In response to the heightened demand for reporters used in courtrooms and depositions, as well as those who provide the closed captioning seen on TV and other services for the hearing impaired, court reporting certification programs are on the rise.
“Not only are court reporters in very high demand, but they also experience extremely rewarding careers,” explains Patricia Falls, owner of The School of Court Reporting, a leading provider of court reporter degrees based in Marlton, New Jersey. “The court reporting profession has zero unemployment, and a first-year earning potential of up to $80,000, with the ability to earn even more.”
According to Falls, there are many options for enrolling in court reporter certification programs. Students can choose day or evening classes, full-time or part time courses and online or onsite learning programs. Falls shares insider’s tips into earning a court reporter degree for maximum career growth potential.
1. Know Your Learning Style.
How and when you learn best will determine what type of program is right for you. Do you have the ability to go to school full-time, or does a career limit you to part-time and evenings only? What about distance learning? Do you prefer to learn in the classroom, or from the comfort of your own home?
2. Do Your Homework.
When evaluating schools, make sure to ask about their job placement rates and teaching methodologies. A credible provider of court reporting certification programs should teach a real-time theory (such as the Phoenix Theory) and hold certifications by the Board of Shorthand Reporting and other relevant institutions.
3. See The Big Picture.
Look for a court reporter degree program that provides internships and training to support the expanding role of court reporting. Training in captioning, cyber-conferencing, scoping and transcribing can prove invaluable in a court reporting career.