REFERENCE: King, C.M & Short, D.D. (1994, July). Using digital captions to improve literacy in multimedia environments. Paper presented at the National Educational Computing Conference, Boston, MA.
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CONTEXT: This paper compares analog and digital captioning and focuses on several advantages of digital captioning for several student populations, including students who are deaf and hard-of-hearing, learning-disabled, and students learning English as a second language.
DESCRIPTION: Today, captions seen on television, educational and entertainment videos, and videodiscs are analog. Two limitations of analog captions are a single available font and the inability for the captions to remain on the screen when the video is in pause. In addition, viewers have no control over any aspects of the captions, such as display rate, placement on the screen or size. Digital captions can overcome these limitations. Digital captions can be available with any medium that is digital, including CD-ROM, CD-Audio and Digital Video. With digital captions, users can change the caption format, including font style, size and color, and background color. More important, users can change the language in the captions themselves, a potentially powerful tool for teachers. Digital captions may also be linked to other information, such as a glossary. The new capabilities made possible when digital media become more widespread will give both teachers and students new tools for literacy development and language learning.
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