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Criminal Justice Articles

Finding the right Court Reporter education

Court reporters have an extremely important job within the legal system. As a court reporter, one must be able to comprehend a lot of information quickly, and then translate that information accurately for court records. Not everyone can become a court reporter. In fact, people must have intensive training and certification in order to prepare for a career in court reporting. There are many different schools and classes that offer training in this field, so it's important to be sure to find the right court reporter education that will ensure employment. A typical education in the field of court reporting takes about one to two years to complete. Certification is an important step in the process of preparing for a career in court reporting; any school that provides certification is a good place to start.

Transcription is perhaps the most important aspect of the job, making these courses absolutely essential for success. The term transcription means to take the spoken word and literally translate it onto paper. This must be done at a rapid pace, and with as few mistakes as possible. Since the transcription is legally binding because it is taking place in a court of law, court reporters have to be accurate and efficient in order to capture the information properly. In some states, people must be licensed to become a court reporter. The licensing process requires certification in several skill sets, including a verbatim report, or a real-time verbatim report. Verbatim means "word for word", so court reporters must be able to translate exactly what is said.

A good court reporting school is able to offer certification and licensure, and in most cases assist students with career placement opportunities. A Certificate of Merit is earned once the student completes their verbatim certification. Each state has different requirements for licensing and certification, so it's important for students to do their research in advance so they know the proper prerequisites. Of course, there are other aspects that are integral to a good court reporter education. Understanding the basics of the legal system, legal terminology, and how courtrooms work is essential. Keeping up to date on the latest laws is also very helpful. A court reporting educational background should be well rounded and give students a solid knowledge of the processes and procedures involved.

Just as in any field, real-life training is the most important part of a court reporting education. When career placement is offered by a particular school, it helps to get students off on the right foot and find employment with a court or city legal department. The National Court Reporters Association can help to recommend some courses, schools, and certifications that will help people advance in their careers. The American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers is another good resource that offers certifications in court reporting and transcription. There is room for advancement with more certification and training, so that court reporters can move up the ladder.

Schools Offering Court Reporting Courses:

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