NCTJ Skills Conference

Reporters are being forced to abandon ethical news gathering methods as a direct result of the Leveson inquiry, according to Guardian crime correspondent Sandra Laville.
She made an impassioned plea for journalists to be brave and to trust their own personal integrity during the final session of the NCTJ Skills Conference in Bournemouth.
Young journalists were warned not to slavishly follow rules and accept authority.

Match reporting opportunity

Fans of the table-topping Maidstone United Under-21s have been unable to read about their team's fine run of form this season... until now.

Josh Margrie-Rouse's match report was published on the MUFC website today, after seven sports journalism students attended last nights' Kent derby against Margate.

And more of the students' work may feature in the programme for the next first team league game, I hear.

Open lectures

The university has an on-going series of open lectures which can provide great material for journalists - both in terms of quotes and background detail for stories and by supplying new ideas for academic work.

Highlights this month include:

Professor Till Roenneberg

October 2, 6pm, Grimond (Canterbury). The impact of sleep deprivation caused by changes in the modern lifestyle. A relevant topic for any students who stay glued to their iPads long after lights-out - and an interesting broader health story waiting to be told.

Year 2 NCTJ Reporting groups

Year two will split in half for the NCTJ workshop sessions on Thursdays and Fridays, with one group taken by me and the other by Ron.

Rob's group

Amy, Cecily, Helen, Jade, Jasmin, Katie, Michelle, Paige, Stine, Victoria

Ron's group

Alex, Cian, Clara, Dan, Nageen, Nathalie, Ola, Sanam, Sophie, Uzoma


The first date we will offer for the NCTJ Reporting exam is Monday, December 9. The exam runs from 10am to 12.30pm. Ron and I will talk to you about entry for the exam in early November.

How to (really) read the news

Hold The Front Page should already be a permanent bookmark in your browser as a source of journalism news and job vacancies - but one blog in particular could help improve your performance in conference and on news days.

Dyson at Large, run by former newspaper editor Steve Dyson, performs a post mortem on a different regional newspaper every fortnight, explaining in forensic detail what worked and what didn't.


Rob Bailey's blog