Britain’s first sports journalism degree course begins next week at Brighton University. The BA Honours programme takes place over three years and has full NCTJ accreditation.
Students will be taught the NCTJ certificate in magazine and newspaper journalism syllabus, alongside units which look at the different approaches to writing or reporting about sport.
The degree is the brainchild of Professors John Sugden and Alan Tomlinson, authors of various academic works in the field. They claim: “Sports journalism is now a multi-skilled vocation which requires professionals who can inform a diverse audience using a wide range of communication tools.”
The course was established in response to the increased profile and importance of sport within the news agenda. It is already proving popular, with an unexpectedly high number of applications for admission.
“Students will gain an insight into how it fits into the context of newspapers and the role of the sports journalist within society. Investigative journalism will be encouraged,” said course tutor Ben Carrington.
Specifically, students will learn how to compile match reports, interviews and colour features using various media, in class and during work experience attachments which are a course requirement.
So far, links have been established with various local press, The Observer’s monthly sports magazine, OSM, and BBC Sport. It is hoped that students will use their initiative to extend their placements beyond the course.
By Emma Lindsey