Court Reporter Classes and Stenography Courses Online

Proper training and certification is the key to becoming a successful court reporter. Training to become a court reporter will take between two and four years of education at a stenography school. The most common degree awarded for court reporting is an Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree. There are other programs that award technical certificates and Bachelor of Science degrees as well. Most students pursuing a bachelor's degree have already worked in the industry and are looking to move into management, or the educational field. Course topics generally include legal and medical terminology, principles and theory of machine shorthand for transcription, as well as software applications and business law. A large amount of your schooling will be spent improving your speed and accuracy. To graduate you will need to be able to type at least 225 words per minute on your steno machine. You will be given tests like the deposition test, which is a question and answer session that simulates an attorney questioning a witness. A court reporter spends hours taking down testimony and creating a written transcript, so you must be able to concentrate for long periods of time and meet tight deadlines.

Specialized Court Reporter Courses

Many students specialize in a particular area, such as closed captioning for the hearing impaired. There are also specializations available in medicine and engineering. Students who want to specialize in an area should make sure the schools they are considering offers those specialties. Internships are generally a requirement for graduation, so you should check to see if the program offers supervised internships with practicing court reporters. Students should also look for stenography programs that are approved by the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA), website: NCRAonline.org. Some states require graduation from an NCRA-certified program, before granting licensure.

Online Court Reporting Classes

There are numerous schools across the country offering both online and on campus programs. Many offer day and evening classes to accommodate a student's schedule. You will need a lot of practice time to improve your speed outside of the classroom so that should be taken into consideration when you are thinking about your career choice. With an expected growth of 18-25% by the year 2018, the field of stenography is a career choice worth considering.