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Digital Journalism

Digital Journalism

London College of Communication
Taught by
Ben Gilbert, A respected industry expert


Get a sound understanding of the opportunities and challenges digital technology brings to journalism. Explore some of the latest news stories - Trump and fake news, the Panama papers, citizen reporting of terror attacks - by delving into the technology, tools, and issues.

On this five day course you’ll be introduced to the pivotal digital developments in data, social media and user-experience. You will find out about latest reader expectations that have made new business models not only possible but necessary. Whilst this is not a ‘techie’ course you will have the opportunity to get to grips with technology, like Google Analytics and HTML, in some practical workshops.

Through a series of case-studies you’ll look at different revenue-generating business models. There will be the opportunity to contribute to current debates and issues in digital journalism such as partisan news, verification and disruption.

At the end of the week you’ll have the chance to future-gaze, applying what you’ve learned by developing a business model and presenting it to your group.

Day One: Overview

  • Digital journalism > Where are and how did we get here?
  • Issues, challenges and trends > Partisan content and fake news
  • Technology > An overview of the digital landscape
  • The Industry > Job roles and responsibilities > Evolution and variety
  • StoryCase study > The politics of social media
  • WorkshopDigital vocabulary > Untangling the jargon

Day Two: Content

  • Editorial > Writing web-ready news and features
  • Basics > Breaking down the cognitive and mechanical skills involved
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) > Getting ahead on Google search
  • HTML > The language of computers
  • StoryCase study > The possibilities of 21st century content
  • WorkshopMaking the news > Creating an accurate and optimised real-time content

Day Three: Social

  • Social Media > Finding leads, sources and stories online
  • Writing for social media and chat apps
  • Creating a presence, building an audience and sourcing stories
  • Live, mobile and visual journalism > Mobile first strategy > Live-blogging > Video and images>
  • Law > User-generated content > Verification
  • StoryCase study > Social power and citizen reporting
  • WorkshopMaking the news > Creating an accurate and optimised real-time content

Day Four: Technology

  • Data journalism > Consume for knowledge, produce coherently and think critically
  • Basics > Analysing data, visualisation, challenges and privacy
  • Analytics and auditing > Using data to inform continual improvement
  • Audience > Where are they and what do they want
  • Case study > Turning Google's search knowledge into stories
  • WorkshopDigital gold > Mining big data

Day Five: Product

  • Workflow > Moving towards a digital output
  • Publishing > Content management (CMS) > Blogging platforms
  • Digital product development > Increasing usability, access and engagement
  • Futurising > New consumers > Platforms > Tools > Disruption
  • Demystifying digital > Presenting a business model
  • StoryCase-study > Multi-million dollar media
  • Workshop
    UX design > Bring your content ideas to life in the digital sphere


By the end of the course you should be able to:

  • Plan user-friendly, web-ready news and features content
  • Source news stories and analyse open data online
  • Use a journalism specific digital vocabulary
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the current issues and challenges for digital journalism
  • Contribute to the development of digital journalism business and production models

Intermediate. You should have some prior journalism experience but you do not need to have any previous digital knowledge.

This course has been specifically designed for those who have been working in journalism and want to explore the opportunities and confront the challenges of digital journalism with greater confidence.

You may be:

  • In a senior editorial position and responsible for recruiting new staff and managing a digital production budget
  • A journalist working with developers and digital designers
  • Returning to work after a break for parental leave or other reasons
  • A freelancer seeking opportunities and networks

If you have any questions about the course please do not hesitate to contact us.

Follow Up Courses
Our Digital Skills training courses are ideal if you started out in the pre-digital era - broaden your knowledge, employability skills and digital literacy for the digital economy.

Tutor Description

Ben Gilbert is an NCTJ-trained journalist with more than 15 years’ experience at the frontline of web media at leading digital platforms such as Yahoo and Microsoft. Most recently, he was editorial director at the disruptive startup MOVE Guides. A former music journalist, Ben has developed digital content strategy and created dynamic content as a writer, editor and producer. He is an Associate Lecturer at London College of Communication and Westminster University, holding an MA in Media, Culture & Communication from the Institute of Education.

This course will be taught by a respected industry expert.

Available dates