Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts

Summary

reporters correspondents and broadcast news analysts image
Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts inform the public about news and events happening internationally, nationally, and locally.
Quick Facts: Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts
2015 Median Pay $37,720 per year
$18.13 per hour
Typical Entry-Level Education Bachelor's degree
Work Experience in a Related Occupation None
On-the-job Training None
Number of Jobs, 2014 54,400
Job Outlook, 2014-24 -9% (Decline)
Employment Change, 2014-24 -4,800

What Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts Do

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.

Work Environment

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts spend a lot of time in the field, conducting interviews and investigating stories. The work is often fast paced, with constant demands to meet deadlines and to be the first reporter to publish a news story on a subject.

How to Become a Reporter, Correspondent, or Broadcast News Analyst

Employers generally prefer workers who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications along with an internship or work experience from a college radio or television station or a newspaper.

Pay

The median annual wage for reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts was $37,720 in May 2015.

Job Outlook

Employment of reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts is projected to decline 9 percent from 2014 to 2024. Declining advertising revenue in radio, newspapers, and television will negatively impact the employment growth for these occupations.

State & Area Data

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts.

Similar Occupations

Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts with similar occupations.

More Information, Including Links to O*NET

Learn more about reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.

What Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts Do About this section

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts
Reporters that work in television set up and conduct interviews, which may be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts.

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.

Duties

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts typically do the following:

  • Research topics and stories that an editor or news director has assigned to them
  • Interview people who have information, analysis, or opinions about a story or article
  • Write articles for newspapers, blogs, and magazines and write scripts to be read on television or radio
  • Review articles for accuracy and proper style and grammar
  • Develop relationships with experts and contacts who provide tips and leads on stories
  • Analyze and interpret information to increase their audiences’ understanding of the news
  • Update stories as new information becomes available

Reporters and correspondents, also called journalists, often work for a particular type of media organization, such as a television or radio station, newspaper, or website.

Those who work in television and radio set up and conduct interviews, which can be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts. These workers are often responsible for editing interviews and other recordings to create a cohesive story and for writing and recording voiceovers that provide the audience with the facts of the story. They may create multiple versions of the same story for different broadcasts or different media platforms.

Most television and radio shows have hosts, also called anchors, who report the news and introduce stories from reporters.

Journalists for print media conduct interviews and write articles to be used in newspapers, magazines, and online publications. Because most newspapers and magazines have print and online versions, reporters typically produce content for both versions. Doing so often requires staying up to date with new developments of a story so that the online editions can be updated with the most current information.

Some journalists may convey stories through both broadcast and print media, as well as help manage the organization’s web content. For example, television stations often have a website, and a reporter may post a blog or an article for the website. Similarly, a reporter working for newspapers or magazines may create videos or podcasts that people access online.

Stations are increasingly relying on multimedia journalists to publish content on a variety of platforms, including radio and television stations, websites, and mobile devices. Multimedia journalists typically record, report, write, and edit their own stories. They also gather the audio, video, or graphics that accompany their stories.

Reporters and correspondents may need to maintain a presence on social media networking sites. Many use social media to cover live events, provide additional information for readers and viewers, promote their stations and newscasts, and engage better with their audiences.

Some journalists, particularly those in large cities or large news organizations, cover a particular topic, such as sports, medicine, or politics. Journalists who work in small cities, towns, or organizations may need to cover a wider range of subjects.

Some reporters live in other countries and cover international news.

Some reporters—particularly those who work for print news—are self-employed and take freelance assignments from news organizations. Freelance assignments are given to writers on an as-needed basis. Because freelance reporters are paid for the individual story, they work with many organizations and often spend some of their time marketing their stories and looking for their next assignment.

Some people with a background as a reporter or correspondent work as postsecondary teachers and teach journalism or communications at colleges and universities.

Broadcast news analysts are another type of media occupation. Broadcast news analysts are often called upon to provide their opinion, rather than reporting, on a particular news story. They may appear on television, radio, or in print and offer their opinion to viewers, listeners, or readers. However, most broadcast news analysts come from fields outside of journalism and have expertise in a particularly subject—for example, politics, business, or medicine—and are hired on a contract basis to provide their opinion of the subjects being discussed. Becoming a broadcast news analyst is typically not a career path for new journalists.

Work Environment About this section

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts
Reporters and correspondents spend a lot of time in the field conducting interviews and investigating stories.

Reporters and correspondents held about 49,300 jobs in 2014. Broadcast news analysts held about 5,100 jobs.

Most reporters and correspondents work for newspaper publishers or in radio or television broadcasting. About 1 in 6 were self-employed in 2014.

Reporters and correspondents spend a lot of time in the field, conducting interviews and investigating stories. Many reporters spend little to no time in an office. They travel to be on location for events or to meet contacts and file stories remotely.

Reporters and correspondents covering international news often live in other countries.

Working on stories about natural disasters or wars can put reporters in dangerous situations. In addition, reporters may often face pressure or stress when trying to meet a deadline or cover breaking news.

Reporters may also collaborate with editors, photographers, videographers, and other journalists when working on a story.

Work Schedules

Most reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts work full time. The work is often fast paced, with constant demands to meet deadlines and to be the first reporter to publish a news story on a subject. Reporters may need to work additional hours or change their work schedules in order to follow breaking news. Because news can happen at any time of the day, journalists may need to work nights and weekends.

How to Become a Reporter, Correspondent, or Broadcast News Analyst About this section

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts
Journalists need to be persistent in their pursuit of the story as getting the facts of the story can be difficult, especially when those involved refuse to comment.

Employers generally prefer to hire reporters and correspondents who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications along with an internship or work experience from a college radio or television station or a newspaper.

Education

Most employers prefer workers who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications. However, some employers may hire applicants who have a degree in a related subject, such as English or political science, and relevant work experience.

Bachelor’s degree programs in journalism and communications include classes in journalistic ethics and techniques for researching stories and conducting interviews. Some programs may require students to take liberal arts classes, such as English, history, economics, and political science, so that students are prepared to cover stories on a wide range of subjects.

Some journalism students may benefit from classes in multimedia design, coding, and programming. Because content is increasingly being delivered on television, websites, and mobile devices, reporters need to know how to develop stories with video, audio, data, and graphics.

Some schools offer graduate programs in journalism and communications. These programs prepare students who have a bachelor’s degree in another field to become journalists.

Other Experience

Employers generally require workers to have experience gained through internships or by working on school newspapers. While attending college, many students seek multiple internships with different news organizations. These internships allow students the opportunities to work on stories and put together a portfolio of their best writing samples or on-air appearances.

Advancement

After gaining more work experience, reporters and correspondents can advance by moving from news organizations in small cities or towns to news organizations in large cities. Larger markets offer job opportunities with higher pay and more responsibility and challenges. Reporters and correspondents also may become editors or news directors.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Journalists must be able to report the news both verbally and in writing. Strong writing skills are important for journalists in all kinds of media.

Computer skills. Journalists should be able to use editing equipment and other broadcast-related devices.

Interpersonal skills. To develop contacts and conduct interviews, reporters need to build good relationships with many people. They also need to work well with other journalists, editors, and news directors.

Objectivity. Journalists need to report the facts of the news without inserting their opinion or bias into the story.

Persistence. Sometimes, getting the facts of a story is difficult, particularly when those involved refuse to be interviewed or provide comment. Journalists need to be persistent in their pursuit of the story.

Stamina. The work of journalists is often fast paced and exhausting. Reporters must be able to keep up with the additional hours of work.

Pay About this section

Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts

Median annual wages, May 2015

Broadcast news analysts

$65,530

Media and communication workers

$53,530

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts

$37,720

Reporters and correspondents

$36,360

Total, all occupations

$36,200

 

The median annual wage for broadcast news analysts was $65,530 in May 2015. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $27,370, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $187,200.

The median annual wage for reporters and correspondents was $36,360 in May 2015. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $21,390, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $81,580.

Most reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts work full time. The work is often fast paced, with constant demands to meet deadlines and to be the first reporter to publish a news story on a subject. Reporters may need to work additional hours or change their work schedules in order to follow breaking news. Because news can happen at any time of the day, journalists may need to work nights and weekends.

Job Outlook About this section

Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts

Percent change in employment, projected 2014-24

Total, all occupations

7%

Media and communication workers

4%

Reporters and correspondents

-8%

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts

-9%

Broadcast news analysts

-13%

 

Employment of reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts is projected to decline 9 percent from 2014 to 2024. Employment of reporters and correspondents is projected to decline 8 percent, while employment of broadcast news analysts is projected to decline 13 percent from 2014 to 2024. Declining advertising revenue in radio, newspapers, and television will negatively impact the employment growth for these occupations.

Readership and circulation of newspapers are expected to continue to decline over the next decade. In addition, television and radio stations are increasingly publishing content online and on mobile devices. As a result, news organizations may have more difficulty selling traditional forms of advertising, which is often their primary source of revenue.

Declining revenue will force news organizations to downsize and employ fewer journalists. Increasing demand for online news may offset some of the downsizing. However, because online and mobile ad revenue is typically less than print revenue, the growth in digital advertising may not offset the decline in print advertising, circulation, and readership.

News organizations also continue to consolidate and increasingly are sharing resources, staff, and content with other media outlets. For example, reporters are able to gather and report on news for multiple media stations owned by the same corporation, while television stations reuse news and material already gathered by other stations and reporters. As consolidations, mergers, and news sharing continue, the demand for journalists may decrease.

Following a merger or content-sharing agreements, some news agencies may reduce the number of reporters and correspondents on staff. However, in some instances, consolidations may help limit the loss of jobs. Mergers may allow financially troubled newspapers, radio stations, and television stations to keep staff because of increased funding and resources from the larger organization.

Job Prospects

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts are expected to face strong competition for jobs, because of the large number of workers who are interested in entering the field and the projected employment declines in both occupations. Those with experience in the field—experience often gained through internships or by working for school newspapers, television stations, or radio stations—should have the best job prospects.

Multimedia journalism experience, including recording and editing pieces, should also improve job prospects. Because stations are increasingly publishing content on multiple media platforms, particularly the web, employers may prefer applicants who have experience in website design and coding.

In addition, opportunities will likely be better in small local newspapers or television and radio stations.

Competition will be particularly strong in large metropolitan areas, at national newspapers with higher circulation figures, and at network television stations.

Employment projections data for reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts, 2014-24
Occupational Title SOC Code Employment, 2014 Projected Employment, 2024 Change, 2014-24 Employment by Industry
Percent Numeric

SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program

News analysts, reporters and correspondents

27-3020 54,400 49,600 -9 -4,800 [XLSX]

Broadcast news analysts

27-3021 5,100 4,500 -13 -600 [XLSX]

Reporters and correspondents

27-3022 49,300 45,100 -8 -4,200 [XLSX]

State & Area Data About this section

Occupational Employment Statistics (OES)

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program produces employment and wage estimates annually for over 800 occupations. These estimates are available for the nation as a whole, for individual states, and for metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas. The link(s) below go to OES data maps for employment and wages by state and area.

Projections Central

Occupational employment projections are developed for all states by Labor Market Information (LMI) or individual state Employment Projections offices. All state projections data are available at www.projectionscentral.com. Information on this site allows projected employment growth for an occupation to be compared among states or to be compared within one state. In addition, states may produce projections for areas; there are links to each state’s websites where these data may be retrieved.

Career InfoNet

America’s Career InfoNet includes hundreds of occupational profiles with data available by state and metro area. There are links in the left-hand side menu to compare occupational employment by state and occupational wages by local area or metro area. There is also a salary info tool to search for wages by zip code.

Similar Occupations About this section

This table shows a list of occupations with job duties that are similar to those of reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts.

Occupation Job Duties ENTRY-LEVEL EDUCATION Help 2015 MEDIAN PAY Help
Radio and television announcers

Announcers

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

See How to Become One $30,080
Atmospheric scientists, including meteorologists

Atmospheric Scientists, Including Meteorologists

Atmospheric scientists study the weather and climate, and how those conditions affect human activity and the earth in general.

Bachelor's degree $89,820
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 programs, television broadcasts, concerts, sound recordings, and movies.

See How to Become One $41,780
Editors

Editors

Editors plan, review, and revise content for publication.

Bachelor's degree $56,010
Film and video editors and camera operators

Film and Video Editors and Camera Operators

Film and video editors and camera operators manipulate moving images that entertain or inform an audience.

Bachelor's degree $55,740
Photographers

Photographers

Photographers use their technical expertise, creativity, and composition skills to produce and preserve images that tell a story or record an event.

High school diploma or equivalent $31,710
Postsecondary teachers

Postsecondary Teachers

Postsecondary teachers instruct students in a wide variety of academic and career and technical subjects beyond the high school level. They also conduct research and publish scholarly papers and books.

See How to Become One $72,470
Public relations managers and specialists

Public Relations and Fundraising Managers

Public relations managers plan and direct the creation of material that will maintain or enhance the public image of their employer or client. Fundraising managers coordinate campaigns that bring in donations for their organization.

Bachelor's degree $104,140
public relations specialists image

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 $56,770
Technical writers

Technical Writers

Technical writers, also called technical communicators, prepare instruction manuals, how-to guides, journal articles, and other supporting documents to communicate complex and technical information more easily. They also develop, gather, and disseminate technical information through an organization’s communications channels.

Bachelor's degree $70,240
Writers and authors

Writers and Authors

Writers and authors develop written content for advertisements, books, magazines, movie and television scripts, songs, blogs, or other types of media.

Bachelor's degree $60,250
Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast News Analysts,
on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/media-and-communication/reporters-correspondents-and-broadcast-news-analysts.htm (visited May 27, 2016).

Publish Date: Thursday, December 17, 2015

What They Do

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Work Environment

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How to Become One

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Pay

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State & Area Data

The State and Area Data tab provides links to state and area occupational data from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program, state projections data from Projections Central, and occupational information from the Department of Labor's Career InfoNet.

Job Outlook

The Job Outlook tab describes the factors that affect employment growth or decline in the occupation, and in some instances, describes the relationship between the number of job seekers and the number of job openings.

Similar Occupations

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Contacts for More Information

The More Information tab provides the Internet addresses of associations, government agencies, unions, and other organizations that can provide additional information on the occupation. This tab also includes links to relevant occupational information from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET).

2015 Median Pay

The wage at which half of the workers in the occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Median wage data are from the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics survey. In May 2015, the median annual wage for all workers was $36,200.

On-the-job Training

Additional training needed (postemployment) to attain competency in the skills needed in this occupation.

Entry-level Education

Typical level of education that most workers need to enter this occupation.

Work experience in a related occupation

Work experience that is commonly considered necessary by employers, or is a commonly accepted substitute for more formal types of training or education.

Number of Jobs, 2014

The employment, or size, of this occupation in 2014, which is the base year of the 2014-24 employment projections.

Job Outlook, 2014-24

The projected percent change in employment from 2014 to 2024. The average growth rate for all occupations is 7 percent.

Employment Change, 2014-24

The projected numeric change in employment from 2014 to 2024.

Entry-level Education

Typical level of education that most workers need to enter this occupation.

On-the-job Training

Additional training needed (postemployment) to attain competency in the skills needed in this occupation.

Employment Change, projected 2014-24

The projected numeric change in employment from 2014 to 2024.

Growth Rate (Projected)

The percent change of employment for each occupation from 2014 to 2024.

Projected Number of New Jobs

The projected numeric change in employment from 2014 to 2024.

Projected Growth Rate

The projected percent change in employment from 2014 to 2024.

2015 Median Pay

The wage at which half of the workers in the occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Median wage data are from the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics survey. In May 2015, the median annual wage for all workers was $36,200.