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Become An Associate Editor

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Working As An Associate 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

  • $49,720

    Average Salary

What Does An Associate Editor Do

The primary role of an Associate Editor is to ensure that subordinates submit high-quality content. They review and edit copies, set deadlines, and supervise the production details of magazines, newspapers, books, or websites.

How To Become An Associate Editor

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


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.


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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131,564 Associate Editor jobs

Johns Hopkins Intrastaff
Baltimore, MD

$39,602 Estimated

Cincy Magazine
Cincinnati, OH
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

Syneos Health
New York, NY
Associate Editor

$46,983 Estimated

American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)
Leawood, KS
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

Santa Monica, CA
Associate Editor

$43,301 Estimated

Boston, MA
Associate Editor

$48,371 Estimated

American Association for Cancer Research
Philadelphia, PA
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

CBS Corporation
Louisville, KY
Associate Editor - CNET

$49,720 Estimated

Money Map Press
Baltimore, MD
Associate Editor (Entry-Level)

$44,219 Estimated

The Wall Street Journal
New York, NY
Associate Editor, Live Journalism

$46,983 Estimated

NBC Universal
Denver, CO
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

Thomson Reuters
New York, NY
Associate Editor

$46,983 Estimated

New York, NY
Associate Editor

$46,983 Estimated

The American Academy of Family Physicians
Leawood, KS
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

The American Institute of Physics
College Park, MD
Associate Editor

$49,968 Estimated

BNP Media
Troy, MI
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

Source Media
New York, NY
Associate Editor

$46,983 Estimated

NBC Universal
Denver, CO
Associate Editor

$49,720 Estimated

Boston, MA
Associate editor

$48,371 Estimated

14 West
Baltimore, MD
Associate Editor

$44,219 Estimated

Add To My Jobs

Real Associate Editor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Head Spanish Associate Editor Inter-American Division Publishing Association Doral, FL Apr 20, 2016 $92,810
Associate Scientific Editor, Immunity Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Aug 05, 2015 $82,651 -
Senior Associate Editor American Chemical Society Temple City, CA Sep 15, 2015 $81,025
Associate Agent, Editor The Zoe Pagnamenta Agency LLC New York, NY Aug 15, 2014 $78,263
Associate Agent, Editor The Zoe Pagnamenta Agency LLC New York, NY Aug 15, 2016 $78,263
Senior Associate Editor Advance Magazine Publishers Inc. DBA CONDÉ Nast New York, NY Mar 13, 2015 $78,000
Associate Editor American Physical Society Ridge, NY Jan 10, 2014 $77,792 -
Associate Editor HKM Productions, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jan 03, 2013 $75,000
Associate Scientific Editor Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Sep 15, 2016 $75,000 -
Senior Associate Editor CBS Interactive, Inc. New York, NY Aug 23, 2015 $74,277
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Top Skills for An Associate Editor


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Top Associate Editor Skills

  1. Web Content
  2. Online Content
  3. Edit Content
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Photographed subjects for web content.
  • Increased online content of work designing interactive websites resulting in increased online traffic of 45%.
  • Collaborated with college professors to write and edit content for math textbooks, including digital products.
  • Managed the editorial department's computer system (Mac and PC).
  • Edited and met all deadlines for a 32-page weekly newspaper.

Top Associate Editor Employers

What Kind Of Companies Hire an Associate Editor

  1. Pearson Education
  2. Pace Communications
  3. Patch.Com
  4. Journal of Visualized Experiments
  5. The American Acupuncturist
  6. Punctum Books
  7. Oxford University Press
  8. Nextpittsburgh
  9. Watching America
  10. Illumin Engineering Magazine
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