module specification

SJ5035 - Advanced Reporting (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Advanced Reporting
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 300
72 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
228 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 25%   Three media products showing evidence of reporting skills attained in this module: 2/3 minutes
Coursework 25%   Three media products showing evidence of reporting skills attained in this module: 2/3 minutes
Coursework 40%   2500-word piece of long-form journalism showcasing investigative reporting skills, with multimedia links and options
Coursework 10%   Engagement with class, assessed by online journal and moderated by tutor
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Wednesday Afternoon

Module summary

Continuing on from the first-year core Reporting Skills, students in Advanced Reporting will develop the skills and techniques necessary to succeed in more advanced forms of reporting, including investigative journalism, features, and in-depth interviews and profiles. This course is core for journalism students and for some allied courses.

Through a combination of workshops, masterclasses and site visits, students learn to identify subject matter and potential readerships; master interviewing and editing techniques across media; learn how to find original angles; undertake focused, widely sourced research on individuals and issues; and conduct on-the-spot reportage.  They analyse statistics and develop stories based on them.

This module develop students’ skills in multi-platform journalism. Via predominantly practical workshops, the students will learn the basics of radio journalism, as well as TV/video camera and editing skills, using cutting-edge software and equipment. This will reinforce their understanding of the need for 360-degree journalism in today’s society.

They will work on projects within class with a view to publishing them online via the course website,
Holloway Express, thereby providing an outward-facing portal for future employability.

The module will be assessed by two portfolios of six stories (news and features) in total, comprising one podcast and one video package, both of which must show evidence of professional writing and newsgathering skills learnt in this module, plus a piece of long-form journalism (2,500 words) showcasing investigative reporting (this can use multimedia). Contributions to an online journal will assess class contribution, moderated by tutors at the end of the year.

Prior learning requirements

Pass level 4


This module focuses on originating stories and developing writing/creative/editing skills for different journalistic audiences and formats across a range of media.

Students learn to identify subject matter for potential readerships; develop research, interviewing and editing techniques for radio, TV and print; practise on-the-spot reportage; and find original angles and relevant sources for their stories.  They will be encouraged to seek professional publication for good stories, which will also be published on the course website.

They learn how to write/create content in different formats, from in-depth profiles to on-the-spot crisis reporting or well-researched investigations, which will be assessed in two portfolios.

They develop the professional techniques and writing disciplines required by the different approaches and styles of the industry, including news and report writing for newspapers, magazines, radio and TV, websites. Writing and creating media to precise length and deadline will be important, as will original research. Use of mobile technology will be encouraged.

Through discussion and presentation, risk evaluation and ethical concerns arising from collaboration and commissioning practice will be explored.

In-depth investigative journalism will explore ethical concerns in the wider world.

Learning Outcomes LO 1 - 5

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The module will be taught by a programme of weekly sessions, comprising a three-hour block for each of the 27 weeks in which it runs. Learning and teaching strategy will be based on an interactive, caoching model.

Sessions will mix tutor instruction with blended learning, in-class writing workshops, discussions and debate, site visits and guest lectures, with students required to do weekly reporting and writing exercises out of class as well as during sessions, where coaching will supplement group work.

Newsdays in news weeks will incorporate coaching sessions. Rather than a set programme of content, students will be led on a skills basis through a news agenda of the day.

Electronic resources, including the university’s virtual environment, will be used by students and staff.

Working in small teams will develop social as well as professional and academic skills.
The module will be supported by a VLE site containing notes, readings and extended bibliographies, and weblinks.

Independent, reflective study, including reading, individual reporting exercises and writing, will form the backbone of every session.

Support for pdp, via e-portfolio.

Learning outcomes

If students read all the required texts, participate in all the class activities and complete the required assessments and assignments, they should be able to:
1. Utilise the techniques and tools required for multi-media news gathering and writing to a level acceptable at professional entry;

2. Report from and about a wide range of situations, finding and using appropriate sources for stories, developing original angles, and displaying personal and professional skills in newsgathering.

3. Create journalistic products in a variety of platforms – radio, TV, print -- to length and to audience, working to a variety of audience, creating a portfolio of work;

4. Analyse and use in practice the newsgathering skills needed to develop stories from a variety of sources for variety of journalistic disciplines, including packages for radio and TV and investigations;

5. Discuss, codify and evaluate ethical concerns which may arise from collaborative working or risky situations.

Assessment strategy

Formative assessment will comprise regular reporting and writing assignments, which will demonstrate the students’ understanding of the material and flag up what they still need to learn.  One-to-one feedback will be given in class, on a coaching model, especially on newsdays.
Contribution in class, active participation in workshops/site visits and attendance in guest lectures will be self-assessed as well as tutor-assessed, via journal, with weekly feedback.
Summative assessment will consist of multi-media portfolios of work as well as a piece of long-form journalism demonstrating reporting skills, and contribution to online journals. Journals will promote reflective engagement.
Written feedback will be provided electronically for all summative assessments, reinforced by tutorial coaching. Summative assessments will take place at three intervals during the module, timed to be effective alongside other subject-specific modules: in each case of summative assessment feedback will be given to the student within a two-week period.

All work will be marked individually.
All assessments cover all learning outcomes.



Core texts

Lee-Potter, E. (2017) Interviewing for Journalists
Hicks, W. (2016) Writing for Journalists

Additional texts

Adams, Sally. (2009). Interviewing for Journalists: Routledge London
Bull, A. (2016). Multimedia Journalism A Practical Guide: Routledge London
Bradshaw, P. (2017). The Online Journalism Handbook: Longman London
Carey, J (1996). Reportage: Faber London
Conboy, M. (2007). The Language of the News London: Routledge London
Clarkson, W. (1990). Confessions of a Tabloid Journalist: Fourth Estate London
Frost, C. (2001 and subsequent editions). Reporting for Journalist: Routledge London
Halpern Wenger, D & Potter, D. (2011). Advancing The Story: CQ Press London
Harris, G and Spark, D. (2010). Practical Newspaper Reporting: Focal Press, London
Hicks, W. (2006). English for Journalists: Routledge London
Knightley, K. (2004). The First Casualty: Andre Deutsch London
Levenson, E (2015). Creativity and Feature Writing: Routledge London
Machin, D and Niblock, S. (2006). News Production Theory and Practice: Routledge London
Mencher, M. (2007). News Reporting and Writing: McGraw Hill NY
Rich, C. (2010). Writing and Reporting News - a Coaching Method: Wadsworth Publishing London
Smith, J. (2007). Essential Reporting: SAGE London
Wheeler, S. (2009). Feature Writing for Journalists: Routledge London

Anderson, J. (2009). A Great Face for Radio: Know The Score Books
Block, M. (2011). Writing for Broadcast: Bonus
Fleming, C. (2009). The Radio Handbook: Psychology Press (E-book via ‘Library’ in Weblearn)
Gover, K. (2007). Creative Radio Journalism: Rockarama Radio Network
Starkey, G and Crisell, A. (2009). Radio Journalism: Routledge London

Boyd, A. (2005). Broadcast Journalism (5th edition): Oxford, Oxford
Bull, A. (2016). Multimedia Journalism A Practical Guide: Routledge London
Thompson, R. (2004). Writing for Broadcast Journalists: Routledge London
Conboy, M. (2007). The Language of the News London: Routledge London
Willett, A. (2013). Media Production: A Practical Guide To Radio And TV Oxford: Routledge London

Burden, P. (2008). Fake Sheikhs and Royal Trappings: Eye, Fake Sheikhs and Royal Trappings: Eye London
de Burgh, H. (2008). Investigative Journalism: Routledge London
Lee-Hunter, M. (2011). Story-based inquiry: a manual for investigative journalists: unesco ebook
Leigh, D. (1997). The Liar: The Fall of Jonathan Aitken: Penguin, London
Pilger, J. (2004). Tell Me No Lies: Cape, London
Private Eye magazine
Watson, T and Hickman,M. (2012). Dial M for Murdoch: Allen Lane, London
Winnett, R and Raynor, G. (2009). No Expenses Spared: Corgi, London

BBC College of Journalism

BBC 5 live news bulletins, Breakfast Show, Drive (1600-1900)
5 Live Investigates
PM with Eddie Mair, BBC Radio 4 (1700-1800)
BBC London 94.5 news bulletins
Capital FM news bulletins
LBC news bulletins