The challenging world of journalism

A journalist is a person who collects, writes or distributes news or other current information. A journalist is also defined as someone engaged in journalism such as a writer or editor for a news medium or a writer who aims at a mass audience, according to Merriam Webster. 

Credit photo :


March 30 th, 2015

Job description

The journalist's core job description is to research, document, write and present news in an honest, ethical and fair manner. Journalism still focuses on the fundamentals of journalism such as quality writing, in-depth reporting and thorough research. Journalists’ interview people, work against tight deadlines, build contacts and sources for use in future stories and fact-check information provided by sources.

Sub-editors, who proofread and copy-edit articles when needed, also have the status of professional journalists. There are various journalism fields such as photojournalism, broadcast journalism, sports journalism or social media. Apart from these, there are also other areas of expertise like:

  • information researcher
  • literary criticism
  • correspondent
  • cartoonist
  • editor
  • fuser
  • editor-in-chief
  • carry over
  • editorial secretary


Rhodes University offers the primary accomplishment for Journalism students. While other universities and colleges offer diplomas or BA degrees with Media Studies as a major, Rhodes University combines practical knowledge with theoretical frameworks to compound a highly respected degree. Coupled with an intense selection process, an estimated 120 students are permitted to second year, with even less permitted to the fourth year specialisation course. Without this fourth year course, graduates depart with a three year BA degree, with Journalism and Media Studies as their major.


A Journalist earns an average salary of R117,739 per annum. Experience strongly influences pay for this job. Most journalists change their career path after 20 years in the industry. The highest paying skills associated with this job are online research and technical writing.

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