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Public Captioning and Interpreting Requests

As an institution of public accommodation, WVU has a responsibility to ensure that its programming is accessible for individuals with Disabilities.

When creating campus events on-site or online, it is important to plan early to ensure that the final program will be accessible for guests with Disabilities. When hosting events, departments or units are responsible for arranging captioning and interpreting services for the public and for paying the costs associated with provision of these services, except in cases where a student who is registered with OAS requests these services as part of an authorized academic accommodation.

In addition to accommodating students, OAS accepts custom captioning and interpreting requests throughout the year from members of the WVU community for a variety of public events and programs, at a reduced cost. These services may be provided remotely or in person. Custom captioning and interpreting requests are prioritized after authorized student accommodations and are based on consumer need and the availability of service providers. If we are unable to provide services in-house at the requested date and time, OAS is happy to refer members of the WVU community to a reputable outside vendor.

You may use the diagram below to assess your captioning and interpreting needs. OAS is happy to consult with you to help you decide on the best approach and to answer any accessibility questions you may have.

Click the image to expand and/or check out the text-based version of this flow chart.

Advertising Accessibility

Instructions about how to request services must be readily available on the event website and in outgoing correspondence and may not be relegated to the “fine print.” When promoting online and on-campus events, OAS suggests including the following language, which can be used in outgoing correspondence and posted prominently on WVU webpages to inform guests in need of accommodation:

Sign Language Interpreting and Captioning Services are available by request for participants who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing. To request an Interpreter or Captioner please contact NAME OF DEPTARTMENT POINT PERSON at least one week prior to this event.

This information should be made available to potential participants at least 10 days prior to the scheduled start of the event.

The department or unit should not ask guests to identify their Disability or inquire about the nature of their Disability. Departments may include a simple yes or no question on registration forms asking if guests wish to request disability accommodations.

Placing a Custom Request

If you have questions regarding live captioning or interpreting for campus events, please contact Jason Kapcala

When inquiring, please provide the following information:

  1. What is the date(s) of the event?
  2. What is the start time of the event?
  3. What is the end time of the event?
  4. Is the event in-person or virtual/online?
  5. Please provide a description of the event (e.g. content, speakers, etc.)
  6. Has a specific request for captioning or interpreting been made by an attendee, or is this a proactive accessibility measure for the general public?
  7. If a specific request was made, did it come from a WVU student or someone else?
  8. Is there recorded media associated with the event? (i.e. videos shown during the event)

Custom Closed Captioning Requests

All media hosted on a WVU webpage or social media account must include appropriate closed captioning. This includes events that are recorded live and posted at a later date. Professional captions should be posted within one month of upload (and sooner if a viewer specifically requests it).

All pre-recorded media shown at public events on WVU’s campuses must also be shown with closed captioning and cannot be limited to “on demand” or “by request.” This remains true, even if guests are required to register for the event in advance.

In addition to accommodating students, OAS accepts custom closed captioning requests throughout the year from members of the WVU community. These requests are not directly associated with a student’s accommodations. While we cannot guarantee specific turnaround dates, videos will be prioritized by their pending show dates and in most cases will arrive ahead of schedule. Currently, there is no fee for these custom closed captioning requests.

OAS is also happy to provide guidance for individuals who wish to caption their own media. Automated and machine-generated captioning do not meet the standard required for effective public accommodation.

If you have questions regarding closed captioning, please contact Kelly Barnard

When inquiring, please include the following information:

  1. Course or event information, as applicable (e.g., number, section, instructor name and contact info, event info, etc.)
  2. Media URL(s)
  3. Video name(s)
  4. Show date(s) (this will be used to prioritize requests)

Testimonials from our CUSTOMERS

Don't just take our word for it.

I have used captioners to assist with narrative medicine research projects with cancer patients and HIV patients. My team’s attempts to caption patient interviews were arduous and riddled with errors until we found important allies in the Office of Accessibility Services. Their collaboration was essential. They were able to create quick, accurate captions that were eventually shaped into more than 70 patient life stories. The workers took enormous care with this project, and the patients and their families have been grateful for the stories they’ve received.



The West Virginia Association of the Deaf, Inc.(WVAD)used transcribing services at our 2017 Biennial conference. This was the first time WVAD ever offered transcribing services at a conference. The attendees really liked the transcription services provided by West Virginia University’s Office of Accessibility Services (OAS) because it helped them follow the conference so much easier. Also, the nice thing about the transcription services was that we were able to view/read the transcript on the web, smartphone, or tablets, which comes in very handy. The transcribing team was absolutely fantastic at our conference. WVAD would love to have OAS provide transcription services again at our next conference and any events we may have in the future.


Conference Organizer