Legal training for BBC journalists wins award

Industrial and Commercial Training

ISSN: 0019-7858

Article publication date: 13 June 2008



(2008), "Legal training for BBC journalists wins award", Industrial and Commercial Training, Vol. 40 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Legal training for BBC journalists wins award

Article Type: Notes and news From: Industrial and Commercial Training, Volume 40, Issue 4.

Training to ensure that all BBC journalists and relevant production staff have an appropriate understanding of the law won the Online Solution of the Year prize at the World of Learning awards.

The course features scenarios that center around five key legal areas: defamation, contempt of court, reporting of sexual offences, reporting of youth crime and copyright. The scenarios present a succession of fictional “breaking” stories, ranging from alleged local-council corruption and a famous novelist accused of beating up a night-club bouncer to an MP's revelations in parliament about a local doctor who is ripping off care-home patients. Learners are asked to choose how to report the story as the scenario unfolds. In each scenario learners are offered three or four choices, which may include more than one correct answer - the philosophy of “controlled risk”.

The course, presented by Nicky Campbell and Anita Dhiri, from This Life, provides video feedback that is tailored to the choices an individual learner makes in each scenario. The result weaves together textual learning content with video, audio, stills and animated sequences.

The original identified target audience for the course was more than 9,000 journalists. Since its launch in September 2006, more than 11,000 users have started the course and more than 8,500 have completed all modules.

The judges were looking for an online solution that made a significant impact on users' performance and showed measurable results. On the winning entry, they commented:

The BBC was challenged to implement a training program to ensure that all journalists and relevant production staff had an appropriate understanding of the law, while raising the confidence of staff to continue to make challenging programming. The solution demonstrated clear measurable results in increasing understanding and confidence, through a slick, professional and engaging program.

The training was jointly produced with Line Communications, whose senior project manager Fiona Partington commented:

Following the success of the editorial-policy training course we developed in 2005, we were delighted to be asked to develop another such high-profile project for the BBC. Working with the BBC is always an excellent experience - it is committed to the creation of a rich learning experience and trusts Line to help to create it.

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