Edit Captions on Your Computer for a Kaltura Video


All videos that Kaltura ingests are automatically given "machine captions": captions generated by a computer program that provide generally no less than 70% accuracy. Kaltura users can edit these or any captions attached to an entry. 

These instructions apply to all Kaltura users at UCSD with active directory credentials (instructors, students, staff, etc.). 

Captions can be edited in both Canvas and MediaSpace. Note that while this tutorial will walk you through how to download your captions and edit them on your computer, Kaltura also does offer the ability to edit captions with their web-based editor.

Critical Concepts

What are Captions?

Captions are the textual representation of spoken dialogue, narration, or relevant audio information that display on screen during a video. While their primary purpose is to make the video more accessible to viewers that may have difficulty hearing, captions benefit many viewers and address a wide variety of learning styles.

Though captions can be "burned into" a video during postproduction (that is, edited directly into the video, rendering them unremovable), generally captions are contained within a separate text file that's formatted in a particular way. Timecodes within the file tell the player when to display the text on screen.

Captions are technically different from transcripts. The latter typically refers to a raw text file just containing the text without any timecodes.

Things to Keep in Mind

Steps to Take

You can download and edit your captions in both Canvas and MediaSpace. In either case, you'll need to get to "My Media." Follow the instructions in the table below depending on where you want to download your captions.

In CanvasIn MediaSpace
  1. Log into Canvas.
    1. Go to https://canvas.ucsd.edu
    2. Enter your active directory credentials.
  2. Within Canvas, click My Media in the left navigation.
  1. Log into MediaSpace.
    1. Go to https://mediaspace.ucsd.edu
    2. Click the profile icon at the top right of the page and select Login.
    3. Enter your active directory credentials.
  2. Click the profile icon again and select My Media.
  1. Locate the video in question and click the pencil icon on its row.
  2. Click the Captions tab below the video preview.
  3. On the row with your captions, click the icon with the downward arrow, and the caption file will download to your computer.

An annotated screenshot highlighting the captions download button.

  1. Open the caption file with a basic text editor. Most operating systems have a free text editor that comes with them, such as WordPad in Windows and TextEdit on a Mac.
  2. Edit your captions.
  3. Save your caption file.
  4. Return to the captions tab for the video by following steps 1-4 above if necessary.
  1. Click Upload captions file.
  2. Browse for the file on your computer, select the language, leave the accuracy at 100%, and give it a label. (The label is what will appear in the player when viewers select the captions they'd like displayed.)
  3. If there are other caption files available that are inaccurate, consider deleting them or disabling them. (See our tutorial on deleting captions or our tutorial on disabling captions if needed.)
  4. If you want the captions you uploaded to be the default captions that display when viewers watch the video, click the checkmark on its row.

An annotated screenshot highlighting the "upload captions" button.

Your edited captions will be available in the player immediately, and will also display in the transcript widget.

If you still have questions or need additional assistance, feel free to contact us at kaltura@ucsd.edu.