Questions Students Ask
The following questions were actually gleaned from the forms of students who've signed up in the Virtual Mentors Program. If you find yourself at a loss for things to talk to your protege about, check over this list. It might give you an idea or two.
Just researching the field questions:
I'm looking for feedback on the career. Is it a good career to get into? Will there be jobs for me when I finish school? What makes a person a good court reporter?
Beginning Theory questions:
What should I consider in order to decide which field to go in? What should I expect and how to move forward and stay encouraged in school? How should I pace myself in school? How many hours should I spend on practice? Is that outside of homework? What are some good study habits? How important is it to review theory? How important is realtime in the real world? What are some suggestions to get a grip on my frustrations and turn it into positive action towards my goal?
Beginning Machine questions:
How do you balance working full-time with pursuing the dream of becoming a court reporter? Is an "at home" program a good alternative to school? What skills should I be learning? What was your experience after theory? What do I need to consider at this point to go into a specific field?
I've reached a plateau. When we practice, I can pretty much hit it, and then when the real thing comes I bomb. Do you have any suggestions?
Anyone out there that got a late start such as I have? I am 36, mother of two, single, and I work.
Sometimes I have second thoughts about the profession. As a student I try to read as much as I can about the pros and cons of reporting and sometimes become a little worried about the choice I made. Would you tell me what you enjoy about the profession? What’s kept you in it for so many years?
I need to find a way to use my steno skills now, because I need to support myself. I am writing 120 wpm on my machine and typing over 70 wpm. I hope that I can use my work to practice. Any suggestions?
Which software and writer should I choose?
I had passed my 160s when my school closed and have built my speed past 200. Now I am struggling with whether I should continue on. I have passed the written portion of the RPR and still am trying to pass the skill test. I need encouragement and motivation.
I’m currently enrolled in school, but the court reporting program may be discontinued. Do you have any suggestions?
Home stretch questions:
I would like any helpful hints on building up speed, especially Q&A. How do you deal with test anxiety? Did you have any practice methods in school that might work for me? Do you enjoy what you are doing? Is it worth all the time and frustration it takes to get through school?
I plan to freelance for 2-3 years, then want to work as an official, eventually at the federal court one day. Is that realistic?
I am registered for the next RPR (or CSR) test and I am getting a little nervous. Do you have any suggestions as to my practice for the skills and written exam?
And a quick story to keep in mind:
When I was in high school, a long, long, long time ago, my mother had taken me to a courtroom to see a trial. I enjoyed being there, but most of all I was fascinated with the court reporter. She had total control of the courtroom, not to mention she was very glamorous. When I went to my counselor and informed him that this is what I wanted to do, he explained to me that I needed to reconsider. He told me that court reporting would not be around very long. Ten years later I still wanted to be a court reporter. I decided to go to school and not listen to anyone (especially if they had anything negative to say about it). I am enjoying myself right now and although there are days when I want to give up, I always think back to the time when my mom first introduced me to the courts. I have no regrets.