A kid sitting in a classroom wearing bulky headphones grins.Teaching online? Add audio description. Make learning accessible so students of all abilities can learn anywhere, anytime.

Today, more than 60% of the world’s students are learning at home. The Covid-19 Pandemic is limiting or temporarily closing educational institutions everywhere to help contain virus spread.

Now, students of all ages are online using interactive video, live webinars, and other multi-media tools to keep connected, skilled, and exam-ready. Online education isn’t new; it’s an established essential teaching aid. Compared to traditional classrooms, online teaching reaches more students, saves money, and, for corporations training employees, helps meet development, marketing, and growth goals more quickly and cost effectively. It’s fun too, and great for younger students, specialized learners, language learners, and people on the autism spectrum. Complex ideas are made simple with animation. Demonstrations can be filmed and shared widely in real time or relayed on demand.

And by adding audio description (AD) or described video (DV) to your online education productions, you’re helping everyone learn more. 

AD is the specialized service that makes visual media accessible to people with blindness or visual impairments. It provides a secondary audio track with a narrator describing key visual elements during the natural pauses in the dialogue. Adding AD to online productions provides inclusive accessible education and it also deepens everyone’s learning experiences.

AD enhances online learning because people learn better from words and pictures than from words alone. (Mayer, 2005).

Here’s how: Our brain processes information using two channels: visual and auditory. When information is presented using both channels, the brain can accommodate more new information.

Studies report about 20–30% of students2 retain information more effectively when they can hear it. By taking advantage of our dual processing capability and including AD in online learning tools, we can dramatically improve learning through multimedia instruction for everyone.

Planning an online learning event? Questions about adding AD to your teaching toolkit? Contact us to find out more. Contact Descriptive Video Works via email at  [email protected] or call toll-free: 1-866-818-3897.


  1. Richard E. Mayor, Cambridge University Press, Multimedia Learning: Guiding Visuospatial Thinking with Instructional Animation, 2005. 
  2. Family Education, Is your kid a visual, auditory or kinesthetic learner? May 15, 2019. 

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