How Are Court Reporters Able to Type So Quickly?

When it comes to stenography, being able to type so quickly and accurately is a highly developed skill. You may have seen a court reporter if you have ever been in a courtroom as part of the jury or watching something involving a court room or deposition on television or in the movies.

The average person working in this field has been trained professionally at certified schools or programs. Once in their field, they are able to take down what is dictated or said or even done at up to two hundred words per minute.

Not only can they do this accurately, they can do it quickly! So, what is the secret to their ability to take diction so speedily and how these typists are able to have their fingers fly across the keys and type in such a rapid way?

The average court reporter is able to take down anything that is said with an accuracy that averages around 98.5%. That’s not too bad, right? Not only do they have to know how to type, but reporters also have to be trained to type in a very unique and special way. The expert involved may be trained and experienced in typing rather quickly, but it’s done on a machine that is very different from the standard QWERTY keyboard.

The specially-designed reporting machine allows for dictation and typing speeds that differ quite a bit from the average keyboard on a computer. This machine is designed to enhance and facilitate speed. The keys are not the same in that they have sound represented on them, not words. The professional must type on a phonetic basis.

The keys are 22 in number and are unmarked. The keyboard is also divided into different halves; one for right fingers and one for the left. A second level is where the thumbs rest. The left side has the phonetic sounds that are used initially, such as as a ‘hard K’ sound. The right has final phonetics like the sound of the ‘n’ in the word ‘man’.

The middle contains the vowels and are where the thumbs are placed. There are four keys on this machine concerning vowels. Combinations of these keys represent all of English’s vowel sounds. The interesting part about using this machine is that the professional must listen to sounds and move their fingers to certain keys accordingly.

This is just how the ability to type so quickly is able to happen. Phonetics are used instead of individual letters, inevitably reducing the amount of typing that is required and keeping everything streamlined and efficient. It’s no wonder that these professionals are able to type with such speed and get so much down!

A combination of skill and a unique machine makes quick typing as a reporter possible. With the right training, equipment, commitment, and focus, it’s no surprise that professionals working in this field are able to type rather quickly and with amazing accuracy too.

Scroll to Top