Become a Court Reporter

Court reporter jobs are a lot like other transcription and secretarial positions. Court reporters work with public officials in legal proceedings, office meetings or other events like convention speeches. It is the court reporter's responsibility to make sure that public events are recorded word for word, without any error. Court reporters may find employment in the court system, broadcasting or other fields depending on the interest of the job-seeker. Court reporters should have excellent communication abilities and be willing to take job responsibilities outside of transcription and recording, such as research.

Court Reporter Jobs

Court reporters may work in or outside of the court system. Court reporters have to record the exact words of dialogues, speeches, hearings and other public proceedings. Court reporters may work with media technologies. Audio equipment may be used to record meetings and other events. Stenography may be used to record office dialogue.

Court reporters may work with legal officials to find documents and organize information. Court reporters may also be responsible for providing closed captions and translating services for people who have visual or auditory disabilities.

Court Reporter Training

Court reporters generally hold an associate degree. Licensing standards vary by state. Voice writers are usually the type of court reporter that obtains licensing. Court reporter education depends on the level of job responsibility in the field.

Some court reporters who work only with voice technologies may have only one year of experience or education. Court reporters should possess excellent language and typing skills. Court reporters are usually required to be able to type at over 200 words per minute.

 Court reporters generally attend programs that are certified through the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). Programs that are certified by the NCRA have the same word per minute typing requirement that the United States Federal Government requires of their employees, which is 225 words per minute.

Advancement

Certifications are usually helpful for the court reporter who wants to advance or obtain a higher salary. Certification programs are offered through the NCRA in the United States. NCRA also provides opportunities for court reporters who want to become certified in working with technologies that assist people with visual and auditory disabilities. The American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers (AAERT) offer certifications for electronic court reporters. In order to qualify for the AAERT examination, court reporters must already have two years of experience working in electronic recording. Three levels or certification are available through AAERT.

Beginning electronic court reporters seeking entry-level positions may not need to obtain certification through AAERT in their first year of employment. In such cases, the employer would agree to hire the beginning electronic court reporter on the condition that once he or she became qualified to take they examination that they would become certified through AAERT.

Options

Other career options are available for court reporters that might be a good idea for court reporters looking for career transition opportunities. Some court reporters might work in broadcasting or transcription for, example. Other court reporters might pursue legal studies or criminal justice fields. Court reporters can generally work in any job that involved data entry, typing, transcribing and the like.