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Become An Assignment Editor

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Working As An Assignment Editor

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $50,600

    Average Salary

What Does An Assignment Editor Do

Editors plan, review, and revise content for publication.

Duties

Editors typically do the following:

  • Read content and correct spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors
  • Rewrite text to make it easier for readers to understand
  • Verify facts using standard reference sources
  • Evaluate submissions from writers to decide what to publish
  • Work with writers to help their ideas and stories succeed
  • Develop story and content ideas according to the publication’s style and editorial policy
  • Allocate space for the text, photos, and illustrations that make up a story
  • Approve final versions submitted by staff

Editors plan, coordinate, and revise material for publication in books, newspapers, magazines, or websites. Editors review story ideas and decide what material will appeal most to readers. During the review process, editors offer comments to improve the product, and suggest titles and headlines. In smaller organizations, a single editor may perform all of the editorial duties or share them with only a few other people.

The following are examples of types of editors:

Copy editors review text for errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling and check for readability, style, and agreement with editorial policy. They suggest revisions, such as changing words and rearranging sentences and paragraphs to improve clarity or accuracy. They also may carry out research, confirm sources for writers, and verify facts, dates, and statistics. In addition, they may arrange page layouts of articles, photographs, and advertising.

Publication assistants who work for book-publishing houses may read and evaluate manuscripts submitted by freelance writers, proofread uncorrected drafts, and answer questions about published material. Assistants on small newspapers or in smaller media markets may compile articles available from wire services or the Internet, answer phones, and proofread articles.

Assistant editors are responsible for a particular subject, such as local news, international news, feature stories, or sports. Most assistant editors work for newspaper publishers, television broadcasters, magazines, book publishers, or advertising and public relations firms.

Executive editors oversee assistant editors and generally have the final say about what stories are published and how they are covered. Executive editors typically hire writers, reporters, and other employees. They also plan budgets and negotiate contracts with freelance writers, who are sometimes called “stringers” in the news industry. Although many executive editors work for newspaper publishers, some work for television broadcasters, magazines, or advertising and public relations firms.

Managing editors typically work for magazines, newspaper publishers, and television broadcasters, and are responsible for the daily operations of a news department.

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How To Become An Assignment Editor

A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English, combined with previous writing and proofreading experience, is typically required to be an editor.

Education

Employers generally prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English. They also prefer candidates with mass- or cross-media experience.

Those with other backgrounds who can show strong writing skills also may find jobs as editors. Editors who deal with specific subject matter may need previous related work experience. For example, fashion editors may need expertise in fashion that they gain through formal training or work experience.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many editors start off as editorial assistants, writers, or reporters.

Those who are particularly skilled at identifying good stories, recognizing writing talent, and interacting with writers may be interested in editing jobs. 

Other Experience

Editors also can gain experience by working on high school and college newspapers, and for magazines, radio and television stations, advertising and publishing companies, or nonprofit organizations. Magazines and newspapers also have internships for students. For example, the American Society of Magazine Editors offers a Magazine Internship Program to qualified full-time students in their junior or senior year of college. Interns may write stories, conduct research and interviews, and gain general publishing experience.

The ability to use computers is necessary for editors to stay in touch with writers and other editors and to work on the increasingly important digital media or online side of a publication. Familiarity with electronic publishing, graphics, Web design, and multimedia production is also important, because more content is being offered online.

Advancement

Some editors hold management positions and must make decisions related to running a business. For them, advancement generally means moving up to publications with larger circulation or greater prestige. Copy editors may move into original writing or substantive editing positions, or become freelancers.

Important Qualities

Creativity. Editors must be creative, curious, and knowledgeable in a broad range of topics. Some editors must regularly come up with interesting story ideas and attention-grabbing headlines.

Detail oriented. One of an editor’s main tasks is to make sure that material is error free and matches the style of a publication.

Good judgment. Editors must decide if certain stories are ethical or if there is enough evidence to report them.

Interpersonal skills. In working with writers, editors must have tact and the ability to guide and encourage them in their work.

Writing skills. Editors must ensure that all written content has correct grammar, punctuation, and syntax. Editors must be able to write clearly and logically.

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Assignment Editor jobs

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Assignment Editor Career Paths

Assignment Editor
Managing Editor Project Manager Product Manager
Brand Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Account Executive Marketing Manager Creative Director
Brand Strategist
5 Yearsyrs
Editor Communications Director Marketing Director
Chief Marketing Officer
10 Yearsyrs
News Producer Writer/Producer Creative Director
Communications Director
7 Yearsyrs
News Writer Managing Editor Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Editor Marketing Manager Marketing Director
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Executive Producer Creative Director Marketing Director
Director Of Marketing & Development
9 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Account Executive Public Relations
Director Of Marketing And Public Relations
7 Yearsyrs
General Assignment Reporter Managing Editor Public Relations
Director Of Public Affairs
8 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Communications Coordinator Communications Director
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Development Director Marketing Consultant
Head Of Marketing
6 Yearsyrs
General Assignment Reporter Writer And Editor Communications Manager
Manager Of Corporate Communications
8 Yearsyrs
News Producer Executive Producer Creative Director
Marketing Communications Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Producer Writer And Editor Communications Manager
Marketing Director
7 Yearsyrs
Producer Project Manager Program Manager
Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Marketing Consultant
Marketing Strategist
6 Yearsyrs
Executive Producer General Manager Business Developer
Marketing/Business Development
8 Yearsyrs
Account Executive Senior Account Executive Public Relations
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Journalist Public Affairs Specialist
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Communications Manager Communications Director
Vice President Of Communication
5 Yearsyrs
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Assignment Editor Demographics

Gender

Female

51.2%

Male

47.2%

Unknown

1.6%
Ethnicity

White

81.4%

Hispanic or Latino

10.8%

Asian

5.5%

Unknown

1.9%

Black or African American

0.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0%

French

8.9%

Portuguese

5.4%

German

5.4%

Chinese

3.6%

Vietnamese

3.6%

Mandarin

3.6%

Russian

3.6%

Polish

3.6%

Arabic

3.6%

Dakota

1.8%

Hebrew

1.8%

Yiddish

1.8%

Korean

1.8%

Italian

1.8%
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Assignment Editor Education

Schools

Syracuse University

8.5%

Temple University

7.3%

University of Florida

6.7%

University of Missouri - Columbia

6.7%

Northwestern University

6.1%

American University

5.5%

University of North Texas

4.9%

Fordham University

4.9%

Emerson College

4.9%

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

4.3%

University of Rhode Island

4.3%

Arizona State University

4.3%

West Virginia University

4.3%

Kent State University

4.3%

University of Texas at Austin

4.3%

Florida International University

4.3%

New York University

3.7%

University of Southern California

3.7%

Towson University

3.7%

University of Arizona

3.7%
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Majors

Journalism

30.8%

Communication

29.3%

Photography

4.7%

Business

4.4%

English

4.2%

Agricultural Public Services

3.9%

Political Science

3.5%

Audiovisual Communications Technologies

2.7%

Digital Media

2.4%

Public Relations

2.1%

Psychology

1.8%

Computer Networking

1.5%

Writing

1.4%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.4%

Marketing

1.4%

Liberal Arts

1.3%

Legal Support Services

0.9%

General Studies

0.8%

Education

0.8%

Management

0.8%
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Degrees

Bachelors

63.0%

Masters

17.7%

Other

13.0%

Associate

3.3%

Certificate

1.4%

Doctorate

1.3%

Diploma

0.3%

License

0.1%
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Internship
Temporary

Real Assignment Editor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Assignment Editor MTV Networks, A Division of Viacom International New York, NY Jun 28, 2010 $104,000 -
$114,400
Assignment Editor MTV Networks, A Division of Viacom International New York, NY Jul 26, 2010 $104,000 -
$114,400
News Assignment Editor American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2010 $86,008
Senior Assignment Editor ESPN Productions, Inc. Bristol, CT Mar 17, 2013 $77,010
Assignment Editor General Dynamics Information Technology, Inc. Rockville, MD Oct 01, 2013 $68,510
Assignment Editor (Content Producer) Yahoo! Inc. Coral Gables, FL Nov 17, 2009 $68,391
Assignment Editor NFL Enterprises, LLC Culver City, CA Apr 21, 2014 $68,245
Assignment Editor II ESPN Productions, Inc. Bristol, CT Jan 01, 2012 $60,700
Assignment Editor I ESPN Productions, Inc. Bristol, CT Dec 13, 2015 $56,837
Assignment Editor The Weather Channel Inc. Atlanta, GA Mar 01, 2010 $55,000 -
$65,000
Assignment Editor I ESPN Productions, Inc. Bristol, CT May 26, 2013 $54,100
Assignment Editor I ESPN Productions, Inc. Bristol, CT Dec 05, 2010 $50,200
Assignment Editor MTV Networks, A Division of Viacom International New York, NY Aug 30, 2010 $47,278 -
$93,600
Assignment Editor/News Writer Phoenix Satellite Television (Us) Inc. Irwindale, CA Nov 04, 2010 $46,800
Assignment Editor Korean-American TV Broadcasting Co., Inc. Federal Way, WA Jan 22, 2011 $46,092
Assignment Editor Korean-American TV Broadcasting, Inc. Federal Way, WA Jan 23, 2010 $46,092
Assignment Editor The Weather Channel, LLC Atlanta, GA Nov 18, 2012 $45,500 -
$65,500
Assignment Editor/News Writer Phoenix Satellite Television (Us) Inc. Irwindale, CA Nov 04, 2010 $44,810

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Top Skills for An Assignment Editor

NewsReportsCoveragePlansPhotographersDailyNewsStoriesProductionActivitiesNewsCoverageStationWebsiteNewsCrewsEditorialMeetingsLiveShotsAssignmentDeskFacebookTwitterNewsEventsNewsContentCNNPressReleasesLawEnforcementPoliceScannersPhoneCalls

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Top Assignment Editor Skills

  1. News Reports
  2. Coverage Plans
  3. Photographers
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Make daily calls to area agencies to collect information for possible news reports.
  • Work with Executive Producer to determine evening coverage plans (in addition to responsibilities as weekend assignment editor).
  • Communicated with reporters and photographers on assignment.
  • Supervised reporters and photographers during the development and assignment of daily news stories.
  • Conferred with news director and department heads to coordinate production activities.

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