Subtitles, or captions, are mostly known in the mainstream as a means to translate the dialogue that is being spoken in a video. This usually happens in television or cinema, but did you know that you can increase your online video viewing by as much as 40% just by using subtitles*?
Whether your academy is already up and running or you are still planning on how to get there, subtitles – even in the same language as the audio - have many advantages that you should take into consideration when planning to launch, or improve, your online courses.
1. Reach an international audience
Let’s start with an obvious reason: internationalization. You can record your courses in your company’s official language and then use subtitles to translate the content to other languages, allowing you to reach all of your students with the same content.
Not only does this ensure that you can use your budget elsewhere, since you will only be recording your courses once, for a single language, but it also means that everyone is watching the same content with the same look and feel. You won’t have to compromise the consistency of your content to increase its reach.
This is especially beneficial if you do not have the budget to record the same course in other languages.
2. Increase your students' focus and retention
It makes sense to use subtitles to translate your content, but did you consider using same language subtitles for content in your official language as well? Consider, for example, that your video training is in English. Students that know English as a second language will benefit greatly from same language subtitles, since it will be easier for them to follow along with the speech.
Even native speakers can benefit from them since they eliminate comprehension issues such as dialogue that is spoken too fast, with a strong accent, or with enunciation mistakes. You can also alleviate any sound problems that went by unnoticed during recording and clarify any mentions of full names, brand names or technical terms.
3. Accessibility and Inclusivity
During their training, your students may find themselves in situations where they need to watch your videos muted. This may be because they are sharing their workspace with other colleagues and don’t have headphones available, or simply because their environment is too noisy for them to clearly listen to the audio. Remember, sometimes students go back to courses they previously completed just to recap small bits of information, and their location at that time may not be the best.
Subtitles not only help solve this issue but also allow for the inclusivity of any students that are hard of hearing, hearing impaired, or have a hard time keeping up with your training due to learning disabilities. Your training should be accessible to everyone, anywhere, at any time.
There are many advantages to adding subtitles to your courses. They can help you reach a wider audience, increase knowledge retention and your students’ engagement with your academy, and ensure that anyone can take advantage of your courses. They can even draw the attention away from a distracting presenter or alleviate subpar recording conditions and audio issues.
By using bugle training platform, you can easily add subtitles to your videos by creating a simple text file, in VTT format.
Learn more about how to create an effective online course in this free certification course at the bugle Academy (subtitles available, of course), or this eBook, both developed by our Digital Learning Solutions team.
You may also find interesting:
What is instructional design and why you should care about it (article)
How to encourage lifelong learning among your employees (article)
How to make knowledge sharing effective and scalable in your company (article)
How to identify knowledge gaps in your team (article)
Why Thought Leadership matters (article)
Would you like to learn more about how bugle can help?