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Become A Critic

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Working As A Critic

  • 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

  • $36,360

    Average Salary

What Does A Critic 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 Critic

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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Critic Jobs

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Critic Typical Career Paths

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Average Length of Employment
Book Critic 4.6 years
Art Critic 4.5 years
Music Critic 4.2 years
Food Critic 3.1 years
Critic 3.0 years
Top Employers Before
Internship 10.5%
Instructor 7.7%
Artist 7.7%
Editor 7.0%
Designer 4.9%
Teacher 4.2%
Server 4.2%
Reporter 4.2%
Tutor 3.5%
Author 3.5%
President 3.5%
Manager 3.5%
Top Employers After
Internship 9.9%
Editor 9.3%
Writer 6.8%
Director 5.6%
Instructor 5.6%
Professor 5.6%
Owner 5.0%
Teacher 5.0%
Producer 4.3%
Artist 3.7%
Faculty 3.7%
Reporter 3.1%
Consultant 2.5%

Do you work as a Critic?

Critic Demographics

Gender

Male

57.6%

Female

40.3%

Unknown

2.1%
Ethnicity

White

61.6%

Hispanic or Latino

15.2%

Black or African American

10.2%

Asian

8.8%

Unknown

4.3%
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Languages Spoken

French

25.6%

Spanish

20.5%

Italian

7.7%

Chinese

5.1%

German

5.1%

Russian

5.1%

Arabic

5.1%

Mandarin

5.1%

Korean

5.1%

Vietnamese

2.6%

Hebrew

2.6%

Japanese

2.6%

Czech

2.6%

Bengali

2.6%

Dutch

2.6%
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Critic Education

Schools

Syracuse University

7.4%

Temple University

7.4%

Stanford University

7.4%

Yale University

7.4%

San Francisco State University

7.4%

Brown University

5.6%

Johns Hopkins University

5.6%

Rhode Island School of Design

5.6%

Northwestern University

5.6%

Eastern Michigan University

3.7%

Ramapo College of New Jersey

3.7%

Ithaca College

3.7%

Johnson & Wales University

3.7%

State University of New York Farmingdale

3.7%

Virginia Commonwealth University

3.7%

Boston University

3.7%

University of Illinois at Chicago

3.7%

Texas Tech University

3.7%

New York University

3.7%

Boise State University

3.7%
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Majors

English

16.6%

Fine Arts

11.9%

Writing

9.3%

Journalism

8.6%

Photography

7.3%

Theatre

6.0%

Communication

6.0%

Biology

3.3%

Marketing

3.3%

Law

3.3%

Graphic Design

3.3%

Architecture

3.3%

Business

3.3%

Education

3.3%

Political Science

2.0%

Area Studies

2.0%

History

2.0%

Visual And Performing Arts

2.0%

Global Studies

2.0%

Apparel And Textiles

1.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

40.8%

Masters

25.1%

Other

22.3%

Doctorate

7.1%

Associate

2.8%

Certificate

1.9%
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Real Critic Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Assistant Prof.-Dept.of Pediatrics, Sect.of Critic. Baylor College of Medicine Houston, TX Nov 14, 2011 $171,000
Design Critic Harvard University Cambridge, MA Sep 01, 2010 $132,504
Assistant Prof.-Dept.of Pediatrics, Sect.of Critic. Baylor College of Medicine Houston, TX Jul 01, 2011 $120,000
Design Critic Harvard University Cambridge, MA Jan 09, 2015 $118,103
Design Critic Harvard University Cambridge, MA Sep 01, 2015 $118,103
Design Critic Harvard University Cambridge, MA Jul 01, 2014 $114,681
Critic Yale University New Haven, CT Jan 07, 2016 $85,270
Design Critic Harvard University Cambridge, MA Aug 20, 2012 $80,266
Critic Yale University New Haven, CT Jul 01, 2013 $79,500
Critic Yale University New Haven, CT Jul 01, 2012 $77,635

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Top Skills for A Critic

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  1. Student Newspaper
  2. Search Engine Optimization
  3. Art
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Supported manager to gain efficient department operation and trained staff Associates on appropriate account management procedures.
  • Researched and critiqued local restaurants that appeal to eclectic dining interests.
  • Reviewed movies, concerts and wrote about pop music/pop culture, plus weekly television and entertainment columns.

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Top Critic Employers

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