Journalism Skills Academy

The Journalism Skills Academy is set to be launched by the NCTJ in the autumn of 2020.

It will be a platform where anyone can learn journalistic skills, whether they are considering a career in the sector for the first time or have decades of experience.

All levels of journalism education and skills development will be available from one online destination.

The platform will host:

  1. The NCTJ’s three premier qualifications by distance learning: The Certificate in Foundation Journalism, Diploma in Journalism and the National Qualification in Journalism.

    All three will be delivered interactively, with students learning through quizzes, exercises and video. Learners will also have access to online forums and webinars.

    The NQJ has never previously been delivered by distance learning and we hope this will help grow the accessibility of this qualification, which has a range of pathways to suit journalists across all sectors.
  2. Free resources, such as videos, which will introduce basic journalism skills such as: how to write a new story, interview techniques, media ethics and sports reporting.
  3. A series of specialist courses including media law, podcasting and fact checking, which are designed to help develop mid-career journalists or those whose work would benefit from higher-level journalistic skills.

The NCTJ will work collaboratively with partners in the news media sector and academia to create additional learning packages for journalists working across all platforms.

While the JSA is a primarily a virtual learning space, in-person training courses will – once they can recommence – also be run under the JSA banner.

The JSA will provide an opportunity for people interested in journalism careers to understand the industry better. It will also help news media businesses and individual journalists demonstrate that they are committed to professional practise and learning new skills.

Supporting the initiative, Gavin Allen, head of news output at the BBC, said: “This is a cracking idea from a brilliant organisation which recognises that if you don’t skill up you may as well give up. Journalists aren’t just reporting on an ever-changing world but, like everyone else, having constantly to adapt to it.

“New platforms, new audience opportunities, expectations and demands, new formats, new technological innovations: here’s the chance to engage, learn and improve. And that’s surely what good journalists should always seek to do.”

The NCTJ would be interested to hear from media professionals about their learning needs, as well as from companies wishing to sponsor the work of the JSA.

For more information please contact Will Gore, head of partnerships and projects, and Henry Swarbrick, development manager.