Manual on child-friendly reporting produced
The training course on ‘Reporting Children’ will be integrated into the curriculum for undergraduate students of journalism at the Tbilisi State University and at the Caucasus School of Journalism and Media Management
TBILISI. 8 April. 2008. A practice-based training manual on “Reporting Children” was prepared based on the close collaboration between UNICEF and the Tbilisi State University. The manual is designed for students and teachers of the faculties of journalism as well as for media professionals.
The training manual and the relevant course on ‘Reporting Children’ will be integrated into the curriculum for undergraduate students of journalism at the Tbilisi State University and at the Caucasus School of Journalism and Media Management.
"Reporting on children’s issues requires specific knowledge and understanding of international standards",said Giovanna Barberis, UNICEF Representative in Georgia.“I would like to express our gratitude to the Tbilisi State University and the Caucasus School of Journalism and Media Management for the fruitful collaboration and partnership we had while working on the manual and the training course”, said Giovanna Barberis, UNICEF Representative in Georgia. “Reporting on children’s issues requires specific knowledge and understanding of international standards. We have to carefully analyse each word or phrase in the way they may affect the whole life of a child and everything we say about children should go through additional scrutiny and consideration. I do hope that the training course on reporting children will help rising a new generation of journalists with a high sense of responsibility and professionalism”, added Barberis.
The manual is based on the handbook for media professionals “The Media and Children’s Rights” developed by UNICEF, in collaboration with the MediaWise Trust, a UK based media ethics organization. The draft training manual was designed by Mike Jempson, Director of the MediaWise Trust, in partnership with University teachers and media experts.
In order to adapt the manual to local needs, a working group of professors from Tbilisi State University, and the Caucasus School of Journalism and Media Management, was set up. The group worked on a final training curriculum that combines conventional formal lectures, ‘homework’ exercises, classroom based practical exercises, and seminars, allowing students and tutors to link theory and practice through brief presentations and discussions. It employs a ‘learning by doing’ approach, encouraging active participation through story development and research exercises, role-playing, games, and media analysis.
The manual consists of three publications - guidelines for teachers, manual for students and case studies.
The Students’ manual intends to strengthen journalists’ understanding of children’s rights and to suggest how the issue can generate news stories and features for print and broadcast media. The Guidelines for Teachers combines special teaching instructions, expertises, tests, handouts, homework assignments and role plays for the practical exercises and seminars. The case studies analyses the examples of reporting on children to trigger further discussion around ethical norms and standards.