How To Learn Spanish With Subtitles

Learn a second language with subtitles

Can you improve your language learning skills by simply turning on subtitles?

Subtitles offer many benefits to individuals who are learning a new language and teachers who are teaching a foreign language. While some individuals may use subtitles as their main method of language learning, subtitles are typically used as a way to reinforce what may have already been taught in the classroom.

How can subtitles help to reinforce language learning for students?

With subtitles, students can read what they hear which improves their reading and listening comprehension while also building their phonetic understanding. Studies show that for students who are learning English, for example, it is beneficial to add English subtitles to English language videos in order to build greater phonetic understanding of the language. Students who watch the video with subtitles in their native language don’t show the same improvements in phonetic understanding as those who used English subtitles.

Subtitles also help to improve student’s word recognition and grammar skills. Reading the words that are spoken and seeing the sentence structures helps to visually reinforce what students may have already learned in the classroom. Students can also pause the program to see the grammatical structure of a sentence and recall for themselves verb conjugations and grammatical rules.

When you compare studying flash cards to watching a program with foreign subtitles, the foreign subtitles provide much greater benefits to language learning. Subtitles provide more “real life” language learning experience for students while also engaging them more which can improve their retention of new words and grammatical rules.

How language teachers can use subtitles to help their students:

Language teachers can easily and affordably add subtitles to the videos they create for their students. BroadStream Solutions provides closed captioning and translated subtitling services for teachers to help them provide their students with the best learning experience possible. Pricing starts at only $0.25/minute for same-language closed captioning and $1.67/minute for translated subtitles! Learn more here or send us a message to speak directly with our team.

Tips for learning a new language with the help of subtitles:

  • Keep the videos short. Shorter, entertaining videos will keep your attention and better motivate you to study the words and grammar used. Even though longer videos or movies will provide great learning material, it can feel daunting to sit down and absorb that amount of a new language.
  • Start with videos or a tv series you’ve already watched and loved! You’re more likely to follow along with the foreign language if you’ve already memorized the plot, and if you love the show you’re more likely to stay engaged with the subtitles.
  • For beginners, keep things simple. Put the audio on in your native language and the subtitles in the language you’re learning. This way you can connect what you hear to what you’re reading. Once you feel confident enough, switch the audio over the foreign language as well so you can hear what you read and work on phonetic understanding.
  • Repeat, repeat, repeat. Unfortunately, you can’t just watch one video with subtitles and feel like you finally understand a new language. Learning a new language takes time, and you need to create a habit of watching videos or Netflix series in a foreign language to start to see the benefits over time. Don’t get discouraged if it takes you a while! Keep immersing yourself in reading and listening to the language and over time you’ll come to understand.

Learn about our closed captioning and subtitling services that allow video creators to easily and affordably add captions to their videos! BroadStream Solutions uses advanced ASR technology to create accurate captions that are then edited and quality controlled by professional translators. That way, our captions are highly accurate with fast turnaround times and affordable prices. Help your students make the most out of your language learning videos and add subtitles today!

Why YouTubers need to add captions to their channel.

Benefits of adding captions to your YouTube channel

YouTubers understand the need to create high-quality, engaging videos for their viewers. As a YouTuber, you spend hours coming up with ideas for new content, investing in the resources to create your content, and recording and re-recording to make sure everything is perfect…This is no easy task, and takes more time than people realize.

So what can you do to further optimize your content for search and ensure that it gets in front of your target audience?

One simple way to optimize your YouTube channel is to add proper captions to every video you publish. Read on…

How captions optimize your YouTube channel

YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world. People use YouTube to search for answers to their burning questions, to see “how-to” do something, to learn new skills or hobbies, or to simply just pass the time with entertaining content.

Google uses a special algorithm for YouTube to ensure that when individuals search for various topics, they receive the best results. How does YouTube’s algorithm work? It prioritizes relevance, engagement, and quality when creating the results for a search. Videos with the highest score in these three categories appear at the top of the search results list.

So what can YouTubers do to get the best rankings in these three categories? For starters, they need to create high-quality content with clear audio and good lighting. It’s also important to check the title, tags, and description of the video to make sure it contains relevant keywords for the subject. For a bigger impact on search and relavence, don’t use the free captions option within YouTube…it’s not searchable text. More on this later.

The absolute best way to improve relevance, engagement, and quality scores for videos on YouTube is to include professional captions! Captions and text transcripts allow Google to more easily crawl (read) everything that is said during your video to better analyze your content’s keywords and subject matter. Captions also expand your potential audience and help viewers engage with more of your content, improves your video’s scores, increases your number of views, and helps you to make more revenue per video.

Let’s talk more detail about how captions affect your YouTube videos:

  1. Captions create a wider audience for your videos. Approximately 15% of American adults aged 18 and over report some trouble hearing, which is a large audience that can benefit from added captions to videos. More people visiting your channel and being able to watch your videos in their entirety thanks to subtitles means higher relevance, engagement, and quality scores.
  2. Studies show that over 50% of people use captions on videos. These individuals are more likely to click away from a video or engage less with videos that do not include accurate captions. Remember that not everyone who uses captions are “hard of hearing”. Many individuals use captions to allow them to watch videos with the sound lowered or muted if they are in a public place. Others use captions simply because they enjoy the added clarification of what’s being said on screen.
  3. Captions improve your keyword density, thus improving your search rankings. Caption files (.srt files) are added to videos in text format, so all of the text is used by the search engine to place your videos high on the list when someone searches not only your key words but relevant words in your .srt or caption file. The higher your keyword density, the higher your SEO optimization will be and the more people will be exposed to your content.
  4. Translated subtitles help your videos to rank in different languages. It’s reported that over 60% of video views on YouTube come from non-English speakers. If your videos are in English with no foreign language subtitles, you’re missing out on more than half of everyone using YouTube! Adding foreign language subtitles to your videos means that you now have keywords in foreign languages, boosting your search results in those languages as well.

“So why can’t I just use YouTube automated captions?”

Simply put…because Google doesn’t crawl them! YouTube’s automated captions are not used by search engines to determine your video’s keywords and boost your SEO scores. These automated captions are not helping to improve your search rankings or put your video high on the list when your audience searches for the topic. They also aren’t helping to boost your engagement scores which in turn boost your rankings in search results.

Yes, YouTube automated captions are a free and easy option to add captions to your video, but they aren’t adding any benefit to your channel’s overall performance or growth. Want to grow your channel(s)? Take the step toward professional captions.

How YouTubers Can Add Professional Captions To Their Videos

Adding captions to your YouTube videos is easier and more affordable than you think. You can add captions to your videos by using BroadStream’s closed captioning services! Our team uses the most innovative ASR (automated speech recognition) technology alongside professional translators to create accurate and affordable caption files for video content creators.

For only $0.25/minute, You can add a same language caption file to your video. For $1.67/minute, you can add a translated subtitle file. Accurate captions at affordable prices – to help You improve your channel’s performance and accessibility with every video you caption.

To learn more about our captioning services, visit our page or contact us.

What is ‘Respeaking’?

Respeaking is a common method used to create captions and subtitles in many countries…but what does it mean?

Respeaking is done by a professional “respeaker” to create captions or subtitles for live and pre-recorded programming. The respeaker listens to the program’s audio and repeats what is said into a special microphone (a.k.a speech silencer), being sure to add punctuation and labels to identify speakers and sounds. Speech recognition software is used to convert the speech to text that is used to create a subtitle file for the program. The speech silencer used by the respeaker helps to improve the accuracy of the captions by removing any background noise and confusing sounds.

This method of respeaking requires the use of highly trained professionals who speak clearly, quickly and accurately. Respeakers, or speech-to-text reporters, must listen to the audio, respeak the audio quickly and accurately, and then check the output to make any necessary corrections. All of this must be done quickly, especially for live programming where the captions must appear in time with the live audio.

Due to the vocal strain from respeaking, respeakers are only advised to do 15-minute stints at a time. For live programming, broadcasters must have a team of respeakers ready to rotate throughout the program to ensure that the subtitle accuracy doesn’t decline as the respeaker’s voice becomes strained.

ASR Technology & Respeaking

Advanced Automated Speech Recognition (ASR) technology is quickly becoming an innovative partner to the process of respeaking. ASR technology, when combined with the method of respeaking, helps to improve productivity and the speed in which captions can be created.

Many broadcasters today use a combined ASR-Respeaker method of creating captions in order to ensure that they are fully utilizing their respeaker’s time. Respeakers can work faster and caption more content when using ASR technology as a supplemental tool. This change in workflow improves overall productivity as content producers are able to extend their re-speakers to more projects and use ASR technology as a supplemental tool to speed-up certain tasks or take over when a respeaker needs a break.

Our team works together with broadcasters to help them combine our advanced ASR technology, such as WinCaps or VoCaption Live, with their current method of respeaking to achieve higher productivity levels.

If you’re interested in learning more about our captioning and subtitling software and solutions and how they can benefit your operation, learn more here or contact our team directly. 

FCC vs. ADA Caption Requirements

Are your videos in compliance with FCC and ADA requirements?

Both the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) strive to protect and assist individuals with disabilities. This includes individuals who are hard-of-hearing and their rights to have full access to video programming. To ensure access to video programming, the FCC and ADA have set standards and requirements for closed captioning on live and pre-recorded programming.

Does your programming meet their standards and requirements?

Let’s find out:

FCC Requirements for closed captioning on television –

FCC rules apply to all television programming with captions. The organization states that captions must be accurate, synchronous, complete, and properly placed.

  • The program’s captions must match the spoken words while also displaying the background noises in an accurate manner.
  • Captions must be synced with the audio of the programming. Text must coincide with the spoken words and sounds at the same time and speed.
  • Captions must be included from the beginning of the programming to the end of the programming.
  • Captions should not block any important visuals on the screen, overlap causing difficulty in reading, or run off the screen.
  • It’s important to note that these rules also apply to internet video programming if the “video programming was broadcast on television in the U.S. with captions.”

ADA Compliance Laws for Closed Captioning –

The ADA closed captioning guidelines are targeted towards government institutions, public schools and universities, as well as businesses and non-profit organizations that serve the public. The closed captioning requirements for both television and online internet video content are designed to ensure that captions are being created correctly.

  • Each caption should hold 1-3 lines of text onscreen at a time, and should not exceed 3 lines.
  • Captions should have an accuracy of 99%.
  • The captioning font should be similar to Helvetica
  • Background noises, or non-speech sounds, should be added in square brackets.
  • Punctuation and both lower and upper case letters should be used
  • Captions should reflect slang words used in the audio

You can find more information about the ADA’s captioning regulations from their website linked here.

Are there any exclusions?

It’s important to understand that captioning rules only apply to videos that have been aired on television. If content has never been aired on television, then these rules do not apply. However, although not legally required to have accurate captioning, these videos should still include accurate captions. Why? Because video with captions reach a much wider audience. Videos with accurate captions help individuals who are deaf or experience hearing loss to still enjoy the content. Captions allow individuals who are only able to watch the content with the sound off to still enjoy the video. Captions improve retention rates for videos filled with important information, and deliver a better viewing experience.

Are you following FCC and ADA guidelines? If not, a complaint could be filed against you and legal actions may be taken.

Be safe, avoid potential and unnecessary legal problems by captioning your videos with accurate and correctly placed captions.

To learn more about captioning software that complies with FCC and ADA guidelines, visit our Subtitling & Captioning Page

Guide to adding captions to online courses and eLearning Videos

Now, more than ever, online learning courses are a crucial component of school courses. After the COVID-19 pandemic, learning institutions have been challenged to make their courses and learning materials more accessible online should their students need to stay home instead of coming to the classroom. From university professors to elementary school teachers, everyone is uploading courses and teaching videos to online platforms to make sure that students don’t miss out on their material when they have to stay at home.

All of this material needs to be captioned.


First, students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing need to be able to access these videos as well. According to the American Disabilities Act (ADA), most higher education institutions, including both public and private, must offer closed captioning. Failure to comply with these regulations could lead to serious penalties for the learning institution.

Second, professors must understand that students in the modern world are not always able to study in perfectly quiet environments. Many students are living at home with their families and are constantly surrounded by noise and distractions. Captions help these students to understand what is being said even if they can’t hear every word perfectly due to noisy surroundings.

Another reason for adding captions to eLearning courses is to help improve student’s comprehension, accuracy, engagement, and retention. A study by sought to better understand student’s use of captions when it comes to online learning courses. Amongst the students who said they use closed captioning, “59.1 percent reported that the closed captions in course videos are very or extremely helpful, and an additional 29 percent said they were moderately helpful.” This is after the survey found that over 50% of students without any hearing disabilities use closed captions at least some of the time.

Enhance your student’s learning experience and improve their success rates through the use of closed captioning.

Here’s how to add closed captioning to your online and eLearning courses:

Step 1: Have both your video file and its audio file ready to be uploaded. You can use websites such as vlchelp to help create an audio only file from any video.

Step 2: Purchase and download WinCaps Q4.

WinCaps Q4 is BroadStream’s software solution for closed caption and subtitle creation. WinCaps Q4 takes any video or audio file and creates an accurate closed caption file that provides the text as well as timing for captions. These captions can be easily edited to change any wording, punctuation, or spelling. A separate caption file can also be created to easily translate these files into a foreign language.

If you are an educational institution, ask about our special WinCaps Q4 Educational that provides a special license to last the duration of your course.

Step 3: Export the caption file that can then be uploaded on your learning platform alongside the course video. Students will be able to choose whether or not they want to add these captions to the video, providing them with the best personal learning experience.

If you have any questions, reach out to our team online through our contact page. We’ll be happy to answer any questions about how to best add closed captioning to your online courses.

For more information about WinCaps Q4 and it’s various features, visit our WinCaps page.

To learn about our closed captioning services that start at just $0.25/minute, visit our closed captioning services page.

Captions vs. Subtitles

What’s the difference between captions and subtitles?

Many people confuse captions and subtitles. They both appear as text on a television, computer screen or mobile phone while a video is playing, and help individuals understand the speech better. So what is the actual difference between the two?

The basic difference is captions are in the same language as the spoken word on the screen and subtitles are in a different language.

Captions take the speech and display it as text in the same language. Subtitles, on the other hand, are a translation of the speech into different languages. This means that with captions, what you read is what you also hear. With subtitles, what you read is a different language than what you hear.

Captions were originally developed to make television programs more accessible to the deaf community. Individuals with hearing impairments may not be able to fully understand the audio but can follow along with the closed captions to understand what is being spoken.

Closed captions prevent discrimination against people with disabilities and are required by law in many countries including America and all of Europe. Not only do captions benefit the deaf community, but they also make multimedia videos more engaging and accessible. With captions, videos can be played on silent in public areas or noisy rooms. Captions also help viewers to better retain information from university lectures, training videos, conference meetings, live events, and so much more.

Subtitles, on the other hand, were originally developed to make television viewing more accessible to viewers who don’t speak the same language as the audio in the program. Videos and TV programs can now be shared across the world with the help of subtitles. Although the speech remains in one language, individuals can add their foreign language, if available, using subtitles to better understand what is being said. Subtitles not only make multimedia more accessible across languages, but also help individuals who are trying to learn a new language. Statistics show that adding subtitles in a foreign language can help individuals learn a new language by watching the words and phrases pop-up on the screen. Subtitles also offer benefits for the deaf and hard-of-hearing who seek to access videos in foreign languages as well.

Both subtitles and captions make multimedia videos and television programs accessible across the world. Video content is quickly invading social media platforms and videos are becoming much more important in education and business environments.

Every video you create should have captions or subtitles to improve engagement, accessibility and retention for all viewers regardless of their hearing situation.

Check out our Captioning & Subtitling Software to learn more about what these technologies can do for you.

A Brief History of ASR Technology

A Brief History of ASR Technology

Did you know that the first ASR Technology was invented in 1952?

ASR stands for Automated Speech Recognition. This technology uses machines (computers) instead of humans to convert speech to text for captions, subtitles, transcripts and other documentation.

One of the earliest projects that can be considered an ASR technology was developed in 1952 by researchers at Bell Laboratories. They called this technology “Audrey” and it could only recognize spoken numerical digits. A few years later in the 1960’s, IBM engineered a new technology called Shoebox which, unlike Audrey, could recognize arithmetic commands as well as digits.

Later in the 1970’s, a new model of ASR was developed called the Hidden Markov Model. In brief, this ASR speech model used probability functions to transcribe what it determined to be the correct words. Although the original technology was not very efficient nor accurate, about 80% of the ASR technology currently being used today derives from this original model.

So how did these technologies evolve into the ASR software that we know today?

In the 1970’s, various groups began to take speech recognition technology more seriously. The U.S Department of Defense’s ARPA, for example, began the Speech Understanding Research program which funded various research projects and led to the creation of new ASR systems. In the 1980’s, engineers began taking the Hidden Markov Method seriously which led to a huge leap forward in the commercial production of more accurate ASR technologies. Instead of trying to get computers to copy the way humans digest language, researchers began using statistical models to allow computers to interpret speech.

This led to highly expensive ASR technologies being sold during the 90’s which thankfully became more accessible and affordable during the technology boom in the 2000’s.

Nowadays, ASR technologies continue to grow and develop to constantly improve accuracy, speed, and affordability. The need for humans to check the accuracy of these technologies is decreasing, and the availability of ASR technology across all industries is spreading. No longer is ASR considered to be only useful for broadcast TV. The importance of this technology is being explored by universities, school systems, businesses, houses of worship, and much more.

What first began as a technology to recognize numerical digits has now developed into a highly advanced system of recognizing hundreds of languages and accents in real-time. BroadStream continues to innovate and improve upon ASR products to create systems that are accurate, easy to install and run, and affordable across various industries.

Our VoCaption and SubCaptioner solutions, provide real-time live captioning and on-premise, file-based captioning that saves time and money when compared to using human captioners and increases video accessibility and engagement. To learn more about these solutions, please visit our Captioning & Subtitling page!