Broadcast Media Degree Programs and Majors

Broadcast media encompasses communication methods including terrestrial and satellite radio, television and the Internet. Relevant degrees are offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Learn about the program requirements, coursework and popular careers available to graduates.

Essential Information

The broad spectrum of the broadcast media field can be studied at the associate's, bachelor's and master's degree levels. These degree programs are typically offered through the communications or journalism departments where the specifics of broadcast media can be explored. Undergraduate programs provide courses in visual and mass communications, audio and video editing, film production and media history, while topics at the graduate level include media law, research and ethics. Depending on the level of study completed, graduates could explore job opportunities ranging from camera operations and video editing to news directing and advanced reporting.

Prospective undergraduate students are required to have a high school diploma and ACT or SAT scores. At the graduate level, applicants need to have a bachelor's degree and GRE scores. Other requirements include a thesis for a master's degree program.

Associate in Science in Communication Media

Associate's degree programs in communication media explore radio, television and online broadcasting as part of the curriculum. Students are introduced to methods for creating communication materials in electronic formats for over-the-air and Internet-based broadcasting. Additionally, students learn to use audio and visual equipment to capture and edit multimedia news packages. In addition to some general education coursework, subject areas in this program cover writing, oral communication, communication theories and societal impacts of mass media. Courses might discuss print media as well. Some typical courses in the program may include:

  • Visual communication
  • Television production
  • Sociology
  • Film study
  • Mass communication

Bachelor of Arts in Mass Media

A bachelor's degree in mass media introduces students to the ways broadcast media is developed, produced and distributed. Students learn about processes involved in working with television and the Internet, among other outlets, to create effective presentations. In addition to general education requirements in subjects including math and English, students explore technology, media content, mass media and sociology. The following are some of the typical courses found in a bachelor's degree in mass media program:

  • Video editing
  • Film production
  • History of media
  • Audio editing
  • Business practices in media

Master of Science in Broadcast Journalism

A broadcast journalism master's degree requires three semesters of post-baccalaureate study, which includes developing and producing a thesis project. Programs emphasize development of news gathering and reporting skills, and introduce students to electronic newsroom technology. Graduate broadcast media programs are taught through a university's school of journalism. Students learn about the field through specific courses and field work. Reporting, editing and production practices for television and radio, along with online media such as podcasts and Internet television are explored in this program. Some typical classes include:

  • Media law
  • Ethics in journalism
  • Media research
  • News production
  • Television reporting

Popular Career Options

Careers for undergraduates with degrees in mass media can be found at television or radio stations or other broadcast studios working on creating or producing media content. Some career options include:

  • Equipment technician
  • Camera operator
  • Video editor
  • Reporter
  • Media producer

Graduates of master's degree programs may find career options on camera and behind the scenes with jobs in production and research. Some jobs include:

  • Assignment reporter
  • Communications specialist
  • Sports anchor
  • Production coordinator
  • News director

Continuing Education Information

Students who complete an associate's degree in communication media may transfer to a bachelor's degree program to advance their broadcast media careers. Those who want to work in the technical aspects of the field can receive certification through organizations including the Society of Broadcast Engineers. Since competition is high in this field, higher-level degrees usually create more career opportunities.

Broadcast media degrees prepare students in producing content for radio, television and online media and in manipulating audio and visual equipment needed for media productions. Among the skills that are developed in these programs are writing, reporting, audio and video editing, oral communications and podcasting.

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