Adding captions to your videos is an excellent way to improve the accessibility of your courses. You can add captions in your native language to make your content accessible to students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing. You can even open up your business to new markets by adding captions in other languages!
From your Video Library, you can easily upload closed caption files (SRT files) for the videos that you have hosted with Thinkific. Read on for more information!
In this article:
Creating SRT Files
First, you'll need to have your subtitles in SRT file format. You can create these files yourself (please follow Wistia's instructions for that). Or, save yourself some time and hire an experienced freelancer to do it for you (e.g. via Upwork).
Here's a screenshot of an example SRT file, to give you an idea of the formatting you're looking for.
Note: You can upload multiple SRT files to the same video, meaning that you can add captions in as many languages as you like!
Uploading SRT Files
Once you have your SRTs, find the file you'd like to add captions to in your Video Library and select Edit:
Note: The search bar will make it easier to find the right video if you have lots of files.
Navigate to the Captions tab and hit Upload.
Follow the on-screen instructions to select the correct SRT file(s), then hit Upload.
You'll be prompted to Select language for the file from a drop-down list. The language you choose will be what's displayed to the user when selecting to switch on the captions.
Once you've done that, select Save and that's it!
Your captions will now be available as an option when the student selects the CC icon on the video player to switch on subtitles.
Note: You can also select to Auto-show closed captions. When enabled, this means your closed captions will be turned on by default for the viewer. Additionally, we'll check their browser settings and, if they have a language chosen that matches one of your available closed caption files, we'll show them that language by default. This is especially useful if you're expecting that a large number of your users will need closed captions enabled, making life easier for your students!
Managing Your Captions
Now that you have closed caption files added to your video, you might want to update or remove them. That's no problem at all!
Downloading Caption Files
Use this to option to download an SRT file that you previously uploaded. This makes it easy to perform quick edits to your existing files and reupload without needing to wonder where you saved them last time.
Deleting Caption Files
If you don't want to keep an old closed caption file, you can delete it. This will make sure that this file no longer shows up as an option for your video viewers. Click on the three dots you see next to the Download option and you'll see the option to delete appear.
If you have any errors when uploading your SRT file, try the troubleshooting steps below:
- Remove any spaces included in the file name
- Confirm there are spaces before and after the arrows that separate the caption timecodes (and add them in if they're missing)
- Remove any HTML text formatting; caption files should be in plain text with no styling
- Confirm the timecodes start at 00:00:00:00 (some captioning programs use timecodes that start at 01:00:00:00 by default)
If the issue continues, please reach out to us here with your SRT file attached as well as the name of the video you are uploading to.
If your students are having trouble viewing closed captioning on their devices, you can suggest the troubleshooting steps below:
- Our general browser troubleshooting steps are a great place to start
- Make sure devices meet the system requirements and supported browsers
- For mobile devices, test viewing the video as minimized and maximized (fullscreen) in the Thinkific Course Player; some mobile devices hide closed captioning when videos are maximized