Special Course Spotlight: Election Reporting

Special Course Spotlight: Election Reporting

What students should take this class?

This news studio class is for journalism students who are interested in the present and future of their city, their state and the country. Students will report on the 2018 elections from many different angles while publishing on a web platform and coming up with innovative social media strategies to promote their content.
 

What will students get out of taking this class?

Students will create multimedia content on breaking news and features, giving them a wide variety of high quality bylines and clips. They will also take part in a pop up newsroom, learning to work as a team to cover a huge event, before, during and after this election cycle. This will allow them to get immediate community feedback for their work. They will also have editorial and coordination responsibilities, working with student journalists from other classes. Finally, they will get to experience the thrills of election day and results coverage. 
 

What skills will students leave the class with?

Students will improve their multimedia and web presentation skills as reporters in covering events, politics, human interest stories, and general trends. They will incorporate micro reporting, curation and data mining to come up with big picture stories which fit and inform current media narratives. They will also learn to cut through political spin, fake news, hubris and propaganda.
 
Photo of man standing in front of a billboard in Nigeria.

– Recent elections in Africa’s most populous nation Nigeria have been marred by delays and accusations of cheating. Photo by Nico Colombant.

How will this class shift student thinking?

After covering the election, student journalists will realize the impact they can have on democracy while producing high quality work that will contribute to the community’s civic health.
 

Why does Nico want to teach this class?

In his previous career as a journalist, Nico covered dozens of elections from several continents, from newsrooms to the field, in print, photos, video, web and audio.
“I learned so much from each of these enthralling situations which I would be delighted to pass on,” he said. “The class will also empower students to come up with their own story choices and reporting strategies in this new era where we all can have a voice in this currently crowded and confusing but full of opportunity media landscape.”
 

How will this class prepare students for the workforce?

Students will get experience reporting on news as it happens.  Those in the class will be fully engaged student journalists finding out what works best in the new media ecosystem when covering extremely relevant stories. They will be able to work on their reporting strengths and weaknesses to better themselves as individual journalists, as well as figure out how they fit within a team dynamic. In short, they will learn to be content producers and leaders for pop up newsrooms of the present and future.  
 

How is this class different than others?

The class will be completely tied to current events, blending political science with journalism.  Students don’t need to be experts in political science but a passion for politics won’t hurt. Those with politico-phobia are also welcome as we will also be tackling the major issues being voted on during this next election cycle. Every student will find a role that best maximizes their talents and learning objectives to the collective benefit of our team newsroom. Nothing about this class is predetermined, and it will allow for creativity and producing quality team coverage.

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