How to Caption in Arc

Arc is a feature integration in Canvas, the Learning Management System that Iowa State University is using.  Arc is a tool that provides automated captioning to videos.  While this is a feature that YouTube also has, Arc provided captions are generally more correct and include punctuation and capitalization as well.  While auto generated captions from both Arc and YouTube will still need to be edited for correctness, the captions provided by Arc are generally closer to the end result that you are looking for, leading to less work for you!

To start using Arc to caption your videos, follow the instructions below.

Step 1: Go to https://iowastate.instructuremedia.com/login

Step 2: Choose the Canvas Login button on the Arc sign-in page.

Arc sign in screen

Step 3: Sign in with your net-id and password.  

NOTE: If you have trouble signing in using this method, follow Steps 4-6.  If you did not have any issues, continue to Step 7.

Step 4: Go to https://canvas.iastate.edu 

Step 5: First time users need to create a course, follow the detailed instructions for creating a course.

Step 6: Once you have created a course or are enrolled in a course, you can click the Arc icon on the left hand side of the Canvas dashboard.


On the Arc Account Dashboard


Step 7: In the right-hand corner of the screen, click the ADD icon.

Add Video Icon

Step 8: Drag and Drop video files or Browse to the video file to upload them.

Drag and Drop or Browse for Video files to upload

Step 9: After the file finishes uploading, open the file by clicking on it.

Step 10: You should see your video with several tabs below it.  Click on the Captions tab.

Video Properties with the Captions tag selected

Step 11: Under Captions Request, select the language that the video was recorded in, then click Request.

Select the language of the video to request captions

Step 12: Depending on the length of your video, it could take some time for captions to be generated.  Next to the language you selected for captions, it will say Queued until the captions are ready.

Step 13: When the Review & Publish button is visible, your captions are ready to be reviewed. 

Review and Publish Captions

Step 14: Click on Review & Publish and your captions for the video will appear underneath the video.  You need to double check the captions for accuracy.  You can click on and edit any sentence.  After you edit a sentence, it saves automatically.

Review the captions for accuracy

Step 15: Click the green Publish button when you have reviewed the captions and they are perfected.

Step 16: You should now be returned to the video page.  Under Manage Captions, click the 3 dots to the right of the language selected and select Download. 

Download the published captions

Step 17: This will prompt a download of a zip file that includes two .srt files (latest and original).  Rename the "latest.srt" file following the naming convention: "filename.[language code]_[country code].srt" (ex: filename.en_US.srt).  Upload the file to YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, etc to add your video captions there.


Any published videos should include closed captioning that is appropriately edited to relay the correct information.  If you need assistance in getting your Extension and Outreach videos closed captioned, please contact jfindlay@iastate.edu.

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