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Introduction to Journalism and Reporting

Explore what makes good journalism as you learn about its origins and where news reporting stands today.

Introduction to Journalism and Reporting
  • Duration

    4 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours
  • 100% online

    Learn at your own paceHow it works
  • Included in an ExpertTrack

    Course 1 of 3
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    $39/monthFind out more

Step into the world of news reporting

On this four-week course, you’ll be introduced to different types of journalism and news reporting today as well as exploring that of the past.

Learning from the experts at the University of Kent, you’ll go behind the scenes to see how news content is created.

You’ll discover the best practices from industry experts to help hone your skills as a budding journalist.

Develop your interviewing skills

To examine the key pillars of good journalism, you’ll learn how to find reliable and relevant sources as well as techniques to improve your communication and interviewing skills.

You’ll identify the different types of interviews before trying out your skills as you prepare to conduct your own interview.

You’ll examine your perceptions of news and the behaviour of some publications before learning about the ethical and legal frameworks for journalists.

This will help you explore ethical dilemmas journalists may face as you think about what you would do in particular situations.

On the course, you’ll also get the opportunity to put what you have learned into practice during different activities such as creating a news story, carrying out an interview, and taking part in an interactive quiz.

Syllabus

  • Week 1

    Exploring journalism and reporting

    • Welcome to the course

      Welcome to Exploring Journalism and Reporting – a course designed to introduce you to the building blocks of good, authoritative and engaging journalism – and get you creating some of your own.

    • Where do we get our news?

      TV, radio, websites, social media, newspapers – there are so many ways to get our news. Which is your favourite medium?

    • The changing shape of journalism

      Let’s take a look at the origins of modern journalism and where it is going today.

    • Key forms of journalism

      Let’s take a closer look now at different forms of journalism and news platforms.

    • Weekly wrap-up

      Lead Educator Angela Harrison reflects on what we’ve covered this week and looks ahead to what’s coming next week.

  • Week 2

    Vital ingredients of good journalism

    • Welcome to Week 2

      Welcome to Week 2 of this ExpertTrack on Exploring Journalism and Reporting. We are going to take a closer look at some of the vital ingredients of good journalism.

    • What is news?

      What is news and what makes something ‘news-worthy’ - worthy of reporting? Let’s explore this in the next few steps.

    • The building blocks of good journalism

      Journalism has changed in terms of the way it is delivered and consumed, but it is built on many of the same foundations as the journalism of the past. Let’s take a look at some of the key ‘building blocks’ of good journalism.

    • Prepare to create a headline and intro

      You’re soon going to put what you have been learning into practice by writing your own headline and introduction to a story you think should be covered. But first, get some tips on what makes a good headline and intro.

    • Peer Graded Assignment

      In the following steps, we would like you to create a headline and an introduction to a story you think should be covered in the news and then review the work of two other learners who have done the same thing.

    • Weekly wrap-up

      Let’s step back and remind ourselves of what we’ve covered this week.

  • Week 3

    How free are journalists and what controls are there on them?

    • Welcome to Week 3

      There is a lot of talk about the importance of a ‘free press’ or ‘free media’ in democracies, but what are the boundaries or limits to this? This week we are looking at the legal and ethical frameworks journalists work in.

    • The legal and ethical framework for journalists

      There are limits to the freedom of the media - laws and ethical codes journalists need to work within. We will look at some of these boundaries and at some of the criticisms levelled at journalists accused of crossing them.

    • Ethical dilemmas

      Journalists strive to behave ethically and sometimes face difficult ethical decisions. In these steps, we look at another key ethics guide and think about what we would do in particular situations.

    • Case study analysis

      Let’s examine the controversy over the media’s treatment of the UK’s Duke and Duchess of Sussex - Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

    • What do we mean by 'the Public Interest'?

      Journalists should report on matters which are in the ‘Public Interest’ and their investigations can expose wrong-doing and injustices. Let’s examine what this term means and look at some key journalistic investigations.

    • Weekly wrap-up

      Let’s recap on what we’ve covered this week and look ahead to what’s coming up next week.

  • Week 4

    What makes a good interview or quote?

    • Welcome to Week 4

      This week is all about the power of a good interview and the quotes you get from them. It is through an interview that you hear a person’s story, their point of view or important facts -- all vital ingredients for good stories.

    • Exploring the purpose of interviews and what makes a good quote?

      We will think about what journalistic interviews are for and how the ‘quotes’ or broadcast clips from them are used. We will also look at how to identify a good quote.

    • Different types of interviews

      We will take a closer look at some different types of journalistic interviews, from big ‘set-piece’ events featuring famous people to the ‘vox pop’ of people on the street.

    • Getting ready to do your own interview

      Get some tips on how to interview people and how to phrase questions for journalistic interviews before composing some questions of your own.

    • Try out your interviewing skills

      It’s time to test what we’ve been thinking about by preparing for and then doing your own interview. You will then face a ‘quote challenge’ of picking what you think is the most engaging or interesting quote from your interview.

    • End of Course 1

      Let’s reflect on all we have learned this week and throughout this course. Test your memory or understanding of what we’ve covered in a simple quiz.

Prove you're job ready

Highlight the new, job-relevant skills you’ve gained and supplement existing qualifications with a hard-earned, industry-specific digital certificate – plus one for every course within your ExpertTrack.

  • Learn the latest in your chosen industry or subject.
  • Complete each course and pass assessments.
  • Receive certificates validated by the educating organisation.
  • Impress employers with learning outcomes you can add to your CV.
  • Make your career dreams a reality.

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Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explore key forms of journalism and the history of journalism
  • Describe the foundations of good journalism
  • Assess headlines and introductions
  • Identify the legal and ethical frameworks for journalists
  • Discuss the concept of journalism done in 'the Public Interest'
  • Explain the principles behind news-writing, interviewing and selecting good quotes

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in studying journalism at university or college.

It will also be of interest to avid consumers of news or budding writers who want to learn about how it is made, or those looking for a career change.

Who developed the course?

The University of Kent

The University of Kent, the UK’s European university, is one of the country’s most dynamic universities. Established in 1965, it now has 19,850 students studying at its various campuses.

About this ExpertTrack

Develop skills to produce good journalism in a digital era and learn tips about how to consume news with a better understanding.

Start learning today - free 7-day trial

After your free trial you can:

  • Pay $39 per month to keep learning online
  • Have complete control over your subscription; you can cancel any time
  • Work at your own pace and set your own deadlines at every stage
  • Only pay while you’re learning; the subscription will cancel automatically when you finish
  • Complete online assessments to test your knowledge and prove your skills
  • Earn digital course certificates and a final award that you can share online, with potential employers, and your professional network
  • Keep access to the content of courses you complete even after your subscription ends

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  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
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  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
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Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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