Court Reporting Degrees

Advantages to Earning A Court Reporting Degree

A court reporting degree provides individuals with skills necessary for a employment within the field of legal transcription. A court reporting degree provides students with the knowledge necessary to understand court proceedings, machine shorthand, legal and medical terminology, and transcription. Many colleges and universities have developed curricula based in expanding a student’s knowledge of the English language while combining core courses in writing, social studies, government and computers to better understand the practice of legal transcription.

Several colleges and universities have recognized and instilled online degree programs to meet the demand of students who manage family and work responsibilities as they advance their education. Most online degree programs in the field of court reporting provide students with virtually the same educational experiences as their traditional brick and mortar counterparts. Online courses consist groups of 25 students with 24 hour access to class materials, instruction, and information. Online degree programs also give students the added benefit of a highly personalized learning experience, flexible scheduling, and one on one access to classmates and other instructors through Internet chats. Online degree programs are often a great options for students seeking future careers in court reporting.

What Students Learn Within An Online Court Reporting Degree

Training to become a court reporter varies significantly and is based upon the type of court reporting an individual chooses. Online court reporting degree programs provide students learn the skills and knowledge necessary to work as legal transcriptionists within a variety of settings.Programs certified by the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA) assure students receive proper instruction to use stenotpe computer aided transcription and real time reporting gain skills necessary to capture 225 words per minute. Online court reporting classes provide students with the typing, decision making, research, organization, transcription, and interpersonal skills necessary for future career success.

Associate level courses in court reporting include: legal terminology, reporting procedures, medical terminology, touch shorthand theory, punctuation of the spoken word, communications, English, vocabulary, law, dictation, shorthand, ethics, and court reporting computer applications. Most graduates from an associates degree program in court reporting may advance to novice level court transcriptionist positions or advance their degrees.

Bachelor level courses in court reporting include: legal procedures and terminology, computer aided transcription, vocabulary for court reporters, punctuation and proofreading, testimony, jury charge, realtime transcription, judicial reporting, reporting procedures and business applications, medical terminology, ethics, and court reporting computer applications. Graduates from a bachelor level court reporter program generally qualify for transcription positions upon gaining real time voice writing proficiencies.

Prospective Jobs For Graduates With Court Reporting Degrees

The demand for court reporters is expected to grow by 18 percent until 2018 per reports from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. Most court reporters use audio capture technology and acquire skills through on the job experiences like reading manuals, working closely with trainers, and observing electronic transcribers as they use equipment. Transcription services, translating services, and broadcast captioning skills are in high demand with plenty of employment opportunities for Graduates from a court reporting degree program often find employment opportunities within a number of organizations. Graduates who complete an associates or bachelor’s degree generally gain entry level employment within attorney’s offices, state legislatures, courtrooms, government agencies, or broadcast programs. Some graduates work as independent contractors or freelancers in self owned businesses. Other graduates work within private companies and gain work experience under the direction of qualified supervisors or practitioners within firms and agencies.

Salary For Graduates With Court Reporting Degrees

Graduates with court reporting degrees generally have earnings based upon organization of employment, educational level, and work related experiences. Court reporters are generally compensated based upon the type of reporting job, the experience level of the reporter, geographic location, and certification levels. Official court reporters generally earn between $35,390 to $67,430 annually. Freelance and independent court reporters are generally paid per job with a per page fee for transcriptions. Captioners are generally paid by the organization of employment receiving salaries and other benefits. If captioners work independently as contractors, they are generally paid hourly. Many salaried reporters supplement their income with freelance work.

Career Outlook and Advancement Opportunities For Graduates with Court Reporting Degrees

Graduates with a degree in court reporting generally find ample employment options and job prospects within various organizations and agencies. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics expects the demand for professional and qualified court reporters to grow at a faster than average rate in comparison to other occupations until 2018. Due to the increasing demand for live television captions, accurate transcription of court proceedings and pretrial depositions, and translation services for the deaf or those with diminished hearing, employment prospects are expected to grow and remain steady in the forseeable future. Many court reporters begin as novice, entry level transcriptionists and advance to higher positions with increased responsibilities within two year upon gaining work related skills. Some court reporters organize or search official records and often become valuable members of a courtroom administration. Economic downturns, budget issues within Federal, State, and local courts, and advancing technology may limit the demand for court reporting services within legal settings and courtrooms though qualified professionals will continue to be needed for felony trials, court proceedings, and other publications.

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