Associates Degree in Photojournalism: Program Information

Oct 14, 2019

An associate's degree in photojournalism helps students learn about the history of photography and the reporting side of journalism through pictures. Explore the program, common courses and employment outlook.

Essential Information

Associate of arts and associate of science programs specifically in photojournalism are fairly uncommon, though some schools offer journalism electives in their photography programs that can provide a similar education. These 2-year programs combine instruction in journalism writing and courses in photography and art.


Associate's Degree in Photojournalism

Students who get an associate's degree can expect to work with state-of-the-art camera equipment and software. Most schools offer photojournalism courses through photography and journalism associate programs. In addition to general education classes, associate's degrees in photojournalism include study in both journalism and photography. Some class topics include:

  • Electronic and digital images
  • Use of color
  • History of photojournalism
  • Intermediate and advanced photography
  • Mass media writing and reporting

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted employment growth for all photographers to decrease 6% for the decade 2018-2028, which is as fast as the average (www.bls.gov). In May 2018, the BLS also reported that the mean yearly salary for photographers was $42,770.

Continuing Education and Certification

For those who want to pursue further study, there are many bachelor's degree programs in journalism with a photojournalism concentration. A bachelor's degree program will include classes in mass communication, in addition to focused and hands-on study of photography techniques and news photography. The National Press Photographers Association is a professional organization that offers career advice and professional development resources for photojournalists (www.nppa.org).

The Professional Photographers Association offers a credential program for photographers. It involves an exam and review of the photographer's images (www.ppa.com). Workshops and other educational programs are also available through the association. Credentialing is not required; however, it can demonstrate a photojournalist's expertise in the field.

Associate's degree programs in photojournalism give students the necessary foundation in photography and journalism to pursue employment as photographers, or further their education with advanced degrees and credentials. Though not required, photojournalists can obtain certification as proof of their skills.

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