Unit description

Introduces students to news writing, research and interviewing techniques that may be applied broadly across news media formats. Students gain a critical appreciation of professional, legal and ethical issues in contemporary journalism. Practical activities and assessments give students exposure to professional journalism standards and practices.

Unit content

Understanding journalism:

  • journalism as a cultural and media industry practice
  • news values: filtering and selection
  • interrogating objectivity: balance, fairness and multiple perspectives
  • news organisations, news sites and newsworkers.

Introduction to journalistic practice:

  • distinguishing news from news comment (editorials, opinion pieces, features)
  • forms, styles and techniques of news writing for print and online
  • news-gathering, research and information routines
  • interviewing skills.

Professional issues in journalism:

  • ethical journalism: a contradiction in terms?
  • introduction to legal issues
  • cultural representation and cross-cultural communications
  • journalist's relationship to public relations and issues management professionals.

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

Learning outcomes and graduate attributes

Prescribed texts

Session 2

  • Lamble, S, 2013, News As It Happens: An Introduction to Journalism, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic. ISBN: 9780195520408.
Prescribed texts may change in future study periods.

Teaching and assessment


Teaching method
Lecture on-site 1 hours (12 weeks)
Tutorial on-site 2 hours (12 weeks)
News article plus reflective writing20%
News article plus reflective writing25%
News stories (revision) plus reflective essay35%


Teaching method
Structured online learning 3 hours (12 weeks)
News article plus reflective writing20%
News article plus reflective writing25%
News stories (revision) plus reflective essay35%

Intensive offerings may or may not be scheduled in every session. Please refer to the timetable for further details.

Southern Cross University employs different teaching methods within units to provide students with the flexibility to choose the mode of learning that best suits them. SCU academics strive to use the latest approaches and, as a result, the learning modes and materials may change. The most current information regarding a unit will be provided to enrolled students at the beginning of the study session.

Fee information


Commonwealth Supported courses
For information regarding Student Contribution Amounts please visit the Student Contribution Amounts.
Commencing 2015 Commonwealth Supported only. Student contribution band: 1

Fee paying courses
For POSTGRADUATE or UNDERGRADUATE full fee paying courses please check Domestic Postgraduate Fees OR Domestic Undergraduate Fees


Please check the international course and fee list to determine the relevant fees.