Education

The most popular accessibility stories of 2015

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As the year comes to a close, here’s a look back at some of the most popular articles and events regarding consumer accessibility across the web, digital technology, education, TV, video, cinema, arts, policy and research in 2015.


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CAP THAT! recap

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In June 2015, we launched our annual CAP THAT! campaign with a simple message: turn the captions on when watching video content in class. This year we focused on the significance of using captions to benefit even more students, including students with English as an Additional Language, those who have reading difficulties, children on the autism spectrum, as well as students who are Deaf or hearing impaired. Amongst Australian schools nationwide, this equates to over one million kids in total.

CAP THAT! captioned for learning logo


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Captions: essential for learning

This downloadable brochure is available for teachers, librarians and teachers of the Deaf to use and share, explaining how captions provide literacy, learning and accessibility benefits for all students. Available information includes:


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Several hundred million reasons captions boost literacy

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The use of captions to help with literacy is supported by a range of studies and approaches. As we approach National Literacy and Numeracy Week and the culmination of the CAP THAT! campaign, we contrast two studies on captions and literacy—a small-scale American study and a massive program in India targeting hundreds of millions.

Key attached to keychain with the word 'literacy'


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Including captioning for excursions

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The principles of CAP THAT! don’t have to stop at the school gate. There are options for including captioning as part of an excursion; it just requires a little research and planning beforehand.

Teacher and six primary school students standing outside a building


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How does captioning help with inclusive education?

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Inclusive education is an expectation for any student enrolled in a mainstream school, which is the case for the vast majority of Australian school students who have a disability.

Teacher and four primary school students using a laptop


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Parents support captions in the classroom

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Parents are a key ally in providing a supported captioning experience, according to Kate Kennedy from Parents of Deaf Children (PODC), the NSW-based parent organisation providing support, information and advocacy services to families of children with hearing loss.

Father and son sitting on a sofa using a laptop together

While the focus of the organisation is on supporting families, it often works with schools and classroom teachers to ensure they are aware of the needs of deaf children in the classroom.


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Captioned video and transcripts – ideal access and teaching combination

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For students with diverse learning needs, the use of captioned content in the classroom is the best way to gain access to context and information for learning experiences using media. When captions are not available, the fall-back position for teachers has often been the use of transcripts.

Student writing the word 'plant' on an interactive whiteboard, alongside the words Irrigation, gardener, farmer, water, soil and fertilising. The caption reads 'will consolidate your message.'


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Five key captioning roles for specialist educators

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Specialist education roles, such as Itinerant or Supporting Teachers of the Deaf, have a strategic and practical role in promoting the use of captions in school.

Smiling teacher standing in a classroom, holding a folder in her right hand

Five key roles you can play are:

1. Broadening the reach of access services to others


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Choosing captioned options is an essential first step

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In many subjects, students (and teachers) have a choice about which texts or resources to study. For students who use captions, it makes sense to choose texts or resources that have captioned film versions available.

Finger pointing to the text "English Captions: Yes [Descriptive subtitles for the hearing impaired]" on the back of a DVD box


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