Well it has to be done! I might as well use my talents as a journalist to promote my own course.
Currently the course at East Coast Media is BA (Hons) Journalism, validated by University of Hull. It predominately is print based, but due to moves in industry to go towards a more multi-media journalist, the course has been rewritten and will hopefully resurface as BA (Hons) Multi-Platform Journalism.
I am currently waiting for the programme to go before the university board to validate it. Fingers crossed for June 24th. Then if approved it will run from September 2010.
The new programme has been developed to produce an all-round journalist; one who can produce copy for print; produce video content for TV and online as well as audio. It will introduce them to concepts of social media and how to use it effectively as a journalist. How to source stories and engage with the audience.
The BBC and the local newspaper, the Grimsby Telegraph, have been asked for advice and read over the content. The Broadcast Journalism Training Council (BJTC) has also been instrumental in giving advice and support as to where we need to progress.
It is an exciting time and in preparation for September I have been hitting the social media networks big time. Though youngsters seem to use social media, they probably do not use them for the right reasons – networking, gaining contacts and information, searching for jobs, etc.
The programme will deliver the basic content in teaching undergraduates how to write for different mediums; how to use equipment to a standard; how to produce online material; how to operate as a multi-platform journalist, etc. It is a big undertaking, but one which the team are ready for. If anyone is interested in the course then they need to apply through UCAS, as we are now recruiting for Sept 2010.
We have a very rigorous assessment procedure, which includes an interview and written assessment – grammatical errors test and press release rewrite. Mature applicants are also considered. A big must for the course is that the candidate shows how passionate and enthusiastic they are to be a journalist – not many show this at all! They also need to be interested in news and current affairs – watch the news, not just local but national. Why do you watch it? What makes one news programme more engaging than another? What newspapers do you read? Why? It’s amazing when asked these staple questions, many let themselves down. They only read the local paper because it’s in the house; they watch the local news because it’s already on when they get home. It does not show me your passion for wanting to break into the industry. Maybe I’m really tough and harsh. But, if these processes are not gone through, the ones that don’t show that passion soon drop out.
It has taken me a year to put this course together and consider what future journalists need to know. It is also based on a report published in 2008 by the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ).
Just speak to any of our graduates to find out firsthand what they thought of the course – the new one will be much improved.
Contact 01472 315550 if you require further information. But don’t dismiss East Coast Media (which happens to be a Skillset Media Academy) and Grimsby as being the end of the universe: there is more than meets the eye in this corner of the world.