Although there are no licensing or certification requirements to become a court reporter in Alaska, individuals who want achieve greater professional opportunities should consider completing a number of steps:
|Complete an Alaska State Court Reporter Educational Program|
|Become NCRA Certified as a Registered Professional Reporter in Alaska|
|Get to Work as a Court Reporter in Alaska|
Step 1. Complete an Alaska State Court Reporter Educational Program
Court reporter educational programs may consist of certificate or diploma programs from specialized court reporter/stenography schools or associate degree programs through community colleges and technical schools.
Many individuals seeking an education in court reporting pursue programs that have been recognized and certified by the Council on Approved Student Education (CASE) through the National Court Reporters Association. Only those programs that hold the designation of being NCRA Certified have been approved by CASE.
Explore Other Education Options Related to Criminal Justice and Legal Studies
Here you’ll find schools that offer certificate and degree programs well suited to a career in legal assisting, law office management and the paralegal profession.
Step 2. Become NCRA Certified as a Registered Professional Reporter in Alaska
Many Alaska employers seek court reporters who have achieved professional certification through the NCRA as a Registered Professional Reporter (RPR). This designation requires passing both a written examination and a skills test. Currently 22 states recognize the RPR designation for certification/licensure.
The written portion of the RPR certification examination is administered by Pearson VUE. You must first register to take the test through the NCRA website, which costs $185 as a NCRA member and $210 as a non-member.
You can view upcoming testing dates and register through the Pearson VUE website. You may take the exam at one of the many nearby Pearson VUE testing sites, including:
- Anchorage, Alaska
- Renton, Washington
- Seattle, Washington
The written knowledge test (WKT) consists of 115, multiple-choice questions that include the following content:
- Technology: 22 percent
- Reporting practices: 62 percent
- Professional practices: 16 percent
You must receive a scaled score of 70 or better to pass the exam.
Upcoming testing dates for the NCRA skills exam are posted on their website. Registration is available when testing dates are announced. Testing in Alaska for the skills test occurs at:
Midnight Sun Court Reporters
511 West 9th Avenue, Suite #1
Anchorage, Alaska 99501
Step 3. Get to Work in Alaska
A number of professional opportunities may exist as a result of you well-rounded resume. You may pursue employment in Alaska’s Judicial System through one of the courts:
There is also a number of court reporting professional opportunities through companies in the private sector:
- Pacific Rim Reporting, Anchorage, AK
- Atkinson-Baker, Inc. Court Reporters (national)
- Alaska Court Reporting and Transcribing Services, Anchorage, AK
Step 4. Get Involved
A great way to enjoy networking and professional opportunities is through a professional association, such as the National Association of Court Reporters and the Alaska Shorthand Reporters Association. Due to the lack of licensing requirements for court reporters in Alaska, it is not uncommon for employers to seek qualified court reporters through professional associations such as the Alaska Shorthand Reporters Association, as their members adhere to higher standards of verbatim reporting and professional ethics.
Professional associations are also an excellent way to achieve continuing education credits for NCRA certification renewal.
Alaska Court Reporting Salary
According to the Alaska Supreme Court’s glossary, court reporters are responsible for keeping an accurate record of what has been said in court. Accuracy is highly important in this type of work, especially since many cases are appealed.
The state of Alaska defines court reporters as professionals who use verbatim methods and equipment to make a record of trial and pretrial proceedings. This category includes stenographers who provide captions for those who have impaired hearing.
To obtain depositions in Alaska, it is frequently necessary to bring court reporters into remote locations that do not have such professionals available locally. Plaintiffs or defendants are allowed to try and recover the cost of doing so according to a 2007 Alaska Supreme Court ruling.
Salary information for the year preceding November 2013 is available from Indeed.com. The following types of Alaskan court reporters had the annual salaries shown below:
- Court reporter – $19,000
- Digital court reporter – $24,000
- Official court reporter – $29,000
- Rpr court reporter – $55,000
Rpr court reporters are registered professional reporters who have received certification from the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). This guarantees that they can record 225 words per minute. This is one of a number of types of certifications available for court reporters.
Most court reporters work for local or state government and take verbatim records of court proceedings. Another sizable group of court reporters work for business support services. A number of firms retain court reporters that they contract out to businesses and legal professionals. Some of the court reporting firms found in Alaska are listed below:
- Glacier Stenographic Reporters
- Kaplan, Leaman & Wolfe court Reporters
- Liz D’Amour & Associates, Inc.
- Pacific Rim Reporting
- Peninsula Reporting