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Student Disability Resource Center

Sign Language and Captioning

Sign language interpreters, closed captioning, and transcripts are just a few accessibility tools that the university community may rely on to receive information effectively.

Sign Language- Why it Matters

Effective communication, inclusive design, providing access, and fostering participation are key reasons why sign language and sign language interpreters are important, and necessary to assist students in meeting their educational goals, and to benefit the campus and community.

Per the National Deaf Center,

  • Effective communication affords deaf people the ability to share and/or receive information in a manner that is successful for them.
  • Administrators and professionals at academic institutions can foster a culture that is inclusive and accommodating of diverse people
  • The role of the interpreter is to provide both hearing and deaf people with equal access to information and interactions.

Sign language is the foundation of the Deaf Community's cultural identity. This allows Deaf individuals to communicate and express, connect, and participate fully in the campus and community setting and environment.

Request a Sign Language Interpreter or Real-Time Captioning

Complete this form to request a sign language interpreter and/or captioning for a university event.

Sign Language Interpreter / Captioning Request Form

Captioning and Transcripts- Why they Matter

Please consult with the campus Digital Accessibility Team for guidance and assistance regarding captioning guidance, how-to's, resources, and assistance. (Note: The information below is taken from the Digital Accessibility Captioning & Transcriptions webpage.)

Captioning & Transcripts
Producing accurate captions and transcripts is an important step to ensure everyone has the opportunity to engage with your video or audio content.

Why Do We Need Captions?
Captions and transcripts provide a text version of audio information so that people who would not be able to hear or process the audio can still have access to the information. 

Many people benefit from captions, including those who:

  • Are deaf or hard of hearing.
  • Have an auditory processing disorder.
  • Prefer to read captions due to the way they learn and absorb content.
  • Are non-native speakers.
  • Are trying to listen in a noisy environment.
  • Are having trouble understanding the speaker for any reason.

Please consult with the Digital Accessibility folks here on campus. Not only can captioning be important for the receiver, but captioning correctly can be equally as important to the receiver and content provider (i.e. spacing, blocking necessary content, open vs. closed captions for videos shown to groups/ individual use, etc.…). 

Video: Improving Access to Postsecondary Education from the U. of Washington (used with consent).

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