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Correcting Auto-Captioning

Auto-captions are often such poor quality that content is not accurately communicated to people who depend on captions such as people who are Deaf and hard of hearing. Auto-captions should be corrected to be precise and provide equal access. A redeeming aspect of auto-captions is that they can be used as a starting point for captioning your own videos. YouTube closed-captioning has a rate of 60-70% accuracy while Panopto is 70-75%. The Department of Education is looking for 100% accuracy with spelling, punctuation and description of nondescript audio such as [laughter]. See directions below on how to manually correct your closed captioning for both options.

Steps for Editing Closed Captioning

  • Start the video capture software. It creates captions, but they won’t be accurate enough on their own.
  • Go back and manually edit the text. (Only the owner of YouTube videos can edit the auto-captioning and owners and Administrators can edit in Panopto). This way, you just need to fix the problem spots rather than typing in the entire text.
  • Add appropriate sentence delineation (punctuation and capitalization.)
  • Provide information about significant sound effects. For instance, add descriptions of sound in square brackets (such as [music] or [laughter]) to help people understand what is happening.
  • Make sure the captioning is in sync with the audio.


If you are the video owner, YouTube’s auto-captions can be very useful as a starting point for providing captions. Please note: You can only edit your own Youtube videos. Certain videos that are uploaded to YouTube are good candidates for using their machine-generated captions as a base. If the voices are clear, speaking unaccented English, and there is no music and minimal background noise, auto-captions can get you started.


  • If your captions do exist and have been processed successfully, you will be able to edit each individual caption by clicking the Edit icon next to the caption.
    You can completely delete the caption by clicking the delete trash can icon next to the caption in question.

    Note: At any time while making these edits, you can press Shift+Space to play/pause the session playback, while editing captions.

  • Important: Once you’ve imported/edited your captions, commit the changes by pressing the Publish button on the top right of the Editor or the captions will not save. 


  • Tutorial:  How To Add/Edit/Delete ASR (Automatic Speech Recording)
    Viewing the Captions in the Panopto Player:

    To view the captions and change display properties in the player, Click the CC button.

    CC Button




    Click the Show Captions button to to view captions with the recording.

    Show Captions Button