How To Become A Journalist


Journalism is one of the most exciting, challenging and equally rewarding careers. They are not only the pillar of the media but also the highly critical to a proper operational democracy. So, if you are thinking of getting started on a journalistic path, then you are most definitely in the right place.

Before you actually enroll for a course in journalism, it is important to note that you must have an interest in the field. You should have an inquisitive mind and pay close attention to how things are changing in the world. Thinking on your feet is an important quality any and every journalist should have.

Academic qualifications in the field take anywhere from one year to four years: a year for a diploma course or longer in case you are a part time student and four years for a bachelor degree. In some countries, however, a bachelor degree can take three or three and a half years depending on how much time the student has committed to the course.

After the academic part of the preparation is done, get some practice. You need to have at least forty hours experience as an intern and 150-200 hours for a bachelor degree course depending on the country of study. If you are lucky enough to secure an internship at a local media house, that’s great but if you don’t, any opportunity to practice is good enough. School newspapers, newsletters and year books are just as good.

You can enrol in a journalism course in one of the many colleges and universities around the world although getting into a well established institute may be difficult but I would recommend checking out Macleay's study options, you can find their site here. The best thing about journalism is that you are marketable in any country regardless of where you come from. Even the non-English speaking countries, as long as you speak the local language of course.

Now that you know what you need to study journalism, what are the specific requirements needed to enroll for a journalism course?

A good formal education: Even though there are journalists out there who made it without a formal education, competition is growing rapidly and you would be a whole lot more secure with a solid academic background than without. Languages and humanities are usually the strong points when it comes to journalism courses so you may want to build on these during your latter high school years.

Choose your forte: With the many genres in journalism, you might need to concentrate on the specific niche you want to concentrate on and practice. Whether you are enrolling for a shorter journalism course or the longer bachelor of journalism, you should make sure you choose the institute which is right for you and your career. If you want to be a sports journalist or a fashion editor then you will need to make channels like ESPN and read up from fashion magazines respectively.

Write: Writing is a sure way to carve your way into this particular career path. Take any and every opportunity to write to get your name out there. It is also advisable to get your name out there by managing your own blog. This will be a great way to exercise your writing.

Finally, and most importantly, stay current. Read as many newspapers and watch news networks as much as you possibly can because after all, updating people of what is going on in the world is what you are after right?