A TV production assistant may not need formal education because it's provided on the job, although education and training programs are available. Experience can be important to employers and can be achieved through internships.
Television production assistants perform a wide array of tasks on a TV film set, from running errands to transporting equipment. While a high school diploma or equivalent is the only prerequisite, most employers look for an associate's or a bachelor's degree in television production or broadcasting for this position. Degree programs in this field often include an internship.
|Required Education||High school diploma or GED|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)*||11% for film and video editors and camera operators|
|Median Annual Salary (2015)*||$49,080 for film and video editors and camera operators|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Television Production Assistant Educational Requirements
Production assistant is an entry-level position, and some employers may be willing to hire assistants who have no college training. Associate's or bachelor's degrees are desirable, however, because they demonstrate dedication and a familiarity with television production. Some degree programs also offer internship opportunities so students can gain production assistant experience while still in school.
Associate of Applied Science
Students enrolled in a television production associate's degree program learn about the process of producing for television, from conceiving show ideas to filming and airing finished products. Many community colleges have their own production studios or have relationships with local television stations that allow students to gain practical experience.
Some of the skills learned while enrolled in a television production associate's degree program include script and news report writing, lighting for television, editing, camera operation and methods of field production. Additionally, an associate's degree program may include a workshop component that allows students to create their own television program.
Bachelor of Arts
A 4-year television production degree program provides students with a more thorough introduction to the technical aspects and history of television production. A bachelor's degree program in television production may also feature study of film or digital media. Some schools offer television production as a concentration in a broader bachelor's degree in communication or media studies program.
Instruction in a bachelor's degree program in television production covers areas such as writing, producing and directing. The goal is to give students a complete understanding of the television production process. Specific topics that may be included are writing for television, location selection, set design and techniques of post-production. In addition to including the technical aspects of television production, curriculum may also include the theoretical, historical and legal issues of producing television. An internship or a final project often concludes the requirements of the degree.
While the educational requirements slightly differ by employer, most desire an associate's or bachelor's degree in communications, film, applied science, the arts, or similar major along with work experience.