NCTJ Gold for Grimsby

Exciting news for Grimsby and the east coast as the Grimsby Institute has been accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) to offer its gold standard Diploma in Journalism course.

The 20-week full time fast track qualification will prepare any aspiring journalists for the demands of a fast-changing multimedia industry.

In the 21st century journalism has converged with journalists being expected to have the skills required to work across all platforms. Traditional broadcast and web skills are also needed by print journalists.

The course we offer will equip future journalists with the skills they need to be an effective reporter. You will learn shorthand, law and how government works all within the demands of a working newsroom.

With an NCTJ certificate on your CV, a prospective employer knows you have grasped the basics.

To gain entry on this course you will need to demonstrate an interest in current affairs at all levels; have 
a lively interest in people, places and events; 

good spelling, grammar and punctuation; a willingness to accept irregular working hours; 
an ability to work under pressure to meet deadlines
 and determination and persistence.

A Journalism Diversity Fund has been set up by those in the industry who want to support the training of journalists from socially and ethnically diverse backgrounds.

This industry fund is aimed at people without the financial means to attend NCTJ training courses. Applicants will need to demonstrate a genuine commitment to journalism and the potential to succeed.

The fund can help financially by paying course fees and living expenses, as well as providing a mentor, and helping to find work experience. To find out more about the fund and whether you would be eligible check out the website www.journalismdiversityfund.co.uk and to download an application form.

To apply for the NCTJ Diploma in Journalism you need to download an application form from the NCTJ website – www.nctj.comImageApplication forms must be returned to the NCTJ as soon as possible or at least six weeks before the start of the course.

If invited for an interview, you will be required to take a written test, based on current affairs knowledge, to test your English skills and writing ability.

You will also need to demonstrate a keen interest in working as a journalist by having undertaken work experience placement at a news organisation.

On finishing this qualification, if successful in getting a job on a newspaper as a junior then you can work towards getting your senior.

All learning will take place in our newsroom within the new University Centre. Candidates will have access to the latest TV and radio equipment.

This is certainly an exciting opportunity for anyone wishing to become a journalist and is a great way to break into the industry.

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Prospective students – tips on how to do well at interview

It’s that time of year again when I’m getting applications via UCAS for the BA Multi-Platform Journalism course. I read through each one carefully and check how many points the applicant says they hope to achieve. Everyone is invited in for interview as I do believe in meeting people and finding out more about them, than just reading a piece of paper. I also think it’s good for them to meet staff and see the place and explore it.

I wrote  a blog last year on this, giving some tips for when invited to interview. It’s surprising how many students don’t get an interview but are just offered conditional without being seen, which brings me to another blog I wrote on test drives. If you can go visit the institution and get a feel for it. If taster sessions are offered, take them up and if you get offered media work experience take it! And then there’s the question of UCAS points – another blog where I commented on the points offered on my course and the reason behind it. It currently stands at 180, but from Sept 2011 will move to 240.

The reason being I need to attract students who can write and speak English to a high standard; are well-read and can communicate their thoughts and opinions; plus here at ECM, we are unique in offering a chance to work at the Grimsby Telegraph one day a week and we have access to Seven, the local television station broadcasting on VirginMedia 879 (I’ll write a blog about that soon). Plus a large proportion of our journalism graduates work at the BBC, Sky as well as in other media outlets. Oh and we are a Skillset Media Academy! So because it’s Grimsby and you may think it’s the end of the universe – it isn’t. It’s actually very nice here and cost of living is cheap compared to elsewhere. If you have a car you can travel to Hull or Lincoln for a night out, if you don’t fancy Grimsby or Cleethorpes.

So if you want to know more about the BA (Hons) Multi-Platform Journalism course then call 01472 315550 or contact me through this blog or on Twitter @eastcoastmedia and of course to learn more about me and my ability see my youtube channel or visit my podcasts. I think you’ll find I practice what I preach and the last word can go to one of our recent industry speakers, Lee Smallwood, read what he had to say about East Coast Media in his blog.