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16th March 2009, 11:49am
Award for broadcast journalism training
University Students The School of Journalism at the University of Lincoln is making headlines after scooping a national award for the way it teaches broadcast students journalism skills.

The BA Journalism course has won the Broadcast Journalism Training Council’s (BJTC’s) Award for Innovation in Broadcast Journalism Training. The award recognises the growing emphasis on community journalism in the radio elements of the course.

Lincoln’s broadcast journalism students produce regular news bulletins and features for the city’s community radio station, Siren FM, which is based on the University campus.  They are also expected to find and report on original stories from the various communities in Lincoln.

The BA Journalism broadcast teaching team includes current and former BBC radio journalists and presenters: BBC Lincolnshire’s Rod Whiting; Maggie Curtis, who is on secondment from the BBC as Siren’s Communities Editor for one year; and BBC News Correspondent Barnie Choudhury. Visiting lecturers, including senior journalists from Lincs FM, BBC Five Live, Kerrang Radio and the BBC World Service, also offer their expertise to the students.

Deborah Wilson, formerly a full-time BBC journalist and broadcaster, is Programme Leader for Journalism at the University of Lincoln.

She said: “The grounding in community journalism which we offer our students teaches them the essential skills they need for a career in the industry. They are expected to source, produce and present their own local news stories to a live audience – with all the pressure that brings. It can be a difficult balancing act, as this more experimental work must not compromise the mainstream training necessary to maintain the course’s BJTC accreditation. This award was only able to happen because of the talent, commitment and drive of all those involved in teaching on the BA Journalism programme, plus the willing cooperation and support of Siren FM staff and volunteers.”

Representatives from the Lincoln School of Journalism and Siren FM will collect the honour at the BJTC awards ceremony on 25 March.

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