Court Reporter and Stenographer Video: Career Options and Educational Requirements

Court Reporter and Stenographer Video: Career Options and Educational Requirements Transcript

A court stenographer is responsible for court reporting, either by typing, transcribing or voice writing. A stenographer must keep accurate legal records of court proceedings and other such hearings. Although court reporters and stenographers are many times one in the same, court reporters may take on additional responsibilities outside of the courtroom.


Individuals with excellent typing, grammar, and listening skills will do well in the field of court reporting. As a court reporter or stenographer, you are responsible for creating transcripts of legal proceedings, meetings, and other such events. You will also be required to maintain an accurate legal record of these events by stenographic or voice writing.

Job Duties and Skills

A court reporters main role is to transcribe legal events. However, court reporters are also responsible for things that happen before and after such legal proceedings. For example, court reporters must maintain a dictionary or key to translate their keystrokes or voice recordings so they can then be transformed into text. After the proceedings, court reporters must go back and edit their content for correct grammar. Some court reporters transcribe legal events using a stenotype machine, electronic reporting, or voice writing. These stenographers must also have excellent listening, hearing, English vocabulary, punctuation and grammar skills in addition to being fast and accurate.

Training Required

Certification and training requirements for court reporters differ from state to state. Training also depends on the type of reporting an individual wishes to specialize in. An entry-level voice writer can complete training in less than a year, but a real-time stenographer can go through almost three years of training. Many court reporters learn specific skills on the job. The National Verbatim Reporters Association also offers three different national certifications to voice writers. These certifications are: Certified Verbatim Reporter, Certificate of Merit and Real-Time Verbatim Reporter.

Career Opportunities

As a court reporter, you will be able to choose your specialty based on your education and training. Many times, court reporters work in courtrooms or attorneys' offices. There are also court reporters who work as freelancers or independent contractors from their home office.


If you are interested in stenography, voice reporting or electronic reporting, a career as a court reporter may be right for you. Individuals who have great attention to detail, excellent listening and grammar skills, and the ability to work at a fast pace will do well in the field.


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