It’s been a while since I’ve shadowed a court reporter on a job. Today, I had the great opportunity to sit in with my friend and the girl who introduced me to stenography and taught me how to steno my first letters, punctuation, and word(s) on the stenograph! It’s a big deal. 😉
I’ve been stenoing a lot of videos on Youtube during any free time that I’ve had this summer. It’s always a challenge to keep up with what people are saying since it’s talking in real life conversations. Compared to the fixed speeds in the practice dictation that is available on my school’s site and the Speed Plus books, practicing to real people conversations makes it that much harder to keep up. (Besides, I can catch up with my favourite Youtube channels and practice steno at the same time too!) Right now, I drop a lot of words since I’m still not writing at 225 wpm yet, but I think that my ability to listen to people talk at higher speeds has been improving. I know this because songs that I used to find challenging to practice to are easy peasy and not a challenge anymore. I used to steno to songs a lot in my 40-140 wpm phase because they were fast yet still slow enough for me to write out every word. I like to steno to songs from musicals more than the typical radio hit since the lyrics contain more varied words (dialogue) instead of a repeating chorus.
Speaking of Youtube videos, this is one that I’ve been challenging myself with stenoing recently. I bookmarked this video to watch and even though I realized that I had previously seen this video before and was struck with the emotional message of it, this time I recognised it as a great steno practice video.
Listen and watch this video and tell me that the lyrics in this rap aren’t SUPER fast! That translates to perfect practice material! (Literally! Get it? :P) If you’re not a steno, try typing the lyrics out to this video on your QWERTY keyboard and message me if you succeed in getting all the words down in one go. That’s real-time captioning for ya.
Practice makes perfect, and I’ve been getting better at getting all of the words in this video down accurately. My word per minute count on Case Catalyst hovers between 140-240 wpm during the course of this song. The rapper/storyteller is very emotional in his delivery of speech which makes the song a journey to steno through. (Steno students: Practice to rap music if you want to train your ear to listen to fast speech!)
Anyway! Back to the shadowing session that I had — it was good. I felt good that I was able to get down a lot of what was being said. My feeling about the whole day is why I launched into the whole spiel about stenoing to videos and songs in the first place. It’s because I feel that I’ve been stenoing to so many videos and challenging myself over the summer that I think this made today’s case feel very easy to steno to. Don’t get me wrong: I didn’t deliver a perfect transcript and my notes are far from complete, but this was probably the best shadowing experience I’ve done in terms of getting down the words. The people in today’s examination were speaking from 80-200 wpm and fluctuated every so often. I was able to maintain a 0.5~ untranslate rate in the last half hour of the day. 🙂
It was also really nice to be back at the agency environment again and see old faces. 🙂 Looking forward to the next one as always.