Journalism Jobs

An editorial assistant – the four types.

What is an editorial assistant? When searching for jobs and typing in the search bars the key words ‘EDITORIAL ASSISTANT’, I came across a range of different job descriptions. My idea, was working alongside an editor of a magazine doing editorial and media related jobs, but they weren’t all like that. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with these different types of editorial assistant positions, but I don’t think all of them are related to journalism and the media in the way some might hope.

  • The ADMIN type
  • The PUBLISHER type
  • The JOURNAL type
  • The EDITORIAL type


Reveal Magazine advertised for an editorial assistant, which to me, was the perfect opportunity! Working alongside the editor, contributing and helping towards the publication of the magazine. Or not – the job description was very admin based: “running of the office, running work experience, helping with invoicing and mark-ups, PA work for the editor.’ The employer was looking for previous PA or admin experience, and although it would be great to get experience working in the office, at Reveal magazine, with internal opportunities popping up – it isn’t focused on journalism, writing or editing at all. The plus side of this, would be the contacts and being able to move forward and show your ability… but it’s always worth knowing the actual job description before you try.


This is taking the editorial assistant side with a view of books and academic work, rather than the media. These sorts of positions work with book publishers, and the role is based on ‘different text types’ and will provide experience of ‘textbook, professional and research markets’. Again, very different to a career in journalism.


‘You will be working with one of the world’s leading science journals…’ Erm, not really what I was thinking, but when I saw the ‘editorial assistant’ title, I automatically clicked on it. Editorial assistants for journals handle papers that have been provisionally accepted for publication, and work on the promotion and development of a journal. These positions require organisation skills and teamwork, with less focus on the editorial side.


This is the role type that I think is most suited to those who are looking for a career in the media, as editorial assistants on websites or magazine are usually dealing with duties such as social media, proof reading, writing regular pages, research, website contribution, etc. I have found a job description for for an editorial assistant which I think matches this type well – it includes social media, multimedia aspects, writing, editing and some admin jobs – sourcing images and liasing with PRs.

Key Role Accountabilities
  • Write topical news stories and spot breaking news.
    Source and organise competitions.
    Create product reviews and liaise with PRs.
    Create engaging slideshows and must-watch video playlists.
    Picture edit
    Help make each article uber-engaging with links, video, slideshows and boxes.
    Work with the team on increasing Parentdish’s social reach.
Person Requirements
  • This role would suit a recent graduate.
    You will already be online savvy and know your SEO from your CMS.
    You will be a quick and brilliant writer keen to develop a career in online editorial.
    We’re a small team under big pressure. We’re looking for an individual who is happy to muck in, step up and brew up.  Even better, if you like Reese’s Peanut Cups.

Obviously, being an editorial assistant at an entry level position, you will be doing jobs such as admin, odd jobs to ease the work load off your editor, and maybe even making a brew every now and then, but the important thing is being in a role where you are learning in the field you hope to develop your career in.

I love the variety of being in the ‘editorial’ type of an editorial assistant because every day is different and varied with different tasks to do every day, some days I go in thinking I don’t have much work to do and suddenly I have a to-do list as big as my arm! All part of the learning curve…


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