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Become A Correspondent

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Working As A Correspondent

  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $74,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Correspondent Do

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts inform the public about news and events happening internationally, nationally, and locally. They report the news for newspapers, magazines, websites, television, and radio.

Duties

Reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts typically do the following:

  • Research topics and stories that an editor or news director has assigned to them
  • Interview people who have information, analysis, or opinions about a story or article
  • Write articles for newspapers, blogs, and magazines and write scripts to be read on television or radio
  • Review articles for accuracy and proper style and grammar
  • Develop relationships with experts and contacts who provide tips and leads on stories
  • Analyze and interpret information to increase their audiences’ understanding of the news
  • Update stories as new information becomes available

Reporters and correspondents, also called journalists, often work for a particular type of media organization, such as a television or radio station, newspaper, or website.

Those who work in television and radio set up and conduct interviews, which can be broadcast live or recorded for future broadcasts. These workers are often responsible for editing interviews and other recordings to create a cohesive story and for writing and recording voiceovers that provide the audience with the facts of the story. They may create multiple versions of the same story for different broadcasts or different media platforms.

Most television and radio shows have hosts, also called anchors, who report the news and introduce stories from reporters.

Journalists for print media conduct interviews and write articles to be used in newspapers, magazines, and online publications. Because most newspapers and magazines have print and online versions, reporters typically produce content for both versions. Doing so often requires staying up to date with new developments of a story so that the online editions can be updated with the most current information.

Some journalists may convey stories through both broadcast and print media, as well as help manage the organization’s web content. For example, television stations often have a website, and a reporter may post a blog or an article for the website. Similarly, a reporter working for newspapers or magazines may create videos or podcasts that people access online.

Stations are increasingly relying on multimedia journalists to publish content on a variety of platforms, including radio and television stations, websites, and mobile devices. Multimedia journalists typically record, report, write, and edit their own stories. They also gather the audio, video, or graphics that accompany their stories.

Reporters and correspondents may need to maintain a presence on social media networking sites. Many use social media to cover live events, provide additional information for readers and viewers, promote their stations and newscasts, and engage better with their audiences.

Some journalists, particularly those in large cities or large news organizations, cover a particular topic, such as sports, medicine, or politics. Journalists who work in small cities, towns, or organizations may need to cover a wider range of subjects.

Some reporters live in other countries and cover international news.

Some reporters—particularly those who work for print news—are self-employed and take freelance assignments from news organizations. Freelance assignments are given to writers on an as-needed basis. Because freelance reporters are paid for the individual story, they work with many organizations and often spend some of their time marketing their stories and looking for their next assignment.

Some people with a background as a reporter or correspondent work as postsecondary teachers and teach journalism or communications at colleges and universities.

Broadcast news analysts are another type of media occupation. Broadcast news analysts are often called upon to provide their opinion, rather than reporting, on a particular news story. They may appear on television, radio, or in print and offer their opinion to viewers, listeners, or readers. However, most broadcast news analysts come from fields outside of journalism and have expertise in a particularly subject—for example, politics, business, or medicine—and are hired on a contract basis to provide their opinion of the subjects being discussed. Becoming a broadcast news analyst is typically not a career path for new journalists.

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How To Become A Correspondent

Employers generally prefer to hire reporters and correspondents who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications along with an internship or work experience from a college radio or television station or a newspaper.

Education

Most employers prefer workers who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications. However, some employers may hire applicants who have a degree in a related subject, such as English or political science, and relevant work experience.

Bachelor’s degree programs in journalism and communications include classes in journalistic ethics and techniques for researching stories and conducting interviews. Some programs may require students to take liberal arts classes, such as English, history, economics, and political science, so that students are prepared to cover stories on a wide range of subjects.

Some journalism students may benefit from classes in multimedia design, coding, and programming. Because content is increasingly being delivered on television, websites, and mobile devices, reporters need to know how to develop stories with video, audio, data, and graphics.

Some schools offer graduate programs in journalism and communications. These programs prepare students who have a bachelor’s degree in another field to become journalists.

Other Experience

Employers generally require workers to have experience gained through internships or by working on school newspapers. While attending college, many students seek multiple internships with different news organizations. These internships allow students the opportunities to work on stories and put together a portfolio of their best writing samples or on-air appearances.

Advancement

After gaining more work experience, reporters and correspondents can advance by moving from news organizations in small cities or towns to news organizations in large cities. Larger markets offer job opportunities with higher pay and more responsibility and challenges. Reporters and correspondents also may become editors or news directors.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Journalists must be able to report the news both verbally and in writing. Strong writing skills are important for journalists in all kinds of media.

Computer skills. Journalists should be able to use editing equipment and other broadcast-related devices.

Interpersonal skills. To develop contacts and conduct interviews, reporters need to build good relationships with many people. They also need to work well with other journalists, editors, and news directors.

Objectivity. Journalists need to report the facts of the news without inserting their opinion or bias into the story.

Persistence. Sometimes, getting the facts of a story is difficult, particularly when those involved refuse to be interviewed or provide comment. Journalists need to be persistent in their pursuit of the story.

Stamina. The work of journalists is often fast paced and exhausting. Reporters must be able to keep up with the additional hours of work.

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Correspondent Career Paths

Correspondent
Editor Owner Marketing Director
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Editor Consultant Marketing Manager
Brand Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Editor Project Manager Marketing Director
Director Of Marketing And Public Relations
6 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Executive Assistant Property Manager
Assistant Director, Communications
5 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Public Relations Specialist Public Relations Manager
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Communications Manager Communications Director
Director Of Public Affairs
7 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Technical Writer Web Developer
Web Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Communications Manager Public Relations Director
Media Relations Director
5 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Communications Manager Public Relations Director
Public Relations And Communications Director
7 Yearsyrs
Writer Copy Editor Staff Writer
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Writer Technical Writer Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Writer Copy Editor Managing Editor
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Owner Communications Director
Deputy Communications Director
6 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Founder Creative Director
Digital Director
9 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Technical Writer Content Manager
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Journalist Communications Specialist Public Relations Specialist
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Content Writer Content Manager
Digital Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Senior Editor
Bureau Chief
7 Yearsyrs
Journalist Producer Public Relations Manager
Community Relations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Journalist Producer Social Media Manager
Digital Communications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Correspondent Demographics

Gender

Female

49.9%

Male

39.3%

Unknown

10.8%
Ethnicity

White

61.1%

Hispanic or Latino

14.7%

Black or African American

11.8%

Asian

8.3%

Unknown

4.2%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

41.3%

French

16.4%

German

5.9%

Arabic

5.9%

Italian

5.5%

Chinese

4.3%

Mandarin

3.8%

Japanese

3.3%

Portuguese

2.9%

Russian

2.4%

Korean

1.7%

Turkish

1.0%

Hindi

1.0%

Cantonese

1.0%

Dutch

0.7%

Thai

0.7%

Greek

0.7%

Polish

0.7%

Swahili

0.5%

Telugu

0.5%
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Correspondent Education

Schools

New York University

7.4%

Northwestern University

6.7%

Emerson College

6.7%

Boston University

5.8%

University of Connecticut

5.6%

University of Missouri - Columbia

5.6%

Columbia University

5.4%

Temple University

5.3%

Florida State University

5.3%

American University

5.0%

Northeastern University

5.0%

University of South Florida

4.8%

University of Florida

4.8%

University of Phoenix

4.5%

Pennsylvania State University

4.3%

University of Maryland - College Park

4.0%

University of Alabama

3.7%

University of Iowa

3.7%

Michigan State University

3.2%

University of Massachusetts Amherst

3.2%
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Majors

Journalism

25.3%

Communication

15.4%

Business

10.0%

English

8.7%

Political Science

6.3%

Public Relations

3.3%

Writing

3.2%

Marketing

3.0%

Psychology

2.9%

Agricultural Public Services

2.6%

Accounting

2.4%

History

2.3%

Finance

2.1%

Management

2.0%

Photography

2.0%

Economics

1.9%

Law

1.7%

Education

1.7%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.6%

International Relations

1.6%
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Degrees

Bachelors

53.0%

Masters

20.0%

Other

16.0%

Associate

3.8%

Certificate

3.2%

Doctorate

2.5%

Diploma

1.2%

License

0.3%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$74,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$36,000
Min 10%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$74,000
Median 50%
$152,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Thomson Reuters
Highest Paying City
Denver, CO
Highest Paying State
North Dakota
Avg Experience Level
2.7 years
How much does a Correspondent make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Correspondent in the United States is $75,073 per year or $36 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $36,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $152,000.

Real Correspondent Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Political Correspondent John Fairfax Us Limited DC Dec 15, 2009 $214,000 -
$238,000
Political Correspondent John Fairfax Us Limited Washington, DC Dec 15, 2009 $214,000 -
$238,000
Washington Correspondent Independent Television News Washington, DC Dec 01, 2013 $177,595
Washington Correspondent Independent Television News Washington, DC Jan 12, 2015 $177,595
Horseracing Correspondent ODS Technologies, L.P. Los Angeles, CA Oct 01, 2012 $160,000
Washington Correspondent John Fairfax Us Limited Washington, DC Dec 03, 2010 $136,523
Political Correspondent News America Incorporated Washington, DC Mar 22, 2011 $131,859
Correspondent Cable News Network, Inc. New York, NY Jul 13, 2015 $122,860 -
$145,900
Political Correspondent Australian Broadcasting Corporation Washington, DC Dec 08, 2009 $118,000 -
$125,000
Private Equity Correspondent Thomson Reuters Markets LLC New York, NY Jun 25, 2015 $116,000
Commodities Correspondent Thomson Reuters Markets LLC New York, NY Mar 06, 2015 $114,370
Technology Correspondent Thomson Reuters Markets LLC San Francisco, CA Oct 20, 2015 $113,069
Defense Correspondent WP Company LLC Washington, DC Sep 28, 2013 $100,337 -
$125,421
Correspondent Reuters America LLC New York, NY May 27, 2016 $98,316
Correspondent Thomson Reuters Markets LLC New York, NY Aug 27, 2010 $97,500
US Correspondent Dow Jones & Company, Inc. New York, NY Feb 17, 2013 $96,900
US Correspondent Dow Jones & Company, Inc. New York, NY Jan 30, 2010 $95,000
U.S. Correspondent Dow Jones and Company New York, NY Jan 30, 2011 $95,000
Finance Correspondent News America Incorporated New York, NY Sep 30, 2010 $94,272
Commodities Correspondent Thomson Reuters Markets LLC New York, NY Feb 24, 2015 $92,202
International Financial Institutions Correspondent Bloomberg L.P. Washington, DC Jan 21, 2015 $89,000 -
$110,000
White House Correspondent Reuters America LLC Washington, DC Sep 18, 2015 $88,296
North American Correspondent News Limited of Australia, Inc. New York, NY Aug 01, 2015 $66,000
North American Correspondent News Limited of Australia, Inc. New York, NY Aug 01, 2015 $65,900
Special Correspondent, Int'l Human RTS, Religious The Christian Post, LLC New York, NY Sep 05, 2013 $65,000
North American Correspondent News Limited of Australia, Inc. New York, NY Aug 01, 2013 $60,000
Correspondent Nikkei America, Inc. New York, NY Sep 27, 2010 $53,949
Correspondent Nikkei America, Inc. Washington, DC Sep 25, 2012 $53,219
Correspondent Nikkei America, Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2014 $48,523
Golf Correspondent TGC, LLC Orlando, FL Aug 24, 2016 $42,000

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Top Skills for A Correspondent

  1. News Stories
  2. Student Newspaper
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Researched and wrote news stories, investigated leads, made on-site observations, and interviewed people involved in arts events.
  • Submitted weekly video game reviews for student newspaper.
  • Responded to incoming inquiries regarding automotive policies and offered diligent customer service to provide a smooth and effortless transition for customer.
  • Write profiles of executives and features on tech companies, general business news and business-related higher education topics
  • Analysed financial statements, covered the accounting industry including changes introduced by Financial Accounting Standards Board and the SEC.

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Top 10 Best States for Correspondents

  1. District of Columbia
  2. New York
  3. Arizona
  4. Alaska
  5. Florida
  6. Louisiana
  7. Nevada
  8. Rhode Island
  9. New Jersey
  10. California
  • (24 jobs)
  • (104 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)
  • (3 jobs)
  • (42 jobs)
  • (5 jobs)
  • (6 jobs)
  • (0 jobs)
  • (7 jobs)
  • (62 jobs)

Top Correspondent Employers

Jobs From Top Correspondent Employers

Correspondent Videos

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A day in the life of a Brussels correspondent

How to be a war correspondent

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