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Edited Captions

Arthur and Edited Captions
To further expand the reach of WGBH's hit children's series Arthur, PBS is now broadcasting the program with two streams of closed captions for viewers who are deaf or hard of hearing: original, near-verbatim captions and edited captions. Intended for elementary school-aged children who are not yet fluent readers and cannot make use of the program audio, edited captions present simplified language and shorter sentences at a slower rate.

Edited captioning was developed by the Media Access Group at WGBH. Edited captions on Arthur are provided by the Media Access Group and are funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

My clothes will catch on fire?
Verbatim caption: Wait a minute, when am I going to be on fire?

Wait a minute, when am I going to be on fire?
Edited caption: My clothes will catch on fire?

What are the goals of edited captions on Arthur?
  • To assist children who are deaf or hard of hearing and have basic reading skills, but are not yet fluent readers (and therefore cannot read verbatim captions)
  • To decrease the effort required to read the captions and to increase the likelihood that children will do so
  • To help children understand the story independently and succeed in reading captions
  • To enhance children's enjoyment of the program
  • To serve as a step toward reading the original, verbatim captions
  • To provide a fun and motivational way for children to practice their reading skills
  • To give children more time to process the program video and to incorporate it into their understanding of the story
  • To help children learn new words and/or word meanings by balancing new and familiar words (Research indicates that, for independent readers, only five percent of the words they encounter should be new. Because children cannot control the pace of captions in the same way that they can control how quickly they read print, even fewer words should be unfamiliar.)
  • To help children appreciate the value and importance of captions in their lives

How can edited captions be accessed?
Like near-verbatim closed captions, edited captions are available through most caption-ready televisions and set-top decoders. Viewers can choose the desired level of captioning or switch between them easily with their remote controls and onscreen menus, selecting "CC1" for original captions and "CC2" for edited captions. Viewers may check their TV manual for additional information on how to access edited captions.

Now watch Arthur and give us your feedback.
If you're a parent or teacher, we'd like to get your feedback on the value and effectiveness of edited captions on Arthur. Please fill out one of the following questionnaires, and let us know. As you watch Arthur with your children or students, please keep in mind that Arthur is written for a listening audience, while both edited and original captions are written for a reading audience.

Parents Enter Here

Teachers Enter Here

Where can I find Arthur online?
For Arthur-related information, games, and activities, as well as resources for parents, teachers, and librarians, visit Arthur's companion Web site at

All characters and underlying materials (including artwork) © Marc Brown.
"Arthur," "D.W." and all of the ARTHUR characters are trademarks of Marc Brown and used with permission. (Show and Web site credits)

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