What They Do: News analysts, reporters, and journalists keep the public updated about current events and noteworthy information.
Work Environment: Most news analysts, reporters, and journalists work for newspaper, website, or magazine publishers or in television or radio broadcasting. Others are self-employed. Most work full time, and their schedules vary.
How to Become One: News analysts, reporters, and journalists typically enter the occupation with a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications. Internship or work experience on a college newspaper, radio station, or television station also may be helpful.
Salary: The median annual wage for news analysts, reporters, and journalists is $48,370.
Job Outlook: Overall employment of news analysts, reporters, and journalists is projected to grow 6 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations.
Related Careers: Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of news analysts, reporters, and journalists with similar occupations.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists keep the public updated about current events and noteworthy information. They report international, national, and local news for newspapers, magazines, websites, television, and radio.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists typically do the following:
News analysts, reporters, and journalists often work for a particular type of media organization, such as a television or radio station, newspaper, or website.
Those who work in television and radio set up and conduct interviews, which can be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts. These workers often edit interviews and other recordings to create a cohesive story or report, and they write and record voiceovers to provide the audience with supplementary facts or context. They may create multiple versions of the same story or report for different broadcasts or media platforms.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists for print media conduct interviews and write stories or articles to be used in newspapers, magazines, and online publications. Because most newspapers and magazines have print and online versions, these workers’ content typically appears in both versions. As a result, they must stay up to date with developments related to a content item and update the online version with current information, if necessary.
Outlets are increasingly relying on multimedia journalists to publish content on a variety of platforms, such as a video content on the website of a daily newspaper. Multimedia journalists typically record, report, write, and edit their own stories or articles. They also gather the audio, video, or graphics that accompany their content.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists may need to maintain a social media presence. Many use social media to cover live events, provide additional information for readers and viewers, promote their stations and newscasts, and engage with their audiences.
Some workers, particularly those in large cities or large news organizations, cover a particular topic, such as sports, medicine, or politics. Those who work in small cities, towns, or organizations may be generalists and cover a wide range of subjects.
Some news analysts, reporters, and journalists are self-employed and accept freelance assignments from news organizations. Because freelancers are paid for individual stories or articles, they may work with many organizations and spend some of their time marketing their content and looking for their next assignment. Self-employed news analysts, reporters, and journalists also may publish news and videos on their own platforms.
The following are examples of types of news analysts, reporters, and journalists:
Columnists write articles offering an opinion or perspective about a particular subject. They submit a piece to a publication, often on a schedule, such as once per week. Their work may be published in a newspaper, magazine, or other outlet or self-published on the columnist’s website.
Correspondents report the news to a radio or television network from a remote location. Those who cover international events, called foreign correspondents, often live in another country and report about a specific region of the world.
News anchors lead television or radio shows that describe current events. Others are news commentators who analyze and interpret reports and offer opinions. They may come from fields outside of journalism and have expertise in a particular subject, such as finance, and are hired on a contract basis to provide their opinion on that subject.
For information about workers with a background in this field who teach journalism or communications at colleges and universities, see the profile on postsecondary teachers.
Broadcast news analysts are another type of media occupation. Broadcast news analysts, also called anchors, lead news shows on television or radio. Others are news commentators, who analyze and interpret news stories, and offer opinions. Some news commentators come from fields outside of journalism and have expertise in a particular subject—for example, politics, business, or medicine—and are hired on a contract basis to provide their opinion on the subjects being discussed.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists hold about 46,700 jobs. The largest employers of news analysts, reporters, and journalists are as follows:
|Radio and television broadcasting||35%|
|Newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers||34%|
|Other information services||11%|
News analysts, reporters, and journalists spend a lot of time in the field, conducting interviews and investigating stories or articles. Reporters spend some time in an office or newsroom, but they often travel to be on location for events or to meet contacts and file stories remotely.
Working on news items about some topics or events, such as conflicts and natural disasters, may put news analysts, reporters, and journalists in dangerous situations. In addition, reporters often face pressure or stress when trying to meet a deadline or cover breaking news.
Most news analysts, reporters, and journalists work full time, and their schedules vary. They may need to work additional hours or change their schedules in order to follow breaking news. Because news can happen at any time, they may need to work nights and weekends. They may also work nights and weekends to lead news programs or provide commentary.
Get the education you need: Find schools for News Analysts, Reporters, and Journalists near you!
News analysts, reporters, and journalists typically enter the occupation with a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications. Internship or work experience on a college newspaper, radio station, or television station also may be helpful.
News analysts, reporters, and journalists typically need a bachelor’s degree in journalism, communications, or a related subject, such as English.
Bachelor’s degree programs in journalism and communications include courses in journalistic ethics and techniques for researching topics and conducting interviews. Some programs may require students to study liberal arts subjects, such as history and economics, to prepare for covering a range of topics. Students may further specialize in the type of journalism they wish to pursue, such as print or broadcast.
Journalism students may benefit from courses in multimedia design, coding, and programming to be able to develop content that includes video, audio, data, and graphics.
Employers generally prefer to hire candidates who have had an internship or have worked on school newspapers, radio stations, or TV stations. While attending college, students may seek multiple internships with different news organizations. Internships allow students to gain experience and develop samples of their writing or their on-air appearances.
News commentators who come from a field outside of journalism typically have expertise in areas on which they comment.
After gaining experience, field reporters at a local news station may become that station’s anchor. News analysts, reporters, and journalists may also advance by moving from news organizations in small cities or towns to news organizations in large cities. Large markets may offer opportunities for more responsibility and challenges. Reporters and journalists also may become editors or news directors.
Communication skills. News analysts, reporters, and journalists must be able to clearly convey information. Strong writing skills also are important.
Interpersonal skills. To develop contacts and conduct interviews, news analysts, reporters, and journalists must be able to build relationships. They also need to work well with other journalists, editors, and news directors.
Persistence. News analysts, reporters, and journalists must be determined when pursuing stories or articles. Investigating topics and gathering facts may be difficult, particularly when those involved refuse to be interviewed or to provide comment.
Stamina. The work of news analysts, reporters, and journalists is often fast paced and exhausting. They must be able to adapt to the irregular hours of work.
Technological skills. News analysts, reporters, and journalists should be able to use editing equipment and other broadcast-related devices. They also should be able to use multimedia and coding software in order to publish stories on websites and mobile devices.
The median annual wage for news analysts, reporters, and journalists is $48,370. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $29,210, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $120,590.
The median annual wages for news analysts, reporters, and journalists in the top industries in which they work are as follows:
|Other information services||$73,180|
|Radio and television broadcasting||$49,720|
|Newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers||$38,210|
Most news analysts, reporters, and journalists work full time, and schedules vary. They may need to work additional hours or change their schedules in order to follow breaking news. Because news can happen at any time, they may need to work nights and weekends. They may also work nights and weekends to lead news programs or provide commentary.
Employment of news analysts, reporters, and journalists is projected to grow 6 percent over the next ten years, about as fast as the average for all occupations.
About 5,400 openings for news analysts, reporters, and journalists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.
Much of the projected employment growth in this occupation is due to recovery from the COVID-19 recession that began in 2020. However, declining advertising revenue in radio, newspapers, and television is expected to impact the long-term demand for these workers.
Readership and circulation of newspapers are expected to continue to decline over the decade. In addition, television and radio stations are increasingly publishing content online and on mobile devices. As a result, news organizations may have difficulty selling traditional forms of advertising, which is often their primary source of revenue. Some organizations will likely continue to use new forms of advertising or offer paid subscriptions, but these innovations may not make up for lost print-ad revenues.
Declining revenue will force news organizations to downsize and employ fewer journalists. Increasing demand for online news may offset some of the downsizing. However, because online and mobile ad revenue is typically less than print revenue, the growth in digital advertising may not offset the decline in print advertising, circulation, and readership.
News organizations also continue to consolidate and increasingly share resources, staff, and content with other media outlets. For example, reporters working for a media outlet may gather and report news that is published in multiple newspapers owned by the same parent company. As consolidations, mergers, and news sharing continue, the demand for journalists may decrease. However, in some instances, consolidation helps limit the loss of jobs. Mergers may allow financially troubled newspapers, radio stations, and television stations to keep staff because of increased funding and resources from the larger organization.
|Occupational Title||Employment, 2020||Projected Employment, 2030||Change, 2020-30|
|News analysts, reporters and journalists||46,700||49,500||6||2,800|
A portion of the information on this page is used by permission of the U.S. Department of Labor.