How to Become a Court Reporter in Arizona

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Court reporters are an essential part of the legal field.

They are responsible for transcribing court proceedings and other events verbatim.

Court reporting is done with a special keyboard that allows you to write in shorthand, which speeds up the writing process.

How to Become a Court Reporter in Arizona

To become a court reporter, you’ll need to pass a court reporter program, pass certification exams, and get licensed as a court reporter.

See if You Meet the Requirements for Court Reporting

Before you begin the process, it’s important to be sure that you meet the requirements for becoming a court reporter.

You’ll need a clean background.

If you have any misdemeanor or felony convictions, you may not qualify for court reporting.

You’ll also need to be a U.S. citizen.

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Lastly, you’ll need excellent hearing and verbal processing skills, and the ability to type quickly.

Don’t worry if you don’t have strong typing skills yet.

You’ll learn how to type quickly and accurately in the court reporting program.

Complete a Court Reporting Program

The first step to becoming a court reporter is completing a training program.

You can choose an associate’s degree program or a certificate program.

During the program, you’ll learn how to use a stenotype machine, transcription, and communications theory.

You’ll also learn judicial and medical terminology and courtroom procedures.

Get a National Certification

You have two organizations to choose from when getting a national certification.

The Association of Court Reporters and Captioners, or NCRA, offers a Registered Professional Reporter, or RPR, certification.

The National Verbatim Reporters Association, or NVRA, offers a Certified Verbatim Reporter, or CVR, certification.

Both certifications require two tests.

You’ll take the skills portion which tests your skills.

The written exam isn’t required to be a court reporter in Arizona, but it is required to get your RPR or CVR certification.

The NVRA costs $150 for the skills portion and $125 for the written portion.

The NCRA costs $120 for the skills portion and $220 for the written portion.

Pass the Arizona Certification Exam

Once you’ve passed a national certification exam, you are ready to take the Arizona certification exam.

The exam has 100 questions, and you must get a score of 70% or better to pass.

This exam is similar to the written exams for national certification.

However, there’s a focus on Arizona-specific procedures and laws.

To take the test, you’ll mail in your application and a $50 testing fee.

When you take the test, you’ll need to bring your photo ID.

Submit Your Application to the Arizona Certification and Licensing Division

This is the final step in becoming licensed as a court reporter in Arizona.

You’ll complete the application, and mail it to the Arizona Certification and Licensing Division. 

You’ll need to include a 2″ x 2″ color photograph or headshot.

You’ll need a copy of your degree and your RPR or CVR certification.

You will need to include a set of your fingerprints on an FBI fingerprint card and a $22 processing fee for an FBI background check.

The certification fee is $450.

Court Reporter Schools in Arizona

Gateway Community College Gateway Community College

Gateway Community College offers the only program in Arizona that is certified by the National Court Reporters Association.

The college has several locations in Phoenix.

You can choose to earn a certificate or an Associate of Applied Science degree.

The program is very rigorous. Students attend classes every weekday.

When completing the course, you must be able to write 225 words a minute on a steno machine with a minimum of 95% accuracy.

You’ll also learn about the legal system, including court procedures, medical and legal terminology, English and grammar, and how to use stenography software.

The program includes a judicial internship.

Courses include Court Reporting Skill Building, Computer Aided Transcription, Court Reporting: Legal Terminology, and Court Reporting: Machine Short Hand.

You’ll also take general education courses, including composition, mathematics, critical reading, and oral communications.

Contact Information

Address: 108 N 40th St, Phoenix, AZ 85034, United States


Phone: 256-549-8694

Arizona Western College Arizona Western College

Arizona Western College has paired with Ed2Go to provide a digital court reporter program.

The course is entirely online and prepares you to transcribe digital legal proceedings.

The program prepares you to take the  AAERT’s (American Association of Electronic Reporters and Transcribers) national certification or CER, (Certified Electronic Reporter) exam.

You’ll learn how to transcribe proceedings including depositions, hearings, trials, and more with digital recording software.

You’ll learn how to use digital reporting software and hardware.

You’ll learn the basics of the U.S. legal system and proceedings.

Ethics, confidentiality, and professionalism are also key components you’ll learn.

Lastly, you’ll learn the medical, legal, and industry-specific terminology.

Once you’ve completed the program, you can get your AAERT CER certification.

This can allow you to work onsite, or from home, depending on the position.

Contact Information

Address: 2020 S Ave 8 E, Yuma, AZ 85365, United States


Phone: 928-317-6000

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to maintain my court reporter certification in Arizona?


You’ll need to renew your certification every two years.

You’ll need to pay a $400 fee and have 20 hours of continuing education within the last two years.

RPR certification is every three years and requires 30 hours of continuing education.

CVR is renewed every two years and requires 20 continuing education credits.

Are court reporters in demand in Arizona?

Yes, court reporters are in demand, and this demand is only expected to grow in the next decade.

The demand for court reporters in Arizona is expected to grow by 7%, which is faster than average.

Will technology replace court reporters?

Technology is unlikely to replace court reporters.

Instead, as technology improves, court reporters will have greater efficiency.

What Certification is Best?

If you want to do digital court reporting, the AAERT certification is probably the best.

If you want to work in an Arizona courtroom, either the NVRA or NCRA are great options.

Court Reporter Salary Information

The average salary for a court reporter in Arizona is $61,700.

Salaries range from $44,517 to $80,756.

How much you make will depend on the demand in your area, where you choose to work, your education, and your experience.

Annual Salary Range:
Item Percent

Average Salary in Arizona

City Name Salary
Phoenix $61,700
Tucson $59,248
Mesa $61,709
Glendale $61,700
Scottsdale $61,709
Chandler $61,709
Tempe $61,709
Gilbert $61,709
Peoria $61,575
Yuma $63,457

Regional Salary

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ170$60,270$28.98$85,020$35,880
Tucson, AZ50$62,980$30.28$86,610$37,050
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Court Reporters and Simultaneous Captioners, OCC Code 27-3092, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Court Reporter Programs by State

Chelsea Wilson

About Chelsea Wilson

Chelsea Wilson is the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s distance learning LLM degree program, which provides foreign trained attorneys with the opportunity to earn a Master of Laws degree from a top-tier American university from anywhere in the world.

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