Moving Closer to the Journalism Occupational Qualification

The South African National Editors Forum (SANEF) in partnership with frayintermedia oversaw the first workshop aimed at developing assessments for a new journalism occupational qualification. The workshop took place on Friday and Saturday, April 20 and 21 at Media24 Offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

By the end of the year SANEF will have a complete package for entry-level journalists, school-leavers who wish to pursue a career in journalism.

The two-day workshop brought together 20 seasoned journalists, media experts and journalism trainers to contribute to the development of the national assessment standards.

The process is funded by the Fibre Processing and Manufacturing (FP&M) Seta and quality assured by the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO).

“I am pleased with the level of participation so far. We are inviting experienced media practitioners and editors to attend upcoming meetings and contribute based on their experience. It is only in consultation with practitioners that the skills gaps in our newsrooms can be addressed,” SANEF Chairperson of Education and Training Sub-committee Tshamano Makhadi said.

The workshop follows the official registration of the journalist occupational qualification with the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA). The new journalism qualification takes the fundamental journalism skills needed in modern newsroom environment to produce a qualification that meets the needs of the sector.

The qualification is at NQF level 5 and 6 and is aimed at entry-level journalists, school-leavers who wish to pursue a career in journalism, graduates who lack newsroom experience or experienced journalists working in converged newsrooms. It will enable journalists to create stories for radio, television, print and online using text, video, still images and sound.

Part of the learning process will include work based skills development, during which learners will be placed in newsrooms to gain real-life experience.

SANEF urges experts, including senior journalists, news editors and media trainers to participate in future workshops and meetings during the course of 2018 and help define and uphold standards for journalism education.

The FP&M Seta also urges the industry to take advantage of this opportunity to contribute.

By the end of the year, SANEF will have a complete package with learners’ study guide and workbook, a facilitator guide, national external integrated summative assessment (EISA) tools and a registered learnership.

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