Shorthand notes


Shorthand is a fundamental skill for all journalists and an accurate shorthand note is vital. Shorthand is an elective module in the NCTJ Diploma in Journalism.

Teeline is the most popular shorthand system and is a key feature of the majority of NCTJ-accredited journalism courses. Achieving a shorthand speed of 100 words per minute (wpm) will improve your employment prospects and is essential if you want to progress to the National Qualification in Journalism (NQJ) news pathway.

Shorthand can also be studied independently from home with our distance learning offering.

Study materials and tutoring

The recommended study book is Teeline Gold Standard for Journalists by Marie Cartwright. This book is designed to take a beginner up to 100wpm, and includes essential speed building and exam practice. The book is included in our distance learning module, or you can purchase individually via our online shop, alongside a range of other shorthand learning materials.

For those who may need ongoing specialist tuition, there are also a number of freelance shorthand tutors offering in-person or remote tuition. find a freelance tutor

How can I sit an exam?

We approve training providers and employers to deliver shorthand exams for their candidates and trainees. We also hold National exams for external candidates such as distance learners.

Candidates on an NCTJ-accredited course

If your course includes shorthand, your training provider will hold shorthand exams for you. Please discuss available exam dates with your course leader or tutor.

Industry candidates attached to an approved exam centre

Employers approved to act as an exam centre may hold and invigilate shorthand exams for their trainees. Please discuss available exam dates with your employer. If you are an employer, click here to schedule an exam.

All other candidates (i.e. distance learners, off-course learners, non-NCTJ learners)

National shorthand exams are held for external candidates in September, January and May. National exams are available at the key speeds of 60 and 100wpm only. Click here to find dates and book a shorthand exam.

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