Is a Journalism Degree Worth It? (2022)

Is a journalism degree worth it that’s what we’re going to be talking about today and let’s jump right into it what is a journalism degree journalism is all about communicating important news that much of the time is going to be happening right now to your audience.

So it’s obviously going to involve analyzing and research but you’re going to have to do that really quickly now around 11,000 people here in the united states graduate with a bachelor’s in journalism every year.

So this is one of the more common degrees and some of the careers you might go for would be correspondent or reporter technical writer or editor so firstthing we’re going to talk about is salary or earning potential and then we’re going to go over some other,

Important factors that will help you assess whether this degree is going to be worth going 40,000 in student loan debt for according to pay scale with this degree you would expect to earn around 43,000 a year starting out and 78,000 in mid career pay you can compare that to a really high earning degree,

And a really low earning one and you’ll see that it’s on the lower side maybe average at best i always recommend that you try to go for a career where you can make around 75 to 80 thousand dollars a year because studies have shown that you will maximize your happiness when you make that much making more than that doesn’t really increase your happiness,

And so i always say that it’s generally a good idea depending on the person of course to try to go for around 75 to 80,000. now when it comes to different career paths you could go into you could become a writer or an author and,

They make around sixty three thousand a year or thirty dollars an hour editors make around sixty one thousand a year or twenty nine dollars an hour and reporters correspondents or broadcast news analysts make around forty six thousand a year or twenty two dollars an hour.

So to put that in perspective the average american makes around 50,000 a year so this is below average if you want to become a news correspondent or a reporter for instance and that 50,000 number includes people who haven’t gotten to greece it even includes people who didn’t get a high school diploma or didn’t even go to school at all.

Now journalism is basically a communications major and when you look at how much those majors make over a lifetime you’ll see that they make around 2.3 million dollars and the average major makes around 2.4 million so it’s below average.

Now keep in mind this was census from you know the last 40 50 years of data you know the next 40 or 50 years could be completely different maybe journalism is the best major 50 years from now but,

Overall it is a sign that it’s not great it’s also not horrible there’s lots of majors out there where you would make worse money but i’m gonna have to give this one a seven out of ten when it comes to salary.


Next we’re going to be going over satisfaction which is extremely subjective i like to focus on job satisfaction as well as meaning and job satisfaction is pretty self-explanatory and meaning is basically how much you think your career positively impacts the world.

So for meaning a journalism degree scored around 45 percent and you can compare that to a really good one and a really bad one and you’ll see that it is below average if you look at specific careers editors have a meaning score of 42 and their job satisfaction is 65 which again here meaning is going to be below average but,

Job satisfaction is maybe slightly above average and this of course is when you compare it to a really high scoring one and a low scoring one now when it comes to how much people regret getting their college degree journalism is a communications major and,

They are the fifth most regretted type of degree and the main reason people regret this is because the skills that you learn with a communications or a journalism degree tend to be a little bit too general not to say that these skills aren’t valuable of course communication is very valuable but,

A lot of the time the type of communication that you’re going to have to get good at is going to depend on what your job is or what industry you go into so for instance learning how to communicate on blog posts learning how to make blog posts would be completely different than,

Learning how to make a podcast and same thing with being a journalist maybe writing blogs or something along those lines that type of communication is going to be completely different i think in our changing world you also have to expand this out to things that are outside of your traditional careers like becoming a journalist or,

A reporter a lot of the time learning good communication skills can be a great segue into becoming a content producer of some sort maybe starting a blog website a blog a podcast etc and i think a lot of the careers you would go into both traditional as well as non-traditional would be relatively satisfying.

However this is very subjective like i said it could have everything to do with the people you work with the career you work in how much research you did the industry you work in the company you work for etc so it’s extremely different depending on the situation and, the personality for one person it could be a one out of ten or a ten out of ten and so i’m gonna go ahead and give this one an 8 out of 10 overall.


Next we’re going to be talking about demand and this is basically how much demand there is on the job market for people who have these skills so for instance a writer or an author there’s around 131,000 jobs available right now and over the next 10 years it’s going to decline by 2 percent for editors there’s 118,000 jobs available right.

Now and over the next 10 years it will be declining by negative percent and for reporters correspondents and news analysts there’s 52,000 jobs available right now and over the next 10 years negative 11 yikes.

Now when it comes to unemployment rates this is also not looking very good so for instance you can see this article from 2017 that says employment rates are improving for everyone but journalism majors.

So because of the fact that so many people are graduating with this degree and there’s not that many jobs out there that is going to create fierce competition on top of that you don’t actually have to get a journalism degree in order to become a journalist or a reporter or,

A news analyst sure it would likely help you it would teach you some of the skills you’re going to need and you know if you go to the right school and you network that could also be really beneficial but at the end of the day you don’t actually need a journalism degree and there’s nothing stopping you from starting your own news website on blog and,

That’s what tons of people have ended up doing studies have shown that most people do not trust traditional news traditional media and so what they’re doing instead is they’re turning to people on the internet which they may not be much better but,

They trust them more than you know the traditional news sources now when you look up journalism degrees on and this is a little trick that i like to do just to kind of gauge how much demand there is out there you’ll see that there’s 11,000 jobs available.

Now you can compare that to a computer science degree and an anthropology degree and you’ll see that it’s kind of somewhere in the middle that’s actually on the better side but when you consider there’s over 10,000 people graduating every year already with a degree and,

On top of that you don’t actually need the degree in order to get into a lot of these careers it doesn’t look as good and when big companies are surveyed about what college degree graduates what college degree majors that,

They’re looking for communications is pretty middle of the pack it’s not that impressive so overall there’s some upsides and there’s some downsides to this one i think that the future is going to be relatively bright for news entertainment education that sort of thing and,

I do think that you would learn a lot of intangible soft skills that might benefit you in your life whether it’s you know directly with your salary or indirectly later on i think that there is a lot of opportunity for basically small news organizations or,

News outlets to pop up even just like one person teams can pop up and people are much more susceptible to just listening to another person and their opinion on what’s going on than listening to some talking head that’s on the tv a lot of the time.

Now again i’m not sure whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing some random stranger’s opinion on the internet you probably need to you know take that with a grain of salt of course but overall that’s kind of the direction that i see things going,

So i’m going to give this one a 7 out of 10 when it comes to demand next we’re going to be talking about x factors and this is basically anything that’s important that we haven’t talked about already so we mentioned over a lifetime that communications degrees earn around 2.3 million which is slightly below average and,

If you look down the list at the different career paths that they could go down it does seem like they are somewhat steady so they’re earning a decent amount of money no matter what career path they go down these are obviously not amazing numbers but,

you know it does stay somewhat steady so for instance if you went into an art related career you’d make around 2.5 million over a lifetime which is better than some of the others on the list now when you look at journalism as a skill you’ll see that it ranks around 36 out of 100 and you can compare that to the highest ranking skill software engineering,

And a low ranking skill like industrial sewing and you’ll see that it’s definitely on the lower side so basically what this means is journalism is not one of those skills that’s highly sought after at least on the job market again i think this is a skill that’s valuable it has value but,

When it comes to businesses you know hiring managers and business owners looking to hire people it doesn’t look very good now there is a bright side here when it comes to the chances that these types of skills are going to be automated they’re very low you know journalism is a communications degree and,

There’s a very human element of communication that i don’t think you’d ever be able to program into a robot for instance i could be wrong about this maybe someone’s gonna you know look at this post a thousand years from now and laugh at me but,

I don’t think we’re ever gonna see robot comedians for instance i found out people didn’t get my joke and when you look at reporters and correspondents it shows there’s only about 11 percent chance that they are automated on top of that journalism isn’t going to be one of the harder degrees.

Now i guess you could say that could be a positive or a negative depending on the perspective that you’re coming from but there’s some degrees out there that just have really high dropout rates because of how difficult that they are,


So it’s something that you want to keep in mind but like i said here when it comes to the x-factors a lot of it is not going to be looking that good i’m going to go ahead and give this one a 6 out of 10.

So the overall score when you add everything up and divided by 4 is going to be 7 out of 10. you can make this degree work for you if you really do your research and you know exactly what career path you’re going for i would say for many people it’s not going to be worth it.

Just because of the fact that the jobs that you’re going for you could absolutely get without getting a college degree or you could get a different college degree and still get that job the trend that i mentioned earlier where a lot of people are just starting up their own news websites basically on blog and,

Other websites it’s really big honestly like a lot of people are having a ton of success doing that and so you don’t necessarily have to go the traditional route of getting a college degree in order to be a reporter or an investigative journalist or,

Anything like that so i think these are very valuable skills being able to do research report on breaking events that’s never gonna go out of style that’s gonna be something that is valuable a thousand years in the future and was probably valuable a thousand years in the past as well.

However i would really look into this one and be careful before you commit to four years of your life going to college and probably going around 40,000 in debt now if you want help doing more research on college degrees and you don’t want to wait for one of my posts to come out because,

I have like hundreds of them in the backlog right now check out my patreon down in the description below i have the college degree ranker version 1.1 in there i will also be updating it to make it even better as soon as everything calms down in the world.

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