So, why should you be dubbing e-learning materials? If you work in EdTech, for a college, have an e-learning course or create educational video content of any kind, you’ve probably thought about ways to expand to new markets. Or, just make your content more accessible. If you’re looking to reach these new audiences with your content, the answer is simple: dubbing.
Why has dubbing e-learning materials become so popular in the last year?
The unfortunate events of the COVID-19 pandemic forced many to stay locked up indoors. As a result, there became this almost bizarre boredom that everyone wanted to combat. Some turned to wine, board games and workout videos. While others turned to online courses and e-learning. Not to mention, universities, colleges and schools, scrambling to make all of their content accessible to foreign students and native speaking students online. Sadly, no one predicted the events of the last year.
In addition to the pandemic, there were many other factors that contributed to the popularity of translated e-learning.
- Firstly, the demand for accessibility and flexibility. Online education was becoming the new trend and had to be accessible.
- Secondly, it was much more affordable than attending an in-person course or university.
- Thirdly, edtech was on the rise. As a result, these companies were already scaling to new markets.
Localizing educational content
Dubbing is the most popular form of localization. In fact, it is the most cost-effective translation method for many industries. It provides an alternative to re-shooting all of your content with native speakers, which is the most expensive method.
For those who don’t speak the original language of a lesson or video, it’s much easier for them to hear it in their native language. Not to mention how much easier it is to learn in your mother tongue.
For example, my native language is English, but I speak ok French. However, trying to learn from an online course about economics in French, would be a challenge.
When you’re trying to learn something new, it’s best to do so in your native language and dialect. The reason being – you’re already trying to absorb new information. So, complicating that with a language barrier isn’t going to be efficient.
Unfortunately, not all of us are multilingual. That’s why localization for education has become more popular. Dubbing e-learning and educational content into various languages is becoming the norm, as it makes media accessible to new markets.
But what are the other translation options?
There are a few more translation methods to consider when localizing your e-learning content.
- Re-shooting the content with native speakers – As I mentioned previously, re-shooting is the most expensive method of localization. Not only does the content need to be translated, but re-filmed and edited. It is very time consuming and expensive to select this option. Dubbing is a much more cost-effective method.
- Subtitles – Subtitles are a lot cheaper than dubbing, and can easily be added to your content. However, they shouldn’t be the sole localization method. When a student is trying to memorize and process new information, reading at the same time as a video playing can often be very distracting. And, much more time consuming. Furthermore, subtitles are not friendly to a range of students suffering from dyslexia or ADD.
- Voiceover – Whilst voice-overs are a form of dubbing, they aren’t matched to the video with lip-sync. So, it isn’t as visually appealing. However, it is a cheaper method than lip sync dubbing. So, it really comes down to your content specifically. Then there is the choice between the style of Voice-over you want to go for:
- Untimed (Wild)
- Timed (UN Style)
- A range of niche voiceover styles, such as lektoring (very popular in markets, such as Poland)
Then of course, there is always the method of not localizing your content. Which, I would advise against. As e-learning and educational content is becoming more popular, many are making their content accessible to new markets. As a result, it will become harder to keep up with competitors who do dub their educational content, or offer other translated versions.
Summing up dubbing for e-learning and educational content
When deciding on the right localization method, look into the following and try to imagine how your audience will digest the translation:
- Your companies branding and image
- Do you offer luxury education?
- The type of company/institution you are
- Are you a subscription service? A top university or private school?
- The targets you want to reach
- Are there 1-2 target audiences, or do you want to translate your content in 7 different languages?
Each video is unique. So, it is important to look at a range of factors that would impact this. Ask yourself questions and weigh out the options to make a decision about whether dubbing your educational videos, subtitling or adding a simple voiceover is right the choice.
- For example: If you offer an elite 35 hour finance course, that is on the higher end of the market. Then, having your video dubbed professionally would likely be the best option.
Most importantly, make sure you select a leading vendor. Expertise and guidance is extremely important to get the result you want for your educational content.