Where in Florida Can I Earn a Court Reporting Degree?
Find out which Florida schools offer court reporting degree programs. See requirements, school information and learn about job prospects for a career as a court reporter in Florida. Schools offering Legal Transcriptionist degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Certification and Licensure Information for Court Reporters in Florida
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) asserts that many states require court reporters to be licensed, either through their individual state's licensure board or by way of the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). Sitting for the NCRA exam can result in earning the designation of Registered Professional Reporter (RPR). As of 2012, 22 states accept the RPR in place of individual state licensure or certification.
According to the Florida Court Reporters Association (FCRA), while Florida does have a certification requirement, it's being held in abeyance due to a lack of funding. Meanwhile, the FCRA administers a voluntary certification examination resulting in the Florida Professional Reporter (FPR) designation. While this is a voluntary process, the FCRA mentions that it's advisable for you to sit for the exam. Certification may enhance your employment and advancement potential and prepare you for when the certification requirement is reactivated.
Salary and Job Opportunity Information for Court Reporters in Florida
In a May 2011 survey, the BLS determined the mean annual salary for court reporters in Florida to be about $35,000. This is considerably less than the national figure of nearly $54,000. The BLS also projected that employment opportunities for court reporters nationwide are expected to increase 14% from 2010-2020. This is about the same as the national average for all occupations. The increase may be due to expanded federal regulations regarding captioning. In addition, though some agencies are using digital audio recording technology, court reporters are still necessary to oversee the operation and accuracy of such technologies. Some courts may still prefer a trained court reporter over automated systems.
Certificate Programs in Court Reporting in Florida
Atlantic Technical Center
- Program Name: Certificate in Court Reporting
- Program Length: Approximately 28 months
- Tuition: (Set by the state of Florida) About $7,955 in tuition and fees for the entire program, based on a minimum 12 consecutive months of Florida residency; non-resident figure is calculated on a higher rate (cost for 2012)
- Prerequisites: Assessment test (unless you already hold an associate's degree from an accredited school); online or in-person orientation
- School Type: 2-year, public; nearly 1,000 students (all undergraduate)
- Address: 4700 Coconut Creek Parkway, Coconut Creek, FL 33063
- Phone: 754-321-5100
Approved by the NCRA, this program consists of about 2,850 real-time hours and will take you about 28 months to complete. The program is presented in three sections, and you must complete all sections in order to qualify as a court reporter. Completion of the first two sections only qualifies you as a scopist or transcriptionist. A scopist is someone who edits transcriptions. Included in the program are courses in legal and medical terminology, computer-compatible stenograph theory, computer-aided transcription and courtroom procedures.
Once you complete the program, you're eligible to apply for the Florida Ready to Work credential, which attests to the fact that you possess the fundamental skills to get the job done and are ready to work. To earn this credential, you must take a series of assessment tests administered by the Florida Department of Education, which determine your ability and fitness levels. In addition, upon successful completion of the program, you may be able to apply up to 27 credits toward an associate's degree at Broward College.
Sheridan Technical Center
- Program Name: Certificate in Court Reporting
- Program Length: About 28 months
- Tuition: (Set by the state of Florida) $7,500 in tuition and fees for the entire program for Florida residents; non-resident figure is calculated on a higher rate (cost for 2012)
- Admission Requirements: Orientation, assessment test, interview
- School Type: 2-year, public; about 1,200 students (all undergraduate)
- Address: 5400 Sheridan Street, Hollywood, FL 33021
- Phone: 754-321-5400
The NCRA-approved court reporter certificate program at Sheridan Technical Center is an online program. Consisting of 2,850 hours, it should take you about 28 months to complete. Courses include specialized vocabularies pertaining to the medical, legal, industrial and insurance fields, as well as vocabulary used in governmental programs. You'll learn how to differentiate between - and record - multiple voices. You'll also learn about the use of the Phoenix Theory for machine shorthand, as well as Computer-Assisted Realtime Translation (CART) for closed-captioning purposes. You may also have a chance to complete an internship at a school-partnered facility or agency.
Associate's Degree Programs in Court Reporting in Florida
Miami Dade College
- Program Name: Associate of Science in Court Reporting
- Program Length: 2.5-3 years
- Tuition: $112 tuition and fees per credit hour for in-state residents; $397 tuition and fees per credit hour for out-of-state students (cost for 2012-2013 academic year)
- Admission Requirements: Sit for CPT/PERT assessment tests (unless SAT scores are sufficiently high); meet with faculty advisor
- School Type: 4-year, public; almost 64,000 students (all undergraduate)
- Address: 300 NE 2nd Avenue, Miami, FL 33132
- Phone: 305-237-8888
The program leading to an Associate of Science in Court Reporting degree at Miami Dade College consists of 77 credits, 15 of which are general education requirements. Among the major course requirements are legal and medical terminology, legal and medical transcription, dictation, machine transcription, computer-aided transcription, court procedures and machine shorthand. You'll also be instructed in the Case CATalyst program, which is a realtime translation program in widespread use in the court reporting field. Once you complete your requirements, you may be eligible to sit for the NCRA court reporting examination, with a typing speed of 180-225 words per minute. In addition, Miami Dade College has articulation agreements with all 4-year public and 27 private colleges in Florida, as well as a number of out-of-state schools, which means you may be able to apply credits earned toward a bachelor's degree at one or more of these schools.
To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below: