Working with Captions on your YouTube Videos

Any video content used for teaching at CUNY SPS should include captions and/or a text transcript to provide access to the video to all users, including those with hearing impairments. Adding captions or creating a transcript is especially easy if you start by working with a script. This page provides a brief introduction to the captioning tool for the videos you have uploaded on YouTube. Note that you can only caption a video that you have uploaded to your own YouTube account; you cannot caption someone else’s video.

Upload Your Video

First, upload the video you’d like to caption to your YouTube channel. See this help page for step-by-step instructions.

Once your file is uploaded into YouTube, you have two options for adding captions:  by editing the automatic captions provided by YouTube or by uploading a file.

Editing automatic captions

YouTube creates automatic captions for all videos (just click the CC button on the bottom of the your video). We don’t recommend you use automatic captions without editing because they tend to be inaccurate, especially regarding names and scientific terminology. To edit the auto-generated captions provided by Youtube, click on “English by Youtube (automatic)”.

Select “Edit on Classic Studio”.

Once here, you can edit the automatic captioning and the timing by clicking on “Edit” on the top-right hand corner. Once done, click on “Save Changes”.

Adding captions from a script

To upload subtitles from a file, go to Details > More Options. Scroll down to “Upload subtitles/CC”.


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