News Broadcaster: Career Profile

Sep 17, 2019

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a news broadcaster. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about schooling, job duties and skills required to find out if this is the career for you.

News broadcasters are the journalists who present breaking information and news stories through television, radio and internet broadcasts. Individuals in this field almost always have at least a bachelor's degree in journalism or broadcast journalism and engage in internships at news stations. This job market is highly competitive, with jobs for news broadcasters projected to decline by 13% through 2024.

Essential Information

News broadcasters, sometimes referred to as reporters, television anchors or news analysts, gather information to write news stories, which are broadcast to inform viewers about local, national and international events. Most news broadcasters hold a bachelor's degree. College internships are recommended for aspiring broadcasters and can lead to increased employment opportunities.

Required Education Bachelor's typically required
Other Requirements Internship experience preferred by employers
Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)* 1% for broadcast news analysts
Median Salary (2018)* $66,880 for broadcast news analysts

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Description of a News Broadcaster

News broadcasters and reports use tips and investigation techniques to write and present news stories. They sit at an anchor desk to deliver stories, pre-recorded news packages or in-studio interviews with guests. They introduce reporters at on-site location shots. News broadcasters may present on-air editorials and report on the activities of public officials, celebrities and other groups who are of interest to viewers. They may be required to meet strict deadlines and broadcast reports with very little preparation. News broadcasters may need to adjust to irregular schedules in order to cover breaking news or special events.

Required Education for a News Broadcaster

Most employers prefer to hire professionals who have obtained a 4-year bachelor's degree in journalism, communications or a similar field, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported (www.bls.gov). A minor in an unrelated discipline, such as business or political science, can also help prospective news broadcasters obtain employment because such subject-matter specialties can become a reporting beat. Many news broadcasters begin as reporters relocating frequently to work in better news markets and at larger stations.

Classes in a journalism program may include television journalism and production, news writing and reporting, ethics, photojournalism and mass communications. It is also standard for students to complete an involved practicum or internship, where they will obtain real-world experience by working at a commercial television station.

Skills Required for a Career as a News Broadcaster

Successful news broadcasters have superior communication skills and a passion for news, current events and politics, the BLS said. Additionally, news broadcasters need to have an extroverted personality and a high-tolerance for criticism, since they are in the spotlight and have to work with a wide variety of people on a daily basis.

Career Outlook for News Broadcasters

The BLS reported that there is intense competition for broadcast news positions, especially as an anchor. Employment of broadcast news analysts is projected to show little or no change between 2018 and 2028, with the BLS predicting a 1% growth in the field. According to the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), many entry-level broadcasters are willing to work in smaller markets for modest salaries in order to gain experience, then relocate to advance in the field (www.nab.org). As of May 2018, the BLS reported $66,880 as the median annual salary for broadcast news analysts.

Aspiring broadcast news analysts work in radio, television and internet news organizations. They usually hold at least a bachelor's degree in journalism or a related area. In a field with rapidly declining job opportunities, knowledge in a specialty area, such as sports or politics, internship experience and a willingness to work in smaller markets for lower pay, at least at the beginning of their careers, may be key to success.

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