Communication

Captioning

Captions display the dialogue, narration, and sounds of a video program.  Captions can be found on broadcast programs, DVDs, online, or on any other video technology. They are used by viewers who are deaf or hard of hearing, and by people who are learning the language or who benefit from hearing and seeing the content at the same time.

This article explores the basics of captions.  There are other articles here for more specific topics, including how to add captions to a video you are producing.

TVs and Set-top Boxes

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Real-time Transcription

You may be familiar with the use of a sign language interpreter for a public meeting, classroom, or workplace activity.  But many people with hearing loss do not use sign language.  They may need a transcription or captioning service that displays the speaker’s words on a screen, called Communication Access Real-time Transcription or CART.  

A steno typist with special input equipment and a projector or computer monitor interface provides this service.

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Tips for Better Communication in Classrooms and Other Group Settings

Here are some ways to improve speech communication for hard of hearing people in a group situation:

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Assistive Listening Technology

People who are hard of hearing may have trouble hearing a speaker in a public auditorium or meeting room, even if they use hearing aids or have cochlear implants.  Assistive listening technology is a way your organization can improve the quality and volume of the audio delivered to these audience members.  There are many options. 

This article will cover some of the issues and solutions.

The basic idea of assistive listening systems is that the audio signal is collected and transmitted to units that "feed" into a person's hearing aids or cochlear implant.

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Archived News from 2015 and prior

(News is now posted on the ATC Facebook page.)

Here is some old news:,

  • ISTE"s Past Inclusive Learning Network (ILN) Webinars include
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    Comparing the Accessibility and Screen Enhancement Features of Google Android Lollipop 5.0 and Apple iOS 8.1.1 for People with Low Vision

    The AFB has posted a good comparison of the two dominant smartphone operating systems

    "It can be argued that Apple has represented the gold standard of accessibility for some time now. It is reassuring to see Google taking accessibility more seriously with its more recent Android releases that include Magnification Gestures and color inversion."

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    What’s New in AAC

    Monday, September 15, 2014
    3:30 PM Pacific, 6:30 PM Eastern

    The Special Ed. Tech. Center at Central Washington U. presents what you may have missed.

    It’s hard to stay current on “All things AAC” when it is a rapidly changing scene. Any one else dizzy? Join this webinar to get the latest on new AAC devices and new AAC apps. This fast paced, informative webinar will wet your appetite for what’s new and provide resources for you to look further into the AAC systems that catch your eye.

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    Sorting through AAC Options (Apps / Devices): Making Educated Choices

    Thursday, October 23, 2014
    12 PM Pacific, 3 PM Eastern

    AbleNet presents methodology for selecting the best AAC App or an AAC device.

    After you evaluate an individual who would benefit from AAC options, how do you decide which AAC solution best meets the individual’s functional communication needs? This webinar provides resources to help you decide what the optimum solution is, whether it is an AAC App or an AAC device.

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    Smart Phones & Service for the Visually Impaired

    Professor Norm Coombs of EASI has shared articles on a phone and a cell phone provider designed for people with visual impairments. The Project-Ray Smart Phone is an Android device that has simplified features and was reviewed by the AFB.

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