Online Broadcasting Degrees
Broadcasting has become a more challenging field than ever thanks to developments within the industry itself as well as the prominence of new media such as the Internet. At its heart, broadcasting is still about the live transmission of content to an audience, and that content is either audio only, as with radio, or audio and visual with television. Live broadcast content is primarily based in journalism and sports, with reporting on events, analysis and informing the audience as the main goals. As a field, broadcasting continues to be a staple of modern business and industry, and though it can be a demanding area to work in, can also be fulfilling and financially rewarding.
The decision to pursue a degree in broadcasting means a focus on media and communication. This is both a technology-focused and team-based industry. It requires the highest attention to detail and an ability to work under both high pressure and strict deadlines. Broadcasting is also an extremely complex, multi-layered discipline that requires many different skill-sets to be executed. As a result, there are a wide variety of areas to study in broadcasting, and choosing a degree in broadcasting will require choosing a specialization.
Who Are Online Broadcasting Degrees For?
Anyone with an interest in the media and modern journalism might be a good candidate for broadcast journalism. People with a technical focus, particularly in media related technologies are also a good fit for broadcasting. There are, however, limits on how much content is available for those seeking strictly online broadcasting degrees. Because of the technology-based nature of the industry, a normal, campus-based degree will require extensive use of studios, equipment and other hands-on experiences in labs. The online component of a broadcasting degree can—as with other online degrees—provide students with the necessary theory and lecture components of the course, but the very nature of broadcast media, especially the technical aspects, mandate practical time with the equipment and technology. Existing members of the broadcast industry with experience in the hands-on aspects can study online broadcast degrees for professional development purposes. Those who already possess an associate degree and are looking to upgrade may similarly benefit. For those without previous industry experience, a complete education in broadcasting will likely require both online and campus participation.
Areas Of Study
Broadcasting is a multi-disciplinary field with many career possibilities. Much like a doctor or lawyer, simply deciding to into broadcasting is just the first step, with the next decision being exactly what area to specialize in. Here are some of the options available to those wishing to enter the industry.
As so much of broadcast television consists of reporting, journalism is one major component of the industry. Studying the journalism branch can lead to becoming a reporter on the field, a news anchor within the station, or even the writer or producer for news segments. The reporter is the most visible of broadcast career choices since these are the people seen on the camera or heard on the radio, but the discipline encompasses all the aspects of traditional journalism, including writing skills, investigative techniques, and the ability to interview people and report on topics.
The production side of broadcasting are people like the producers, writers and other staff that help to create and organize the content that finally goes to air. One of the most prominent roles in this area is the producer, who is responsible for timing the show, organizing the structure of stories, monitoring the wire and other news agencies for breaking stories, and acting as a liaison between anchors, director and other news crew. Other roles in this area include production manager, production assistants, writers and directors.
Although falling under the production side of broadcast journalism, the technical area is a very specific field that focuses on the operation of the many devices involved in broadcast journalism. From operating studio cameras to the outside broadcast (OB) van, to selecting camera angles for the video switcher, there are numerous jobs in this area that demand a heavy amount of technical training. As with film, the technical side of broadcast journalism is a multi-disciplinary field, mixing audio, video, lighting and computer graphics as well as the demands of a live transmission.
Television broadcast journalism is focused primarily around news programs, at the local, national and global level. It is a mix of both prepared news stories as well as live reporting of recent or ongoing events. People interested in broadcast journalism may work either in the studio or on the field, but in either case, working with tight deadlines, being able to investigate and develop stories quickly, as well as working well with a camera, audio and production crew are all vital skills that need to be cultivated.
Aside from the video broadcast component, radio broadcasting is similar to its television counterpart in many ways. Field reporting, interviews and analytical content are all still part of the industry, as well as developing and reporting stories. Radio producers and news editors fulfill similar jobs to their television counterparts, while radio presenters act as anchors. One major difference between radio and television broadcasting is that radio commercial producers and radio marketing executives may work in-house, within the station, producing the advertising content as well as promoting the radio station itself.
Online broadcasting degrees open up many opportunities for those interested, and broadcasting itself is a field that will remain relevant both today and in the future. It’s a very challenging, demanding industry, but is an important part of today’s information-oriented society.