Anusha Durga

Journalism is concerned with collection and dissemination of news through the print media as well as theelectronic media. Journalism has a long and well-established tradition inIndia. The Indian press has always been vigilant towards safeguarding the democratic values in the country and fearless in reporting even at times likee mergency when attempts were made to thwart its freedom.

The information revolution has made the job of a journalist more challenging. Simple reporting of events is no more sufficient. There is now more specialization and professionalism in news reporting. Communication media as such, has become more accessible and caters to various groups of readers with diverse tastes. An ordinary newspaper today has exclusive sections devoted to topics like fashion, films, culture, education etc.

Journalists work in diverse areas, such as politics, finance and economics, culture and sports for newspapers and periodicals besides radio and television networks carry their stories and reports. They do not just inform but analyze an issue or a news item or an incident and influence people’s opinion on them. They wield an enormous influence on the society and therefore journalism is also referred to as the Fourth Estate.

The scope in journalism is increasing especially with the diversification of the media. More than 60% of the Indian population (i.e. more than half a billion people!!) over the age of 14 are exposed to one or the other kind of media, giving immense challenge to those interested in media related careers. With over 25,000 newspapers/periodicals/magazines/ journals in the print medium, a network of government and commercial radio channels as well as the national and private TV networks etc., the challenge for journalists is evident. Vernacular press has also grown in strength in the past few years with the growing awareness and literacy amongst people. The information explosion has brought in more competitiveness and the reader or the viewer has gained the most by it as he gets the news and viewpoints quickly and concisely, more than ever before.

Educational Qualification:

Formal training is not an absolute necessity for pursuing a career in journalism. Anyone with inherent qualities like flair in writing, ability to express oneself lucidly and clearly and wide-ranging interests along with a good academic background has a fair chance to succeed in journalism.  Many publications take such fresh graduates in various fields and give them vocational training.

However various institutions around the country offer courses in journalism. These courses are usually part of a wider program on mass communication studies. Some universities also offer degree courses in journalism at undergraduate or postgraduate level. Entry into these courses varies from institute to institute but generally graduation in any discipline is the minimum qualification. Duration also varies but is normally one academic year.
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