AHEAD: Association for Higher Education Access & Disability
Creating inclusive environments in education & employment for people with disabilities.


Google Slides – Closed Captions as you Present. 

Cost: Free with your Gmail Account | Platforms: Google Slides is available for all platforms - web, Android and Apple. 

G Suite is part of your Gmail account and can be part of some Educational Organisations and Workplaces. If so, there is a tool available called ‘Google Slides’ and it allows you to present online in your browser. It is ideal for presenting, especially using the closed captions feature, to a group of people who can benefit from seeing your dialogue being converted into text in the presentation. 

When you present slides, you can turn on automatic captions to display the speaker's words in real time. 

Most useful for: When presenting to a group with diverse needs such as English as a second language, hard of hearing or have dyslexia then it may help the group to engage in the content of the presentation. 

How do I switch on the Closed Captions feature: 

  • Your Microphone: To use captions with Google Slides, your computer microphone needs to be on and working. Devices and microphones vary, so check your computer manual for instructions. Microphone settings are typically in the System Preferences on a Mac, or the Control Panel on a PC. Google Slides can use the computer’s microphone or an external microphone paired with the computer. 

  • Make sure you are connected to the Internet.  

  • Open your presentation in Google Slides. 

  • To start presenting, go to ‘View’ and click ‘Present’. 

  • To turn on captions, click CC (this is found in the menu at the bottom of your slide when you are in Presenter mode). If this menu disappears just roll you mouse over the bottom of your Slide. 

  • As you speak, captions appear at the bottom of the screen. Captions don't include punctuation. 

  • To change text position or size, next to “CC” click the drop-down menu 

  • Captions are not stored.

where to find the closed caption tool in Google slides - on the bottom of the slide when in present mode.

Our Top Tips: 

  • The quality of closed captions can vary for several reasons. These can include a poor microphone, a room with an echo or if the presenter has a strong accent. 
  • Take time to try the closed captions feature – speak clearly and confidently and will help the accuracy of the captions. 
  • At first, captions can seem distracting but over time you get familiar with them on the screen.

Demonstration of closed Captions in PowerPoint in Action 

Video source: Google Workspace YouTube channel 

Go to the Google Website for more information> 

Advice about Closed Captions and Presentations:  

  • If you are a student in Higher Education, speak to your Assistive Technology Officer or Disability Officer /Learning Support Officer.  

  • If you are a Student in the FET/ETB then it may be possible to speak to an Educational Needs Coordinator, Learning Support Coordinator, Student Access Officer, Student Support Coordinator or a Disability Support Officer for more information about assistive technology.  

  • If you are an Employee and are interested in this technology then speak to your Disability Liaison Officer (public service) or your Line Manager to start the conversation. 

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Creating Inclusive Environments in Education and Employment for People with Disabilities

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