Media And Communication

Everyone communicates; some people do it for a living. Writers, photographers, translators, reporters, and media technicians make up this category, working for personal expression or public knowledge. Television, print, and radio media offer job opportunities in all aspects of media creation and delivery.

Job tasks may include:

  • Researching for information and stories that will be interesting and engaging to a specific audience
  • Creating original content for publication or presentation
  • Reviewing completed drafts to check for grammatical errors, flow of information, and to maintain high standards of quality
  • Communicating complex ideas in a clear and accurate fashion
  • Operating communication and media equipment to produce high quality content
  • Using technology to make creative content appealing and easily distributable
  • Providing commentary, analysis, or interpretation of information, news, politics, entertainment, and the arts
  • Writing news articles, magazine columns, instruction manuals, and press releases for publication in print and in digital platforms

CARRERS IN COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA

Employers typically require a combination of formal education and work experience to get started. In some cases, additional training happens on the job, as the worker familiarizes his or herself with the content, techniques, and process of media production. Overall, this is a highly competitive category of work, and some careers may have comparatively few full-time job opportunities (writing, for example). Most students pursue internships and volunteer work in order to get work experience while earning their degree, and many news organizations, publishers, and other employers offer both to college students. Writers and other creative professionals may work as freelancers as they build their portfolio.

Many students pursue internships and volunteer work in order to get work experience while earning their degree, and many news organizations, publishers, and other employers offer both to college students. While full-time work is available, it may not be widely available. Writers and other creative professionals may work as freelancers as they build their portfolio. Photographers are also an integral part of this category, and benefit from an in-depth, well-presented portfolio of past work.

Employment in some fields, such as journalism, is less stable now than in past decades. So-called "traditional media," such as printed newspapers and similar publications, has greatly declined in presence and in employment opportunities. The internet has risen in importance and now provides a platform for multimedia communication opportunities. Content creators turn to digital media platforms to share their work with the world, through blogs, podcasts, video channels, and a variety of other social media.

IMPORTANT QUALITIES

  • Communcation skills Fairly important in the field of communication. This can include skills in writing and public speaking, as well as an understanding of interpersonal dynamics they are useful especially in non-technical positions. Professionals must be able to convey information and meaning clearly and accurately to their audience. It is also a crucial skill between coworkers, as projects and programs are often tackled by a team.
  • Creativity. If it were easy, everyone would do it. Finding new and/or interesting ways to present material to an audience takes imagination and resourcefulness. Tight deadlines and other restrictions may make the work process more difficult, so creative ideas and solutions are valuable.
  • Computer skills. For those in the technical and production side of the field, proficiency in computers and technology is required for the job. Recording, editing, designing, and processing all require training and familiarity. For the creative and research ends, computers are the default tool, and workers should know how to make the most of it.
  • Detail oriented. When a job centers on communicating a message, accuracy is imperative. Whether a person is employed on the creative, technical, or managerial side of the industry, it is crucial that he or she be fully engaged with the work. Mistakes in journalism, for example, can be especially damaging to a publication's reputation (not to mention to the subject of the report). Catching small errors before they become large ones is a significant aspect of the job.

JOB OUTLOOK

Overall, jobs in this category are projected to grow at level comparable to or less than the national average for all occupations. Many kinds of jobs in media are in a place of transition, as some workers will be replaced by automation (film and media editors and operators) and others are on a path of downsizing and decline (news organizations in general). Conversely, job opportunities for interpreters and translators are projected to grow at a much faster rate than average, partly due to the continuing path of globalization. Jobs that are able to adapt to or take advantage of new social and technological trends and advancement will likely fair best. Because of the variability, be sure to review the projections for the specific professions you are considering. 

  Occupation Description Entry-Level Education 2012 Median Pay
Announcers Announcers

Announcers present music, news, and sports and may provide commentary or interview guests about these topics or other important events. Some act as masters of ceremonies (emcees) or disc jockeys (DJs) at weddings, parties, or clubs.'

Typically they have a bachelor's degree $27,750
Broadcast and sound engineering technicians Broadcast and sound engineering technicians

Broadcast and sound engineering technicians set up, operate, and maintain the electrical equipment for radio and television broadcasts, concerts, sound recordings, movies and in office and school buildings. '

Typically need postsecondary education $41,200
Editors Editors

Editors plan, review, and revise content for publication.'

Bachelor's degree $53,880
Film and video editors and camera operators Film and video editors and camera operators Film and video editors and camera operators record images that entertain or inform an audience. Camera operators capture a wide range of material for TV shows, motion pictures, music videos, documentaries, or news and sporting events. Editors construct the final productions from the many different images camera operators capture. They collaborate with producers and directors to create the final production.' Bachelor's degree $46,280
Interpreters and translators Interpreters and translators

Interpreters and translators convert information from one language to another. Interpreters work in spoken or sign language, translators in written language.'

Bachelor's degree $45,430
Photographers Photographers Photographers use their technical expertise, creativity, and composition skills to produce and preserve images that visually tell a story or record an event.' High school diploma or equivalent $28,490
Public relations specialists Public relations specialists Public relations specialists create and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They design media releases to shape public perception of their organization and to increase awareness of its work and goals.' Bachelor's degree $54,170
Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts inform the public about news and events happening internationally, nationally, and locally. They report the news for newspapers, magazines, websites, television, and radio.'

Bachelor's degree $37,090
Technical writers Technical writers

Technical writers, also called technical communicators, produce instruction manuals and other supporting documents to communicate complex and technical information more easily. They also develop, gather, and disseminate technical information among customers, designers, and manufacturers.'

Bachelor's degree $65,500
Writers and authors Writers and authors

Writers and authors develop original written content for advertisements, books, magazines, movie and television scripts, songs, and online publications.'

Bachelor's degree $55,940
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Ref: bls.gov
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