Providing Captions and Transcripts for BBC Bitesize

Mar 18 2021 VITAC
Blue image with the words 'BBC Bitesize' in white across the middle. Cartoon, illustrated pictures of children run across the bottom
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In April 2020, the BBC launched its biggest ever push on education with a 14-week program of content designed to minimize disruption to children’s education and provide rhythm and routine during the coronavirus lockdown. 

The initiative was rolled out rapidly when lockdown came into effect, but the content also needed to pass stringent quality controls so, when it came to choosing a transcription and captioning provider, the BBC needed a reliable vendor.

Take 1, now VITAC, has extensive experience delivering subtitles and transcription data for a number of BBC projects across multiple platforms. As such, the team are familiar with the company’s technical, grammar, and language requirements and are able to support delivery in multiple formats (including .SRT for social and the BBC EBU TTD format for online content.) 

VITAC also has specific experience working on educational programming for the BBC as the company is responsible for providing transcriptions and subtitles for BBC Teach’s short-form content catalogue. BBC Teach is a dedicated teaching resource site which aims to support educators by curating the best BBC videos, clips, and other curriculum-related resources for use in the classroom. The site covers 22 subjects ranging from early years to GCSE/Nationals and Highers, organized by subject and age group, to help teachers deliver lessons. 

For BBC Bitesize Daily, VITAC provided transcripts and captions for hundreds of hours of programming delivered across BBC iPlayer, Red Button, the Bitesize website and app, BBC Four, and BBC Sounds. With three million children taking Bitesize Daily lessons on the first day the service was launched, the project required that VITAC produce transcripts and captions for a high volume of content within a short timeframe; this was enabled by the company’s distributed workforce, supported by their proprietary, cloud-based infrastructure.

We’re really proud of the small part we’ve played (before, during, and after lockdown) to make sure educational content is accessible to all learners.