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Overview of Court Reporting Degree Programs

Majors Overview December 19, 2013

Receive information on an Associate of Science (A.S.) degree in court reporting and its education requirements, coursework, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

A.S. Programs in Court Reporting

Schools typically offer an associate degree in court reporting as an Associate of Science in Court Reporting. The typing skills of students enrolled in the program are honed even as they are also taught about transcriptions of oral speech, legal terminology and court proceedings. Prospective students must meet minimum typing-speed norms, familiarity with legal and medical terminology, the ability to use writing programs in computerized format, and understanding of courtroom procedures. Passage of a test by students and completion of an internship are needed in order to graduate; those who successfully complete the program can seek entry-level jobs in the field.

Education Requirements

Students enrolled in some court reporting programs are required to pass a typing test that satisfies minimum standards required by the school. Admission criteria also require applicant students to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma.

Coursework

Typically, coursework includes general education classes in computers, mathematics, communications and English. The focus of core coursework is usually centered on assisting students with grasping the working of a courtroom and the typical procedures followed in court hearings.

Students are taught about computer programs employed in the industry and can expect to enhance their typing skills to satisfy expected standards in the field. Students may also be required to participate in an internship to gain practical experience. Coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Medical terminology
•Reporting procedures
•Legal terminology
•Stenotype theory
•Captioning

Job and Wage Outlook

In 2010, there were about 22,000 court reporters employed in the country (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). About half of these professionals worked for local and state government agencies. A job growth rate of 14% has been predicted for court reporters during the decade from 2010 to 2020. The optimistic projected is owed to an expected increase in the number of courtroom reporters needed for translation and closed captioning work. In May 2011, court reporters earned an average annual wage of $48,510 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Court reporters are required, in some states, to obtain licensure (BLS) by passing an examination. The National Verbatim Reporters Association offers national certificates to court reporters; they can use the certificates to satisfy licensing needs in some states.

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