Google has extended its support for an online learning scheme aimed at helping working journalists to improve their skills.
The Google News Initiative has given further backing to the Journalism Skills Academy, launched in October last year by the National Council for the Training of Journalists.
Centred on an e-learning platform, the academy delivers training activities including courses, refresher sessions and the NCTJ’s qualifications via an interactive distance learning programme.
The NCTJ says Google’s continued support will enable it to “scale up its training offer and to promote and market the JSA to relevant audiences”.
Matt Cooke, pictured, head of Google News Lab, said: “We’re supporting the NCTJ to build their new digital hub for learning – removing the need for resources to be posted, and providing training opportunities for journalists across the country.”
As part of the expansion, the NCTJ’s Level 5 Diploma in Journalism qualification has now launched on the e-learning platform, enabling distance learners to undertake their studies online for the first time.
All new distance learners will be enrolled on the JSA, and existing learners will be given the option to transfer to the interactive and multimedia online study materials.
The NCTJ has also this month appointed Christina Borg to the new position of Journalism Skills Academy manager.
Will Gore, the NCTJ’s head of partnerships and projects, said: “The Journalism Skills Academy is a vital element of the NCTJ’s ongoing evolution, enabling us to meet the rapidly changing needs of the journalism sector.
“The ongoing support of the Google News Initiative means we can now scale up and further improve our training offer across a wide range of topics, and for a broad array of audiences.
“For 70 years, the NCTJ has been synonymous with excellence in professional journalism training.
“The JSA will make our qualifications and our training more accessible than ever, encouraging new talent into our industry, and providing the thousands of talented individuals already working as journalists with opportunities to enhance old skills and develop new ones.
“We are enormously grateful to Google, and especially to Matt Cooke, for sharing our vision for the JSA, and we look forward to seeing the project go from strength to strength.”