Fundamentals of journalism

Newsworthiness What Makes a Story Newsworthy? News can be defined as "Newsworthy information about recent events or happenings, especially as reported by news media". But what makes news newsworthy? There is a list of five factors, detailed below, which are considered when deciding if a story is newsworthy.

Fundamentals of journalism

Messenger Research last year out of Stanford University revealed that students — from middle schoolers to undergraduates — are easily duped by false information they find online. How are we to prepare young people to become informed citizens in an era where anyone can publish, and there are political and financial incentives for misinformation?

As a journalism professor who began my own media career as a high school student, I have a firsthand understanding of how teaching journalism can prepare young people to become effective communicators — and can help them sift fact from fiction.

Studies show that social media has become an increasingly popular way for Americans to get news. Words can cast doubt on previously accepted standards, and shared norms once considered common sense can suddenly be cast as suspect.

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The election uncovered the surreptitious power of misinformation and its potential to influence the public. Buzzfeed found that fake news stories significantly outperformed real news stories on Facebook leading up to the election.

One fake news writer was even accused of singlehandedly swaying the election.

Fundamentals of journalism

A subsequent Pew Research study indicated that 23 percent of Americans claim to have shared a made-up news story — either knowingly or not. Critical thinking speaks to a need for young people to become discerning interpreters of information and to make judgments based on thoughtful analysis.

An informed thinker is someone who has researched a topic and has been thoughtful in making sure that what he is presenting is credible, valid and well-researched.


Informed thinking articulates a clearer method and result than critical thinking. Students learn to detect biases and agendas in media and are empowered to distinguish fact from fiction. I would argue that this approach makes students more than savvy consumers: Informed thinkers become effective problem solvers, emerge as content creators and learn to advocate for public good.

The Maine Department of Education formulated this perspective 20 years ago and has since adopted it as a guiding principle. They also develop more effectively as informed thinkers.

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At the University of Oregon, our School of Journalism and Communication and our College of Education have partnered with education thought leaders Esther Wojcicki and Tara Guber to develop and pilot curricula for middle schools and high schools that get to the heart of these matters.

The Journalistic Learning Initiative JLI is an experience-based program designed to enhance existing English Language Arts courses with specific emphasis on information gathering, storytelling and publishing. According to an independent assessment not yet published85 to 90 percent of the participating students agreed that the journalistic skills learned in JLI were useful and relevant.

There are other programs with similar missions: While these programs can all support the work of teachers and advisors, JLI excels by embedding its methods into an existing curriculum.

Learning journalism in school provides informed thinking skills that can be used inside and outside the classroom.

Journalistic Learning Initiative, Author provided No reuse Moving forward Student media programs are by no means a new phenomenon, but recent trends suggest that student newspapers are in decline.

Beyond critical thinking

Journalism programs, where they exist, rarely count as English credit. There are few courses or curricula that teach media literacy, research fundamentals and content creation technology. JLI encourages students to read and write about things relevant to their own lives. The standards also stress the importance of media creation.

As misinformation continues to plague the public, journalism education presents a familiar yet untapped resource.Journalism students at Oaklea Middle School, Junction City, Oregon.

Journalistic Learning Initiative, Author provided (No reuse). So Berner, a professor emeritus at Pennsylvania State University, decided to write Fundamentals of Journalism: Reporting, Writing and Editing, a student-friendly book with an affordable list price of only $ News can be defined as "Newsworthy information about recent events or happenings, especially as reported by news media".But what makes news newsworthy?

There is a list of five factors, detailed below, which are considered when deciding if a story is newsworthy. Did You Know? Tort came into English straight from French many centuries ago, and it still looks a little odd. Its root meaning of "twisted" (as opposed to "straight") obviously came to mean "wrong" (as opposed to "right").

Every first-year law student takes a course in the important subject of torts. Fundamentals Of Journalism As A Paper Is Being Taught At The Various Diploma, Graduate And Post Graduate Level In Media Communication And Journalism At Universities And Institutions.

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Fundamentals of journalism
Reporting and Writing Basics - Handbook of Journalism