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Community Member

Is it possible to add closed-captioning to a YouTube video in Arc?

I uploaded a YouTube video into Arc and I am not able to add closed captioning.  Will it be possible to add CC to YouTube videos uploaded into Arc?

8 Replies
Community Contributor

Last we heard from the Arc team (this was at InstructureCon 2018) the terms of service for YouTube were such that they were not able to add this feature. So as it stands, YouTube videos can't be fed into the auto-captioner within Arc.

However, if you can obtain an actual .mp4 file of a YouTube video and upload that to Arc, you can add that file to Arc, generate captions, edit the captions, and then download the .srt file. You can then add that .srt file to the actual YouTube video within Arc to give it captions. It's roundabout, and you want to make sure you are authorized to get a copy of the YouTube video, but it can work in dire circumstances.

Thank you for your feedback.  We may end up using this "roundabout" for some instances.

Community Participant

That does work, but not something I think most of us will use on a regular basis.  Hopefully, they will get it figured out in the future.

Community Participant

We follow a similar workflow that Andrew mentioned. There are some Firefox Add-Ins that might be helpful to get the .mp4 file. (We only use this in cases where we have a stated need for accommodation for a student and strongly encourage our faculty to try to source similar content that does have captions first.)

Easy YouTube Video Downloader Express

Community Participant

We are required by law to have closed-captions on ALL videos, not just by request. We are piloting Studio now but will not recommend that it is used with YouTube videos unless instructors can follow the workaround steps (which they won't).

Hello! Not exactly what you're asking for if you need autogenerated, but I actually was able to add an srt caption file to a youtube video in Video Studio (was called Arc). You can search for the youtube video by URL in Studio. Then when you go into edit the video, you can click on the caption tab, then english, then add the srt file. It was actually the only solution I could find that would let us join a youtube video that we hadn't downloaded and an srt file, so this was a good solution for us in this case. 

Community Participant

Hi  @l_sudbury ‌, 

Thanks for the workaround. We'll definitely be testing that out. How did you generate the srt file?

Community Contributor

If there are captions on a YouTube video, you can retrieve the transcript by accessing that video on YouTube, and select the three dots and select View Transcript. Select the language you want to use, then copy all the lines and times into a word processor.

Our technology can listen for words in your video and create ~85% accurate captions for media uploaded manually. Videos added through YouTube cannot use this feature.

Supported Languages for Captions

The following is a list of languages supported by Canvas Studio and YouTube. The Canvas Studio interface is only available in English for the time being.

Deutsch (Deutschland)German (Germany)
Deutsch (Österreich)German (Austria)
Deutsch (Schweiz)German (Switzerland)
English (Canada)English (Canada)
English (Ireland)English (Ireland)
English (United Kingdom)English (United Kingdom)
English (United States)English (United States)
Español (España)Spanish (Spain)
Español (Estados Unidos)Spanish (United States)
Español (Latinoamérica)Spanish (Latin America)
Español (México)Spanish (Mexico)
Français (Belgique)French (Belgium)
Français (Canada)French (Canada)
Français (France)French (France)
Français (Suisse)French (Switzerland)
Nederlands (België)Dutch (Belgium)
Nederlands (Nederland)Dutch (Netherlands)
Português (Brasil)Portuguese (Brazil)
Português (Portugal)Portuguese (Portugal)
中文(新加坡)Chinese (Singapore)
中文(简体)Chinese (Simplified)
中文(繁體)Chinese (Traditional)
中文(香港)Chinese (Hong Kong)

If the captions are automatically generated, we recommend that you fine-tune them manually, such as adjusting for proper capitalization and punctuation.


All creators are obligated to take action to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act and other laws. If you publish videos on YouTube, you may want to review your channel settings carefully.