Something I do not have a lot of. Money and Time.
Choose a school. Check. How hard could it be?
Google a little bit, read a few reviews, and whaa laa.
Well, it wasn't so easy for me. I quickly read about what theory people either loved or hated.
So, my search became not only what school to attend, but what theory would be the best to learn for a beginner.
I don't want to spend a bunch of T&M (time and money) on a program, all to drop out and star a new one. I have to do my research upfront before I whip out the AMEX.
I have been on the blogs and googled to my hearts (almost) content.
I still wrestle with which online program will eventually cost me less Money and Time.
There are pros and cons to everything.
I like CRAH because it seems like a one stop shop for school, software, support and machine. But is it too good to true? Is there a better option out there.
The blogs rave about Mark Kislingbury. He has his own brick and mortar school in Texas. You can pay to watch live classes or watch archived classes for new students to the tune of $500 per month. That price does not go down until you are done with the program. There is another option though for us budget minded folks. Selfstudycourtreporting.com, Mark's Stenomaster theory bundled up like CRAH. Cd's, books, and Mark's personal dictionary.
It only offers email support, but at the price of $3500.00. It is a little easier on the pocket book.
Another option that is a little more a la carte would be to learn Stenomaster theory only ($1799.00) and then join Mark's Magnum Steno Club ($30 per month) and buy his book ($250). You may be able to navigate speed building this way. Granted, you would probably need guidance from a mentor.
I could not find anything about a machine or CAT software. I assume this means you better start looking on Ebay for a second hand machine. Also add in there, ordering CAT software (student version $495.00)
Okay, my mind is feeling numb looking at the numbers and researching which program would be best. It is a big decision. One that should not be taken lightly, considering the amount of money and time you invest.
The main reason I still think I will choose Court Reporting and Captioning at Home, is because of the 365 days of email support. Added bonus, internship placement and job placement assistance. I know I have an insider with my sister being a court reporter, but she only knows what she knows. She doesn't know a captioner to set me up with or know who would be the best employer. She knows freelance court reporting. Plus, she is about to be a first time mom, and probably doesn't want to deal with an inquisitive, nagging sister.
If anyone else is wrestling with similar questions, let me know what you decide!