Analyze and interpret information to report to the public

What do Journalists do?

It is the job of a Journalist to investigate and gather information to put together in written or spoken form and report it to the world. Journalists must interview sources and collect their records before producing their work. There are many different forms of media Journalists use to present their story. A journalist's work can be presented through newspapers, magazines, radio, television, or the internet. Meeting deadlines is a huge part of this career. If a deadline is not met, an article will not be run. Journalists are relied on to give the world the information they want in a well-rounded objective manner.

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Training, Skills, and Education

Being a journalist requires specific types of training, skills, and education. Journalist majors will take courses in editing, journalistic ethics and reporting. It is also required to take courses in feature writing, photo journalism, and communications. There is different course work required for print or broadcast journalism. It is helpful to do a professional internship with a media outlet to gain experience in Journalism. Some of the skills Journalists need are writing skills, radio/television production techniques, software and web design, and photo and video media. The education required to become a Journalist is a bachelor's degree in Journalism or Communications.
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What People Might Not Know

While most people have a general idea of what a journalist does, they do not realize how dangerous of a job it can actually be. Journalists can sometimes go to jail for refusing to give up a source. They can even be killed for asking questions and seeking the truth. Journalists often face a public that questions their motives. Journalists have even been kidnapped and murdered by terrorists. Unfriendly fire in Afghanistan has killed more reporters than American soldiers. Many times journalists have to decide if getting a story is worth risking their life.
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A Day in the Life

  • A day in the life of a Journalist is usually fast-paced and exciting.
  • A journalist will show up to their job at whichever media outlet they work for.
  • They will either be assigned a story or choose their own.
  • It is the job of a journalist to then go out into the world and get the information they need for their story.
  • They will research the story, interview people involved, and gather their information.
  • A journalist will then put their records together to create their story to present to the public.

Job Advancement

  • Journalists typically begin their careers with smaller publications or broadcast networks
  • Start out as general assignment reporters
  • Gain experience and build a portfolio of reports
  • Get assigned to more difficult and in-depth stories
  • Many journalists go on to become editors, producers, etc.
  • Advance to larger networks and publications

Job Outlook/Salary

  • Expected 14% decline for reporters and correspondents
  • Moderate decline in employment for 2012-2022
  • Media outlets transitioning to online publication
  • Average starting salary $about 40,000 a year
  • Journalists at stations in larger cities earn more
  • Writers/Anchors for big media outlets can earn $1 million or more anually

Why I Want to be a Journalist

  • I have enjoyed writing since I was young
  • I have always been interested in current events
  • I like being able to express my opinion through editorials or give facts through informative articles
  • I would enjoy sharing the information I find with the world


  • What sort of training do you need?
  • What sort of skills do you need?
  • Is there any room for job advancement?
  • What is all involved with this career?
  • What is the job outlook and salary?
  • Why do you want to go into this career?
  • What does a day in the life of this career look like?