Journalism Studies

Potential Careers

Graduates from this department predominantly enter employment related to their degree subject.

Large numbers are employed as reporters or journalists with national, regional, or local newspapers, magazines, and multi-media organisations. Smaller numbers enter broadcast journalism, with production and research roles in television companies, or are working as radio journalists.

Others use their knowledge of the media and their communications skills to gain work in closely-related areas, such as public relations, marketing, or media planning.

A few individuals move into unrelated roles which nevertheless utilise their well-developed communication and interpersonal skills. Examples include Young Offenders Officer and Learning Support Worker.

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Step 1 - Look at the career paths of recent graduates

Understanding what recent graduates from your subject have gone on to do can be a valuable source of information to help in career planning, but bear in mind that what you choose to do will be a personal decision based on many other factors, such as what you are good at, what you enjoy, and what you want from work.

Understand yourself and your options

Read this section first, if you have not already done so, as it will help you explore these factors and get ideas for possible careers.

Journalism - what University of Sheffield graduates do six months after graduation

This data was collected six months after graduation, so although useful, it doesn't provide a reliable indicator of longer term career paths. Some graduates are still in transition and may be in short term jobs, mainly in administrative, retail and customer service roles, developing further skills and experience while at the same time job hunting, travelling or taking time out.

Graduate case studies

Our graduate case studies database allows you to search by department and read the case studies from graduates who describe their career path and provide a realistic insight into the world of work.

Step 2 - Research options linked to your subject

Planning a career in the media?

While remaining ambitious about your future career, you must be realistic. If you plan to work in the media then your primary aim should be to get a foot on the media careers ladder, and work your way towards where you eventually want to be. It is unrealistic to think your first job will be as a foreign correspondent for CNN, a TV soccer pundit, or as a free-wheeling staff feature writer for a national newspaper (though some national newspapers have, in recent years, been more ready to recruit keen and gifted young writers direct from journalism courses).

Probably, your best plan is to consider a range of options when deciding what employers to approach. You know what your perfect first job would be, but - to state the obvious - you should also have a fall-back position, e.g. "I would like to work for an evening newspaper, but I am also going to target some weekly newspapers in busy news areas," or "I am going to try for a radio job, but also apply to the regional press," or "I would like to cover sport eventually, but realise there are more jobs going as general news reporters."

Options with your subject - Media and Communication Studies

This section of the Prospects website will help you to explore how you can best use your degree (there is no profile directly related to journalism).

Explore types of jobs - Prospects

This part of Prospects includes profiles covering a wide range of occupations, including job descriptions, salary, entry requirements, training, typical employers and vacancies.

Step 3 - Search vacancy databases for jobs of interest

Career Connect

We advertise over 5000 vacancies each year for graduate jobs, placements, part-time, voluntary and vacation work.

Information resources

Our Information resources database includes a section covering a large number of general and regional graduate vacancy websites. Within the ‘Occupations’ section we include recruiters who specialise in a particular sector. Many professional organisations and government bodies also include vacancies as part of their website.

Other suggested vacancy sources

Work placements

Work placements often lead to a job, not necessarily at the same employer, but with one in the same sector or same media group. At the very least, if you perform well in a work placement, the employer there can provide a glowing reference for you to show to other employers. Towards the end of your placement, ask for a written reference. Ideally get this reference in your hand before your placement ends.

Dozens of placements are arranged by the Department of Journalism in the normal progression of their courses. But there is nothing to stop you arranging your own. If you have already done one or more placement, you may want to try to get another one with the same employer (if it is one you want to work for,) or to target some other employer for a placement in another media sector.

The more placements you do, the better (as long as the placement has some value).

First, check with the relevant member of staff that the Department does not already have an arrangement with the employer you wish to target for a placement - for example, some broadcast newsrooms in this region want the Department´s staff to arrange any placements, and will not handle applications from individual students.