February 17, 2021

Learn How Court Reporters Can Transcribe Legal Proceedings

By: Colleen Jilio-Ryan | Posted in: court reporter

Court reporters transcribe

Court reporters transcribe a wide variety of documents, videos, meetings, conferences, court proceedings, and many other recorded depositions or written documents. It is the transcriber’s job to document every word that is spoken in a legal proceeding. Often overlooked, this job is crucial for proper interpretation and documentation. The following guide answers offer detailed insight into the various academic paths one can take to become a transcriber. To make the process easier, a stenotype machine is typically used by the transcriber to record spoken words.

Get the Training You Need

To be certified as a court reporter/transcriber, you need to receive proper training. Many transcription programs take between two and three years to complete. Courses include mechanical shorthand, keyboard techniques, vocabulary, various terminology (medical/legal), ethics, and many other classes that will help you gain an advantage when you start your career. The courses you take will not only teach you the information required in the field, but you will also learn various techniques and skills. Throughout your course time, you will be encouraged to practice your typing, more specifically your words per minute, as much as possible. If you plan on passing your keyboarding tests, you must be able to type over 225 words per minute.

Obtain the Necessary Equipment

In order to achieve as close to as 100% accuracy as possible, you will need to have a high-quality stenotype machine. The stenotype machine must be able to allow you to type quickly and efficiently. Unlike a traditional typewriter, a stenotype machine only has 22 keys that somewhat resemble the keys of a piano. The black keys have no markings and are designed to be used singly and in specific combinations to represent specific letters and letter groups. Instead of actual words, phonetic codes are produced. In addition to the stenotype machine, a laptop and voice recorder are also extremely helpful.

Become a Certified Court Reporter

As soon as you complete your training, you must apply to take your state certification test. Once you have your equipment and have passed your state test, you can begin to apply for jobs as a certified court reporter/transcriber. The more jobs you complete, the more accurate and proficient you will become. 

If you want to learn more about what it takes to become a professional court reporter/transcriber, contact Jilio-Ryan Court Reporters for more information. Court reporters/transcribers must have an extremely high accuracy rate with few to no errors, which is why you must learn from the best. Contact Jilio-Ryan Court Reporters to find the answers to all of your questions.

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