NCRA Certifications

Registered Professional Reporters

All of our reporters are either Registered Merit Reporters or Registered Professional Reporters as certified by the National Court Reporters Association. Click here (RPR definition) to find out more about NCRA credentials generally and the RPR designation.

NCRA Certifications*

NCRA certifications have set the standard for excellence since 1935.

That year, the first certification program was established to individually recognize the competence of court reporters. In the first year 27 reporters passed the first exam, establishing themselves as “Certified Professionals,” or CPs.

The certification program now has three tiers of achievement and proudly claims nearly 14,000 Registered Professional Reporters (RPRs), the updated equivalent of the CP. Over 3,000 reporters have earned the next level of certification, the Registered Merit Reporter (RMR), and over 350 have become Registered Diplomate Reporters (RDRs). Additionally, of significant importance in today’s court reporting marketplace is the Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR).

Registered Professional Reporter (RPR)

What it takes to become a Registered Professional Reporter (RPR)

To become an RPR, you must have the knowledge, skills, and ability to produce a high-quality verbatim record. The Written Knowledge Test, or WKT, is a 105-question, multiple-choice test that focuses on four areas: reporting (48%), transcript production (44%), operating practices (4%), and professional issues and continuing education (4%).

In addition, you’ll also have to pass three sections of a skills test that evaluates you in three areas:
  • Literary at 180 wpm
  • Jury Charge at 200 wpm
  • Testimony/Q&A at 225 wpm
  • After these dictation sections, 75 minutes is allowed to transcribe the notes from each leg and 95% accuracy is required on each leg to pass. It is not required to pass all the sections of the exam in one sitting. As long as NCRA membership is maintained, credit is retained for the sections passed. There is no time limit for earning the RPR.

How to maintain your RPR Certification

As an RPR, you’ll participate in NCRA’s continuing education program. To renew your RPR you must maintain your NCRA membership and earn a minimum of 3.0 CEUs over a three-year period.

Registered Merit Reporter (RMR)

Once established as an RPR, the next step is to become an advanced-level court reporter by passing the Registered Merit Reporter (RMR) Exam. With the RMR credential, a reporter is recognized by their peers and clients as one of the top court reporters in the country.

What it takes to become a Registered Merit Reporter (RMR)

The RMR Exam consists of a 105-question Written Knowledge Test (WKT) that focuses on four areas of knowledge: reporting (47%), transcript production (41%), administration (6%), and professional issues and continuing education (6%).

In addition, you’ll also have to pass three sections of a skills test that evaluates you in three areas:

  • Literary at 200 wpm
  • Jury Charge at 240 wpm
  • Testimony/Q&A at 260 wpm
  • After these dictation sections, 75 minutes is allowed to transcribe the notes from each leg and 95% accuracy is required on each leg to pass. It is not required to pass all the sections of the exam in one sitting. As long as NCRA membership is maintained, credit is retained for the sections passed. There is no time limit for earning the RMR.

Registered Diplomate Reporter (RDR)

The RDR is the highest level of certification available to court reporters. This certification program was developed to allow high-level, seasoned reporters to distinguish themselves as members of the profession’s elite. If you’ve already been an RMR for five years, if you’ve exhibited exemplary skills in all areas of court reporting, if you’re actively involved in court reporting and served as a consultant or leader in the profession, then you’re ready to sit for the Registered Diplomate Reporter (RDR) Examination. As of this writing, NCRA boasts over 350 RDRs.

Who is eligible to sit for the RDR Exam?

To sit for the RDR exam, a candidate must be an RMR and have six (6) current and continuous years of membership commencing with Participating or Registered member status.

What it takes to attain the RDR Certification

The RDR Exam consists of a 105-question, multiple-choice Written Knowledge Test (WKT) that focuses on six areas: reporting (35%), transcript production (27%), management (11%), education (10%), marketing (8%), and professional issues (9%). The exam is designed to test knowledge and experience; however, a candidate must also be familiar with new reporting technology, NCRA policies and guidelines, and articles published in the Journal of Court Reporting to pass the exam.

Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR)

A Certified Realtime Reporter has developed their writing skills and proven them through one of the top national programs certifying their ability in realtime reporting. Attaining the CRR designation commands instant respect and immediate attention from peers and clients alike. You must be a member in good standing of NCRA and a current RPR to register for the CRR.

What it takes to pass the CRR Exam

The CRR Exam consists of three steps:

  1. Setting up and operating reporting equipment.
  2. Accurately writing realtime for five minutes at 96% accuracy from professionally recorded literary material at the speed of 180 words per minute.
  3. Converting the real time file to an ASCII text file. Grading is based only on the final submitted text file.

*Some of the information provided on this webpage was extracted from the National Court Reporters Association website at: www.ncraonline.org.