Online Journalism Bachelor’s Degree
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In a world where information travels quickly, the need for unbiased journalism is more important than ever. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 6% growth in media and communication jobs from 2016-2026. With this versatile degree, you can work for a newspaper, magazine, broadcasting station, or an organization. Journalists must think quickly on their feet, be good listeners, and perform rigorous fact checking. If you love researching and telling stories, consider pursuing an online journalism degree.
Why Earn an Online Journalism Degree?
If you want to earn a bachelor's degree in journalism from the comfort of home, enroll in an online program. You can complete your studies at your convenience, allowing you to earn your degree while raising a family, working full time, or living abroad.
Earning an online degree in journalism also allows for flexibility. You can work on your studies at your own pace and when you feel most productive. If you want to earn your degree quickly, you can choose an accelerated program. If you prefer slow and steady, choose a part-time program.
In addition to convenience and flexibility, most online schools are affordable. By attending class online, you can avoid student activity fees and spending money on room, board, and commuting.
What Can I Do with a Bachelor's in Journalism?
Journalism is a versatile degree. The skills and disciplines students develop translate to several other careers and fields since almost every job requires research, some writing, and attention to detail. If you want to earn a master's degree in journalism, communication, political science, or another related field, earning a journalism degree online provides a strong foundation.
Skills and Knowledge Gained
While earning a journalism bachelor's degree online, students can expect to learn both hard and soft skills. Hard skills are easy to measure and teach. Some journalism-related hard skills include using proper grammar, fact checking, writing in Associated Press style, transcribing interviews, and using Adobe InDesign. Graduates can apply these hard skills to nearly any job in the communication field.
On the other end, soft skills are harder to quantify and teach. Individuals usually develop soft skills through experience. Although most accredited online journalism programs require students to write real-life stories, degree seekers should pursue additional experience through internship opportunities. Some soft skills journalism students acquire while studying include listening during an interview, asking thought-provoking questions, effectively managing time, working on several projects at once, and meeting strict deadlines. These soft skills are useful for nearly any career that requires communication, from job interviews to crafting social media posts.
Both hard skills and soft skills take time to develop. Earning a bachelor's degree in journalism, rather than an associate degree, opens up more journalism career opportunities. Since most bachelor's degrees take four years and associate degrees only take two to complete, potential employers are more likely to hire candidates who invest more time developing their skills.
Careers and Salary Potential
With a journalism degree, you can work in various industries, from education to marketing. Self-starters who like to manage their own schedules often thrive as reporters. Those who want to motivate a team and oversee an entire publication can pursue a career as an editor. Whether you classify yourself as an introvert or extrovert, leader or follower, the journalism field offers opportunities for everyone.
Advertising, Branding, and Sales Promotions: In the advertising world, every communication piece tells a story, from photos to taglines. Pursuing a journalism degree helps professionals craft impactful messages that inspire action.
Marketing, Advertising, and Media Management: These industry professionals also use communication methods to sell products to specific audiences. The best online journalism degree teaches students how to write for different audiences, from children to seniors.
Education: All teachers and administrators must search for facts with as little bias as possible, so journalism ethics translate well to this field. If you decide to earn a graduate degree in journalism, you can share your expertise as a college journalism professor.
Financial Services: Every organization needs an accountant or point person to manage budgets. Journalists and financial services professionals both pay attention to detail and fact check numbers, which is why you can pursue both career fields with a bachelor's degree in journalism.
Newspaper Publishing: Newspaper publishers oversee the big picture. They search for conflicts of interest between advertisements and stories, and offer story ideas to reporters. After earning experience as a journalist, you can work as a newspaper publisher.
Reporter, Correspondent, or Broadcast News Analyst
Annual Median Salary: $40,910
These professionals investigate stories about current events to share with the public. Some reporters write for publications, while others speak to cameras on the news. Whether you want to work in print or broadcast, a bachelor's in journalism helps you earn an entry-level position.
Annual Median Salary: $58,770
Editors approve story pitches, develop new story ideas, help reporters overcome issues, and edit stories for style and content. These professionals must spot grammar mistakes and possess a strong understanding of Associated Press style rules. Journalists with bachelor's degrees and several years of experience can work as editors.
Public Relations Specialist
Annual Median Salary: $59,300
A public relations specialist manages an organization's image. These professionals form relationships with the public through social media, pitching stories to the media with press releases, and hosting events. Earning a journalism bachelor's degree online helps public relations professionals learn how to effectively pitch stories to journalists and manage several projects at once.
Writer or Author
Annual Median Salary: $61,820
Writers and authors often work as self-employed freelancers, but many work for publishing companies or marketing firms. These professionals typically specialize in certain writing styles, such as copywriting, creative writing, or journalistic writing. However, a flexible writing style allows writers and authors to write for different industries, which is helpful for job prospects.
Annual Median Salary: $62,708
After earning professional experience as a communication coordinator, individuals with an online journalism degree can work as communications managers. These professionals oversee communication departments, guiding everyone from writers to photographers. They ensure every communication effort helps meet the organization's overarching communication goal.
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