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Degree Overview: Associate of Media Reporting

Majors Overview August 3, 2013

In this article, you will learn about the associate degree programs related to media reporting, as well as receive information on salary, requirements, and courses to make an informed decision on your education.

Associate Degree Program in Journalism

There is no associate’s degree programs in media reporting offered at any colleges or universities in the United States; however, aspiring media reporters would benefit by enrolling in an associate’s degree program in journalism. Graduates from an associate program can seek entry-level jobs in the field or transfer to a four-year bachelor’s degree program. Students enrolled in the program are trained in various writing techniques as applicable to a variety of media forms, including Internet sites, magazines and newspapers. They can not only build their writing and editing skills, but also their computer and communication skills. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a general educational development (GED) certificate or a high school diploma.

Program Coursework

Through the coursework, students will build a solid foundation of knowledge in media reporting by analyzing different related topics, including communication theories, reporting for various forms of media, and the history of journalism. Other program course topics may include the following:

•News photography
•Magazine writing
•Techniques for staff editors
•Mass communications
•News writing

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Individuals who have completed a journalism associate’s degree program may seek entry-level reporting jobs. In May 2011, correspondents and reporters took home an average annual salary of $35,000. While $75,000 was the average annual salary earned by the top 10%, $20,000 was earned by the lowest 10% (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)).

Job growth for traditional media reporters is projected to decline moderately to eight percent during the period from 2010 to 2020. The pessimistic projection is attributed to the merger of large news organizations with smaller ones and the consequent reduction in the number of reporters employed. Additionally, there is a decline in the number of people reading or watching the news. Reporters with experience, including those who have participated in an internship or are working for their school newspapers, are more likely to get hired (BLS). More jobs may be available with smaller radio and television stations and newspapers.

Continuing Education Information

Most employers of reporters prefer them to hold a bachelor’s degree in journalism or a related field, with experience. Individuals who want to further their expertise and education would benefit by completing a graduate degree program in journalism. With experience, those who begin their careers in entry level jobs with small city news agencies may advance to positions with news organizations in large cities; others may be promoted to become editors or news directors.

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