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Newspaper or magazine editor

Alternative titles for this job include

Newspaper and magazine editors manage the style and content of printed publications.

Average salary (a year)

£25,000 Starter


£50,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37 to 39 variable

You could work

evenings / weekends flexibly

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Newspaper or magazine editor

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • working towards this role
  • training with a professional body


You'll usually start by doing a degree in English, journalism or media studies.

You can do a postgraduate qualification in publishing or journalism if your first degree is not related to the industry.

If you want to work for a specialist publication like a medical or scientific journal, you'll likely need a:

  • degree or postgraduate qualification in a relevant subject
  • high level of specialist knowledge

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

More Information


You can start as a reporter or journalist with a regional newspaper or magazine and work your way up. There's a lot of competition for jobs so you may have an advantage if you've got a relevant degree.


You'll need to get some experience before applying for your first job in publishing. To build up your experience you can:

  • volunteer for student and community newspapers
  • keep an online blog
  • have an online presence on sites such as Twitter
  • submit articles and reviews to local papers or websites

This is also a good way to develop contacts, as many jobs are not advertised.

Other Routes

You could take a proofreading or editing course, like the ones offered by the National Council for the Training of Journalists, the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading and The Publishing Training Centre.

More Information

Professional and industry bodies

You may find it useful to join organisations like the Society of Editors and Professional Publishers Association for professional recognition, training opportunities and to make industry contacts.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a newspaper and magazine editor from the National Council for the Training of Journalists.

You can learn more about other editorial and media careers from Discover Creative Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of English language
  • knowledge of media production and communication
  • the ability to read English
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • excellent written communication skills
  • the ability to work well with others
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Depending on the publication you work for as an editor, you could:

  • commission articles
  • choose which articles to publish
  • decide on the layout for publishing
  • assess work sent from freelance journalists, photographers and illustrators

Working environment

You could work in an office.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience as a local newspaper editor, you could move on to regional publications. Then you could work at national publications.

You could become editor-in-chief of a group of newspapers or magazine publishers.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Newspaper or magazine editor right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

NCTJ L3 Cert in Journalism

  • Start date: 06 September 2024
  • Location: Warrington

NCTJ Diploma in Journalism (18 months - September)

  • Start date: 09 September 2024
  • Location: Portsmouth

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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