You can see how the best CV writing tips are put into practice with our journalist CV sample, showcasing all the qualities of a good journalist with an impressive design from one of our pre-made templates. That’s paired with all the information you’ll need about the journalist CV format and content.

Our CV examples have been compiled to help you find a stepping-stone to begin the writing process. Even an experienced journalist needs inspiration to start an engaging story!

Are you ready to begin writing your journalist CV? Begin by reading the following:


    Sample journalist CV

    Journalist CV Sample

    Zara Bond

    64 Dunstan Close
    Bristol BS1 0HG

    Professional summary

    Dynamic Journalist adept at developing articles and investigating issues for the sole purpose of engaging the audience and exceeding objectives. Offering eight years’ experience in writing for online media, I am well-versed in viral trends, breaking news response, and how to capitalise on social media platforms to maximise visibility.

    Work history

    January 2023 – Current

    P&B Social – Bristol

    • Wrote, edited, and produced articles for multiple platforms, including digital and social media channels, maximising visibility.
    • Applied understanding of public opinion, social media and traditional media, creating engaging and attention-grabbing articles.
    • Evaluated and followed up on news leads and tips, developing key story ideas.
    • Consistently displayed ethical decision-making through research and fact-checking.

    January 2018 – December 2022

    Kompas Daily – Bristol, Indonesia

    • Interviewed sources, contacts and leads to gather information for stories.
    • Completed research and checked all facts to maintain high standard of journalistic integrity.
    • Developed and pursued stories independently and for assignment, covering a range of topics.


    Media operations knowledge
    Google analytics
    Feature writing
    Editorial writing
    Story development
    Political journalism speciality
    Advanced interviewing skills


    SOAS University of London London, ENG
    Master of Arts Religion in Global Politics

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    Journalist CV template

    No journalist likes unorganised notes and drafts for their articles – and this is the same for your potential employer! That’s why it’s important to get your CV in order. It’s easy to create a polished CV once you’ve discovered the perfect journalist CV template. Discover our best-rated templates for journalist skills, experience, and important qualifications below.

    Choosing the right format for your journalist CV

    The first step of the process is to choose the right structure from a list of CV formats. This is how you can ensure that the skeleton of your CV will be the right shape to fit in all of your most important content including skills, experience, and educational history. Because of this, you’ll need to find the best fit for a journalist. While there are lots of different formats for you to choose from, there is one that stands out above all others for this position.

    We would suggest that you go with a reverse-chronological CV. This approach means you will begin with your current or most recent position, then work backwards through time, highlighting each of your most important job roles. This structure will allow the reader to quickly understand the depth of your experience as a journalist – and make a quick decision as to whether or not your CV is worth considering.

    This is going to be the best format for you to use if you are already an established journalist. If your direct work experience is lacking, you can always supplement some of this history with other writing you have completed – for example for student papers, or independent, low-level magazines/websites. You should also consider the following essential tips when choosing your CV format for a journalist:

    • Break up lengthy sections of text with headings, bullet points, or section breaks to enhance readability.
    • Aim for one or two pages in length.
    • Use clear fonts such as Calibri, Times New Roman, or Arial for clarity.
    • Tailor your CV to align with the requirements in the job ad.
    • Submit as a Word or PDF file unless directed otherwise.

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    How to write a CV for a journalist

    Now that we’ve covered format, it’s time to cover how to write a CV for a journalist. We’re going to go in-depth on the content of your CV, covering all of the most important information that you will need to include to get noticed. While much of this information may seem obvious to include, you will need to ensure it is written in a clear, engaging way.

    Stay with us as we run through the following:

    Adding contact details to your journalist CV

    A small and often underestimated section is your contact details. This is an important section not to be missed! After all, how can your employer contact you if they don’t have your email, phone number, or know where it is you are based? Many candidates forget to add this vital information, leading to lost opportunities.

    You’ll want to stay ahead from the jump! Add a clear set of contact details somewhere near the top of your document. You should always strive to separate them from the rest of your text so that they are easy to spot. Consider choosing a bold or larger font.

    When you share your contact info, always remember to include the following:

    • Your full name – no need for your middle name.
    • Location – so the employer knows where you are based.
    • Phone number – use a mobile number if you can as it’s easier to reach you.
    • Email address – make sure that it is work appropriate.

    Example of contact section for a journalist CV

    Zara Bond
    64 Dunstan Close, Bristol BS34 3QK

    Journalist CV personal statement

    Next up, you will need to introduce yourself to the reader. This is where you should write a strong, personal statement. But what exactly is a personal statement? You can think of it as a handshake and a first impression. It is a short section of writing that will highlight all of your most important experience and your career objectives. What’s the difficulty with this section? You will only have around 100 words to do this.

    Because of how brief this section will be, you will want to follow a simple formula to ensure you cover all of the most important information needed. It begins with a simple introductory sentence. This should explain a little about who you are and your career objective.

    Your second sentence should then give a snappy example of something you have achieved within the field of journalism. Perhaps you have published over 100 articles in a specific topic – this would be the time to mention it! Using a number is a great way to lend a sense of authority to your claim.

    Moving on to your third and fourth sentences, you should reserve these for any special skills you have. Add anything that makes you unique! Perhaps you are adept at media ethics or have impressive shorthand note-taking skills! No matter what it is, make sure you add something that makes you stand out and makes the reader want to continue with your CV!

    Here are some extra tips for your personal statement:

    • Always write in the third person as this gives your writing a sense of professionalism.
    • Proofread your personal statement to make sure the language is clear and error-free.
    • Use action verbs and positive adjectives to hook the reader and describe yourself.

    Example of personal statement for a journalist CV

    NCTJ qualified journalist offering extensive experience in investigative reporting, editing and publishing. Committed to delivering factual, concise and elegantly written pieces that inform and engage a wide range of audiences.


    Highly motivated journalist with extensive experience in finding engaging stories and telling them with a high level of integrity. Published over 100 science news articles across career. Highly skilled in shorthand note-taking, interviews, and precise writing.

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    How to present your work history on a journalist CV

    The work history section of your CV is one of the most important – this is because many readers will skip here to see if you have what it takes to be considered a serious journalist! As such, it’s important that you make this the longest section of your CV, especially if you have the experience to talk about.

    As we mentioned before, it’s best to use a reverse-chronological format here – starting with your current or most recent role, then working backwards through time. List up to 6 responsibilities for each role, making sure that each is unique.

    What are some other tips for your work experience section? Always make sure that each responsibility you have included is relevant to the job you are applying for. Let’s say the job ad is asking for investigative journalism – you should aim to highlight how you have experience in this field whenever you can.

    Another thing to remember is to always use effective language. You should employ positive adjectives when you can to describe yourself. Use words like “effective”, or “punctual”, to let the reader know what you are like as a person. Another good set of language tools to use are action verbs – these replace “responsible for” with more inventive words such as “investigated”, “penned”, or “conducted”.

    Example of work experience for a journalist CV

    09/2023 to Current
    The Bristol Post, Bristol

    • Pursued and independently developed stories covering a broad range of topics.
    • Developed a high level knowledge of local issues to give comprehensive coverage for readers.
    • Helped local businesses obtain needed publicity by assembling materials and preparing talking points.
    • Created compelling pieces for online publication, coordinating images and layout for optimised presentation.

    04/2020 to 08/2023
    Entertainment Now Magazine, Bristol

    • Regularly live-tweeted showbiz events to following of 100,000, driving audience engagement and brand awareness.
    • Produced engaging website copy in house style and compliant to brand guidelines.
    • Routinely broke news stories ahead of competition, helping to increase Share of Voice (SoV) on social media.

    Journalist CV skills

    As a journalist, you’ll need a wide range of CV skills to be considered for a position. Crafting an effective journalist CV involves showing all of these. Many employers use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS software) to search through potential candidates and find the ones with the skills they need.

    Because of this, you’ll want to add up to 12 skills on your CV in a dedicated section. We would recommend adding a mixture of hard and soft skills. What’s the difference here? A hard skill is anything that you have acquired on the job, or through education. A soft skill can be thought of more like a positive character trait – explaining how you collaborate in a professional setting.

    By including a balanced representation of both hard and soft skills, you will show to the reader that you are an eclectic candidate. Put yourself in your employer’s shoes. They will want to find a journalist who has experience in investigative reporting, familiar with various news platforms and with an adherence to journalistic ethical processes – but they will also want somebody who is a good communicator, adaptable, and who works well in a team.

    Here are the skills recruiters are looking for to match the journalist job description.

    Must-have skills for a journalist

    • Thorough research
    • Interviewing skills
    • Excellent grammar and spelling
    • Story development
    • Media operations knowledge
    • Audience understanding

    Nice-to-have journalist skills and qualities

    • Calm under pressure
    • Excellent time management
    • Good interpersonal skills
    • Diligent and determined
    • Professional and objective
    • Flexible and adaptable

    Outlining education on a journalist CV

    The final key section of your CV should be dedicated to your educational section. This is where you will be able to show you have the brains to back up your experience and skills. While journalism is a career that relies on a lot of in-person experience – having a good educational background is an additional colour for your CV that will help you during the application process.

    Because of this, you will want to outline every relevant qualification that you have. You should begin with your most impressive qualifications – starting with a master’s degree, or undergraduate degree in a relevant field. From there, you can begin to go backwards through time, choosing anything that may add to your experience level. You should also include any professional training courses you have completed over the years.

    So, what does the normal education section of a journalist look like? People find journalism through different parts, but many jobs will search for candidates with a degree in Journalism, English, or some kind of writing field. If you have one of these degrees – you should absolutely mention it!

    As a side note – try not to mention any bad grades or incomplete courses as these will not add to your application and could hinder it. Instead, focus on qualifications that make it seem as though journalism has always been your plan – and that you prepared for this with your education!

    Example of education for a journalist CV

    MA: News Journalism (NCTJ Accredited Course) 2023
    University of Cardiff – Cardiff
    Graduated with Honours

    Bachelor of Science: Marketing
    University of Bristol, Bristol

    Dos and don’ts for your journalist CV

    Whether it’s an in-house role or a freelance journalist CV, take a look at these tried-and-tested tips to ensure your CV fits the bill.


    • DO remember to do your research

      Research is vital to the role of a journalist. But it’s also important for your CV. Before writing your CV, have a good look at the journalist job description. Note down all the main requirements and criteria that match your own experience and skills. You can then include these in your journalist CV to tick the recruiter’s boxes.

    • DO remember to show your versatility

      Journalism comes in so many different forms, from the topics you cover to the media you work on. To show that you’re up to the task, try to cover as many different duties and responsibilities as you can in your work history. If you’ve already mentioned research and interviewing for one role, why not focus on your knack for story development in another? It will make your journalist CV well rounded and showcase even more of your skills.


    • DON’T forget to include keywords

      With the role of a journalist so competitive, many recruiters use ATS software to narrow down their search. That includes scanning CVs for keywords to find a good fit. To increase your chances of success, include relevant phrases in your journalist CV like “NCTJ”, “sports journalism”, or “digital broadcasting” – depending on the role, of course.

    • DON’T forget to check, check, and check again

      Sending a journalist CV with errors is as devastating as sending an incomplete article to the press. Eagle-eyed recruiters will spot your mistakes and question your grammar and spelling skills, attention to detail, or both. Make sure you proofread your CV, from the professional summary down to the finest details on your education section.


    Your journalist CV questions answered

    What does a journalist do?

    Broadly speaking, the role of a journalist is to research present information on a wide range of topics. That can be anything from the music and film industry to politics and economics. It can also cover a variety of media, including newspaper, magazines, radio, TV, and online.

    What qualifications do you need to be a journalist?

    The qualification that you need to be a journalist is typically being NCTJ (National Council for the Training of Journalists) qualified. If you’re not NCTJ qualified, employers look for a BA or MA degree and solid work experience such as being a digital journalist, multimedia reporter, or junior reporter.

    How to become a journalist (UK)?

    To become a journalist, you should start by writing as much as possible about your chosen subject. Whether it’s a personal blog, publishing platforms like Medium, or voluntary writing work – start building up a portfolio, so it’s eventually easier to secure an entry-level role. A relevant degree in journalism, English, or a specialist subject like politics will also be beneficial to your journalist CV, followed by an NCTJ-accredited MA course.

    How much do journalists make?

    The journalist salary (UK) can typically fall anywhere from £25,000 to £100,000, depending on your level of experience, authority on a subject, and the type of organisation you’re working for. An average journalist salary is between £30,000 and £40,000, while a freelance journalist salary (UK) will depend massively on experience, authority, and how much work you take on.

    Can anyone be a journalist?

    Technically speaking, anyone can be a journalist. Alongside the qualities of a journalist, recruiters are looking primarily for experience with examples of your work – whether it’s broadcast or written journalism. It’s a good idea to link to these in a cover letter.

    How do you write a journalist CV?

    Write a journalist CV by focusing on the following items:

    • A strong professional summary, highlighting any specific qualifications such as the NCTJ qualification, as well as your most relevant skills.
    • Using a clear layout with concise bullet points to explain your responsibilities and achievements.
    • A strong list of relevant skills that make you ideal for the role.

    What qualifications do you need to be a music journalist?

    General journalism courses are a good fit for music journalists. That includes a BA in journalism, broadcast journalism, English, or creative writing – along with post-graduate courses accredited by the NCTJ. You can also demonstrate your subject knowledge with a degree or diploma in music or music history.

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    Sign off on a great journalist CV

    Writing a CV doesn’t have to be as time-consuming as a well-researched report. Using our journalist CV example, UK candidates can get a clear idea of what’s required, then get started on their own application with ease. Our CV builder comes equipped with customisable templates, CV examples and relevant content for the role of a journalist, so you’ll have an impressive journalist CV in a matter of minutes.

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