How to Become a Video Editor
Video Editor Careers & Degrees

Video Editors use their creativity, talent and experience in order to create a variety of media to entertain, inform and tell stories.

Video Editors can find work in a variety of entertainment industries including: broadcast television, motion pictures and cable television.

Some types of work they can edit include commercials, television shows and movies.

There are plenty of opportunities for those who want to become a Video Editor .

However, the entertainment industry’s lucrative nature has created a highly competitive environment for those pursing this type of career.

Education Requirements to Become a Video Editor

In addition to being highly creative, candidates who want to become a Video Editor need a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree.

This is a desirable trait because it shows employers that a candidate has taken the time to strengthen their natural talents in order to become a Video Editor.

Candidates who want to become a Video Editor should attend an editing program at an accredited institution including colleges, universities, art schools and film schools.

Candidates should take this time to strengthen their creativity, technical skills and eye for creating stories through the editing process.

Suring their undergraduate studies, students will learn a variety of skills that will make them competitive jobseekers.

Education institutions that offer film studies can provide courses such as videography, editing courses, computer courses that teach editing programs and camera operation classes.

Some film schools may also offer training opportunities so that students can work upon and improve their artistic talents.

In addition, students should strengthen their business skills by taking business courses.

A candidate who takes business courses will have a well rounded educational background which is very beneficial for students in the long run.

Business skills and knowledge are even more important for candidates who wish to pursue a freelance career.

In addition to having an educational background, candidates should have several artistic talents and skills in order to have a strong background.

Video Editors would need strong attention to detail and the ability to create a story within a specific time frame.

Video Editor Job Description

A Video Editor is responsible for editing several components to create various forms of entertainment.

Some video components they normally edit include: film, video, audio and soundtracks.

Their goal is to edit these components that may sometimes be out of order to create commercials, music videos, television shows or movies.

The final result would have to be a production that would entertain or inform its intended audience.

A Video Editor would get to work after shooting has been completed.

Video shooting for movies and television shows are normally recorded out of order.

An editor’s job would be to take these snippets of film to create a cohesive and understandable product.

The entertainment industry’s strong reliance on computer technology has caused worker’s to be proficient with a variety of computer software.

Editors are not exempt and need to use a variety of computer software in order to edit and revise the final production.

Video Editors can also provide their services through freelance and contracting work.

These professionals would need the ability to use business skills in order to find short term and long term work.

Video Editor Salary and Career Path

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual wage for film and video editors throughout the U.S.

was approximately $50,560 in the year 2008.

The salary range for these professionals is approximately $24,640 to $112,410 per year.

The motion picture industry tends to hire a larger amount of Video Editors than other industries and also happens to pay hirer wages.

The median wage for Video Editors in the motion picture industry is approximately $56,170 per year.

Wages will differ for freelance Video Editors whose income has a tendency to fluctuate every year.

Income for these professionals will depend on the quantity of clients they have.

Video Editing positions are very competitive because of the industry’s lucrative nature; employers also look for candidates who have years of experience and advanced computer skills.

Job growth for this position is expected to stay steady through the year 2018 with little growth.

The below information is based on the 2019 BLS national averages.
  • Annually
  • Monthly
  • Hourly

National Average Salary

$87,300
$32K
$45K
$87K
$99K
$168K
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

Average Salary by State

StateAvg. Annual Salary
Alabama$61,250
Arizona$70,810
Arkansas$53,490
California$118,510
Colorado$52,490
Connecticut$74,440
District of Columbia$70,370
Florida$51,560
Georgia$65,050
Hawaii- NA -
Idaho$45,510
Illinois$65,480
Indiana$43,360
Iowa$49,150
Kansas$44,140
Kentucky- NA -
Maine$58,980
Maryland$55,210
Massachusetts$74,760
Michigan$58,620
Minnesota- NA -
Missouri$53,350
Montana$49,430
Nebraska$40,670
Nevada$61,180
New Hampshire$65,550
New Jersey$89,540
New Mexico$74,490
New York$90,290
North Carolina- NA -
Ohio$57,690
Oklahoma$40,750
Oregon$59,840
Pennsylvania$61,080
South Carolina$48,640
Tennessee$62,350
Texas$56,160
Utah$50,420
Vermont$50,220
Virginia- NA -
Washington$82,060
Wisconsin$51,050
Puerto Rico$44,660

The top earning state in the field is California, where the average salary is $118,510.

These are the top 5 earning states in the field:

California - $118,510
New York - $90,290
New Jersey - $89,540
Washington - $82,060
Massachusetts - $74,760
* Salary information based on the May 2019 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Film and Video Editors, OCC Code 27-4032, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

QuestionWhat is a video editor?

Video editors use their skills and editing software to combine shots into sequences.

Video editors can work in a variety of fields; they can be involved in the post-production stage of film-making, they can work for TV stations or can be involved in producing commercials or videos designed for social media.

They usually collaborate closely with the directors to select and combine shots into sequences.

Video editors use camera footage, dialogue, images, sound effects, and special effects to create products that are ready for broadcasting.

If you are a detail-oriented, flexible person who has knowledge of media production, computer operating systems, and software, a career as a video editor may be the right path for you.

Video editors also need the ability to work with others because this is a profession that requires teamwork.

QuestionHow much does a video editor make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual pay for film and video editors was $62,650 as of May 2018.

Salaries vary widely, depending on a variety of factors.

Annual wages start at less than $32,000 and can go up to more than $170,000.

QuestionHow much does it cost to become a video editor?

Most video editing positions require a bachelor’s degree in film or broadcasting.

Courses in cinematography or video editing software are also available at some colleges.

A bachelor’s degree in film production and editing can cost anywhere between $35,000 and $120,000, depending on the school you choose.

If you want to become a video editor, you should learn how to use several types of editing software.

There are many online and classroom classes that can teach you how to use video editing software and can cost you less than $20 a month.

QuestionWhat is the demand for video editors?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of film and video editors is expected to grow 14 percent from 2018 to 2028.

As the number of streaming platforms and the number of shows produced by these platforms increases, the number of jobs available for video editors is expected to grow.

The number of employment opportunities available in this field depends on the region; cities such as Los Angeles and New York offer more career opportunities to video editors.

If you decide to join this profession you should expect strong competition and having the experience of working for a TV station or on a film set will give you better job prospects.

QuestionHow long does it take to become a video editor?

Although there are no strict educational requirements for film editors, a bachelor’s degree in film or broadcasting can help you start a career in this field.

A bachelor’s degree can typically be earned in 4 years.

In order to work as a film editor you will also need to learn how to use new film editing software, and, as a beginner in this field, you should be familiar with as many types of software as possible.

You can learn how to use different software through online classes or classroom instruction.

Software vendors also provide certification which can be earned if you pass an exam.

As you gain video editing experience you will usually specialize in one type of software.

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