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Career as Journalist

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Journalism is the business of giving news. Journalists work for newspapers, magazines, regional dailies, the electronic medium, websites and for government & public sector publications. The print medium holds an important role in our lives, providing the latest news and acting as a forum for addressing public issues and grievances.

Job Profile

Career as Journalist

Newspaper journalism
Newspaper work is broadly divided into two streams: the field and the desk.
Field work

  • Journalists are assigned to cover political issues, law and order, sports, education, local affairs and the like. Journalists may be assigned to specific ‘beats’ to cover all happenings in that area
  • They cover news stories, national and local events to inform it’s readers what is happening where, why and how
  • The main job entails witnessing events and reporting in a style which influences people to react to the changing scene
  • The local reporter, the national affairs correspondent, the foreign correspondent, sports, travel and other specialist writers all go outside the office to collect information and file news reports

Desk work

  • This is an office job. Sub-editors or copy editors process these ‘stories’ for presentation with headlines
  • They are responsible to see that the ‘story’ is objective and has no personal bias
  • Reporting and subbing are complementary and are vital functions in the editorial department

In the newspaper office

  • The team in a newspaper office is headed by the editor under him there are sub-editors, correspondents, special reporters, reporters and freelance journalists, photojournalists etc.


  • Plan the contents of the publication and supervise its preparation
  • Administrative duties of editors include hiring writers, planning budgets, negotiating contracts with freelance writers, etc.

Associate or assistant editors

  • Have responsibility for particular subjects, such as sports, international news, education, careers, family, etc.


  • Give final shape to the story submitted by a reporter
  • Acts almost like a ‘gate keeper’ editing, reformatting, objectively presenting each report keeping in mind the general policy of the newspaper

Reporters and correspondents

  • Prepare stories about local, state, national and international events
  • Present varied viewpoints on current issues
  • Monitor the actions of public officials and others who exercise power through their columns


  • Are based in large cities and in other countries to prepare stories on major news events occurring in these locations

Freelance journalists

  • Write independently and get paid for each piece or article they write


  • Are appointed by newspapers & periodicals as specialists for regular columns
  • Contribute to the column on a regular basis for which they receive a fixed amount


  • Eminent personalities, an authority in a field, are invited by the newspapers & periodicals to write on topical issues or leading articles on a selected subject

Magazine journalism

The structure in magazine publishing is almost the same as that of a newspaper. There is the editor, associate editors and journalists who write specific stories assigned to them.

  • The work involves researching, interviewing and stimulating writing
  • There are freelance contributions, columnists and special commentators involved even in magazine journalism

Other people in the profession


  • Prepares comical or satirical sketch on political, cultural events
  • While established cartoonists are working for some big groups, others are generally free lancers


  • Illustrators and cartographers specialize in maps and charts to illustrate data work in this medium


  • Provides photographs which cover or tell a story or illustrating an event
Skills required
  • Good general knowledge
  • Keen observation, inquisitive temperament
  • Good perception and interest in details
  • Ability to sift relevant facts from the irrelevant
  • Clear and logical
  • Intellectually curious
  • Self motivated and persevering
  • A style of writing that is accurate, readable and informed
  • Interest in current affairs
  • Tactful, confident and organised while interviewing people
  • Alert, physically fit and healthy
  • Creative
  • Knowledgeable

Employment Opportunities

Newspaper groups of the English/Vernacular medium, Newsagencies, News Bureaus, Press Trust of India, English/Vernacular magazines and journals, Indian Information Service (Group A) of the government, Directorates of publicity employ trained journalists. The electronic medium Radio/TV news service, Video magazines, Advertising and Visual Communication agencies to offer jobs to journalists.


1.18 Lakh to 9.38 Lakhs per annum

(Salary data sourced from PayScale.com)


Recruiting Companies

  • Hindustan TimesHindustan Times
  • India TodayIndia Today
  • Times of IndiaTimes of India

Employers in Print medium (indicative list):

  • Pioneer
  • Manorama
  • Outlook
  • Dainik Jagran
  • Hindu

How do I get there?

  • Std XII

    Stream: Any

  • Graduate Degree


  • Apprenticeship

    Newspaper/ Periodicals/ Pub…

  • Goal


  • Std XII

    Stream: Any

  • Graduation

    Subject: Any

  • Postgraduati…

    Specialist subject> Special…

  • Goal

    Specialist Journalist (Eco/…

Courses in journalism are offered in English, Hindi and regional languages

*Graduates can pursue a professional degree/diploma in journalism from an institute of journalism
**Apprenticeship positions are filled by graduates with a newspaper for supervised training

Where to study?

Prestigious Institutes in India

  • Asian College of Journalism, Chennai
  • Garware Institute of Career Education and Development, Mumbai
  • Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Delhi

Offering Under Graduate Courses

  • Amity School of Communication (ASCO)

Offering Post Graduate Courses

  • AJK Mass Communication Research Centre
  • Amity School of Communication (ASCO)
  • Asian College of Journalism (ACJ)
  • Garware Institute of Career Education and Development (GICED)
  • Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC)
  • MICA
  • PDN College of Communication Management
  • Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication (SIMC)

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