Jan 24, 2022  
2016-2017 Course Catalog 
2016-2017 Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Realtime Reporting AAS

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The Real Time Reporting Program (Court Reporting and Captioning) prepares students for various careers using real-time reporting skills. This type of reporting captures and converts the spoken word to text. Court Reporters are responsible for producing verbatim transcripts of legal proceedings from court cases to special events to political speeches and meetings. They play a critical role at every meeting or event where the spoken word must be preserved. Further, they are responsible for producing an accurate, complete, and secure legal record. Captioners possess the skills to produce accurate, simultaneous translations of broadcasts or other proceedings using real-time translation. They may translate television programs or educational materials. Individuals may be employed through judicial districts, law offices, as freelance court reporters or captioners, court or conference reporters, scopists or real-time reporters in other capacities. The key feature of real-time reporting programs is the development of high-speed recording skills to 225+ words per minute through the use of real-time translation machine shorthand and computer aided transcription.


For more information about the Real Time Reporting Program visit our website at https://www.dmacc.edu/programs/courtreporting/.

Location: Newton

Court Reporting courses offered only at the Newton Campus. Selected courses (Liberal Arts core) are offered at other campuses.

Students start Fall term.

This program is a year-round program, meeting in the Fall, Spring and Summer terms.

Program Entry Requirements

1. Complete an application for admission.
2. Satisfy the assessment requirement.
3. Attend the required court reporting information session.

All students must rent or purchase a realtime-ready student stenowriter before fall classes begin. Model will be specified at information session.

Graduation Requirements

1. Must complete all coursework as prescribed and maintain a 2.0 grade point average.
2. Must earn a grade of “C” or better in all Court Reporting courses.
3. Pass three 5-minute tests with 95% accuracy at each of the following speeds: 225 words per minute testimony (two-voice); 200 words per minute jury charge; and 180 words per minute literary.
4. Complete at least 40 verified hours of actual writing time during internship as well as submit 40 pages of transcript and a written narrative.

NOTE:  Progress in theory and speed classes is very individualized.  Students make progress at different rates, depending on the amount of time spent practicing and the quality of practice.  Students should plan to spend a minimum of 10-15 hours outside of class practicing on their steno machines (in addition to 9-12 hours of class practice).

Students may need to repeat some speed classes to meet speed/accuracy requirements.  Students repeating speed classes will incur additional tuition charges.  According to the National Court Reporters Association, the national average for completion of court reporting programs is 33 months. 

NCRA Annual Report, November 2006


Total Credits Required to Complete the Degree - 84

Fixed Costs

Tuition……………………………………………………………………………………..$147.00 per credit

The costs for each program are estimates and subject to change.

Varied Costs

  Semester 1 Semester 2 Semester 3 Semester 4 Semester 5 Semester 6
Books (approximate) 400 400 400 200 200 150
Supplies/Equipment approx (includes steno lease) 400 150 150 150 150 150

Approximate total for the program:  $15,248*

* Program entry requirements are not included in the total approximate cost.

What Kind of Work Will You Do?

  • Official Reporter for County, State, or Federal Courts.
  • Freelance Reporter writing depositions, arbitrations or administrative hearings.
  • Freelance Reporter transcribing medical and/or legal.
  • Work as a Scopist by editing transcripts written by court reporters.
  • May work for a captioning company or television station to provide on-air captions.

What Skills and Abilities Will You Need?

  • Exceptional vocabulary, grammar and editing skills.
  • Detail oriented, accurate, punctual.
  • Work well under pressure and deadlines.
  • Ability to work under stress.
  • Discipline required to practice, practice, practice.
  • Strong time management and organization skills.
  • Strong listening skills.
  • Self-motivated, self-starter.

What Else Should I Consider about this Program or Career Choice?

  • Requires a large time commitment as speed building practice a key to success.
  • Program is designed for fulltime students.
  • Restrict work hours as required courses, lab time, homework, and practice are demanding
  • Family support is important.
  • Students must rent or buy a Steno writer prior to the first term (model specified at information session).
  • A personal laptop computer is required for the internship.
  • Graduation from the program requires the following machine shorthand writing speeds: Pass three 5-minute tests with 95% accuracy at each of the following speeds: 225 words per minute testimony (two-voice); 200 words per minute jury charge; and 180 words per minute literary.
  • Complete at least 40 verified hours of actual writing time during internship as well as submit 40 pages of transcript and a written narrative.
  • Average annual salary-AAS: $48,000

Nondiscrimination Policy

Des Moines Area Community College shall not engage in nor allow discrimination covered by law against any person, group or organization. This includes in employment, hiring practices or the provision of services, and harassment or discrimination based on race, color, national origin, creed, religion, sex (including pregnancy and marital status), sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability and genetic information. Veteran status in educational programs, activities, employment practices, or admission procedures is also included to the extent covered by law. Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against may file a complaint through the College Discrimination Complaint Procedure. Complaint forms may be obtained from the Campus Provost’s office, the Academic Deans’ office, the Judicial Officer, or the EEO/AA Officer, Human Resources. For information about the ADA, the Section 504/ADA Coordinator may be contacted at 515-964-6857.  For Title IX questions and concerns contact 515-964-6850. (2016)

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