Careers and Employment Outlook

Careers and Employment Outlook

A Career with Choices

  • Independence
  • Prestige
  • Flexibility
  • Exciting work environment

Pursue one of the following career paths:

Official Court Reporter

Work in a courtroom as an Official Court Reporter with full benefits and extra compensation for transcripts produced. Be a part of modern computer-integrated courtrooms by writing realtime and allowing all parties to view your writing instantly as it is projected on computer monitors around the courtroom.

Freelance Reporter

Work as a freelance reporter associated with a single firm or as an independent contractor and enjoy a flexible schedule taking depositions for pretrial discovery, recording conventions, hearings, and other matters. Your salary is determined by the amount of time you commit to your work. Work as little or as much as you want. You can even work from home.

These career objectives can be attained by completion of the A.A.S. in Court Reporting. The curriculum is designed to offer education and skills to prepare the student to pass the Texas Certified Shorthand Reporter (CSR) examination and the National Registered Professional Reporter (RPR) examination. In addition, the A.A.S. in Court Reporting also prepares the student to meet transfer requirements to an upper-level college or university. Students who opt to pursue court reporting classes only may complete the Certificate in Court Reporting (no core curriculum requirements).


Work in the field of captioning, both closed captioning and offline captioning. Caption live television programs as they occur live, as well as perform a much-needed service to the deaf and hard of hearing as a Communication Access Realtime Translating (CART) provider. As a captioner, you can work from the casual setting of your home as you write remotely from live television programming. Or, secure contracts to do offline captioning as you caption motion pictures and programs from television archives.

These career objectives can be attained by completion of the Enhanced Certificate in Judicial Realtime/CART/Captioning in addition to the A.A. S. Degree in Court Reporting.


Work as a scopist assisting working court reporters to produce transcripts and do daily copy for court and depositions, or use your court reporting skills to do transcriptions for legal proceedings working for attorneys, or fulfilling the needs of a variety of companies that may need the services of a transcriptionist.

These career objectives can be attained by completion of the Certificate in Information Reporting/Scoping.

Employment change

Employment of court reporters is projected to grow 2 percent from 2014 to 2024. Demand for court reporters will be influenced by new federal regulations requiring an expanded use of captioning for television, the Internet, and other technologies.

Job prospects

Job opportunities for court reporters are expected to be excellent as job openings continue to outnumber jobseekers in some areas. Court reporters with certification and those who choose to specialize in providing CART, broadcast captioning, or webcasting services should have the best job opportunities. Court reporters who are willing to relocate to rural areas or large cities, where demand for court reporters' services is very high, should have good job opportunities. The favorable job market also reflects the fact that fewer people are entering this profession, particularly as stenographic typists.

Court reporters had median annual wages of $49,500 in May 2015. Median annual wages in May 2015 were $53,550 for court reporters working in state government, $52,290 for those working in local government and $42,860 for those working in business support services.

Compensation and compensation methods for court reporters vary with the type of reporting job, the experience of the individual reporter, the level of certification achieved, and the region of the country. Official court reporters earn a salary and a per-page fee for transcripts. Many salaried court reporters supplement their income by doing freelance work. Freelance court reporters are paid per job and receive a per-page fee for transcripts. CART providers are paid by the hour. Captioners receive a salary and benefits if they work as employees of a captioning company. Captioners working as independent contractors are paid by the hour.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Court Reporters (visited July 27, 2016).

Page last updated September 11, 2020.

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