Court Reporting Named Top Career Path That Doesn’t Require a 4-Year Degree

\n\nThe average debt level for all graduating seniors from a four-year college is a whopping $29,400, according to the Institute for College Access & Success. More than 1.3 million graduates are facing loan debt and that number continues to rise every year. With an abundance of recent graduates up to their ears in debt and unable to find jobs that allow them to afford the payments, more and more savvy career-oriented individuals are looking for alternatives to the typical four-year degree program that allows them equally rewarding and lucrative opportunities to those that come from a four-year degree.\n\nAccording to an article posted by PaySclae Career News, the court reporting profession has been named one of the top career paths that does not require a four-year degree. Court Reporters, also known as Stenographers, often fly under the radar and remain relatively unknown (until now, thanks to a certain Wisconsin Badger). However, these professionals play a critical role in the world around us through their transcriptions of court proceedings, as well captioning television programs, seminars and live broadcasting for the deaf and hard of hearing. \n\nThere are currently approximately 32,000 court reporters working in the United States, but with 70% of the court reporting population over the age of 46, the retirement rate is expected to significantly increase over the coming years, creating new demand for this often overlooked profession. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the court reporting profession is expected to grow 10% over the next decade.\n\nNot only does the burgeoning career opportunities make court reporting one of the best career paths today, it is also a lucrative one. The national median annual salary of a court reporter is $48,160, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The most promising outlook is with realtime captioning and Communication Access Real-Time Translation (CART). Stenographers in those fields can make up to six figures after just a few years. \n\nToday, a graduate from an accredited court reporting program can find themselves in many situation. Often, they are allowed to set their own schedules and work from home. Here are just a few career paths:\n


  • Court Reporter: Works in a court room and creates verbatim transcripts of the proceedings.
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  • Freelance Court Reporter: Works with lawyers and also creates verbatim transcripts during press conferences, meetings and depositions.
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  • CART Captioner: Provides equal access for those who are deaf or hard of hearing by creating realtime text of spoken words during seminars, classes and meetings.
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  • Closed Captioning: Transcribing what is being said over live broadcasting, such as the news and sports events.
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\n\n\nThe education requirements for court reporters and cart captioners vary. Typically, a certificate from an accredited program in your area is required. Some jobs require postsecondary certificates or an associate’s degree. All fields offer online courses that can be completed at home while maintaining a full-time job. Stenographer equipment also varies by career path. At the vary minimum, students will need to invest in a steno writing machine. There are affordable options such as buying a used Stenograph Wave Writer specifically designed for students at a much lower price point. \n\n

Used Student Steno Machines 1-800-323-4247

\nIf you’d like to speak with an expert from Stenograph, the industry leader in court reporting technology and supplies, please reach out at 1-800-323-4247 or fill our online form to request more information. We are happy to answer your questions regarding financial options and recommendations before taking the next step in your court reporting career!\n\n

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