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Medical Transcriptionist

Medical transcriptionists are health-care documentation specialists who authenticate medical reports. They perform report audits looking for significant errors. They also ensure the accuracy of reports on patient care during and after an injury, or for continuing care purposes.

Also Known As

Administrative Support Personnel, Clinical Documentation Specialist, Health-care Documentation Specialist, Office Personnel, Speech Recognition Analyst, Transcriptionist

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used.

Here is how this occupation has been classified over time.

2006 NOC

  • 1244.2: Medical Transcriptionists

2006 NOC-S

  • B214: Court Recorders and Medical Transcriptionists

2011 NOC

  • 1251: Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations

2016 NOC

  • 1251: Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations

2021 NOC

  • 12110: Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations

2023 OaSIS

  • 12110.02: Medical transcriptionists
Updated Mar 31, 2024

In a hospital setting, medical transcriptionists edit and analyze medical documents. These may include:

  • Discharge summaries
  • History and physical examination reports
  • Operative and procedure reports
  • Consultation reports
  • Pathology reports
  • Diagnostic imaging reports
  • Obstetrical reports

Documentation is a permanent record of medical, scientific, and legal value. Medical transcriptionists using speech-recognition software to authenticate health-care documents produced from audio recordings. Timely and accurate completion is required to ensure quality patient care.

In medical clinics and offices, medical transcriptionists may perform additional office tasks. These may include:

  • Receiving patients
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Answering the telephone
  • Handling incoming and outgoing mail
  • Typing referral letters
  • Completing and submitting billing claims
  • Maintaining electronic medical records
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2024
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg

Medical transcriptionists work in office environments. They spend most of their time ensuring the quality of documentation. They do this by listening and editing while using computer technology. This can include typing. They may be required to sit for an extended period.

They most often work regular office hours. However, some evening or weekend work may be required.

Some experienced medical transcriptionists work from their homes. They provide services to health regions, private physicians, or private medical transcription agencies.

Interests & Abilities

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2006 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Medical Transcriptionists

2006 NOC: 1244.2

Interest Codes

Interest Codes for This NOC Group

Interest in copying to transcribe machine dictation or rough notes from medical reports, correspondence, medical records and patient information


Interest in operating office equipment to record and transcribe surgical proceedings, medical records and other reports


Interest to research the accuracy of transcribed information

Your Interest Codes

To identify or change your interest codes, complete the Interests Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 

It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective, and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes for this NOC group is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn About Interests


Typical ability expectations for this NOC group
Your abilities

To fill in or change the values for your abilities, complete the Abilities Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Mental Abilities

General Learning Ability

Verbal Ability

Numerical Ability

Visual Abilities

Spatial Perception

Form Perception

Clerical Perception

Physical Abilities

Motor Coordination

Finger Dexterity

Manual Dexterity

Understanding Abilities

A Quick Guide

You are born with abilities that help you process certain types of information and turn it into action. These abilities influence which skills you can learn more easily.

The abilities or aptitudes shown for this NOC group come from the General Aptitude Test Battery (GATB). The GATB measures 9 aptitudes. It groups them into 3 categories: mental, visual, and physical.

The abilities scores range from 1 to 5, with 5 being stronger.

Learn About Abilities

Traits & Skills
Updated Mar 31, 2024

Medical transcriptionists need:

  • Communication and transcription skills
  • Computer and software skills
  • An aptitude for language
  • Analytical thinking skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Discretion
  • The ability to work with little direction or supervision from others

Transcriptionists who work in settings other than clinics should enjoy working in a quiet location without much patient contact. Those who work in a clinic setting should have good interpersonal skills.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Top 10 Skills Employers Are Looking For

Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations

2016 NOC: 1251

This chart shows which job skills are currently in highest demand for this occupational group. It was created using this occupation's 20 most recent Alberta job postings, collected between Jan 12, 2022 and Nov 21, 2023.

Review these skills to learn:

  • Whether or not this occupation matches your skill set
  • What training you may need to get these skills
  • What skills to highlight in your resumé, cover letter, and interview.
Long term benefits: Life insurance
Health benefits: Health care plan
Financial benefits: Piece work
Construction Specialization: Excellent written communication
Financial benefits: Bonus
Work under pressure
Attention to detail
Long term benefits: Other benefits
Long term benefits: Group insurance benefits
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2024
  • Minimum Education 1 year post-secondary

Medical transcriptionists need:

  • Excellent knowledge of medical terminology
  • Proficiency with anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, diagnostic, and treatment modalities
  • Proficiency with drug names
  • Proficiency in English grammar and punctuation
  • Advanced editing and proofreading skills
  • Familiarity with health-care documentation guidelines and standards
  • Strong word-processing skills
  • Experience using transcription equipment, software, and resource tools

Most people entering this field have completed a 1-year education program at a recognized post-secondary school. This must include a course in medical terminology.

Medical transcriptionists need to stay up to date with new terminology related to medical and surgical specialties.

To expand or narrow your search for programs related to this occupation, visit Post-Secondary Programs.

Completing a program does not guarantee entrance into an occupation. Before enrolling in an education program, prospective students should look into various sources for education options and employment possibilities. For example, contact associations and employers in this field.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2024
  • Certification Not Regulated

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2024

Most medical transcriptionists work in settings where large numbers of physician-dictated patient reports are transcribed. These settings include:

  • Hospitals
  • Medical research facilities
  • Medical laboratories
  • Diagnostic imaging centres

Others work in:

  • Medical clinics
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Coroners’ or medical examiners’ offices
  • University medical schools
  • Medical insurance companies
  • Government agencies, such as the Workers’ Compensation Board
  • Medical service transcription organizations (MTSOs)

Some self-employed transcriptionists provide services on a contract basis.

Experienced transcriptionists may advance to supervisory positions in settings that employ a number of transcriptionists. Examples includes hospitals and other health-care facilities.

Industry Concentration

This section shows the industries where the majority of people in this occupation work. The data is based on the 2016 Census.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups.

In the 1251: Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations occupational group, 80.5% of people work in:

Employment Outlook

Employment outlook is influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • Time of year (for seasonal jobs)
  • Location in Alberta
  • Employment turnover (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation
  • Trends and events that affect overall employment, especially in the industry or industries from the previous list

In Alberta, the 1251: Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations occupational group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 2.3% from 2021 to 2025. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 39 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Source: 2021-2025 Alberta Regional Occupational Demand Outlook

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2024

Salaries vary according to duties and experience. Many transcriptionists work from home. Their earnings are based on the recorded minute and whether editing is the only requirement. Some extra research may be required if the transcriptionist is not familiar with the specialty being transcribed.

Depending on the work site, medical transcriptionists may be represented by the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE), Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), or the Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA).

Salary scales established through union contracts determine pay in these settings. For information about current collective agreements in the public and not-for-profit sectors, visit their websites.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Court reporters, medical transcriptionists and related occupations

2016 NOC: 1251
Average Wage
Per Hour
Average Salary
Per Year
Average Hours
Per Week
Average Months on Payroll
Survey Methodology Survey Analysis

2021 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey

NOC 1251 Wage Profile

Unless otherwise noted, the data shown here is for all industries and all regions in Alberta.

All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production), and other forms of compensation.

To see the full survey data for this NOC group, visit the wage profile.

Other wage sources
To make an informed wage and salary decision, research other wage sources [pdf] to supplement this data.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $17.33 $27.55 $25.33 $27.55
Overall $23.00 $33.50 $30.68 $32.90
Top $26.00 $34.79 $31.46 $33.50

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

Pay brackets for hourly wages

  • Starting pay: average pay offered for entry-level positions
  • Overall pay: average pay across all employees in this occupation
  • Top pay: average pay offered to top-paid employees

Industry Information

Health Care & Social Assistance

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years
Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties
Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months
Vacancy Rate
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Clerical and Administrative Support
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 31, 2024

Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) website:

Canadian Union of Public Employee (CUPE) website:

Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA) website:

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 31, 2024. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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