The 1997 'top ten' survey : students' views of what makes news
journal contributionposted on 1998-12-01, 00:00 authored by R Patching, Martin Hirst
Have you ever wondered how journalism students learn to differentiate the 'important' story from the daily dross that journalism inevitably throws up? We have. This paper examines the choices journalism students make when they're asked to nominate a 'top ten' from a finite list of stories. It suggests the possible news values they apply to their selection of the ten 'best' stories over a 12 month period. As a second measure of ability to comprehend and apply news values we also examine the students' ability to correctly locate countries on a map: a test of their 'political geography'. We offer some tentative conclusions about our students' willingness to engage with the 'difficult' stories about politics and economics, rather than the 'easy shot' news of celebrities, disasters and sporting heroes.