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Services for Students with Disabilities

Working with Real-Time Captioning Services

Students walking across campus

The office of Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) offers Sign Language Interpreter services for students regisistered with SSD and for campus events. Below are tips for working with a Deaf or Hard of Hearing (D/HH) students and Real-Time Captioners (RTC). More information is provided below on the working with Sign Language Interpreters, please contact the SSD office by email at or by phone at 559-278-2811 for more information.

  • Real-Time Captioners (RTC) transcribe all communication content that is said in class into a written format; words are displayed on a laptop screen or iPad for the student with the use of a stenotype system.
  • The RTC may need to be seated near the student. 
  • The RTC may sit at a designated table on a level surface, or near the end of an aisle and have access to an electrical outlet.
  • When distributing handouts, please include the captioner(s) and provide access to any class materials beforehand so they can prepare adequately. 

  • Communicate directly to the student. 
    • Avoid using third person language when communicating with the student. For example, “Tell him/her/them…” 
  • Speak at a normal speed and tone without over-enunciating words or speaking more loudly. 
  • When reading out loud in class, please be mindful of the pace since there is a tendency to talk faster while reading.
  • If there is a class discussion, help moderate the pace so the student has an opportunity to participate. There are a few seconds of a delay between what you say and when the student receives the content.

  • Please be mindful of the lighting in the room so that access is not disrupted.
  • Please refrain talking with your back to the students to a minimum (e.g., writing on the whiteboards while lecturing).  This muffles clarity and auditory access to the information for all participants/students.
  • Please encourage students to be mindful of the RTC’s equipment and carefully work around the placement of the RTC during group activities for safety purposes.
    • Please be mindful of the RTC’s placement during group work since the RTC equipment would need to be set up each time it is relocated.

Any videos watched in class should be closed captioned and accessible for D/HH students. Please contact the Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) by phone at 559-278-6892, or visit the CSU, Fresno's campus Accessibility website for any additional support. 

Please note: If there are any questions about working with an Real-Time Captioners, please ask the student or assigned Real-Time Captioner(s). 

For more information, please visit SSD’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or contact the SSD office by email at or by phone at 559-278-2811 for more information.