What Education Is Needed to Become a Newscaster?

Discover how to get started in the highly competitive field of newscasting. Learn about college programs that help you prepare for this career and advanced education options for newscasters. Schools offering Journalism degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Those interested in becoming a newscaster have many educational options. Although journalism is one of the primary degrees available, different specializations and tracks offer a more tailored education.

Degrees Bachelor's, Master's and Ph.D. in Mass Communications, Journalism or a related discipline
Experience Internships, working on school publications, participating in drama club or other clubs
Courses Media uses and effects, journalism ethics, photo storytelling, news editing, audience and engagement, image and sound

What Courses Will I Take in a Bachelor's Program?

Most prospective employers prefer that you graduate with a bachelor's degree in mass communications or journalism. In these programs, you'll take liberal arts courses along with classes in radio and television news production. Some employers may accept a degree in another major; others in larger urban settings may prefer a major in a different subject, such as business, economics or political science.

When choosing additional courses to round out your educational experience, English classes that emphasize writing can be beneficial. It'll also be helpful to take a course in public speaking. A few business classes won't hurt, either, since a small percentage of newscasters are self-employed. Depending on the job you land, you might need knowledge in desktop publishing and graphic design. Learning a foreign language can help, too.

A bachelor's degree program in journalism may include courses like the following:

  • Principles of journalism
  • Media and global cultures
  • Social media marketing
  • Media ethics and diversity
  • Magazine reporting and writing
  • Sports writing
  • Broadcasting

How Important is Gaining Practical Experience in the Field?

Hands-on learning, in the form of practical experience, is considered by many employers to be the most valuable part of a prospective newscaster's education. You can accomplish this by working at a college radio or television station or by interning at a local station. Internships often provide you with college credit as well.

How Can I Prepare While Still in High School?

You don't have to wait until you start college to prepare for a career as a newscaster. Besides taking classes to develop your writing skills, additional writing exposure can come from joining your school's newspaper or yearbook staff. Joining the drama club might help, too, if you plan on working for a television station. If your high school offers a speech class, take that as well.

What Programs are Available Beyond Earning a Bachelor's Degree?

You may wish to enhance your education by pursuing a graduate degree. Advanced degrees in journalism are offered at the master's and Ph.D. levels. These include programs that focus on becoming a professional in the field of news or on a particular type of journalism, such as arts and culture or science and medical journalism. You may also have research opportunities or the chance to work with established broadcast professionals.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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  • Howard University

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