English 301

News Writing and Editing

Journalism is a field of mystery: How do reporters work? What do they write about and how? What goes into investigating, interviews, writing and editing? In this course, students will learn key concepts of the field from an award-winning journalist who has worked in the local, regional, national and international print media industry for a decade. The course offers instruction and practice in writing and editing copy for digital and print publications.


Students will first learn about the First Amendment, press freedoms and libel law and move into techniques used in interviewing, composing, editing and publishing. Students will report on stories in a variety of news beats, including the police, courts and town government, as well as feature stories and breaking news. Students will research story ideas, compose and edit, as well as learn tips and tricks required for publication.


Students will be able to evaluate news sources and other students’ writing for libel, plagiarism, objectivity and fairness of coverage. They will produce articles for the course using the ability to determine the most effective and efficient sources of information, including interviewees, electronic databases and public records. Workshopping and free-writing will be required.