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Degree programs in publishing are typically found at the master's level. Typically, publishing programs accept graduates with backgrounds in English, journalism, creative writing, art design or communication studies. Some programs have students develop their own magazines as thesis projects or conduct research on a particular aspect of the field. Internships with book and magazine publishing organizations may be required as well. A few sub-fields in publishing include interactive media, book distribution, internet law, advertising, and media sales.
Publishing Master's Degree Programs
While enrolled in a 2-year master's degree program in publishing, students learn the specific elements that go into the publishing industry, including editing books and articles, making layout decisions, creating editorial calendars, selecting photographs for print and much more. Courses included cover many aspects of the publishing field, from business strategy to layout design. Examples of courses may include:
- Publishing and Internet law
- Marketing and branding
- Magazine editing
- Book acquisition and editing
Popular Career Options
While an individual who goes into publishing may learn career skills on the job, earning a master's degree in publishing may give him or her a competitive edge in the job market. There are many career options available to individuals interested in working in the publishing industry, including but not limited to editor-in-chief, managing editor, print sales manager, freelance editor, and publishing public relations account executive.
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), editors can expect a 5% decline in employment levels from 2014-2024 and a median annual wage of $56,010 as of May 2015. The BLS reported that reporters and correspondents (journalists) had a median annual wage of $36,360, and an annual average wage of $40,860 for those in the newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishing industry. Writers and authors, excluding technical writers and public relations specialists had a median average wage of $60,250 in 2015.
Pursuing a degree in publishing can be done at the master's level, with plenty of sub-fields that will prepare you for a career path as a journalist, publisher, or writer, as well as other niche markets. Coursework covers everything from editing and layout to business and marketing.