AJE | The Future of Journalism Education: The student perspective

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AJE | The Future of Journalism Education: The student perspective

  1. 1. Future of Journalism Education: the student perspective Julie Bradford @JulieBradford  Journalism lecturer at University of Sunderland Josh Halliday @JoshHalliday / JoshHalliday.com  Journalism undergraduate at University of Sunderland
  2. 2. The student perspective <ul><li>Results of student survey </li></ul><ul><li>What employers say they need </li></ul><ul><li>What graduates find in the newsroom </li></ul>
  3. 4. <ul><li>“ Because it's an innovative and exciting industry that is forever changing” </li></ul><ul><li>“ The new entrepreneurial spirit in journalism is exciting” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Greater opportunities for innovative thinking. Fast-developing new methods of storytelling” </li></ul>
  4. 6. “ Journalism students need to be adept at both the old tricks of the trade (newswriting, sub-editing, law) and the new ones (web, social media, Twitter). We need to be qualified to create and publish content across all platforms until it is clearer what path our own careers will take” “ Our school is very good at traditional media but lecturers are still afraid of going 2.0” “ Some journalism departments some of the time are still in a mentality of preparing people for reporting jobs in local newspapers. The NCTJ, which has a tiny emphasis on the web let alone new media, encourages this”
  5. 8. <ul><li>“ At the moment I’m spending so much time mastering ways of presenting information that I’m not spending anywhere near enough time understanding what story should be told. I’m learning to do slick presentations of slim stories. This can’t be right” – US student </li></ul>
  6. 10. <ul><li>“ That is where the present is and the future will be. Anyone who does not learn this skills will be left behind” </li></ul><ul><li>“ A good blog and SEO skills are vital. Mine are terrible and it is my biggest gripe with my course that they have not taught me properly” </li></ul>
  7. 11. <ul><li>“ Oddly the students seem slower to adopt new media than the faculty. Multimedia was offered for the first time last semester, and no one signed up” </li></ul><ul><li>“ HTML/CSS is more likely to discourage people with limited technological ability/interest” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Web Journalism is not a compulsory part of the degree and as it’s not a strong point of mine, I have deliberately avoided choosing Web modules. Perhaps if Web Journalism (which is becoming increasingly essential) were compulsory it would force people like me to give it a go!” </li></ul>
  8. 12. <ul><li>“ Oddly the students seem slower to adopt new media than the faculty. Multimedia was offered for the first time last semester, and no one signed up” </li></ul><ul><li>“ HTML/CSS is more likely to discourage people with limited technological ability/interest” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Web Journalism is not a compulsory part of the degree and as it’s not a strong point of mine, I have deliberately avoided choosing Web modules. Perhaps if Web Journalism (which is becoming increasingly essential) were compulsory it would force people like me to give it a go!” </li></ul>
  9. 14. <ul><li>“ More incorporation of online; a look at developing storytelling methods; a look at what the future of journalism might hold; how journalism makes money” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I think more work with the online medium, blogging and similar skills are important ones that sort of get glossed over” </li></ul><ul><li>“ If I’m learning my essential skills of online media on my own, then bravo to me and give me my money back!” </li></ul>
  10. 15. <ul><li>“ Possibly a module in international or war journalism, something that might inspire rather than dampen the flames” </li></ul><ul><li>“ More variety. There is currently an extreme focus on news journalism, whilst perhaps 70% of the students on the course have no interest in pursuing a career in that field” </li></ul><ul><li>“ More specialist subjects should be available eg. music journalism, fashion journalism. I think that many students have a clear idea of what they want to do when they graduate” </li></ul>
  11. 17. <ul><li>“ For me, I don't enjoy the more academic modules on the course and don't see how they will be relevant to my future career” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Media Studies modules that have an extremely tenuous link to practical journalism, and over- theorise the concept behind news outlets. Just gets frustrating” </li></ul><ul><li>“ There should be fewer lectures and more hands-on sessions. I might even say the approach of this course is a little too intellectual” </li></ul>
  12. 18. What employers are saying <ul><li>“ The employability of bright subs is high and we’d be able to help with workshops, seminars, etc” – newspaper MD </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’m not bothered about a degree. I’m bothered about NCTJ qualifications. In terms of currency in the industry, I need to know someone’s got 100 words per minute shorthand, that they know what a section 39 is” – Paul Durrant, deputy editor of Eastern Daily Press </li></ul><ul><li>“ It’s vital that you are given the opportunity to try out web 2.0-type story-telling techniques. I would want to see journalism students being required to maintain and develop a blog/website with an emphasis on trying out new story-telling, crowd-sourcing, marketing and interactive mechanisms” – Lee Hall, digital editor of Sunderland Echo </li></ul>
  13. 19. Trainee role profile – Trinity Mirror <ul><li>Pre-January 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>To provide written, balanced, accurate editorial copy within set deadlines under the direction of the news desk or by self-generation, taking into account the editorial requirements of the evening newspaper </li></ul><ul><li>Post-January 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Generate content in a variety of formats for all print titles, online platforms and other publishing channels </li></ul><ul><li>Write in the appropriate style and to length/shape for all print titles, maintain accuracy and quality in all forms of work </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure content is produced to deadline </li></ul><ul><li>Build and maintain contacts </li></ul><ul><li>Deliver off-diary stories </li></ul><ul><li>Take photos and caption accurately </li></ul>
  14. 20. Trainee role profile – Trinity Mirror <ul><li>- </li></ul><ul><li>Shoot video where appropriate </li></ul><ul><li>Edit video to an acceptable standard for broadcasting online </li></ul><ul><li>Liaise with Live Desk on content requirement and deadlines </li></ul><ul><li>Liase with appropriate line manager on photo/video requirements and deadlines </li></ul><ul><li>Write directly onto page as required </li></ul><ul><li>Edit to length as required </li></ul><ul><li>Write directly to web as required </li></ul>
  15. 21. Trainee role profile – Trinity Mirror <ul><li>- </li></ul><ul><li>Upload audio, video, images and content to web as required </li></ul><ul><li>Source and trigger online reaction to breaking news to ensure maximum user-generated input into stories </li></ul><ul><li>Interact with readers/audience through online platforms such as blogs, forums, networking sites, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Take part in community initiatives as opportunities arise to increase audience, contributers and user-generated content </li></ul>
  16. 22. Newspaper trainee <ul><li>“ We’re supposed to be web-first, but the emphasis is still on getting everything done for print. Basically it’s about getting the paper out, then thinking about the web. </li></ul><ul><li>“ When the news editors come round to ask what you’re doing, you have to say lots of stories for the paper. They wouldn’t be impressed if you said you were doing a video. </li></ul><ul><li>“ We’re supposed to be active in social networking and maintain a blog, though most of us don’t – it’s extra c*** for no extra money.” </li></ul>
  17. 23. Trainee at Northcliffe
  18. 24. To conclude . . <ul><li>Broad education or vocational skills? “I am against the idea that undergraduate degrees prepare people for work” – Adrian Monck </li></ul><ul><li>How to keep up? “Why would an aspiring journalist now do a journalism degree? The industry will have been transformed by the time you graduate” – Neil MacDonald, Liverpool Post </li></ul><ul><li>Formats or story? “F*** new media, it’s playing with toys” – Columbia professor Ari Goldman </li></ul>
  19. 25. To conclude . . <ul><li>What’s the point of a degree? “Two skills not on your list but should be are ‘willingness to change’ and ‘creative thinking’. Journalists need to think like Fine Arts types and push the boundaries to find out where journalism can and should go” – student in survey </li></ul>

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