“Journalism” and being able to describe yourself as a “journalist” means that you’re involved in an incredibly broad career that could cover everything from writing blog posts about celebrity news and fashion to broadcasting regular updates about global affairs and politics.
Careers in journalism are highly competitive and might suit you if you want to raise awareness about social issues and enjoy visiting new places and meeting people from a variety of backgrounds.
Journalists themselves come from a variety of backgrounds and often choose their journalism specialism because of their own area of interest. However, there is a lot of opportunity in this field to move to other areas as long as you can demonstrate your passion and interest.
Whether you dream of being on television or hope to run an online magazine there is a career in journalism for you.
Many journalists, particularly those who already have well-established careers, went straight from school or college into a job without gaining a degree.
In fact, Journalism as a degree course is a relatively new subject to be offered by universities.
However, because media careers are so competitive, it will often help if you formally study journalism, as well as establishing a portfolio of work, before applying for jobs.
Here’s more about studying Journalism and the accreditations to look for when applying for Journalism courses.
The National Council for the Training of Journalists, or the NCTJ, is a charity of all media and an accreditation board that accredits courses in Journalism and other areas of the media.
As well as accrediting undergraduate degree courses they also offer distance learning, postgraduate degree courses, short courses, conferences, and fast-track courses for those wishing to work in the media industry.
Although there are many universities in the UK that offer courses in Journalism the NCJT courses are considered to be the “Gold Standard” for all journalists.
If you’re thinking of studying Journalism, and you want to study an accredited course, it’s best to use the NCTJ course search tool to find courses that suit you.
To help you cut down your research time, here is the current list of all undergraduate Journalism courses that are NCTJ accredited:
If you’re considering studying Journalism at university then there are a few things you can do to prepare yourself for your course and your future career.
Here are our three top tips for preparing for a Journalism degree:
This should go without saying, but many students forget that having an in depth knowledge of current affairs is a must for a future journalist.
Start crafting and developing your own writing style before you begin your course. Writing a blog, guest blogging for other people and contributing to the school or local paper or newsletter are all good ways to build a portfolio.
It doesn’t matter which journalist(s) inspire you to want to follow in their career footsteps, but you can learn a lot from watching them.
For example, watch how Piers Morgan grills a difficult celebrity during an interview or how BBC news reporters convey serious news bulletins. Take notes and try to develop your own journalistic style.