Closed Captioning to Improve Literacy

Captioning, or Closed Captioning, has a proven track record of improving literacy for learners of all ages. In one randomized study, students who engaged daily in content with “Same Language Subtitling” (SLS) scored significantly higher than students in the comparison condition on the reading comprehension achievement post tests.

Data from PlanetRead has shown that even 30 minutes of weekly exposure to SLS or captioning over 3-5 years enables adults and children with basic familiarity of the alphabet to become functionally literate.  The science underlying SLS and captioning is strong. Eye-tracking research has established that SLS causes an automatic and inescapable read-along response. Early-readers, when exposed to SLS or captions, try to read along, and in the process find their reading skills improving.

This free and simple tool is available to parents, educators, and anyone trying to help someone improve their reading skills! Closed Captioning is available on most devices including TV, Digital Cable, Satellite, DVD’s and many internet video channels such as YouTube.  Simply turn on this feature and captions become immediately available.  In addition, many educational video sites and organizations with digital content provide Closed Captions on their content.

Maybe this idea of using closed captioning is new to you, maybe it’s not.  This is just one example of a menu of strategies that will be offered at AssisTechKnow 2016. Maybe you are an experienced educator looking for new ideas and strategies, or simply looking to build your toolkit of approaches, or you just want to find new tools and techniques for your increasingly diverse student groups. Universally designed solutions (UDL) help all students succeed. If you are tired of sitting through “one size fits all” PD, you should attend AssisTechKnow 2016 professional learning opportunity!

This one-of-a-kind, two-day conference is scheduled for October 20 & 21 at Kent ISD. AssisTechKnow is packed with options for learning and innovation for all types of classrooms populated by all types of students.  In fact, it’s the only conference of its kind in the state of Michigan!  For only $20 per day, you will have access to:

  • Over 40 breakout sessions with 60 minute, 90 minute, half-day and full day options
  • Hands-on, ready to implement learning opportunities that are sure to ignite your work with students
  • In-depth learning with national expert Mike Marotta, building your Google Chrome toolkit and becoming a Connected Educator
  • A host of Featured Speakers from across the region and the state
  • All new Maker Space of low tech through higher tech solutions
  • Over 15 exhibitors and vendors demonstrating the most current solutions
  • Goodie bags for every participant – loaded with gifts, and of course snacks!
  • Over 100 AMAZING door prizes, thanks to generous sponsors including Michigan CEC, Alt+Shift, and Comprehensive Therapy Center

General educators, special educators, itinerant providers,  and administrators will be customizing their own learning over one or both days of AssisTechKnow!

  • Video Supports for Comprehension
  • Navigating Formative Assessment with Digital Tools
  • Chrome as AT
  • The Accessible Mobile Device
  • Adapt, Differentiate and UDLize with Google Slides
  • Dying for Donations?  Let Us Help You The Donor’s Choose Way
  • Is Anybody Listening?  Test and Assignment Reading Accommodations That Work
  • Don’t Panic – eOrganize!
  • Five Simple Ways to Use Augmented Reality
  • Soar With Symbaloo
  • Video Modeling in Special Education
  • Bookshare – Beginner and Advanced
  • Becoming a Connected Educator
  • Supporting Students Who Use AAC
  • Collecting IEP Data with Google Forms
  • Designing Switch Accessible Environments
  • Low Tech vs. High Tech for the SXI Student

And this is just a sample of the sessions you will be able to experience at AssisTechKnow.  Find the full schedule and links to registration at  Don’t miss this UDL and Assistive Technology Extravaganza – right here at Kent ISD!

This blog post was written by Kindy Segovia, Assistive Technology Coordinator for Kent ISD; and, it was edited by Amanda Walma, Professional Learning Coordinator at Kent ISD.

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