Top journalists help NCTJ develop business and finance journalism qualification

The NCTJ is to add a new business and finance journalism module to the Diploma in Journalism which is being developed with the support of leading figures from the industry and journalism training.

The new specialist option in the diploma, available from September 2012, will allow students and trainees to expand their business and finance reporting skills. Development work is underway following support from those attending the Journalism Skills Conference in November 2011 and the Student Council in February 2012.

Journalist and media consultant Steve Dyson is developing the programme of study and assessments and he will be supported by an industry and education advisory group of experts in the field. Just some of the people giving their time and expertise to the group are:

  • Paul Addison, European head of training and education, Bloomberg
  • Peter Barron, editor, The Northern Echo
  • Jim Fitzpatrick, economics and business editor, BBC Northern Ireland
  • Jon Griffin, business editor, Birmingham Mail
  • Ian King, business editor, The Times
  • Adam Leyland, editor, The Grocer
  • Ian Mean, editor-in-chief, The Citizen and Gloucestershire Echo
  • Ruth Mortimer, editor, Marketing Week
  • Maggie Pagano, business columnist, Independent and Independent on Sunday
  • David Parkin, managing director, TheBusinessDesk.com
  • Robert Peston, business editor, BBC
  • Dominic Ponsford, editor, Press Gazette
  • Fiona Walsh, business editor, guardian.co.uk
  • Kevin Ward, editor, South Wales Argus
  • Joy Yates, editor, Hartlepool Mail

Four representatives from the 40 journalism schools across the UK that deliver NCTJ-accredited courses are also on the advisory group:

  • John Dilley, course leader, De Montfort University
  • Pat Joyce, course leader, Adam Smith College
  • Colm Murphy, head of School of Media, Film and Journalism, University of Ulster
  • Ian Reeves, director of learning and teaching, University of Kent’s Centre for Journalism

Speaking at the NCTJ’s recent meeting of the Journalism Qualifications Board which approved the proposals, Chairman Stephen Mitchell said: “The economy continues to be the single most important news agenda item in the media.  While all journalists should have an understanding and ability to report business and finance stories, this specialist option will provide an opportunity for students and trainees to gain a broader and deeper understanding of business and finance reporting.”

The option must be studied alongside the diploma’s mandatory units (reporting; portfolio; shorthand; essential public affairs; and essential media law).  The other specialist options are: court reporting; video journalism for online; production journalism; sports journalism; business of magazines; and broadcast journalism.  Candidates have to complete at least two specialist options as well as the mandatory units to gain the diploma.

Anyone wishing to be involved in the project should contact the NCTJ for more information.