Court reporters are responsible for keeping accurate records of events that happen in the courtroom. These events include hearings, speeches, legal proceedings, and meetings, anything where words are spoken. The court reporter, job is to create a verbatim transcript of what was said, so if anything needs to be looked at again in the future, there is a credible record. Along with recording the transcript for the courtroom, court reporters also provide closed-captioning and translating to the hard-of-hearing community.
The most common method for taking notes used by court reporters is called stenography. A stenotype machine allows the user to press multiple keys at once in combination with letters that represent words and phrases. This allows the reporter to take notes faster and more efficiently than if they were to use a conventional laptop. Electronic reporting is also common, which requires audio equipment to record the events in the courtroom. These audio transcripts are later transcribed and checked for accuracy.
Court reporters earn a good salary. Working in government pays a little more than working in business support services. Since court reporting is such a talent, reporters are also paid a salary plus a per-page transcript fee. Freelance work is common as well, getting paid on a job-by-job basis with additional transcript fees.
- Education Requirements: Post secondary education, roughly two years.
- Job Increase: Expected to increase substantially over the next decade.