What is a Certified CART Provider?

A Certified CART Provider (CCP) is an individual who has taken and passed the Certified CART Provider exam and thus gained certification in the use of Computer Access Realtime Translation, a system for realtime transcription of speech used mainly in assistance for the deaf or hearing impaired. This system will be discussed below. This certification is offered by the National Court Reporter’s Association. The certification is a valuable credential and can be useful in securing jobs in the growing field of captioning for the hearing impaired and other language comprehension challenged individuals.

Computer Access Realtime Translation

Computer Access Realtime Translation (CART) is a system in which a captioner uses a stenotype machine, laptop computer, and CART software. The captioner (a version of the general profession known as court reporting) uses the stenographic technique to covert what is being said to shorthand code. This code is then processed by the CART software on the laptop and displayed as readable English text. The means of display is either the screen of the laptop itself or some other type of display device.

The National Court Reporter’s Association

The CCP exam and certification is, as noted above administered and conferred by The National Court Reporter’s Association, or NCRA. This is a national organization that supports professionals in the court reporting industry. It mainly emphasizes support for reporters that use stenographic methods (as opposed to voice writing) as a main transcription technique. This organization offers memberships at a few different levels in exchange for yearly dues. Members are eligible to take a number of different certification exams offered by the organization that provide credentialing for a number of facets and levels of the court reporting field. The website provides helpful information such as college listings and employment resources like classified advertising.

The CCP Exam

The CCP examination consists of two parts: a written knowledge test (abbreviated as WKT) and a skills test (abbreviated as SKT).

The written knowledge test or WKT portion of the exam lasts 90 minutes and consists of 100 multiple choice questions. These questions deal with four main subject areas (though the NCRA website points out that the test is not limited to these areas): Writing Realtime, Research, Language Skills, and Communication Access Realtime Translation. The test taker must achieve a scaled score of 70% or higher on the WKT portion in order to pass.

The Skills Test or SKT of the CCP exam is identical to the skills portion of the Certified Realtime Reporter (CRR) exam. It consists of three parts: In the first, the individual sets up a stenotype machine and CAT equipment. This shows that they are familiar with the technology and are efficient at getting it set up and ready for use. The second set is a five minute real time transcription session from recorded literary material spoken at 180 words per minute. The student must accurately transcribe this spoken content using the stenotype machine and CAT technology. When the transcription is done, the student must convert their file to an ASCII text file. It is this final file that yields the grade for the skills portion of the exam.
If an individual already has CRR certification (i.e. has taken and passed the CRR exam), he or she doesn’t need to take the SKT portion of the CCP exam.

What it takes to pass the CCP Written Knowledge Test

The WKT is a 90-minute, 100 question, multiple-choice test based on, but not limited to, the following four areas of knowledge needed to perform the duties of a CART provider. A candidate must pass with a scaled score of 70.

• Writing Realtime
• Research
• Language Skills
• Communication Access Realtime Translation

Exam Eligibility

There are no eligibility requirements for taking the CCP exam other than that they be a member of the NCRA in good standing. In order to maintain membership yearly dues are paid, continuing education requirements must be maintained, and a member needs not to have been involved in any misconduct.

Advantages of CCP Certification

The advantages of having a CCP certification are mainly in terms of employment in the realtime captioning field. Captioning is used at a wide variety of events at which there are hearing impaired individuals who need to follow what’s going on. This could take the form of occasions like meetings and public speaking events or be daily types of situations like classroom discussions. That is, sometimes captioners are hired to accompany a hearing impaired individual and provide captioning for class work or for other day to day activities.

Continuing Education

The CCP certification must be maintained by taking continuing education credits. This is in fact the case with all of the certifications that the NCRA offers. The organization employs a system in which it grants continuing education credits called CEUs. In order to maintain the CBC the student must earn at least 3.0 CEUs over a three year period. They must also, of course, maintain membership in the NCRA.

The NCRA Website

Reporters wishing to sit for the CCP exam can register on the website. In addition to this, the NCRA website contains a wealth of information for both court reporting students and professionals already working in the field of. It offers college listings, classified ads for those seeking jobs or advertising their services, articles and news, listing of professional court reporting organizations on the state level, and many other useful features. Court reporters or students can access the website and use it as a kind of home base for their professional pursuits. It serves as an information resource and contact point that can help those starting out and long time court reporting professionals alike.

CBC certification is a useful credential for anyone interested in captioning that uses Computer Access Realtime Translation as a technology. The jobs one would get from this would mainly take the form, as noted, of work with the hearing impaired, learning disabled, and with foreigners who speak little or no English. Take a look at the NCRA website for further information on it at: http://ncraonline.org/