What It Takes
Journalism is a constantly evolving industry. Even with the decline of print consumption, the emergence of new media has lead to a whole new job market for those with journalism training, while other forms, such as broadcasting, continue to hold true.
To succeed in a journalism degree program, you must be self-motivated. Journalists are often responsible for producing ideas and chasing down stories. You'll also need excellent research skills and a passion for telling the stories of others. On top of that, journalists must also be extremely organized, must have good people skills and a good grasp of the written word.
Course Work in Journalism Degree Programs
Some journalism degree programs are specialized in one area, such as print journalism, broadcast journalism or new media. Others will provide an overview of all different types of journalism. Courses will cover areas like media law, media ethics, reporting, English and grammar skills, news gathering, fact checking and more. Depending on the program, students will learn to write for a variety of mediums, including newspapers, magazines, blogs and more. Other skills will include time management and learning to work under pressure.
Journalism degrees are offered at traditional educational institutions, but it's also becoming more common to get a journalism degree online. The course matter in an online journalism degree is the same as in traditional journalism programs, however students will submit assignments electronically and will participate in group discussion forums online. Many students choose to get an undergraduate journalism degree at a brick-and-mortar institution and then continue their studies with a masters degree in journalism online, so they can work as they continue their studies.
There are many careers that can come out of a journalism degree. Though many believe traditional print and magazine journalism jobs are on the decline, it's more likely that these jobs are just morphing into online journalism positions. Job titles in these areas include reporter, editor, technical writer, copy editor, assistant editor and more.
Additional jobs available to journalism grads include writer, broadcast journalist, print production worker and more. On average, journalism salaries are in the $40,000 range, but can go much higher with experience and advanced positions.