NCTJ to offer 'transparency' through courses league table

The National Council for the Training of Journalists is to begin publishing an annual league table naming the UK’s best and worst-performing journalism courses.

The online guide, which is expected to launch this summer, will rank every NCTJ-accredited training course based on exam results, cost, and the percentage of graduates finding work in the industry.

Stephen Chambers, the NCTJ head of accreditation, said the league tables were designed to help would-be journalism students make accurate comparisons before spending large sums on training.

‘We feel students are entitled to look at all the courses we offer and make a judgement on which one is best suited for them. They do vary,’Chambers said.

‘Students should be able to make an informed choice about which course is right. What we want is total transparency.”

The NCTJ accredits around 65 courses – from theory-based undergraduate degree schemes to intensive vocational courses. Price tags range from £6,000 for a nine-month postgraduate course to £800 for a fast-track pre-entry NCTJ course.

The body hopes the league tables will also include testimonials from editors who have hired graduates from a particular course, and from alumni who will be invited to give their opinion on how well a course prepared them for the world of work.

Extracts of reports from the NCTJ accreditation panel, which regularly visits training centres to ensure standards are met, are also likely to be included.

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