English for Journalism

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Overview

Welcome to English for Journalism, a course created by the University of Pennsylvania, and funded by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of English Language Programs.

To enroll in this course for free, click on “Enroll now” and then select "Full Course. No certificate."

This course is designed for non-native English speakers who are interested in developing the skills needed for a career in modern journalism. In this course, you will explore print and digital media through authentic readings and video lectures, while expanding your vocabulary and increasing your ability to read, research, and develop local and global news stories. Unit 1 will provide an introduction to the history and principles of journalism. In unit 2, you will learn how to research, pitch, and interview. The next unit in the course will focus on the language needed to write newspaper and magazine articles, while unit 4 will cover the basics of broadcasting the news. In the final unit of the course, you will analyze the growth, impact, and challenges of digital news, while completing a reflection assignment that allows you to think about and discuss the recent changes to the field of journalism.

Unless otherwise noted, all course materials are available for re-use, repurposing and free distribution under a Creative Commons 4.0 Attribution license.

Supplemental reading materials were provided by Newsela, which publishes daily news articles at a level that's just right for each English language learner.

Syllabus

Unit 1: Introduction and Principles of Journalism
-In this unit, you will first learn about how the course works. Then we will explore the history of journalism, as well as important principles, or ideas, that make good journalism possible.

Unit 2: How to Research, Pitch, and Interview
-This unit will show you how journalists choose their topics and stories. You will also learn how journalists research their stories and interview their sources.

Unit 3: Words in Print
-This unit will help you to write briefly and with emphasis, create a lead that makes the audience want to read more, and effectively edit and proofread article drafts. At the end of the unit, you will create a lead and write an article based on that lead.

Unit 4: Broadcasting the News
-In this unit, we will focus on speaking skills for delivering the news. At the end of the unit, you will write a script for a news report.

Unit 5: Journalism in the Digital Age
-The final unit of this course discusses how journalism is changing fast because of digital technologies. At the end of the unit, you will describe data about the news and complete a reflection assignment that allows you to think about and discuss the recent changes to the field of journalism.

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