When people think of transcription services, the first industries that come to mind are likely to be legal and medical. However, transcription is applicable to more than just these two sectors of the economy. Anytime there is a recording of something, there’s a need for transcription.
In your academic work, consider how much time you spend taking notes from audio or video files. How helpful are those notes afterwards? How long does it take you to get through a recording to get the important information? Even if you haven’t logged the hours, it’s likely that it’s been frustrating work and taken up more time than you wish.
As you prepare for your next research project, here are five reasons why you should consider using academic transcription services :
1. Professionally transcribed files make research more time efficient
While you may be tempted to transcribe the audio yourself, consider how much time this will take away from your valuable research and writing hours. It will often take you, or the poor research assistant you’re working with, nine to 10 times longer than the actual file to complete the transcription. If you have 10 hours of audio to transcribe, it will take the average academic 100 hours, or 2 ½ weeks, to complete. Professional transcribers can turn around that amount of audio in less than a week.
2. Academic transcription services make information easier to use for research purposes
Another way academic transcription services can save you time is that it turns audio into a document that you can scroll through quickly and search. If you have a general outline of the audio, you may know where certain sections start and end. You won’t be able to search by keyword or topic though because it is an outline. Once the audio is typed up, you’ll be able to filter through the information and highlight or flag important parts to come back to.
3. Professional transcribers are more accurate than grad students at transcribing
When grad students or academics transcribe their own work, they typically average around 80% accuracy. This means that even once the file has been transcribed, you’ll still have to spend time making corrections to the document. The best transcription services will guarantee 99% accuracy. They also guarantee you won’t have to make any edits. While you may seem skeptical at this claim – after all you’re working on complex ideas with advanced terminology – professional transcribers are experienced at working with jargon across all types of industries. With their level of accuracy, you’ll have higher quality data to use for your research.
4. Transcription makes it easier to perform high-quality qualitative research
If you work with qualitative data, you know how hard it can be to capture and analyze it. Transcription services can help with both. First, if you’re interviewing people to collect the data, it can be distracting to the process to be taking notes. You might miss important details and hiding behind a computer or notepad can put your interview subjects on edge, and thus alter your research results. By recording the interviews and getting them transcribed later, you’re likely to have more productive interview sessions. The quality of your qualitative data is likely to improve. Also, as stated in the above points, you’ll have a searchable document that will improve the conclusions you’re able to draw from your qualitative research.
5. Transcription gives you files that are more accessible
Audio and video files require technology to play. While nowadays many of these files are available on smartphones or in the cloud, it can still be inaccessible to access, store or play large files. When a file is transcribed, you have an option between Word, Plain Text or PDF files. These types of files are easier to save and open on nearly any device. These files are also easier to share with your collaborators or assistants. Improving accessibility means there will be fewer delays in your research process.
Use an academic transcription company for your next research project
Academic research is challenging. Collecting large amounts of data from a wide range of sources to investigate complex queries and theories. Fortunately, there is one way you can make this process a little easier on yourself.
Using an academic transcription service can save you a ton of time and produce more accurate transcripts to help in your research efforts. Transcription is not just for the medical and legal industries. There are services who have expertise in academic transcription, and they can help you do your job more efficiently and accurately. Before you start your next research project, be sure to include a transcription service in your list of required resources.