Our guide to broadcasting
Sydney Embray

Our guide to broadcasting

First published date March 18 2016 Amended date March 18 2016

That morning drive to work and evening spent on the couch wouldn’t be the same without broadcast professionals.  DJs and presenters provide the world with entertainment, breaking news, and music—making them an invaluable aspect of our lives. 

If you’ve ever envisioned yourself in front of the microphone or camera, a course in broadcasting may be just the thing for making that dream a reality!  That isn’t to say the only roles in broadcasting involve being a personality—there are plenty of rewarding careers behind the camera, sound board, and editing screen.  No matter your area of interest, budget, availability, or location, if you’re interested in broadcasting, there’s bound to be something here for you


What types of broadcasting are there?

Simply speaking, broadcasting is the recording of audio and/or video for the purpose of relaying information—whether that information is the news or entertainment.  Broadcasting occurs across all forms of technology, from the podcast you can download to your phone, to the radio program you listen to in the car to the nightly news.  Each type has its own, unique requirements and audiences, so based on your personal ability and interests you may feel drawn to one over another


What kinds of roles are involved in broadcasting?

It takes a team to get a broadcast off the ground, and those involved range from possessing high technological skills to being the faces and voices at the front of the whole production.  If you consider yourself a budding Fearne Cotton or would-be Chris Moyles, this front-and-centre role might be perfect for you.  You’ll need to be able to think on your feet, as just about anything can happen once you’re live and on the air.  You should be really comfortable with your style of speaking and be very aware of your body and gestures.  People who are really good at radio are the ones who can make anything sound exciting—your audience can’t see you, so your voice has to do it all.  You’ll also handle callers, sound boards, and making sure everything is timed exactly right.

While the presenter is certainly the face of the production, it takes a whole crew of people behind the scenes to make it happen.  These professionals take care of the technological end of things—from running the recording to editing the final product.  There’s a lot of technology involved, so if you’re passionate about IT this might be the job for you.


Where’s a good place to start if I have no experience?

Fortunately for the complete beginner, it’s fairly easy to get some practice and experience through online podcasts and vlogs.  These more amateur productions are available to an enormous online audience, and as they’re pre-recorded, they’re a good way to gain experience—by organising a show without exposing yourself to the stress of live broadcasting.


What can I expect from a course?

No matter your current level of experience with broadcasting, there’s an accommodating and challenging course that will fit your needs.  First-timers can take a podcast course and learn the basics of both presenting and recording a quality production.  More experienced (or more brave) students can take media production classes, where you’ll learn more advanced production techniques and get more practice in front of the camera or microphone.  IT and technology classes help you learn all about the broadcast chain and about the benefits of different broadcast technologies.  


By Sydney Embray