News Producer: Job Description and Education Requirements

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a news producer. Get an overview of the requirements as well as degree programs and job duties to see if this career is right for you.

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Essential Information

News producers are responsible for supervising the overall content and flow of news distribution. While educational programs specifically designed for news producers are rare, undergraduate degree programs in journalism or broadcasting can prepare graduates to enter this career field.

Required EducationBachelor's degree
Projected Job Growth (2012-2022)*3% (for all producers and directors)
Average Salary (2013)*$69,330 (for producers and directors in radio and TV broadcasting)

Source:*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Description

News producers may work in several different media, including print, radio, television and online news. These professionals primarily oversee both the editorial content of the news and how that news is produced and presented to the public. Job duties include writing news stories, selecting footage to include in broadcasts and reviewing sound bytes in order to ensure smooth composition and flow of the news.

News producers are, at times, looked to as leaders of a news production team, and may be expected to have management experience as well as good communications skills. News producers must also have basic computer skills and knowledge of commonly used office software and text editing programs. News producers may be required to work odd hours that include evenings or weekends, depending on the employer.

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

Job openings for producers and directors were expected to increase three percent during the 2012-2022 decade, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The average salary for producers and directors in the radio and television broadcasting industry was $69,330 in 2013, reports the BLS.

Education Requirements

Increasingly, news producers are required to have a college degree at entry level, along with some experience in the medium in which they will act as producer. Education programs for entry-level jobs are normally undergraduate programs. Graduate-level education programs may be useful for those who wish to advance their careers and for those who wish to teach.

Most educational institutions do not tailor their programs specifically to news producers, but many institutions offer degrees with an emphasis in a particular medium, such as television, radio or print journalism. Prospective news producers may choose to complete a journalism program that specifically covers the medium in which they wish to specialize. A few education programs may be intended specifically for those who will take particular roles among news staff, such as reporters or producers.

Common courses in a journalism education program may include:

  • Mass communication process and effect
  • Law and ethics in mass media
  • Writing news for television and radio
  • News selection and discovery
  • Intermediate broadcast news
  • Editing and videography
  • Broadcast operations and management
  • Performance for live broadcast
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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 21 years of age or older and have completed some college or 24 years of age or older and a high school graduate for a Bachelor's degree
    • Masters degree applicants must have a Bachelors degree
    • Doctorate degree applicants must have a Masters degree
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • Florida (1 campus)

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must live within close proximity to school locations
    • Must be graduated from high school by 2011
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • Florida (1 campus)
    • Minnesota (1)
    • Washington (1)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

    • Bachelor
        • Bachelor - Digital Media Production
        • Bachelor of Fine Arts - Digital Media Production
        • Bachelor of Fine Arts - Audio Production
    • Associate
        • Associate - Radio Broadcasting
        • Associate - Audio Production
        • Associate - Post Production

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • California (1 campus)
    • Colorado (1)
    • Georgia (1)
    • Michigan (1)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

    Do you prefer online or campus based learning?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    • Master
        • MA in Communication
        • MA in Communication - New Media & Marketing
    • Bachelor

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • All degree applicants must have a Bachelors degree or higher
    • Post-Master's Certificate degree applicants must have a Masters degree or higher
    School locations:
    • Maryland (1 campus)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Master
        • MA in Communication

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Undergraduate applicants must be a high school graduate or have completed GED and completed some college. Master's degree applicants must have a bachelor's or higher.
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

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Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Georgia (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Georgia include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Communications and Journalism
      • Communication Studies
      • Communication Technology
        • Radio and Television Broadcasting
      • Comparative Language Studies and Services
      • English Composition
      • English Language and Literature
      • Foreign Language and Literature
      • Journalism
      • Public Relations and Advertising
  • School locations:
    • New York (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Syracuse University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Communications and Journalism
      • Communication Studies
      • Communication Technology
        • Radio and Television Broadcasting
      • Comparative Language Studies and Services
      • Digital, Radio, and Television Communication
      • English Composition
      • English Language and Literature
      • Foreign Language and Literature
      • Journalism
      • Public Relations and Advertising

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Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics