The Easiest Way to Caption Blackboard Collaborate Videos

November 25, 2019 BY ELISA LEWIS
Updated: May 1, 2020

puzzle pieces

Blackboard Collaborate gives educators the opportunity to virtually reach and engage with learners.

Aside from having great content, one way to improve user engagement is to caption videos. Captions are time-synchronized text that represent the audio in a video.

There are many benefits to captioning your Blackboard Collaborate video, including accommodating d/Deaf and hard of hearing students, giving viewers flexibility in sound-sensitive environments, and improving the user engagement.

If you’re looking to take your videos to the next level with closed captions, you’ve come to the right place! 3Play Media has a round trip automatic captioning integration with Blackboard Collaborate. You can easily auto-generate closed captions for Blackboard Collaborate recordings right from your account.

The following steps will cover how to set up an integration through Blackboard Collaborate, how to start the actual process of auto-generating captions with 3Play, and some best practices for accurate captions.


How to Setup an Integration with Blackboard Integration

In order to begin this process, you must have both a 3Play Media account and a Blackboard Collaborate account.

Step 1 – Log in to 3Play Media

Open a new browser and log in to your 3Play Media account.

3play media account system log in page

Once you log in, you’ll need to create a project-level API key.

  • Go to Settings at the top right-hand corner of the page
  • Click APIv3 Access Management on the left-hand side to create your API key

APIv3 access management

  • Name the key, enable it, and select a Project Name under Access Type
  • Click Create Access

API Key Test page

Please note, admin level or account-wide API keys will not work for this integration.

Step 3 – Submit a Request

The final step is to submit a request for an integration setup with your Blackboard rep. Once the project-level 3Play Media API Key is created, go to your Blackboard account and submit a case to complete the integration. A representative from Blackboard will integrate the API Key so 3Play will be linked to your Blackboard Collaborate account.

How to Add Captions to Your Recordings

cc for closed captions

Captions allow your content to reach a larger audience so you can connect with all learners.

Once the integration is set up, you can simply auto-generate closed captions for your Blackboard recordings.

Currently, only automatic captions are available with this integration. However, if you would like for your recording to go through the full 3Play process with human editors, we recommend upgrading to a full transcription in your 3Play Media account. Once the upgrade is complete, you may download the 3Play captions file and manually add it to your Blackboard recording.

Step 1 – Log in to Blackboard Collaborate

Open a new browser and navigate to your Blackboard Collaborate login page.

Blackboard Collaborate log in page

Step 2 – Select Recordings

  • From Collaborate scheduler, select Recordings to find the recording you want to be captioned.
  • Find the recording and open the Recording Options

Step 3 – Generate Captions

Lastly, you’ll want to select the recording and click the CC button to reveal a dropdown menu.

  • Click Auto-Generate Captions

Upon completion, the automatic captions will automatically post back to the recording within a couple of hours. At most 24 hours. auto generate captions page

Please note, the Blackboard Collaborate integration is still in beta mode, however, it is useable.

Best Practices for Automatic Captions


Before using automatic captions, it’s important to keep in mind some best practices before recording. 3Play’s typical captioning process utilizes both technology and human editors to ensure a 99% accuracy rate. However, with automatic captions, no humans are used in this process. Therefore, the accuracy rate may fall between 80-90% accuracy. In order to increase accuracy, follow these tips:

  • Good audio quality
  • Little to no background noise
  • Single speaker
  • Clear speech and pronunciation

caption your blackboard collaborate videos!

3play media logo in blue

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