THE ROLE OF THE JOURNALIST
An introduction to the newspaper office, The changing face of journalism, The work of the journalist explained, What is news, How news is changing, What makes a hard-hitting news story, Where news comes from, How to gather news and generate stories, Hard news and soft news explained, The difference between features and general interest articles.
HISTORY, ROLE AND BUSINESS OF PRINT MEDIA
A short history of the newspaper industry, The business of newspapers, Newspaper structures & departments - production, circulation, promotions, advertising, accounts. Journalism and society, The media landscape, How the media works. How the business model of media works. How publications position themselves in the marketplace. The role of the circulation manager and building market share. Advertising, classified advertising. Going online.
NEWS WRITING SKILLS
News Values, Developing News Writing Skills, Interview Techniques
Exploring news values, Determining news worthiness, News writing skills, Different news for different audiences. The 5 W's and the inverted pyramid, KISS, Short simple sentences, Getting your introduction right, Ensure accuracy, Facts not opinions, Using quotes, Avoiding jargon, Structuring the story, Recapping past history, Conducting an interview, Telephone interviews, Email interviews, Press conferences.
Sourcing/Research - Developing your News Gathering Skills
Building your contacts book, The importance of contacts - how to cultivate and use them, Who makes a good contact book, Useful tips for running a contacts network, Tracking down stories and finding facts. Researching a story, On and off the record. Protecting and respecting your sources, Calls you should make, Stories to look for, Developing the story, Good sources for information and story ideas, Monitoring other media, The importance of current information, Who to speak to, How to use cuttings, Always check quotes, Using the internet.
FEATURE ARTICLES, OPINION COLUMNS, REVIEWS
What makes a good feature, Transforming research into copy, Structuring your feature, Doing it in the house style. Revise and improve. Writing opinion columns - The four categories of columns, How to write comment, Grab a topic, Gather facts, Get to the point, Structure.
Writing Reviews - Theatre, Music, Book Television, Radio - The reviewer's role and responsibilities - what you should include in your review - attitude - How to review and write up for theatre, musicals, concerts. Reviewing books - a checklist of what to include in your review. Tips on reviewing CDs, Films and TV Eating out reviews - the pitfalls - key points to include - an example of a fact file. Car reviews.
Newsroom Structures Explained
How the newsroom is organised, The chain of command, The roles of the news editor, deputy editor, associate editors, the news editor, chief sub-editor, sports editor, features editor and the picture editor examined. The daily editorial conference and its function - the news list, coordinating journalists and stories, assignments, placing stories, newspaper policy, Routine tasks. Copyflow - how a news item goes from an original idea to a printed story.
The Role of the Sub Editor
The importance of the sub-editor's job including responsibilities - being held to account, protecting the paper's reputation, Dealing with raw copy, Keeping it in the house style, Cutting to length, Best intro angle, to re-write on not to re-write, Constructing Headlines, Caption writing, Placement of a story, news/advertising ratio, The influence of advertising, Planning, The importance of timing, Design theory- layout, visual appeal and design definitions.
ETHICS LAW & COPYRIGHT
Journalism and Ethics
Ethical dilemmas for journalists, invasions of privacy, racism, reporting of terrorism, anti-sexism, anti-ageism, whistle-blowers, cheque book journalism, the political economy of the media, monopoly ownership, hyper-competition, moral panics, sexing up a story, dumbing down.
Law and the Journalist
What is libelous, defamation, Defence against libel, Justification for printing, What justifies fair comment, Malicious comment, Corrections, Clarifications, Offers of amends, Reporting criminal courts, Reporting civil courts, Employment tribunals, Inquests, Contempt of court.
Copyright and the Journalist
Intellectual property, Understanding copyright, The limitations of copyrighted material, How copyright protects the journalist.
Freelance Journalism Explained
Qualities that are necessary to be a successful freelance journalist, The pros and cons of freelancing explained, Making contact and talking to editors, Breaking into the magazine market, The importance of knowing your market - Research - analysing the contents of newspapers and magazines, Article analysis, Tailoring your work to their requirements, Best categories for the freelance to tackle
Setting Up as a Freelance Journalist
Opportunities for the freelance journalist, Finding a regular supply of work, How to organise yourself - keeping records, cuttings file, joining the National Union of Journalists
PRINT AND DESIGN
How content dictates design, Design as a selling tool, Why the front page must attract the reader, Settling on a style for the publication. The main elements of print layout, Paper and size, Structure and look, Typefaces/Fonts, Structuring text, White Space, Colour, Pictures and Graphics. Headlines, Straplines, Tag lines, Sub-headings, By-lines, Captions. The production stages, Shaping the page. Do's and Don'ts of Print Design.
Learn the most important aspects of radio reporting, Writing for radio - news flashes, headlines, voicers, tasters , Planning the news package, Identifying contributors, Techniques for presentation, Qualities of a good presenter, Techniques for successful interviewing, Technical side of interviewing, Types of interviews.
What makes radio journalism distinctive? Writing short reports and headlines, Writing different types of stories: News flashes, Headlines, Copy stories, Voicers, Tasters, Live reports, Script writing, and Presentation skills. Digital audio editing, Ethics of editing.
Writing for television, The News Package, scripting a television news bulletin, Fitting the narrative with the shots, Gathering News, Technicalities associated with news gathering, Tips for interviewing, Short features, Camera shots and editing, Presentation, The News Schedule, How a TV newsroom is organised. What to wear.
Why Newspapers Report Crime, Crime Story News Values, Trends in Communicating Crime, Personal Qualities of the Crime Reporter, Sources and Building Contacts, Finding the Human Stories behind Official Reports and Statistics, Organising Crime Writing, Bringing your Story alive, Features and background stories, Understanding the language, Adopting the right tone, Ethics of Crime Reporting, Court reporting.
Introduction, Educational Requirements, Interviewing, Types of journalists, Principles of Political Reporting, Local Government, Standard Reporting, Retaining Interest, Writing structures, Jargon, Politicians, Crisis, Elections, Achieving balance and fairness, Issues & Processes, Results, Radio & TV Coverage, Media Checklist, Planned Events, Party Political Broadcasts, Citizen Journalism in political reporting.
Origins of Business Journalism, Understanding the basics, How to read a Profit & Loss account, a balance sheet, a stock table, Accounting terms explained, Key Audiences, Types of business stories, Story Style, Simplifying, International News Stories, Categories, Common Business Reporting Mistakes.
News Agency Reporting, Origins of the News Agency, Reuters, the First Correspondents, Challenges - Citizen Journalism, Professional versus Citizen, Challenges set by Digital and Social Media, Diplomatic Reporting, Interpreting Diplomacy, Predicting outcomes, Understanding Diplomatic Speak, Wars and diplomacies, Ethical Considerations, Tips on becoming a Correspondent, World Media Perspectives, Global Conflict reporting, Humanitarian Crises, Working with Aid Agencies, Journalist Safety.
Learn to investigate stories concerning Malpractice, Corporate wrongdoing, Political corruption, Crime. Analyzing documents - court cases, legal documents, tax records, company and property ownership, government reports, regulatory reports, corporate financial filings/returns, Investigating technical issues, Interviewing on-the-record sources, Interviewing anonymous sources/whistleblowers, Sourcing information through Freedom of Information Acts from Government and Government agencies. Understanding cause and effect, Uncovering the stories behind the statistics.
Sports journalism, an essential element of any news media organisation, is a highly specialised field and requires specific knowledge and skills, but the disciplines and practices are similar to those of a standard journalist. How media coverage of sport is structured and prioritised, Interviews, Sources and contacts, Planning, Researching, Covering an event, Sports news reporting, Captions, Feature writing, Profiles, Sport as soap opera - Scene setters, Types of stories - build up or scene setter, Previews, Running reports, Considered reports, Delayed reports, Inquest pieces.
Writing for Women's & Men's Magazines
Women: The changing face of women's magazines, Front page teasers How to tackle the triumph over tragedy article, How to write the confessional article, Celebrity profiles, Celebrity interviews - how to approach them and what questions to ask, The importance of preparation, getting an original quote, The role of photographs.
Men: the new contents of men's magazines, Understanding how they are read and consumed, Demographics and target markets, Market research - observing the contents, review the work of other writers, Picking an area of interest and becoming an expert, Common topics - fashion, cars, sport.
What a travel editor is looking for, The secret of a good travel piece, Tips on finding new angles, How to write the travel article - what to include and what to leave out, Gripping introductions, Use of sidebars, Staycations, City Breaks, Cheap travel, Special offers, Niche markets - Grey Pound travel, Features, The Travel Narrative, Contacting and writing for the top travel markets. Other opportunities - in-flight magazines, eco tours, exercise holidays, wellness travel.
Sponsorship; Internal PR functions; Corporate Image; Press and Broadcast Media Relations; Client Relationships; Internal PR; Commissioning and Briefing Photographers; Supplying Material to the Press/Getting Material onto TV and Radio; Organising Seminars; Exhibitions and Conferences; Audio/Visual Aids; Writing Skills (Press Releases, Writing Feature Articles for the Press, In-house Journals and Newsletters); Crisis Management; Corporate Advertising; Brochures and Printing.
ONLINE PUBLIC RELATIONS
The Social Media Landscape
Blogs, Microblogs, Chatrooms, Delicious, Email, Flickr, Twitter, Instant messaging, Message Boards, Mobile Internet , New Media Releases, Online Conferencing, Online Surveys, Pay per click, Podcasts, RSS, Search Engines, SEO, Social Networking Service Sites, Video Sharing, Virtual worlds, VoIP, Wiki and Widgets.
The Internet as a Media
Commercial Implications of the Internet, Social Interaction with the Internet, Web 2.0 and its Implications, Internet Convergence, the Network Effect, Internet Information Exchange, Internet Audience Size and Exposure, Internet Culture and Communication, Transparency and the Internet.
Public Relations and Search Engine Optimisation
PR tactics, Optimising your Campaign, the Google Factor, SEO Tactics, SEO Guidelines, Factors influencing SEO, on-page and off-page SEO, CMS, Link Building. Link Building guidelines.
Social Media and PR Strategy
Local versus Global Communication, Landscaping Platforms, Channels and context, Online PR Organisational Analysis and Segmentation, Developing Online PR Strategies, Online PR Tactics and SEO considerations, Online PR Planning, Managing Online PR Risk and Opportunities.
Online Influences on present PR practices
Internet influence on News, Internet Journalists, Economics of Online News Production, Internet Critics and other influences, the PR Practitioner as an Online Publisher, Ethical Internet PR, Truthfulness and Duty of Care, Online Ethics, Debate, Guidelines and Best Practice. Monitoring and Evaluation of Social Media Discourse, Trends and Value. Policy Influences, corporate speak. Implications of Social Media for Corporate Social Responsibility.
WRITING FOR THE WEB
Blogrolls to wikis, the audience for online journalism, Print industry under attack, The rise of citizen journalism, The journalist as online publisher, Online ethics - guidelines and best practice, Blogs, Weblog conventions, blogspeak, How to begin blogging, Tips for setting up a blog, Blogroll, Tags, Trackbacks, Pingbacks, What is Technorati? How to promote your blog, Using wikis, How to write for a wiki.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
Introduction to Social Media, Social Media Explained, Social Network Marketing, Social Sales, Social Recruiting, Social Innovation, Facebook Environment, Setting up a Facebook Account, Facebook Guidelines, Facebook for Business, Facebook Case Studies, Introduction to Twitter, Linking Twitter to other Social Media sites, Twitter as a Marketing Tool, Twitter Case Studies, Introduction to Blogs, Blogger.
Theory of E-Commerce, Website Design & Usability Guidelines, Working with Images, Site Uploading, HTML, CSS.
SETTING UP AND MARKETING YOUR CONSULTANCY
Creating a Business Plan, Executive Summary, Business Opportunities, Sales Strategy, Competitor Analysis, Management Team and Personnel, Operations, Financial Forecasts, Business Legalities, the Workplace, Office Equipment, Financing your Business. Marketing Strategy, Marketing Plan, Competitors, Promotional Tools.
Preparation and Research; Speech Content; Subject Matter and Objectives; Speech Delivery and Variety; Body Language, Eye Contact, etc.; Presentation Aids e.g. Visuals, etc.; Management of Locations and Audiences; Presentation Structure.
The projects are an important part of the course. Each course participant is given 3 project briefs. Participants are asked at the end of the course to produce 3 Journalism Proposals with their recommendations to the examiners. This gives participants the opportunity to use the knowledge they have obtained during the course in a focused way and develops proposal-writing and creative skills.
METHODS OF LEARNING
Online Lecture Modules, Subject Expert Feedback Sessions after each Module, Practical Case Studies, End of Module Assignments, etc.
The Fitzwilliam Institute Group maintains a panel of qualified Subject Experts.
WHO SHOULD APPLY
Anyone working in journalism, in a senior or support position, or those who wish to make a career change to Journalism. The course will also benefit anyone who has journalism or reporting as part of their job specification.
Successful students qualify for the Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism (PG Dip. Journ.). The Postgraduate Diploma is awarded at Distinction, Credit or Pass Level. This course is certified by the Institute of Commercial Management and is industry and internationally recognised in over 140 different countries worldwide.