Managing editor of Guardian News and Media to chair new NCTJ accreditation board

Picture: Chris Elliot, managing editor of Guardian News and Media

Chris Elliott, managing editor of Guardian News and Media and an NCTJ director, will chair a new board set up to develop the NCTJ strategy and standard for accrediting pre-entry journalism courses.

To gain NCTJ accreditation a course is visited by an accreditation panel made up of NCTJ staff and a panel of invited editors and senior journalists.

Editors who have sat on recent accreditation panels include Graham Dudman, managing editor of The Sun, Paul Morgan, editor of Rugby World, Geoff Martin, editor, Hampstead and Highgate Express, and Cerys Griffiths, editor of TV News, BBC North West.

Recommendations made by the accreditation panel are then scrutinised by the NCTJ Board of Directors.

The new Accreditation Board, which will be cross-media, will take over this scrutiny function, meaning accreditation matters will now be the focus of a dedicated, representative board which will study in-depth each new accreditation report.

Chris Elliott said: “At a time when all course providers have to review what they teach to make students fit for a new world the accreditation process is crucial to ensure that news organisations can hire properly trained journalists.”

Kim Fletcher, NCTJ chairman, said: “Chris Elliott is a very experienced journalist who will drive the NCTJ’s accreditation programme, ensuring accreditation remains the gold standard seal of excellence in journalism training.”

The new board’s terms of reference have been agreed and it will meet three times a year.

The new Accreditation Board will also advise and oversee updates to the NCTJ accreditation standard, a document which sets out all the criteria pre-entry journalism training courses must meet to gain accreditation.

The standard requires courses to teach the NCTJ syllabus in full, equip students to meet the demands of the multimedia newsroom environment and focus on quality, “real world” journalism skills.

 Members of the new accreditation board will be drawn from employers and one of the NCTJ’s chief examiners as well as representatives of NCTJ-accredited course providers.