July 30, 2009


Close, but no cigar (yet!).
How was my 160 Testimony test, you ask? (See my previous post, "Today Was a Good Steno Day!") Well, I did what I said I would: I went over my test 1x, 2x, and 3x... and then... dun-dun-dun... I printed it up and graded it. Gulp! I counted 25 errors, and the limit is 17. Maybe there were errors in there that aren't actual errors and are more style preferences. If so, my teacher wouldn't mark them as incorrect. Fingers crossed! But I'm not holding my breath either. I KNOW I got almost all of the words down pat. It's just the transcribing part that messed me up. Like -- - I didn't put quotes around "that" when the attorney said, "So you mean by that as A-1?" - I put too many commas where there shouldn't have been (I guess!). - I misheard little words. I wrote "can" instead of "could" and "yes, yes," instead of "Yes. Yes." These stupid, little errors are what tripped me up... and are what got me so frustrated! When I graded another failed test (so many in the court reporting program before you finally get a PASS at 98% and above accuracy), I called my boyfriend and told him I just wanted a DRINK! Get a little tipsy before going to work, right? Not so smart! :P I was just REALLY BUMMED because I really thought I HAD IT! :( My boyfriend knocked some good sense into me. First, however, he let me vent, which was what I needed... and then he reminded me that it would be better to stay in a speed for a while to KNOW FOR SURE I've mastered that speed and then move on... as opposed to only staying in a speed for two weeks just to have "bragging rights" and to have passed one day because I get "lucky." He's right. I agree. He said that if I'm truly writing at 160 wpm, then when I come back to school in September, I WILL STILL be able to "get it" and be able to pass that last 160 wpm Testimony test in no time! He brought me back to the bigger picture: I'm still progressing very well, and I should be glad for that already. I am... but I'm ALWAYS striving for more, more, more... or in this case, to be faster (on my steno machine) and accurate (on my transcripts). Also, today my classmate told me that all the working reporters she knows, whether they're official or freelance reporters, shared with her that the hardest part about stenography is GETTING THROUGH SCHOOL... not the actual career afterward! She said that the reporters told her that most people don't talk past 225 wpm... and if they do talk too fast, get out of hand by talking over each other, or talk too softly or mumble, you as the court reporter can and should speak up. You as the court reporter must ask the speakers to repeat themselves, speak clearer or louder or whatever... do whatever it takes to get the record! This was comforting news to hear... that supposedly school is harder than the real world for us court reporting students. (If you're a working reporter, would you please share your thoughts. Is this really true, in your opinion?) Anyway...
My five-day forecast (hehehe): - Thursday: School. Work. Laundry. - Friday: Work. Spend time with my boyfriend. - Saturday: Work. Dinner with my family. - Sunday: Church. Study. Spend time with my boyfriend. - Monday: Sit-in with my first court reporter all the way in the Santa Ana court. Bowling at night with friends. Have a great summer, Everyone! Thanks for reading my venting sessions. :) It'll get better, I'm sure! Still, still optimistic! :) (And I seriously love stenography BECAUSE it's so difficult and challenging... it's a hard thing to master!) I'll report right away on how the observation hours go! I'm excited for those! Please stay posted!


Melinda said...

Most people do not talk faster than probably 180. However, you'll get 300 wpm sprinters, which you have to be prepared to speak up and slow them down. I've reported for 19 years, and I still remember school was tough, but you still need to practice speed building even 19 years into the career. Good Luck and keep up the good work. Melinda, official court reporter.

Steno Nerd (AKA Christine) said...

Thanks so much for your kind words and great info, Melinda! It's good to know most people don't speak above 180 wpm, but it's also good to know that I gotta be prepared at all times... for those faster speakers! :)

Yes, I'm aware that court reporting is a lifelong challenge... and that is one of the reasons I love court reporting so much! There's always some new to learn!

Thanks for stopping by, Melinda! :)

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