Universitat Internacional de Catalunya

Professional English for Journalism 1

Professional English for Journalism 1
First semester
Main language of instruction: English

Teaching staff



The subject 'Professional English for Journalism I' consists of two parts in which both corporate journalism and television journalism will be put into practice.

Pre-course requirements

Knowledge of English language. Use of the audiovisual and editing material available at the university.


This subject is aimed at preparing  students for the Newsrooms and be able to write and edit in formal English under the pressure of time. The subject addresses two of the most critical points that a journalist is expected to have: critical thinking and production skills. This is why the subject's case studies are closely tied to the media industry. So not only will you be practicing your writing and editing skills, but you will also develop a high level of critical thinking on topics that affect journalism in a direct way.


  • 01 CG - Capacity for self-evaluation and professional order
  • 02 CG - The ability to learn and act an autonomously and responsibly
  • 03 CG - The ability to work in a group
  • 15 CE - Lingustic ability in Catalan, Spanish and English
  • 17 CE - The ability to produce spoken and written texts for journalistic projects
  • 55 CE - The ability to skillfully handle English terminology related to the journalistic profession

Learning outcomes

Students will have to be able to produce a news report in English. All the final content will have to be written and prepared in different groups. Good use of journalistic language in English will be taken into account, as well as the final result of the product in terms of image.



Session 1: Guidelines for writing texts for television                  

This will be an introducing session to this part of the subject where the students will also revise the guidelines for written texts for television. They will view some examples of the different kinds of formats from BBC, CNN, etc. and will also go over the television language glossary and the use of the 5 W’s.

Session 2: The Stand Up

In this session, the students will go in depth into the theorical and practical details of the Stand Up. Some examples will be shown so that they can take on the challenge to put it into practice during the class. The students will also discuss about the differences between the live connection and a false live connection.

Session 3: The news report 1

In this class, the students will go over the guidelines to produce a news report for televisionDivided in groups, the teacher will give them a B-roll regarding an issue that will  be unveiled during the class. After revising the footage they will have to shoot the voxpops, they will be required to write the text and finally edit the news report in the computer.

Session 4: The news report 2

In this case, the students will have to shoot all the material to produce the news report (B-roll, voxpops and stand up). The only material the teacher will give them is a real press release regarding a current new that will be the theme of the news report. In this session the students will also be divided in groups.

Session 5: The live connection

The mis en scène of live connections will be the main theme of this session. Students will revise the different parts of this format, nowadays one of the most common in television. What to say? How to say it? This will be the key points to discuss before the students go outside to record their live connections as if they were working for a prime time news programme. 

Session 6: The live connection with an interwiew included

This session aims to go further in the field of the live connections. For that purpose, it will offer the students the challenge to include an interview in this format. They will watch some examples and they will have to record a live connection pretending they are interviewing a VIP, a very common situation in some news programmes, specially in case of breaking news.

Session 7: Presenting

Here, the students will become TV presenters for one day and they will go in depth into this part of the television journalism. Which is the role of the TV presenters nowadays? What do they say? And how they say it? These and some other points will be debated in the class before the students go to the studio to practice their skills with the teleprompter.

Session 8: Screening

This will be a screening session to revise and discuss the practices of the days before (news reports, live connections, etc.) and to introduce the students to the use of the Videowall to explain the news.

Session 9: The Video Wall

Practice session about how to explain the news through a Video Wall setup. The students, in pairs, will create their own slideshow taking a news story as a starting-point.

Session 10: On-screen graphics

In this session, the students will discuss the importance and the convenience of the on-screen graphics for television. They will watch some different examples by international media outlets and after this they will write on-screen graphics for a news programme.

Session 11: Final practice

The students are divided into groups and they must produce a news programme of 5-6 minutes which will include:

  • A summary
  • Two news reports
  • A live connection
  • Float

This final practice will have two presenters and will represent the 40% of the final assessment of this part of the subject.

Session 12: Postproduction of the final practice

The students will be required to finish the postproduction of the final practice. They can edit the programme if necessary and add the on-screen graphics in case they did not do it live. The final practice must be submitted before the class ends.

Session 13: Screening of the final practices

Screening of the final practices, final assessment and discussion of the results with the students.

Teaching and learning activities

In person

This subject is divided into thirteen sessions where the students will put their television skills into practice from a very practical point of view. Nine sessions are based on practice (2 News report, Stand up, Live connection, Live connection with interview, Presenting, Video Wall, On-screen graphics and Final practice).

They will shoot, write, and produce a news programme and they will have the opportunity to discuss their own work. The main objective is to improve their knowledge on editing texts for different television formats and to put them into practice properly both in front of and behind the camera.

If students reach an average mark in all of the nine sessions they do not have to pass a test. If they do no then they will have to pass a writing exam. To be evaluated they must attend at least 7 of the 9 practice sessions and the work must be submitted within the deadline set by the teachers.

Coaching. Monitoring how students learn the content of the subject, either individually or in groups. In the coaching sessions, mistakes will be corrected, queries answered, and exercises and activities to achieve the established objectives will be suggested. 0.8
Seminar. This activity will consist of taking an in-depth look at specific up-to-date topics in a monographic manner-in some cases these topics will have been debated socially-, via active work in small groups. 0,6
Practical workshop. A highly practical working activity, where students can acquire skills that are practical or also theoretical (intellectual skills, logical skills, critical skills, intellectual learning skills, study skills, quoting skills, etc). 0,6
Lectures. In lectures, lecturers/professors not only transmit content or knowledge, but also, and above all else, attitudes, motivation, skills and values, etc. They also ensure that participants can express their opinions and arguments to the other students. 2,0

Evaluation systems and criteria

In person

The final evaluation of this subject is distributed according to the criterion: 25% of the note will of corporate journalism and 75% of the part of the television. They must have passed both parts with a minimum of 5 to make the average of the final grade.

Part 1:

There will be five practices, and each will contribute 20% of the final grade. Keep in mind: even if four or fewer practices are given, the average mark will be based on the total number of assigned practices. Therefore, the student is spected to understand that not delivering one or more practices may adversely affect his final mark.

Part 2:

There are 9 practices along the course:

  1. Part 1 (1 point)
  2. Stand-up individually (0.5 points)
  3. Part 2 (1 point)
  4. Direct (1 point)
  5. Live with respondent (0.5 points)
  6. Presentation (1 point)
  7. Videowall (0.5)
  8. Labeling - Chyrons (0.5 points)
  9. End information (4 points) MANDATORY 

The final practice will consist of a 6-minute information including:

  • 2 presenters
  • 2 "directos"
  • 1 "sumario"
  • 2 "piezas"
  • "colas" to be recordered

Keep in mind:

All material must be recorded by students.
If students reach an average mark of 5 they will pass the first call. Those who do not pass this part must submit an audiovisual work proposed by English teachers.
To be evaluated they must have completed a minimum of 8 of the 9 practices and filed within the time limit set by teachers.
Students who for good reasons can not attend any of the practical classes must submit proof within a maximum period of one week. If proof meets the requirements set by the university to be admitted, the practice in question is not included to the average grade for the course.
All students should appear in final practice speaking in English. That is, some will be presenters, some may do the "directos" and others may do the "piezas".
The final practice is compulsory. Students who despite having a proof won't come to class that day must submit a supplementary audiovisual work that will require a preparation of 4 hours.

Bibliography and resources

FERNÁNADEZ, F.; MARTÍNEZ, J. Manual básico de lenguaje y narrativa audiovisual. Paidós Comunicación. HART, J.

FERNÁNDEZ DÍEZ, Federico y MARTÍNEZ ABADÍA, José. La dirección de producción en cine y televisión. Ed. Piados. Papeles de Comunicación nº 3. Barcelona, 1999 (producció)

GARCÍA AVILÉS, Alberto. El periodismo audiovisual ante la convergencia digital. Ed. Universidad de Alicante 2006

GONZÁLEZ REQUENA, Jesús. El discurso televisivo: espectáculo de la modernidad. Ed. Cátedra. Madrid, 1999

MARTÍNEZ ABADÍA, José. Introducción a la tecnología audiovisual. Ed. Paidos Comunicación (2ª edición). Barcelona,

MILLA, Ramón. La realitat “en directe”. Realització d’Informatius diaris a Televisió. Ed. Pórtic. Eines de periodista. Barcelona, 2000 ( realització)