Category Archives for Scoping FAQs

What are the start-up costs involved in becoming a scopist?

These are the start-up costs associated with scoping: A quality computer. The rule of computer equipment is “get the most bang for your buck”: An Intel Pentium computer with the largest hard drive, the fastest processor, and the most RAM you can afford (minimum of 2 GB of RAM is preferred). For more specifics on equipment needed […]

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Will electronic recording make scopist obsolete?

For years, we’ve heard speculation that electronic recording will replace the court reporter and eliminate the need for scopists. Here’s my take on that: While electronic recording is said to be less expensive, someone will still need to be there to run the computer and be responsible for the production of an accurate transcript — […]

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Will the training I receive from ISS be adequate for me to pass a certification exam?

I (Linda) served on the Scopist Certification Subcommittee that wrote the first exam, which is waiting to be given when funding is allocated. This groundbreaking committee’s first task was to define the skills and knowledge a scopist needs to possess, and they produced an NCRA document called “The Scopist Job Analysis.” When I originally wrote the content for […]

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Is it easy to get started?

Starting the course is shockingly easy. You receive access to the material as soon as payment is complete. You don’t need to wait for packages to arrive in the mail or for anyone to give you passwords or access to the course manually. We feature a completely automated enrollment system. As for starting out as […]

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Why do I need to learn to read steno? Is it hard to learn steno?

Although many reporters make audio-synched recordings as they write, it is essential for scopists to know how to read steno notes. And after asking around at different conventions, reporters seem to feel the same way. There are times when the audio can’t be heard, but enough information can be gleaned from the notes to make the […]

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What is CAT software?

CAT (Computer-Aided Transcription) software is a special court reporting program that translates steno notes into English. The reporter enters different words into his or her dictionary, then the computer matches his or her steno notes to those dictionary entries. Any words the reporter writes differently than those in the dictionary — or words that he or […]

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How much does a scopist make? How much can I expect to earn as a newbie?

As a beginner, you’ll be much slower at editing than your more experienced peers. Never fear, though — you won’t stay that way if you don’t want to! You’ll need to establish a clientele that can furnish the amount of pages you need to meet your income goals (our training helps you do this). In your first year, you may […]

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What is the future of the scoping profession?

In this sue-happy country, court reporters seem to be getting busier and busier. Back in “the day,” many reporters had the time to edit their own transcripts, but now their workload is becoming so heavy that they’re practically being forced to seek the help of professional scopists. Most of them now hire us willingly because we give them more […]

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Is certification available for scopists?

At this point in time, NCRA has not instituted professional certification/continuing education credits for scopists since, like many organizations, they have been in a budget crunch. However, they may be “back in the black,” and we have spoken to past/present presidents of the association who have assured us scopist certification is still an important issue […]

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Is the scoping profession a viable career?

This is the best time ever to be a scopist!   Every year when we attend convention, we see a greater number of reporters seeking scopists. They just can’t keep up with the demands placed on them by the reporting profession and do all their own editing as well. More and more reporters are using […]

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