The difficulty in reporting diversity: Training journalists to see outside the stereotype

Walker, Richard and Stanfield, Deborah (2012) The difficulty in reporting diversity: Training journalists to see outside the stereotype. In: 24th Annual NZCA (New Zealand Communication Association) Conference: Divergence, 26-27 November, 2012, Hamilton, New Zealand.

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One of the challenges of teaching journalism is preparing students with the skills to engage with a wide diversity of people. Reporting diversity presents a problem for mainstream media, which inevitably brings its own preconceptions to the stories it tells however there is increasing expectation in society that we value and include people whose voices have not been previously/traditionally heard. This piece of research seeks to evaluate the experience of fourteen third year Wintec Media Arts students who interviewed people living with intellectual disabilities. The opportunity arose when Community Living, a Waikato-based organisation that supports people with intellectual disabilities, was looking to have its stories told. Students were briefed by Community Living staff, and then required to set up an interview, conduct the interview, and write the story. The students were members of a feature writing class in which all but one of the students were also studying journalism. The interview subjects were people supported by Community Living, a non-profit partner of Wintec. The initial stage of this research project involves surveying the students who wrote the features with the view of gaining further understanding of their experience; the extent to which they were challenged by interviewing people with intellectual disabilities, the extent to which the preparation helped, and their feelings about the results. This research project aims at an improved teaching of diversity to journalism students and represents a beginning collaboration between the Schools of Media Arts, and Health and Social Practice which is hoped to provide a platform for future discussion of joint teaching/learning opportunities for students.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects:H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions:Schools > School of Media Arts
Schools > School of Social Development
ID Code:2370
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Deposited On:18 Feb 2013 04:56
Last Modified:04 Apr 2013 21:47

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