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Radical changes to NCTJ exams with new social media elements


The NCTJ is making “radical changes” to the assessments and structure of the National Qualification in Journalism (NQJ).

It explained that this was to reflect the fast-changing digital skills that are “revolutionising” journalism.

All NQJ trainees will sit an exam that covers media law, regulation and ethics, as well as submitting a logbook of their work at the end of the training period. They must also complete at least one other assessment, which is appropriate to their job and the sector in which they are employed.

The first assessment to be introduced it designed for news journalists. They will sit an online exam with a working title of “The Big News Story.” This will test digital skills and use of social media, alongside fundamental news skills.

Alternative options are planned for production journalists, community digital journalists, sports journalists and magazine journalists.

“The NCTJ is now catering for a wider range of journalists and media sectors, and our aim is to open up the NQJ to all journalists. The new NQJ will have more options to suit journalists working in different media and journalism roles as well as placing more emphasis on digital developments and changes in journalism practice,” explained Joanne Butcher, chief executive.

The changes have come, following an 18 month period of research and development. They had received support from broadcasters, publishers and other media organisations.

The only regional publisher not to use the NQJ course is Reach. Reach, previously Trinity Mirror has always had its own qualification.


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