|Recommended Degree Level||Bachelor|
|Number of Jobs, 2012||99,040|
|Annual Job Growth Rate||2.9%|
|Job Openings per Year (est.)||3,700|
- Typically, editors have a bachelor's degree in communications, English or journalism.
- Those with a different academic background who demonstrate strong writing skills may be able to acquire an editor position.
- Editor positions dealing with a specific subject may require experience related to the specific field.
What you study:
- Copy editing
- Grammar and punctuation
- Writing and editing for the Web
- Editing electronically
- Digital publishing
A Day in the Life
As an editor your thoughts matter. As the editor you get to approve the final versions of content and images submitted by staff members. Editors are responsible for the nature and quality of printed material. As an editor you'll ensure the content of the publication adheres to the publication's style and editorial policy.
If you want to be an editor you need to be detailed oriented and see the big picture. During the day you spend time correcting grammar, eliminating inconsistencies and working with writers on rewrites. As an editor you make sure the text is easy to understand. During the day you evaluate printed material for the quality of content.
Throughout the day you work closely with writers. You also constantly work with other people working on the publication such as typesetters, artists, layout personnel, production managers and marketing directors. You also handle disputes between departments. During the day you adhere to the economics of publishing.
If you're a book editor you're involved in meetings listening to book proposals seeking the gem to publish. After you select a book to publish you collaborate with the author to produce the best possible book. As a book editor you'll be the manager who gets books printed by negotiating contracts, collaborating with authors, suggesting changes to the book and editing the material. You edit books for structure and style. You may also be involved in the rewriting process.
If you're a copy editor you evaluate copy for errors in punctuation, grammar and spelling and you also evaluate copy for style and readability and make sure the material adheres to editorial policy. You'll also suggest revisions. As an assistant editor you'll oversee a specify subject such as feature stories, local news or international news. If you're a managing editor you oversee the daily operations of a news department. As an executive editor you manage assistant editors and you make the final decisions regarding which stories are published and how they are covered. You hire employees, create a budget and negotiate contracts.
Certifications and Licensing
Editors are not required to have certifications or licenses but many employers requires candidates to take proofreading and word processing tests.
Full-time versus part-time: Most editors work full-time. Editors' schedules are typically determined by the type of editorial position and the production schedule. They often work overtime when they get close to a production deadline.
Work location: Editors work for newspapers, magazines, book publishers, websites as well as advertising and public relations companies.
- American Copy Editors Society offers an array of resources including a mentorship program, especially for editors just beginning in the business. New editors develop their knowledge and skills throughout the mentorship program. Click on the membership button to access information about the membership program. The website also has job listings.
- The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Handbook provides an overview of the various editor roles. The BLS also offers salary data, educational requirements and an employment growth forecast.
- American Society of Magazine Editors offers a 10-week Magazine Internship program for college seniors at magazines in New York and Washington. Applicants need to be full-time students and have a GPA of at east a 3.0. The interns are regarded as temporary employees of the magazine and are paid at least $350 a week before deductions.