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How To Transcribe An Interview On Word

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Identify What You Want Out Of Your Transcript

Automated transcription of research interviews in Microsoft Word

A big choice impacting how you will transcribe your interview is the purpose of your transcript. Is the transcript simply for reference notes? Will anyone else read it? What accuracy requirements do you have?

For example, if you simply need a transcript to sift through and pull out quotes, there is no need to capture the amount of detail required to produce a verbatim transcript that someone else could read as a substitute for listening to the recording.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will anyone other than me be reading this transcript?
  • Can this transcript act as reference notes, or does it need to be a stand-alone document?
  • Will I be able to listen to the recording again later?
  • Do I already know the main points I need to capture in this recording?
  • Does verbatim accuracy matter?

If you goal is to simply get a few quotes for an article, you already have an idea of what those points are likely to be, and keeping a written record of the recording is un-important, just get started. Using a dedicated transcription software platform is still advisable . However, many of the steps we will layout in this guide are designed to help people who need far more accuracy than decontextualized scribbles and a few time stamps. If you need a proper transcript, you will need more prep.

Say ‘no’ To Transcripts

Since you can code your audio or video sources directly, maybe you don’t need transcripts at all. For example:

  • Listen to your interviews.
  • Each time you hear participants talk about food additives, select the section on the timeline and code it at the node Food Additives.
  • Open the node Food Additives and listen to all the coded snippets in one place.
  • Make a memo to summarize your findings.
  • Depending on your research goals and methodology this approach may work for you. The only draw-back is that you can’t use Text search or Word Frequency queries to find content in the interviews .

    Rev Voice Recorder With Human Audio Transcription

    Rev Voice Recorder

    If accuracy counts and computer generated transcription isnt your thing, Rev Voice Recorder promises 99% accuracy with human transcription. Theres a 12-hour turnaround but you can upload your audio and come back the next day to find a polished interview transcript in your inbox. Rev offers all that at $1/minute. They even offer the Rev Call Recorder app to record and transcribe phone calls at the same rate.

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    Enables Others To Access The Interview

    There may be more than one decision-maker involved in the hiring process. Instead of meeting to discuss an interview candidates answers, you may provide others with the interview transcript for them to review. It is easy to email copies to those who have a say in who is hired. You may also choose to keep the interview in the employees file after they are hired.

    Revisit The Transcript And Edit

    Verbatim Interview transcription with slang from ...

    Now you have a readable transcription that you can work from. Its simply a matter of polishing it up and getting it ready for general consumption. Although your rough draft will be readable, maybe even useable, there will inevitably be issues like typos which youll need to correct before the transcript is ready.

    Its advisable to listen back to the interview at this point. Read through the document as you listen and address any problems or inconsistencies as you go along. You may well find that you misheard certain words or allowed the odd homophone to sneak in, like hear and their.

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    Easy Steps To Transcribe An Interview

    It is important to note, that transcription software requires either the download of the software onto the computer or in many instances with the increased usage of smartphones or tablets, the installation of the application onto the device. The following steps that are relatively uniform will be discussed:

    Rename A Recorded Audio File

    You can rename an audio file that has been recorded.

  • Go to the Transcribed Files folder in OneDrive, or at the top of the Transcribe pane, click the name of the recording. When the audio player interface appears, close it to return to the Transcribed Files folder.

  • Find your recording, then select Actions > Rename and rename the recording file.

    Note: The Transcribed Files folder looks different depending on whether your OneDrive account is for a business or personal.

  • Close the Transcribe pane in Word and then reopen it to see the name update.

  • Recommended Reading: How To Interview A Real Estate Agent

    Reduct Is Entirely Web

    Not only is Reduct is an online video editing and transcription tool, but we also let you store all your videos within our platform, which allows you and your team to work on video files simultaneously on the web.

    You can organize all your video files into Project-Based Folders so your library is easy to navigate. Then, with permissions, you can add other team members to your video folders, or individual video files, and control how they can work on it. All you do is provide each team member with a Reduct login and they can work directly on footage and files.


    Read more about collaborating with team members using Reduct in our article: The Best Collaborative Video Editor For Teams

    How Does Word’s New Transcribe Feature Work

    How to transcribe recordings using Microsoft Word Online

    This update was announced on the Microsoft Support website, which features a guide on how to make, edit, and share transcripts with Word.

    For now, you can only use automatic transcription on Word for the Web, which is Microsoft’s answer to rival services such as Google Docs. While Word for the Web is free to use, you’ll need a Premium account to use transcription.

    You can find the Transcribe tool under the Dictate tab on the toolbar. When you activate it, you can perform one of two actions.

    Firstly, you can let Word listen to your microphone during an interview or conversation. When the talk comes to an end, Word will generate a full transcript of everything said.

    Secondly, you can transcribe text from an audio file. This is as easy as uploading the file to Word and letting it process your conversation while you do other things.

    Word will try its best to assign every piece of dialogue to an individual speaker. However, if it makes a mistake, you can easily re-assign dialogue to a different person using the transcription editor. You can also assign a name to each speaker, and Word will automatically use that name every time they speak in the transcript.

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    Think About The Level Of Detail That Will Best Serve Your Transcription Needs

    If you purchase a professional transcription, the first question you will have to answer is about the level of detail you require. Naming conventions within the industry are not standard. However, transcription broadly fall into three categories full-verbatim, verbatim and other.

    Full verbatim: These transcripts capture every sound. That includes false starts, repetitions, ums, ahs, interruptions and more. They might even include annotations on pauses, tone and laughter. This kind of detail is a lot harder and more time-consuming to capture. Under most circumstances, it is overkill, but if it is necessary, make sure you capture that information from the start.

    Verbatim: Often called intelligent verbatim or clean verbatim, these transcripts are edited for readability. The false starts and ums captured in a full-verbatim transcript are omitted. This is often considered the industry standard, and is most likely the kind of transcript you will get from a transcription service firm if you dont otherwise specify. Likely, it is this level of detail you will want to emulate when producing your own transcript.

    Knowing these different options provided within the industry can give you a number of goal posts to aim for. If you intimately know the recording, and the reason for which you will be using your transcript, you can adopt your level of detail depending on the subject matter. Think about these things beforehand so that you can direct your efforts more efficiently.

    Transcribe A First Rough Draft

    Your next step will be to try and transcribe an initial rough draft. This is an especially prudent idea if youre less than confident in your typing speed. Dont worry too much about accuracy. Youll get the chance to revisit and revise the document later. By all means, pause if you need to but try not to rewind the recording.

    To facilitate faster typing, feel free to add shortcuts for this initial draft. For example, use bc as an abbreviation of because. You can go back and change these later using the find and replace function, or you can enable the autocorrect function on your word processor to fix them as you go.

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    Clean Verbatim Vs True Verbatim Transcript Examples

    There are two main styles of transcription used in interviews and qualitative research:

  • Clean verbatim .
  • True verbatim .
  • A clean verbatim transcript is a lightly edited version of the original audio. Typically, the following elements are removed:

    • Stutters
    • Filler speech, including um,uh, etc.
    • Most non-speech sounds, including coughing and throat clearing
    • False starts

    A true verbatim transcript, on the other hand, attempts to capture every utterance of the speakers. These include stutters, meaningless filler speech, and false starts. Verbatim style may also include non-speech and background sounds, such as coughing and sneezing or a door closing.

    While each transcription style is useful under certain circumstances, clean verbatim is used most often because the transcripts cost less and are easier to read.

    However, true verbatim may be desirable for certain qualitative and market research projects and legal investigations, where its necessary to study not only what was said, but also the manner in which something was said.

    Below, Ive included examples of an interview transcribed in both verbatim and clean verbatim fashion.

    Save As A Transcription Template

    Transcript HK
    • Now that youve walked through steps one through four, save your document as a Word transcript template.
    • Every time you have a new transcription task to complete, make a copy of your template and rename it to match your new project. You can use your template for general transcription, interviews, legal, and medical projects.

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    What Is Transcribe In Word

    Transcribe in Word enables transcriptions of pre-recorded or live audio. It appears in the online version of Word for Microsoft 365 subscribers.

    The feature supports existing audio and video files or the ability to directly record conversations and have them automatically transcribed. Microsofts AI will even separate speakers and organise the conversation into sections that you can easily edit and insert into a Word document.

    Checkout And Receive Your Transcript Over Email When Its Finished

    It depends on the length of your file, but transcripts are usually delivered within a day.

    If you want a more affordable option, Rev also offers machine-generated interview transcriptions for only $0.25 per audio or video minute.

    We also include access to a variety of editing tools, including our world class transcript editor. These tools let you review and annotate your completed transcript as needed, right alongside the audio file.

    Also Check: What Are The Top 5 Questions To Ask An Interviewer

    Format It To Your Needs

    You should now have a transcription thats completely accurate and polished . Its now simply a case of formatting it to fit your needs and ensure that it fulfils its intended purpose.

    Adjust the font and size to ensure that its easy to read even when scanning for quick reference. Use subheadings, titles, paragraphs and page numbers.

    This is probably a good time to give the text one last proof to ensure that its fit for purpose. Make sure any shortcuts have been replaced and that all typos have been corrected.

    Play A Small Section Of Audio At A Time

    How to Record & Transcribe Audio in Microsoft Word

    Type short clips at a time. The worst thing that you can do is to try and listen to the entire interview and transcribe as you go or type only a few words at once. The best thing to do is to play a small section of up to 15 seconds and transcribe it as you go for that length. Type as you hear the words but have a little context of what is coming. If you need to stop, repeat and re-listen thats fine. It will be much easier to do it this way than to try to take in too much or too little of the recording at once.

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    What About Professional Transcription Services

    If you have the financial resources, you may want to hire a professional transcription service, preferably one with experience transcribing oral history recordings. These companies charge in the range of $100-$125 per hour of tape, but be sure that the cost covers making corrections to a first draft and includes delivery of the final transcript in both paper and electronic form. Sometimes it is possible to get funding from state humanities councils to transcribe collections of oral histories once they have been recorded and assembled into a collection.

    If you have a group of interviews to transcribe, it is best to hire the same service to do all of them to ensure consistency in overall approach and in the spelling of personal and geographic names, acronyms, and technical terms. Provide the transcriber with a list of these names and terms together with well-labeled copies of the tapes. Do not send the transcriber your master tape.

    American soldier at ease in France during World War I, ca. 1917. , Library of Congress. Reproduction number: LC-USZ62-26640

    How To Write A Transcript

    wikiHow is a wiki, similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 20 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 21 testimonials and 91% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 223,057 times.Learn more…

    Transcripts are written or typed records of any proceedings. Transcripts are used to record court proceedings, business meetings, and even as records of radio, film and television programs. To write your own transcript of any of the above, you must be extremely attentive and be able to write and type quickly, as transcripts are an exact record of the spoken word.

    Read Also: What Is A One Way Interview

    Relabel A Speaker Or Edit A Section

    The transcription service identifies and separates different speakers and labels them “Speaker 1,” “Speaker 2,” etc. You can edit the speaker label and change all occurrences of it to something else. You can also edit the content of a section to correct any issues in transcription.

  • In the Transcribe pane, hover over a section you want to edit.

  • Select the Edit transcript section icon.

  • Edit the content or change the label. To change all instances of a label, select Change all Speaker .

  • To save your changes, select the Confirm icon.

  • How To Transcribe An Interview: Get Interview Transcripts

    Interview transcription and its relevance

    Writers, researchers, lawyers, and others know that conducting interviews is often essential to getting the full story. Yet a raw interview is of little use. Scanning through it takes a lot of time and effort. You cant quickly move back and forth between sections to analyze possible connections between them.

    This makes it difficult to pull out the most important elements. You wont be able to tell whether you need to perform more interviews to collect further data. To make the most of an interview, you need to create a written version, known as transcription. Heres how to transcribe an audio interview.

    Also Check: How To Make An Interview Successful

    Use A Free Transcription Service

    You can also use a free transcription service to help you automatically transcribe a recording. FreeTranscriptions, for example, is a free transcription service that uses the best online audio-to-text conversion engine to generate accurate machine transcripts. Uploading is easy and the transcribing process only takes minutes. After it transcribes your recordings, you can view an interactive digital version of your transcript, and you can choose to download it as a PDF file or as a Word document.

    These five ways can be the solution to your worries. Try these and see which one can best help you in automatically transcribing into a Word document.

    Give Us A Call

    How Does Transcribe In Word Work

    Transcribe in Word can capture any audio from your PC, which means you can use it to transcribe everything from Zoom meetings to YouTube videos. Word will also capture your own audio from your PCs mic. Keep in mind, when capturing live audio, you can dictate things like smiley face or heart emoji to have those accurately transcribed.

    If you want to transcribe audio or video that youve pre-recorded elsewhere, Transcribe in Word will support up to 200MB of MP3, WAV, M4A, or MP4 files. Processing time for the transcription will vary, of course. You will also be limited to five hours per month for uploaded audio.

    For audio recorded within Word on the web, there is no transcription limit.

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    Hiring A Freelance Transcriptionist

    If you cant afford the services of a transcription agency , then its best to use the services of a freelance transcriptionist. Sites like,, and have a good pool of service providers who can help.

    The good part about hiring a freelancer is that they can do the work relatively cheaply with almost the same turnaround time as a transcription company. The downside is that you have to experiment a little to find the right transcriber.

    In the rest of this post well discuss Option #2, i.e. how to transcribe an interview manually yourself.

    Lets dive in.

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