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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

  • $49,968

    Average Salary

What Does An Associate 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 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.

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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Associate Editor jobs

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Associate Editor Career Paths

Associate Editor
Contributing Writer Managing Editor Marketing Manager
Brand Director
11 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Project Manager Product Manager
Brand Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Senior Writer Managing Editor
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Marketing Consultant Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Production Editor Production Manager Art Director
Creative Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Communications Coordinator Marketing Manager
Digital Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Producer Digital Producer
Digital Project Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Communications Director Marketing Director
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Communications Director
Director Of Marketing And Public Relations
7 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Managing Editor Communications Director
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Technical Writer Communications Manager Marketing Consultant
Head Of Marketing
6 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Writer And Editor Communications Manager
Manager Of Corporate Communications
8 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Writer And Editor Marketing Specialist
Marketing Communications Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Editor Marketing Manager
Marketing Director
7 Yearsyrs
Editor Project Manager Program Manager
Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Technical Writer Program Manager Marketing Consultant
Marketing Strategist
6 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager Business Developer
Marketing/Business Development
8 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Marketing Manager Social Media Manager
Marketing/Social Media Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Marketing Director Search Engine Optimizer
Online Marketing Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Communications Manager Marketing Manager
Senior Manager Of Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Publishing Editor 4.7 years
Sports Copy Editor 4.3 years
Food Editor 4.2 years
News Copy Editor 4.2 years
Medical Editor 4.0 years
City Editor 3.9 years
Senior Editor 3.9 years
Business Editor 3.5 years
Production Editor 3.4 years
Executive Editor 3.4 years
Managing Editor 3.3 years
Editor/Copy Writer 3.3 years
Publication Editor 3.3 years
Editor/Proofreader 3.1 years
Sports Editor 3.1 years
Writer And Editor 3.1 years
Associate Editor 3.0 years
Technical Editor 3.0 years
Editor & Producer 3.0 years
Copy Editor 2.9 years
Deputy Editor 2.9 years
Book Editor 2.7 years
Newsletter Editor 2.7 years
Science Editor 2.7 years
News Editor 2.7 years
Editor 2.6 years
Features Editor 2.6 years
Newspaper Editor 2.5 years
Editor, Freelance 2.5 years
Staff Editor 2.5 years
Editor In Chief 2.5 years
Design Editor 2.4 years
Magazine Editor 2.4 years
Lead Editor 2.4 years
Photo Editor 2.2 years
Image Editor 2.2 years
Digital Editor 2.1 years
Health Editor 2.1 years
Fashion Editor 2.1 years
Online Editor 2.0 years
Assistant Editor 2.0 years
Content Editor 2.0 years
Web Editor 2.0 years
Web Content Editor 1.9 years
Multimedia Editor 1.8 years
Art Editor 1.8 years
Contract Editor 1.8 years
Co-Editor 1.5 years
Junior Editor 1.5 years
Opinion Editor 1.3 years
Top Employers Before
Editor 13.7%
Internship 10.1%
Reporter 8.0%
Writer 2.3%
Teacher 1.9%
Top Employers After
Editor 21.3%
Reporter 3.4%
Internship 3.1%
Writer 2.4%
Consultant 2.3%

Associate Editor Demographics

Gender

Female

56.6%

Male

41.5%

Unknown

1.8%
Ethnicity

White

80.5%

Asian

8.5%

Hispanic or Latino

8.4%

Unknown

2.1%

Black or African American

0.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

39.3%

French

18.9%

German

6.6%

Italian

5.1%

Mandarin

4.2%

Chinese

4.2%

Japanese

3.7%

Russian

2.9%

Portuguese

2.9%

Hindi

2.2%

Arabic

2.0%

Cantonese

1.5%

Hebrew

1.3%

Greek

1.1%

Polish

1.1%

Turkish

0.9%

Nepali

0.7%

Urdu

0.7%

Vietnamese

0.4%

Dutch

0.4%
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Associate Editor Education

Schools

New York University

12.1%

Northwestern University

7.7%

Syracuse University

7.3%

University of Texas at Austin

5.8%

Temple University

5.4%

Emerson College

5.1%

University of Missouri - Columbia

4.9%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

4.6%

Auburn University

4.4%

Columbia College Chicago

4.4%

University of Iowa

4.3%

Columbia University

4.1%

Northeastern University

4.1%

Georgetown University

3.7%

University of Florida

3.7%

DePaul University

3.7%

University of Oregon

3.7%

Boston University

3.7%

Michigan State University

3.6%

University of Washington

3.6%
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Majors

Journalism

23.5%

English

21.9%

Communication

9.8%

Writing

9.4%

Political Science

3.9%

Business

3.6%

History

3.3%

Law

3.2%

Public Relations

2.6%

Agricultural Public Services

2.4%

Fine Arts

2.3%

Marketing

2.2%

Psychology

2.0%

Education

1.7%

Photography

1.6%

Liberal Arts

1.5%

Graphic Design

1.5%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.2%

Area Studies

1.1%

Management

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

51.9%

Masters

26.8%

Other

10.4%

Doctorate

6.3%

Certificate

2.4%

Associate

1.7%

Diploma

0.4%

License

0.1%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

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 -
$86,636
Associate Agent, Editor The Zoe Pagnamenta Agency LLC New York, NY Aug 15, 2016 $78,263
Associate Agent, Editor The Zoe Pagnamenta Agency LLC New York, NY Aug 15, 2014 $78,263
Associate Editor American Physical Society Ridge, NY Jan 10, 2014 $77,792 -
$100,000
Associate Scientific Editor Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Sep 15, 2016 $75,000 -
$92,000
Associate Editor HKM Productions, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jan 03, 2013 $75,000
Associate Scientific Editor Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Sep 30, 2014 $74,000 -
$115,110
Associate Scientific Editor, Immunology Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Feb 12, 2014 $73,800 -
$115,110
Associate Scientific Editor, Immunity Elsevier, Inc. Cambridge, MA Feb 12, 2014 $73,800 -
$115,110
Spanish Associate Editor Inter-American Division Publishing Association Doral, FL Jun 28, 2016 $73,258
Associate Editor General Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists Silver Spring, MD Jun 03, 2015 $71,158
Associate Editor Flaunt Magazine Los Angeles, CA Jun 20, 2015 $70,958
Associate Editor, The Verge VOX Media, Inc. New York, NY Jul 03, 2016 $63,419 -
$84,052
Associate Editor Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. Pleasanton, CA Sep 16, 2014 $63,274
Associate Editor John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Hoboken, NJ Oct 15, 2011 $63,000
Associate Editor Public Library of Science San Francisco, CA Sep 24, 2012 $60,507 -
$70,000
Associate Editor The Week Publications, Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2011 $60,000
Managing Editor/Associate Editor American Physical Society Ridge, NY Feb 02, 2011 $59,259 -
$105,400
Associate Editor Mirrorball Group LLC New York, NY Mar 10, 2014 $58,000
Associate Social Editor The Daily Dot, LLC New York, NY Oct 01, 2015 $56,000
Associate Editor The New Press Inc. New York, NY Jan 09, 2016 $45,967
Associate Editor AOL Inc. New York, NY Aug 09, 2015 $45,800 -
$68,500
Associate Editor Penguin Random House LLC New York, NY Aug 18, 2016 $45,780
Associate Editor Studio One Networks, Inc. New York, NY Sep 22, 2011 $45,175
Associate Editor Penguin Random House LLC New York, NY Jun 01, 2015 $45,000
Associate Editor Nowthis Media, Inc. New York, NY Sep 01, 2014 $45,000
Associate Editor The Big Think Inc. Floyd, NY Jun 13, 2016 $43,700 -
$47,500
Associate Editor China Daily Distribution Corp. New York, NY Oct 01, 2015 $43,200

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Top Skills for An Associate Editor

WebContentOnlineContentEditContentEditorialDepartmentWeeklyNewspaperFreelanceWritersTwitterBookReviewsPhotographyPressReleasesNewsStoriesTradeShowsAdobeIndesignHtmlContentManagementSystemEditor-In-ChiefSEOEditorialInternsEditorialCalendarAdobePhotoshop

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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

Associate Editor Videos

APA Associate Editor EM Training (v1)

Career in Journalism...Arunoday Mukharji, Associate Editor at CNN-IBN

Associate Editor Elizabeth Mazer on Proposals

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