Closed Caption Writer Training
Closed caption writers transcribe text to accompany audio materials and can work in education, business or entertainment. Find out what the requirements are to work in this field, and learn about optional certifications.
What Kind of Training is Required for Closed Caption Writing?
Closed caption writers create text translations of audio materials for hearing-impaired viewers. Federal regulations require closed captions during all Spanish and English television programs. Associate's programs in court reporting, real-time reporting or broadcast captioning offer training in closed caption writing. Some schools offer certificate programs in court reporting.
|Program Levels||Associate's, certificate|
|Common Courses||Machine shorthand, legal terminology, proofreading, captioning, medical terminology|
|Additional Requirements||Some court reporters may need licensure, depending on their state|
|Online availability||Programs available online|
|Median Salary (2018)||$49,930 (for all interpreters and translators)|
|Job Outlook (2018-2028)||19% growth (for all interpreters and translators)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
What Will I Learn?
Courses in an associate's program may include general education courses, like history or communications. You'll explore topics like dictation and transcription, medical terminology, criminal law and vocabulary development. You'll learn how to use real-time reporting tools, like a voice recorder or a stenotype machine. Additional courses might include:
- Machine shorthand
- Legal terminology
Are There Additional Requirements?
There are no licensing or certification requirements to work as a closed caption writer. In some states, court reporters may need to obtain licensure by passing a state administered exam. Voluntary certification credentials are offered through organizations like the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). Available credentials include Registered Professional Reporter (RPR), Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR) and Certified Realtime Captioner (CRC).
You may need to become a member of the NCRA in order to qualify for certification. To earn your credential, you'll usually need to pass a written exam; you'll also need to transcribe recorded material at a rate of at least 180 words per minute with 96% accuracy. You might need to earn continuing education credits in order to maintain certification.
Are Programs Available Online?
Programs are available online from a number of schools. Online programs may require you to purchase your own supplies, including a stenotype machine or voice-to-text equipment. You may need to purchase transcription software in order to complete online coursework.