dcsimg

Criminal Justice Articles

What does it take to become a Court Reporter?

Court reporters record testimony and evidence during legal proceedings, important meetings, speeches, and sometimes conversations. In most cases, court reporters must transcribe a recorded version of the actual proceeding into typed documents they prepare for printing. To accomplish these tasks, the court reporter must have great hearing, excellent grammar and punctuation skills, and a good vocabulary, often including medical, financial, and legal terminology. Accurate, fast typing is also a job requirement. In additional to these skills, court reporters must have relevant education and certification, before they become eligible for employment in this field.

The training needed to become a court reporter will depend on the type of reporting that an applicant is seeking. The main types of court reporting are stenography, voice writing, and electronic reporting. The most commonly used method today is stenography. With this method, court reporters use a machine that allows them to enter symbols for words and phrases. Electronic reporting uses digital or audio tape recorders to capture information. Voice writers repeat each speaker's words by talking into a mask that allows them talk without interfering with the proceedings.

Initial training to become a voice writer usually takes a year, but developing proficiency in this method may require another year of work experience. Stenographic court reporter training takes over two years, for many as long as 33 months, according to the Department of Labor. Court reporters that specialize in electronic reporting often learn this method through on the job training.

Court reporters must attend vocational school, college, or technical school to learn their job skills. It is important to choose a program that meets the certification requirements of the National Court Reporters Association. NCRA-certified programs must require stenographic court reporter students to achieve a minimum recording speed of 225 words per minute. The federal government also uses this requirement as the minimum qualification for court reporting jobs. Currently, only 70 of more than 100 available court reporter training programs have NCRA certification. Ask an admissions officer about each school's certification. A high school diploma or G.E.D. is usually required prior to admission to a certified program.

The NCRA gives a four-part certification exam that leads to certification as a Registered Professional Reporter. Participation in a continuing education program is also necessary for continued certification. Voice writers can obtain certifications by exam through the National Verbatim Reporters Association. Each state sets it own requirement for court reporter's licensing. Some states administer the exam for certification as a Certified Court Reporter; others may require court reporters to be notary publics. The best plan is to check whether your state requires court reporters to qualify for a licensing examination, before enrolling in a course.

Career advancement opportunities for a court reporter include management and supervisory careers as well as teaching. Additional certifications are available for federal court reporters through the United States Court Reporters Association for court reporters employed in federal courts. Electronic court reporters with at least two years of experience can seek voluntarily certification by passing any one of the three examinations offered by the American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers. The court reporters who apply for this certification must also be eligible to become notary publics.

Schools Offering Court Reporting Courses:

Matching School Ads

Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education.

Programs:

  • BS in Legal Support and Services - Paralegal Concentration

Online
Jump into the exciting world of technology or medical services at Harris School.

Programs:

  • Legal Office Technology

Locations: Cherry Hill
Campus
City College of Florida is focused on providing the best in business and career education.

Programs:

  • Legal Assisting/Paralegal

Campus

About Brightwood College

Brightwood College offers accelerated programs that combine flexible schedules and professional instruction to create a rewarding learning experience for individuals focused on gaining the skills for specific careers. Brightwood College is owned and operated by Education Corporation of America.

Programs:

  • Paralegal Studies - Associates
  • General Practice Paralegal

Locations: San Antonio , Nashville
Campus

Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals.  Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience. 

Programs:

  • Associate of Arts in Paralegal Studies

Locations: Pembroke Pines , Clearwater
Campus
Get the career you want at Branford Hall Career Institute.

Programs:

  • Paralegal

Locations: Southington
Campus
A Tradition of Excellence since 1918

No matter what occupation you choose to pursue, the competition for a good job is fierce. Lansdale School of Business (LSB) can help you stand out from the rest by teaching you the specific skills you need to succeed in the career you desire.

Programs:

  • Associate Degree-Paralegal Studies

Locations: Phoenixville
Campus

As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Programs:

  • Paralegal Studies (AS)

Campus

Recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for: Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s 2017, Best Online Programs, Grad Education 2017 and Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s for Veterans 2017

Programs:

  • Jurisprudence with concentration in Legal Studies (Bachelor of Science) - Online

Online

At South College we welcome students from all different stages of life and career. 

Programs:

  • CERT Paralegal Studies
  • AS Paralegal Studies
  • AAS Paralegal Studies

Locations: Asheville , Knoxville
Campus
Matching School Ads