Journalism Degrees: Bachelors, Associates & Online Course Info

About this article
Journalism is constantly changing. What does it take to succeed as a journalist? Learn more about journalism majors, and see what kinds of skills you'll learn to make an informed education decision.
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Journalism Degrees at a Glance

Bachelor's degree programs in journalism involve a heavy emphasis on English and writing. Areas of specialty may include broadcasting, photojournalism, and multimedia reporting. Journalism students also learn to present ethical, balanced news to their target audiences in print, broadcast, and online media.

Job opportunities in the field of news reporting and broadcasting are actually expected to decline by 13% from 2012-2022. Students who understand multimedia technology should have the best chance of landing a job. In addition, budding news reporters and correspondents may consider moving to small markets outside of major cities, where employment opportunities are expected to be slightly better.

Bachelor's Associate
Who is this degree for - Aspiring journalists, reporters and correspondents - Those wanting to transfer to a 4-year school to continue studies
- Students wanting to enter the workforce immediately
Common Career Paths (with approximate median annual salary) - Reporters and correspondents ($36,000)*
- Broadcast news analyst ($61,000)*
- Entry-level copy writer ($41,000)**
- Entry-level copy editor ($37,000)**
Time to completion 4 years 2 years
Common Graduation Requirements - Required in-studio production work
- Internships in chosen medium
- Internships in chosen area of emphasis
Online Availability A few courses may be available online A few courses may be available online

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com


Bachelor's Degree in Journalism

Journalism students will study English and news writing, reporting, editing, and current affairs. Often journalism majors choose a secondary field of study or an emphasis in broadcast or print areas. Specializing is a good way to open up more opportunities and explore more fields, such as online writing and marketing.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Coursework for the bachelor's degree give a wide foundation of knowledge and emphases offer more opportunities for students
  • Four-year colleges often have newspapers and broadcast stations for students to practice skills

Cons

  • Potentially tough job market for graduates

Online Options

Some schools offer some courses online, but many of the courses in the major require hands-on practice in production and/or publishing.

Stand Out in Journalism

Students with some information technology skills have options in online publishing. Students wishing to excel in broadcast journalism will hone performance skills such as script reading, voice-over, and news delivery. Good performance skills can land jobs in cable, interactive media, and related fields. Learning to market and write advertising and promotional materials is useful in all journalistic areas.


Associate Degree in Journalism

An associate degree in journalism can be a springboard for those who don't want to spend four years in college. Many of the courses are concentrated and offer more hands-on experience in some fields such as broadcasting. Students are prepared on newer technology and ready to work upon completion of the program. An associate degree may lead to a career in arts and entertainment, public relations, and media.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Less time in school means getting to work faster
  • Concentrated coursework in chosen specialty eliminates taking unrelated courses
  • Practical experience on new technology can mean less training, making the individual more attractive to an employer

Cons

  • Most journalism careers require a bachelor's degree
  • An associate degree is very specialized in only one field, so career options are much more limited

Online Options

Some associate-level classes may be available online, but most courses will require the student to have hands-on classroom experience. You will want to check with your chosen school to see what you may take online.

Stand Out with an Associate Degree

Outstanding performance skills and efficiency on technology is the way to make a mark with this degree. Employers will be quick to notice those who are ready to step into a position. Practice in writing, performing, editing, and technical skills gives the graduate a competitive edge.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Indiana Wesleyan University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • A.S. General Studies - Communications
      • A.S. General Studies - Communications
  • New Albany, IN

    Indiana University

  • Rock Springs, WY

    Western Wyoming Community College

  • Snyder, TX

    Western Texas College

  • Scottsbluff, NE

    Western Nebraska Community College

  • Parkersburg, WV

    West Virginia University at Parkersburg

  • Paducah, KY

    West Kentucky Community and Technical College

  • Ann Arbor, MI

    Washtenaw Community College

  • Chula Vista, CA

    Southwestern College

  • Lake Wales, FL

    Warner University

Featured Schools

Indiana Wesleyan University

  • A.S. General Studies - Communications

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