Prepare a rough transcription

The first step in preparing the transcription is to obtain a rough transcription.

Experience suggests at least 20 hours is required to obtain a rough transcription of an hour-long interview. If you're preparing several transcripts, you may wish to purchase your own transcription software and foot control pedal:

Volunteers experienced in oral history transcription are welcome to use other software and control devices, as well as automatic transcription software.

If you wish to refine the initial transcription, the task is not as trivial as it sounds, for the soundtrack conceals a host of ambiguities, not all of which will be evident to the naive listener. Expect to spend more time refining the transcription than creating the first iteration. A refined transcription is a product of editorial scholarship, not tech support, for reasons that will become evident in this manual.

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