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How to become a TV/Radio Presenter

tv/radio presenter careers

What does a TV/Radio Presenter do?

Presenters work at the front line of radio and television, entertaining or informing the audience. They work in all areas of broadcasting – national and regional television and radio, satellite and cable channels. Tasks will vary depending on medium and the type of programme.

Presenters work on a variety of types of programme, including news, current affairs, sport, music shows, chat shows and gameshows and specialist programmes such as travel, gardening, history and DIY. They may be involved in introducing and hosting programmes, introducing and interviewing guests, playing music and interacting with the audience.

Announcers (often known as continuity announcers) may introduce programmes, provide links between them, give details of future programmes and read short news items and traffic or weather bulletins.

Announcers and presenters work closely with the production team, following detailed instructions in order to keep programmes to plan whilst on air and need to respond quickly and positively to any problems or changes.

On smaller regional or independent radio stations they may also have to operate some of the technical equipment for recording and playback.

Before the programme presenters will discuss the programme with directors/producers and will usually be involved in planning, including researching and rehearsing. They may write their own material.

What's the working environment like working as a TV/Radio Presenter?

Announcers and presenters often work long hours, including early, late or night shifts, depending on the needs of the particular programme or production. They are normally employed on a contract basis.

They might work in a sound or TV studio, which is usually air- conditioned. However, they can often work on outside broadcasts in all weathers and situations.

What does it take to become a TV/Radio Presenter?

To be an announcer or presenter you should:

  • be outgoing and confident, and have the ability to engage with an audience
  • have excellent oral and written communication and presentation skills
  • be able to memorise facts and ad-lib when necessary
  • have research and interviewing skills and an inquisitive nature
  • have a good understanding of the production process
  • have a broad range of interests, including current affairs
  • be able to think on your feet and stay calm under pressure
  • be creative and flexible
  • be aware of health and safety issues.
In radio presenters may need to operate technical equipment.

TV/Radio Presenter Career Opportunities

Further information

If you would like to know anything about TV/Radio Presenter that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Skillset Careers
Tel: 08080 300 900 for England, Wales and Northern Ireland
Tel: 0808 100 8094 for Scotland

Prospect House
80-110 New Oxford Street

Radio Academy
5 Market Place
Tel: 020 7255 2010

Commercial Radio Companies Association
The Radiocentre
77 Shaftsbury Avenue
Tel: 020 7306 2603

Community Media Association
The Workstation
15 Paternoster Row
S1 2BX
Tel: 0114 279 5219

Hospital Broadcasting Association

Broadcast Journalism Training Council
18 Miller's Close
near Bourne
PE10 0TH
Tel: 01778 440025

National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ)
Latton Bush Centre
Southern Way
CM18 7BL
Tel: 01279 430009

Guild House
Upper St Martin’s Lane
Tel: 020 7379 6000

Broadcasting Entertainment Cinematograph and Theatre Union (BECTU)
373-377 Clapham Road

Facts and Stats:

  • Nearly one in 10 people watch television every day in an average week. The average amount watched remains at 26 hours a week. 59 per cent of those surveyed watching between two and five hours a day.
  • Filming for an episode of Eastenders normally starts six weeks before its transmission.
  • 60 per cent of people in broadcasting work on a freelance basis. The UK has some 240 radio services. The average listener can only pick up 15, six belonging to the BBC and nine commercial ones