Become a News Analyst: Step-by-Step Career Guide

Research the requirements to become a news analyst. Learn about the job description and duties, and read the step-by-step process to start a career in news broadcasting. View article »

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Video Transcript

Should I Become a News Analyst?

News analysts, also referred to as news anchors, cover and research stories, conduct interviews, write scripts, help edit footage, and present the news. Whether they are employed by a small, local television station, a major city station, or a news network with a national or global audience, news analysts keep the public informed.

News analysts rarely work in an office, since they often have to go on location to gather information or interview contacts. This means they might get to travel, sometimes even internationally. However, it also means probably working an irregular schedule and sometimes having to go into uncomfortable or even dangerous situations to get a story.

Career Requirements

Degree Level Bachelor's degree plus internship preferred
Degree Field Journalism, communications, English
Experience Entry-level position as a reporter or correspondent often requires a bachelor's degree and internship or work experience during college; more experience leads to advancement to higher-level positions
Key Skills Writing, speaking, and communication skills, critical thinking and interpersonal skills, determination, strong computer skills, as various software programs are often used for writing and editing news reports
Salary (2015) $65,530 (median salary for broadcast news analysts was)

Sources: O*NET Online, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Steps to Becoming a News Analyst

Aspiring news analysts follow a pretty straightforward career path that begins with a college degree program.

Step 1: Earn a Bachelor's Degree

Aspiring news analysts may earn a bachelor's degree in journalism, mass communications, or English. Students may also want to look to the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC), a professional organization that operates a voluntary evaluation regimen for reviews on journalism education programs. Coursework in journalistic principles, news writing, and television production provides a solid foundation for a career as a news analyst. Students may also consider taking classes in public speaking, political science, economics, and sociology.

Success Tip:

  • Seek an internship. College students and recent graduates may want to seek internships, whether paid or unpaid, with a television station or broadcast network. Internships introduce students to news-gathering operations and increase understanding of the complex world of television production. Journalism and mass communications departments gather information on application procedures and guidelines for available internship positions in the private sector. They also often recommend talented students for these jobs.
  • Gain experience while completing your degree. Future news analysts may also consider writing for college and university newspapers or assisting with school-run television productions. These extracurricular activities allow students to put into practice journalism and television production skills.

Step 2: Obtain an Entry-Level Position

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), smaller television stations provide the best opportunities for securing employment. Television reporters cover all types of news, including stories about community events, personal achievements, crime, government, and tragedies. These entry-level positions help aspiring news analysts to polish their interviewing, writing, and on-camera reporting techniques. With some experience and after having demonstrated exceptional performance on the job, reporters may even have the opportunity to fill in for news analysts.

Step 3: Seek Advancement to a News Analyst Position

According to the BLS, a successful career as a television news reporter opens doors for advancement to a news analyst position, often within the same company, but possibly with a station in another community of similar size or slightly larger. News analysts may have more success working initially for a small local station. Stations in metropolitan markets may prefer their news analysts to have at least two years of experience in analyst positions at small stations.

News analysts have a bachelor's degree in journalism or a related field and often complete an internship before graduating and applying for entry-level work with a small television station. After gaining some experience, aspiring news analysts may move on to larger stations for career advancement.

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