Career Profile: Television Reporter

Career Profile: Television Reporter

by Susan Huebert
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

For many people, watching the evening news is a daily routine. They learn about world events from reporters who gather facts and inform viewers about what they’ve discovered. Becoming a television reporter involves education and experience, but also the ability to pursue stories and to condense them into forms that fit into news programs. If that idea appeals to you, becoming a television reporter might be the right choice.

Have you ever worked on a school newspaper or interviewed someone for an assignment? Television reporters spend a lot of their time trying to find the facts about events in their own communities or around the world. This can often involve talking to people and doing research in libraries or archives. They need to research everything they can about their subject/s, so they can ask intriguing questions while getting to the truth or heart of the story.

Most television reporters prepare for their careers by getting a bachelor’s degree in journalism, broadcasting or television production. Taking creative writing or English literature courses can also be useful. Some reporters might also want to specialize in a particular type of writing or in the history and politics of a certain area of the world. If you know a lot about subjects that involve science or literature, you can work towards specializing in a specific topic. However, reporters have to be prepared to work on any assignments that they receive-usually in the beginning of their career.

Knowing about camera and recording equipment is also useful for television reporters. Large news stations normally have technicians who operate cameras and sound recording equipment, but at smaller stations, reporters might have to learn how to use all of this equipment themselves. When they go out to report on an event, they have to keep the camera rolling while talking and asking people questions.

When they first start out, most reporters work on small, local stories. They might report on a local music festival or a problem with playground equipment. In large television stations with many reporters, it might take several years before they can work on bigger stories. However, if they gain skills and experience, they can often move on to other types of reporting. They might never get to work on the most exciting stories, but they could begin to make their own decisions about which ones to cover.

Salaries for television reporters may vary. When they start out, especially at small stations, reporters might earn only about $20,000 per year. With experience, however, they could reach $100,000 per year, especially if they are willing to travel to different parts of the world. In most parts of Canada, the average salary for a television reporter is between $45,000 and $55,000 per year.

Becoming a television reporter takes a lot of practice and requires you to be open to the world and what stories it has to offer. If you enjoy talking to people and finding out the facts behind a story, this job might be a good career choice for you.


Halbrooks, Glenn. TV Reporter Career Profile and Job Description http://media.about.com/od/televisionandradio/p/Tv-Reporter-Career-Profile.htm.
Living in Canada. “Journalist Salary Canada.” http://www.livingin-canada.com/salaries-for-journalists.html.
Occupation Profile for Radio and Television Announcers http://www.careers.org/occupations/27-3011.00/radio-and-television-announcers.
Study.com. “News Reporter Career Information, Job Duties and Salary Info.” http://study.com/news_reporter_career.html.

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