The time between semesters is a perfect opportunity to super-charge your skill set and add some extra mini qualifications to your CV.
To help with this there’s a rising number of online classes, seminars and workshops offered by a global range of organisations.
We’ve listed some of them below to help you upskill and explore opportunities beyond the classroom.
Poytner is a philanthropically-funded, US-based institute founded 1975 to “elevate journalism”. These days it has its own News University that runs free online courses in multiple forms, including online group seminars, self-directed courses and webinars. There’s a multitude of free courses, as well as paid options, including preparing for election coverage, media-wise sessions and the fundamentals of investigative journalism.
Browse the options here: https://www.poynter.org/newsu/.
Google News Initiative
The Google News Initiative is the internet giant’s effort to work with the news industry “to help journalism thrive in the digital age”. The upshot is an array of handy courses that will get you super quick and agile with using Google products in digital newsmaking. These include lessons on Google podcast managers, storytelling with Google Earth and using Google Trends to find stories.
These free courses are available here: https://newsinitiative.withgoogle.com/training/courses.
Centre for Investigative Journalism
The UK-based Centre for Investigative Journalism regularly runs training sessions on investigative journalism skills. The formats range and include things like an upcoming three-day intensive called Finding Stories with Data. The courses are open to all interested parties, however you must register and pay a fee – charged on a sliding scale to differentiate between large newsrooms and freelancers or small organisations.
A list of available courses is regularly updated here: https://tcij.org/scheduled-training/.
Also based in the UK, The Thomson Foundation, aims to “raise the standards” of journalism through training, consultancy and advice. It has created an online training platform consisting of 23 active courses and over 900 minutes of videos. The courses are often done in conjunction with organisations such as the Dart Centre and the International Federation of Journalists, and involve over 55 experts in the area.
The courses, including Reporting on COVID-19 Safely, Journalism across Multiple Platforms, Social Media Newsgathering, and Mobile Journalism, are available here: http://www.thomsonfoundation.org/e-learning/live-courses/. Some courses are free, others have small fees.
Although on the more expensive side of online training courses, Journalism.co.uk has a series of online training courses for “journalists, editors, web managers, PRs and communication professionals”.
Offerings include a three-part Social Media Content Strategies course, a six- week masterclass in Mobile Journalism, and a two-day online workshop called Introduction to Podcasting. The list of classes is regularly updated on: https://www.journalism.co.uk/vocational-skills-study/s43//.
European Journalism Center
The European Journalism Center has begun an online training programme to help journalists “prepare for the digital age”. This includes the Data Journalism Handbook, which has been downloaded over 150,000 times and translated into 17 languages. Updates on further training endorsed by the European Journalism Center is available here: https://ejc.net/training.
Walkley Masterclasses Online
Closer to home, The Walkley Foundation released a series of Masterclass webinars in early 2020, as COVID and its subsequent lockdowns kicked in. These webinars are now available online here: https://www.walkleys.com/training/.
All Masterclasses are free, and are on topics such as FOI for Journalists, Headline-Writing and Book-Length Journalism.
Ethical Journalism Network
The Ethical Journalism Network has a number of online classes, including a collaboration with the Thomson Foundation on an Ethics of Journalism online course, a collaboration with the Federation of African Journalists on Copyright and how not to breach it, and a specific Ethics of Data Journalism course. These classes are available here: https://ethicaljournalismnetwork.org/resources/courses.
MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) are free online courses available for anybody to enrol in. A list of currently available MOOCs, ranging from English for Journalism to Phishing attacks are available here: https://www.mooc-list.com/tags/journalism.