In our experience, we have found legal transcriptionists to be both diligent and meticulous in their work. But even the most eagle-eyed transcriptionist knows that when it comes to producing fabulous transcripts, a second (or even third!) pair of eyes is key. Scopists and proofreaders can really help make a transcript shine and free up the transcriptionist to accept more jobs, produce more pages, and increase his or her bottom line.
But what do proofreaders and scopists do? Sometimes, the line between these two tasks is unclear so we thought we would write about the similarities and differences in this post.
A scopist is someone who understands transcription formatting, has technical knowledge, excellent editing and proofreading skills, and can use one or several specialized editing macros or computer aided transcription (CAT) systems.
The scopist edits the transcript file against the audio recording of the proceedings. The scopist will usually do a careful, word-by-word review of the transcript using macros or CAT software, making corrections and additions as necessary to the transcript as well as flagging any areas in the transcript for the transcriptionist’s review.
A proofreader is someone who is trained in transcription formats and possesses specialized proofreading skills. Legal knowledge is critical as well as a broad vocabulary and an expert-level understanding of spelling, punctuation, and grammar.
The proofreading process may or may not involve use of the transcript’s audio file. The proofreader will check a PDF or paper version of the transcript for context and will make sure everything is consistent throughout the document (such as spellings, etc.).
Some transcriptionists like scoping their own work and then sending it off to a proofreader, while others prefer to use a scopist and then follow that with a proofreader. It really boils down to preference and how much time he or she wants to spend at the computer editing instead of transcribing new jobs.
In our opinion as a professional legal transcription company, the more eyes the better. Professionals who have a reliable team of scopists and proofreaders to turn to often find themselves with plenty of work and greater earnings. Everyone appreciates a high-quality job with a fast turnaround, and this chain of production helps make that possible.
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I proof my work, then have someone else read it as well. I know it sounds like a lot of extra work but it is well worth it not to have any issues. Great posts, btw!
We think it’s well worth it, too. If our name is on a transcript, we insist on it being as perfect as possible. Happy transcribing, Jackie!
If you don’t proofread, it will cost you time and money. I learned the hard way. I use a paid proofreader now and it’s the best decision I’ve ever made.
Hi Michael! We agree; skilled proofreaders really do make all the difference. We appreciate your visit today!