Steps To Creating Transcripts From Pre-Recorded Files


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There are different kinds of transcripts. You can create transcripts from ready recorded audio or video files or create transcripts from a live proceeding. Most of the transcripts in films are from already recorded audio and film videos while the transcripts of the live proceedings are usually from court proceedings, hospital sessions, University lectures, Business meetings, and even radio, television, and film programs. In order for a transcriber to do transcriptions of any sort, they must be ready and prepare well and that’s exactly what we will look at on this article.

How Do You Create A Transcript Step By Step?

The following are the steps to follow when creating transcripts...

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  1. Put aside enough time to transcribe. One thing many people do, that ends up messing up the entire process of transcribing, is usually downplaying the time they would need to create a particular transcript. It usually takes approximately 2 hours to transcribe a half an hour audio. If you, as a transcriber, don’t put aside two hours or more of your free time and allocate it to work on that audio piece, then you end up overextending, or not even finishing and setting the transcript aside for another time. This will make you not deliver on your targets. It is good to note that this is also highly dependent on the transcriptionists typing speed because more times than not that is the most important thing when creating transcripts apart from your listening skills. It is very important to set ample time aside to work on a particular transcript, to avoid carry overwork to another time when you could do something different. Block out time to transcribe. Transcribing will probably take you longer than you imagined. Also, work on the time you have put aside and not wait until the last minute to transcribe, because chances are you will produce transcripts full of errors.
  2. Pre-listen to the recording you want to work on. I can’t stress enough how important this is. If setting aside time to work on your transcripts is not as important, then do not ignore this step. The same thing you do when you peruse through an exam paper to get a general feel of how the exam questions are and prepare yourself mentally of what awaits is the same thing I mean by listening to the audio or video before embarking on working on it. This will allow you to, first, know what your transcript is about and what to expect when dealing with the Jargon used. Also, there is ease knowing what something entails before dealing with, it calms your nerves and makes your mind ready for what is coming and in this case is the content of the audio. This can refresh your memory about the content of the recording, understand the flow of the conversation, and identify all the voices on the recording. You will know how many speakers you are working with, whether they are male or female and so and so forth. This is a step that one should not avoid, it creates so much ease when working on the audio pieces.
  3. Set the speed of the audio to suit you. It is very clear, and a known fact, that not everyone’s typing speed is as fast as the other or as slow as the other. This is where this step comes in. You will come across audio that is too fast or too slow, which might end up slowing you down if you have a fast typing speed and confusing you if you have a slow typing speed. You can see that pre-listening to the audio will allow you to know whether the speed of the audio is perfect for you or whether you need to reduce or increase it. One step can help make the other step more realistic for you. Most transcription software usually allows one to slow down, forward, rewind, and pause the audios to work on them freely. The best thing you can also do is to get a foot pedal for your machine which will allow you to stop, pause, rewind, and forward with your foot which will allow you to use your hands for typing alone. This will make the complete process worthwhile for you.
  4. Format your transcript. You should make sure you format the document you are writing the transcripts in well. It should include page numbers, a title, and the date of the day you are working on the transcript. You can go further to add an abbreviated version of the title and date in a header or footage on the page. Also, do not forget to include all the speakers and specifically represented if they are female or male. Formatting a transcript usually ensures that your document is neat and follows the rules and guidelines of transcription depending on your clients’ specifications. Note that every time a new speaker comes on, that should be a new paragraph. You should know that a transcript is not one long block but a series of paragraphs that represents the speakers on the audio.
  5. Be sure to transcribe every single word. The essence of creating transcripts is usually to ensure that you get a copy of an audio or a video in a text format exactly as it is. Unless your client says otherwise, a transcriber should be able to transcribe every word available on audio regardless of whether it is an utterance or a reaction. They should be the same way as the recording, and one should not omit or add any words. Where a grammatical error has been experiencing its good to note that, that’s the exact way, intended and you should not correct it.”[sic]” is used to denote a grammatical error in the transcript. If someone says, “They are not ready.” You would type “They is [sic] not ready.” instead of correcting the grammar in the sentence. If a word is inaudible, type “(inaudible)” or use a symbol (e.g. *, ***) to denote that a word is missing. Also, add the time in the recording where the inaudible word is. This can help you when you go back to figure out what they said.
  6. Be sure to identify nonverbal communication. In all conversations, you will never miss nonverbal cues regardless of whether it is a serious conversation between dignitaries or a plain simple conversation between friends. You might wonder so what are non-verbal cues. These are mostly reactions such as (smacks, sighs, laughs), and so on and so forth. If someone laughs after they say something, put “[laughing]” after what he or she said. The same applies to all non-verbal cues in transcription. If it does not follow this through, then we will treat it as an omitted reaction and if for example, the transcript was for a dubbing process then this might make it harder for the process to be flawless.
  7. Be sure to show pauses in your transcripts. So far we can all agree that transcripts illustrate the content on a recording the exact way it is from beginning to end. This also includes putting pauses. The way a conversation flows on a recording is the same way it should flow when illustrated on a transcript. If a speaker pauses after talking for a while, then the transcript should show it as it is. Either including ellipses or the word “pause”. A wonderful illustration of a sentence is.
    1. I don’t know why this is happening… It shall be well though.
    2. I don’t know why this is happening ” pause” It shall be well though.
  8. Proofread and edit your transcripts. So you have already followed through with the steps ahead, you have written your transcripts and also formatted them according to the rules and regulations of transcription. This is the point where you have to go through your transcript to ensure that there are no spelling errors or omitted words and that the transcript is freely flowing and makes sense as it is. Be sure to make corrections and edit where necessary and not to end up over-editing some grammar mistakes. Re-write your transcript to adhere to any form or format deemed necessary.
  9. Countercheck the transcript while listening to the audio. This is the last step which acts as a backup step to the proofreading and editing step. This is great because you get to compare the transcript with audio simultaneously. This step helps one to ensure that their transcript is inline with the audio and that you have included every aspect of the audio.

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