Television and Radio Announcers
|Recommended Degree Level||Bachelor|
|Number of Jobs, 2012||31,340|
|Annual Job Growth Rate||3.3%|
|Job Openings per Year (est.)||1,720|
- Most radio and TV announcers hold a four-year bachelor's degree in journalism, broadcast journalism or communications.
- Radio announcers may also pursue some technical training to work with station equipment.
What you study:
You'll study all of the following in a broadcast journalism or communications program:
- Intro to Communications
- Public Speaking
- History of Communications
- Media Theory
Shows a quick overview of radio and television announcing careers. Produced for the US Dept. of Labor.
A Day in the Life
As a radio or TV announcer, you may be called by many names. If you work at a television station, you'll likely be referred to as a news, weather or sports journalist. If you work at a radio station, you might be called a DJ or radio show host. Your position means that you have a duty to speak to your station's viewers or listeners and ensure that they are provided with timely, engaging content.
You've recently taken a job as a morning news anchor on a local TV station. Your day begins well before the sun rises. After you wake up, you review news bulletins and watch national cable news to catch up on any major stories that broke overnight. You also listen to the radio on your way to the station to catch up on other news stories.
Once you've arrived at the station, you check in with hair and makeup. You've done most grooming tasks yourself and just need some finishing touches. About 30 minutes before the morning broadcast begins, you sit down at the anchor's desk with your co-host and review the morning's news stories. You make edits for readability as needed and double-check to confirm the order of the show.
As soon as the morning broadcast starts, you announce your channel and call numbers to viewers. You banter for a few seconds with your co-host before heading straight into the first story of the day, which is about an industrial fire that burned down a warehouse during the night. It's your job to report the story with professionalism and integrity.
You and your co-host continue to bounce off each other as the show progresses. You report on a wide variety of news and human interest stories. You also introduce and check in with traffic and weather specialists at your station. At the end of the broadcast, you offer a quick recap of traffic and weather reports for viewers who tuned in late. Before the broadcast ends, you sign off and repeat your station's channel and call numbers.
Your day goes on after the first broadcast. The show's producer asks you if you can look over the script for a human interest story for the next day. You do so and realize that there's a gap in footage. You head out with a camera crew to interview a woman who is organizing a community-wide clothing drive and get the footage to your producer before leaving for the day. As an announcer, you'll relax while at home, but you'll always be on the lookout for the next big news story.
Certifications and Licensing
No formal certification is needed to work as a radio or TV announcer. However, radio announcers who want to work at small, independent stations may wish to pursue technical training in radio or sound engineering.
Full-time versus part-time:
As an announcer, you may work odd hours. Many beginning announcers work either late night or early morning shifts. On most days, you will put in at least eight hours at the station where you work. When there are breaking news events, you may be required to work around the clock.
Most broadcasters work out of a TV or radio station. Depending on your role, you may also go out into the field to interview story subjects, report on breaking news or participate in community events.
- U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook for Announcers: This Bureau of Labor Statistics handbook provides a wealth of information about careers in the field of television and radio broadcasting. Salary projections and career outlook information will be particularly useful to prospective announcers.
- North American Broadcasters Association: NABA is the premier professional organization for broadcasters working in the Americas. The newsroom and members areas of the site will be of particular interest to those who want to learn more about happenings in this field.
- National Association of Broadcasters: NAB's website provides policy and advocacy information to broadcasters from around the nation. Use the site to learn more about the issues that are shaping the future of broadcasting.