How Much Does Court Reporter Schools Cost?

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$ Associate's Degree: $780-$12,000+ Per Year $ $ Online Courses: $4,000-$12,000+ $ $ $ State College or University: $5,000-$23,000 Per Year

Court reporters create verbatim transcripts of the legal proceedings, hearings, and other events while preserving the spoken words as a written transcript.

Many of the court reporters further provide closed-captioning, as well as real-time translation services to the hard of hearing and deaf.

The court reporters courses usually require a High School diploma or GED.

Typical Costs

Certain community colleges provide specialized court reporter training as part of a two-year associate’s degree.

The full-time tuition and fees for a two-year degree, which is based on two, 15-unit semesters, costs $780 to $6,150 per year.

At $26, California offers one of the lowest per-unit rates; while the Community College of Vermont is at the top of the scale with a per-credit cost of $205 for the in-state residents.

West Valley College in the San Francisco Bay Area secures a National Court Reporter’s Association – an approved associate’s degree in court reporting for $26 per unit, which makes approx.  $2,100 in total for in-state residents.

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At the same time, the Court Reporting and Captioning program at Cuyahoga Community Colleg in Ohio, which is approved by the National Court Reporter’s Association and National Verbatim Reporters Association, leads to an Associate of Applied Business degree.

The total two-year cost is approx. $6,700 for in-state residents, $13,700 for out-of-state residents.

Other state colleges and universities secure bachelor’s degrees in the court report, and the programs cost about $5,000-$23,000 per year based on whether the student is an in-state or out-of-state resident.

For instance, the AIB College of Business in Des Moines, Iowa, secures a bachelor’s degree in court reporting approved by the National Court Reporters Association for a total cost of $18,000 for 72 credit hours.

For-profit schools also offer diploma and associate’s degree courses in court reporting, for the sum between $7,000 and $12,000 or more.

Bryan College with several campuses in California, for example, offers a certificate course in court reporting recognized by the National Court Reporter’s Association for $9,000 to $10,000.

Online court reporting programs usually cost about $4,000 to $12,000.

For example, the Arkansas School of Court Reporting offers a 36-week online training course approved by the National Verbatim Reporters Association for $4,400 to $5,000.

What Is Included

  • To gain certification with the National Court Reporters Association, the court reporting courses need to cover verbatim recording and professional ethics, transcript production, distribution and also maintenance.
  • The courses require students to reach dictation speeds of as many as 225 words per minute with 95% accuracy.
  • Certain training programs secure job placement assistance and internship opportunities.
  • The programs have to be accredited by agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, like those endorsed by The National Court Reporters Association.

Additional Costs

Most of the court reporting courses require access to a stenotype machine or voice writing equipment.

The rental costs of such are approximately $150 per term or approx. $900 to $2,100 to purchase.

Acculaw, Inc. provides new and used equipment for rent or purchase, and some colleges like AIB College of Business rent steno machines to students.

The additional voice captioning and transcription services, such as the software StenoMask and accessories can add from $1,500 to $2,000 for a degree course.

The books for court reporting programs start at about $500 per course, while the books and supplies for associate’s degree studies can run about $759 per year at the City University of New York: Bronx Community College.

At the same time, at California community colleges, the books cost around $1,550 per year.

The costs for room and board are approx. $2,000 to $9,920, while the campus housing at AIB College of Business is $1,075 to $2,100 per term.

Certain states require voice writers to be licensed. In Washington, for example, a license application costs $150 and requires passing an exam.

The National Court Reporters Association secures several certifications, where the most common one is the Registered Professional Reporter designation.

The certification requires passing an exam for the sum of $140 to $200.

The membership in the NCRA costs $110 to $260 annually.

At the same time, the National Verbatim Reporters Association offers five national certifications to voice writers, and its membership costs $150 to $200 per year, and exam fees are $125 to $150.

Discounts

  • Financial aid is usually offered from most community colleges and universities.
  • The College Board provides information on financial aid.
  • Information on federal financial assistance is also offered at the Student Aid on the Web.

Shopping For Court Reporter Schools

  • The National Court Reporters Association provides a national directory of approved court reporter schools.
  • The National Verbatim Reporters Association further offers a list of affiliated courses.
  • The U.S. Department of Education keeps the College Navigator, which locates schools by degree requirements and zip code.

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