Certainly transcription can be a lucrative way for someone with good typing skills to earn cash from home; however, there’s more to this line of work than just typing. First, there are many different types of transcription, each requiring different typing speeds and other important skills, such as excellent spelling and good listening ability, as well as different kinds of equipment.
These transcription opportunities include everything from data entry, which usually accepts the slowest typing... speeds and pays to least, to realtime captioning, which might require speeds as fast as 300 wpm and pays accordingly. Knowing how fast you can type is important in knowing how much you can earn!
The websites listed below will help you practice your skills and determine your abilities. In turn, be sure you know what you can do can help you navigate the market for those skills and find only legitimate home transcription work. These sites are free but be careful of sales pitches in Google ads or on websites that try to sell you certification or classes to improve your skills.
Prepare Before You Apply to Typing Jobs
Most companies with transcription jobs screen candidates with a sometimes lengthy application process, so it can be disappointing to go through the process only to be rejected because your typing skills are too slow. These online typing tests and practice files can give you an idea how fast you transcribe audio. You can use them to check if your skills are up to the job's requirements or to gauge if your typing skills are improving.
Also, though there are many online typing tests on the Internet, these particular tests are geared toward transcriptionists, rather than students. While these tests are free, keep in mind that the websites they are on may be selling software, classes or other services that may not be of value. I am not endorsing any products on these sites (just as I don’t endorse any products or services promoted on ads on this site). Use the tests but always keep an eye out for the signs of a scam.
More: 13 Typing Jobs From Home
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This site is full of a lot of useful information for experienced transcriptionists. Its sound files use RealPlayer (which can be downloaded for free from the site) and are live and dictated files that range in speed from 40 to 230 words per minute. Most files are about 5 minutes long. There are letters and other general transcription tasks as well as medical and legal transcription files. Typists listen to the files and type them into their software. Stenographers can connect their machines to... their computers and practice using the files too.
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It takes a little time to make sense of this site. (I recommend watching its video tutorial.) However, it has many audio files (mostly from Voice of America radio programs) that can be typed directly into its interface so that it can score your speed. If you sign up and log in, it will keep track of your progress. And while the site has files at a wide range of levels, it is essentially geared toward beginners and English language learners.
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Popular transcription software maker provides several files (medical, legal and general) for practice on its software. The software is free to download, and there are PDFs of the completed transcription to check your work, but there is no timing mechanism to check your speed.