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Become An Editor In Chief

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Working As An Editor In Chief

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

  • Make Decisions

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $73,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Editor In Chief 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 Editor In Chief

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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Average Length of Employment
Publishing Editor 4.7 years
Senior Editor 4.0 years
Executive Editor 3.5 years
Managing Editor 3.3 years
Editor In Chief 3.0 years
Deputy Editor 2.9 years
Staff Editor 2.9 years
News Editor 2.6 years
Features Editor 2.6 years
Editor 2.6 years
Lead Editor 2.6 years
Associate Editor 2.5 years
Magazine Editor 2.4 years
Digital Editor 2.2 years
Online Editor 2.1 years
Assistant Editor 2.0 years
Co-Editor 1.6 years
Top Careers Before Editor In Chief
Internship 16.8%
Editor 14.9%
Reporter 6.3%
Writer 3.8%
Volunteer 3.5%
President 2.9%
Journalist 2.6%
Teacher 2.4%
Top Careers After Editor In Chief
Editor 14.6%
Internship 13.8%
Reporter 5.2%
Volunteer 4.7%
President 4.2%
Writer 3.6%
Server 3.5%
Teacher 3.3%
Tutor 2.7%
Assistant 2.5%

Do you work as an Editor In Chief?

Editor In Chief Demographics

Gender

Female

46.0%

Male

40.6%

Unknown

13.4%
Ethnicity

White

57.9%

Hispanic or Latino

15.5%

Asian

11.4%

Black or African American

10.9%

Unknown

4.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

35.5%

French

17.6%

Chinese

7.1%

Mandarin

6.1%

German

5.5%

Italian

4.7%

Russian

4.5%

Japanese

3.7%

Arabic

3.4%

Korean

2.1%

Portuguese

2.1%

Hebrew

1.3%

Swedish

1.1%

Turkish

0.8%

Hindi

0.8%

Hungarian

0.8%

Catalan

0.8%

Yoruba

0.8%

Polish

0.8%

Dari

0.5%
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Editor In Chief Education

Schools

New York University

11.5%

Northwestern University

6.8%

University of California - Los Angeles

6.5%

Columbia University

6.5%

Syracuse University

5.6%

Florida State University

5.6%

University of Florida

5.3%

University of Texas at Austin

5.3%

American University

5.3%

University of California - Berkeley

5.0%

Michigan State University

4.1%

University of Missouri - Columbia

4.1%

Arizona State University

4.1%

University of Southern California

4.1%

University of Washington

3.5%

University of Oregon

3.5%

University of Arizona

3.5%

George Washington University

3.2%

San Francisco State University

3.2%

Temple University

3.2%
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Majors

Journalism

15.8%

Communication

15.6%

English

15.0%

Writing

7.7%

Business

6.8%

Photography

4.3%

Political Science

4.1%

History

3.2%

Public Relations

3.1%

Graphic Design

2.9%

Psychology

2.9%

Fine Arts

2.8%

Marketing

2.8%

Law

2.6%

Agricultural Public Services

2.1%

Liberal Arts

2.1%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.7%

Education

1.6%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.6%

Management

1.3%
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Degrees

Bachelors

53.9%

Masters

20.3%

Other

14.9%

Doctorate

4.4%

Associate

3.5%

Certificate

2.2%

Diploma

0.7%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$73,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$39,000
Min 10%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$73,000
Median 50%
$139,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
WORLD JOURNAL
Highest Paying City
Cambridge, MA
Highest Paying State
Hawaii
Avg Experience Level
2.6 years
How much does an Editor In Chief make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Editor In Chief in the United States is $73,940 per year or $36 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $39,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $139,000.

Real Editor In Chief Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Chief Editor Luluvise, Inc. New York, NY Sep 04, 2014 $150,000
Chief Editor Nature America, Inc. New York, NY Jul 10, 2015 $109,875
Chief Editor World Journal Sf LLC Millbrae, CA Feb 01, 2011 $100,000
Chief Editor Wincubic.com, Inc. Urban Honolulu, HI May 14, 2010 $91,200
Chief Editor Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc. Washington, DC Oct 01, 2009 $71,200 -
$77,000
Chief Editor Mee Joo Catholic Digest Inc. Palisades Park, NJ Jan 31, 2011 $62,610
Chief Portal Editor (Persian) Freedom House, Inc. Washington, DC Jun 15, 2013 $61,776
Chief Portal Editor (Persian) Freedom House, Inc. Washington, DC Jun 15, 2010 $58,386
Chief Editor Korean Twelve Months News, Inc. Los Angeles, CA May 14, 2010 $56,933
Chief Editor EFE News Services Inc. Miami, FL Jun 02, 2010 $56,867
Chief Editor Joong Ang Daily News Sf, Inc. Union City, CA Oct 08, 2008 $50,000
Chief Editor Joong Ang Daily News Sf, Inc. Union City, CA Nov 05, 2010 $50,000
Chief Editor Pavilion Graphics Inc. Mount Prospect, IL Feb 10, 2011 $48,000
Chief Television Editor Wild Iris Productions Mount Holly, NJ Nov 15, 2010 $46,779
Chief Television Editor Wild Iris Production Mount Holly, NJ Dec 01, 2010 $46,779
Chief Editor The Catholic Times, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Mar 15, 2011 $45,802

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Top Skills for An Editor In Chief

  1. Student Newspaper
  2. Company Website
  3. Edit Content
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Supervised student newspaper operation including, editorial, advertising, and office functions.
  • Managed production of promotional videos for company website.
  • Content creation for YouTube channel, solo gaming channel, edit content, creative thinking to engage audience.
  • Recruited authors for organization's online publication and managed all related content topics and editing.
  • Utilize Adobe PhotoShop, Adobe Lightroom and other software programs for editing images.

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Top 10 Best States for Editors In Chief

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Massachusetts
  3. New York
  4. Virginia
  5. Connecticut
  6. California
  7. Delaware
  8. New Jersey
  9. Alabama
  10. Colorado
  • (67 jobs)
  • (53 jobs)
  • (211 jobs)
  • (81 jobs)
  • (25 jobs)
  • (176 jobs)
  • (4 jobs)
  • (20 jobs)
  • (11 jobs)
  • (35 jobs)

Top Editor In Chief Employers

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Jobs From Top Editor In Chief Employers

Editor In Chief Videos

Out of Order Magazine Editor-in-Chief, Dorian Grinspan - Fashion at Work - Teen Vogue

A Day in the Life | Daily Tar Heel Editor-in-Chief Jenny Surane

How are the Oscars REALLY chosen? - Variety's editor-in-chief gives us the inside scoop

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