18.10.2011 - UNESCO

UNESCO Model Curricula for Journalism Education discussed at workshop in Tehran

Participants of the workshop in Tehran, group discussion - © UNESCO/Arya G. Usis

Competencies required by journalists to carry out their duty properly should be considered as one of the most important elements in designing curricula for journalism education. Failing this could lead to unsatisfactory performance by graduates of journalism schools when they start their professional career as journalists. That was one of the main conclusions agreed upon by participants of a workshop on the UNESCO Model Curricula for Journalism Education in Tehran earlier this month.

More than 20 Iranian lecturers in the field of communication and journalism participated in one-day discussion on journalism education, organized by UNESCO’s Tehran Office in partnerships with the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) and IRNA’s School of Media Studies. The event, which took place on 7 October 2011, was facilitated by Zulkarimein Nasution, a senior lecturer at the University of Indonesia in Jakarta.

“Every step to review or re-design curricula should start from defining the competencies as clear as possible,” stated Mr Nasution, who had conducted similar discussions in other countries, including the very recent one in Kabul, Afghanistan, last month. For example, if one of the defined competencies is to enable students to write news fast but engagingly, the curricula should consist of lessons that will guide them towards this goal.

Other conclusions formulated at the workshop included the need to prepare teaching materials that are in line with the Iranian context and to produce a list of references by Iranian journalism experts. Participants also expressed their interest in getting involved in future follow-up activities, like those that would explore a real application of the UNESCO Model Curricula in Iranian journalism schools and journalism training institutions.

The workshop in Tehran was an important highlight of UNESCO’s programmes in the field of communication and information in Iran. It also opened further opportunities to engage more scholars, academics and lecturers from other Iranian universities and journalism training institutions in taking a closer look at the current curricula applied in journalism education in the country. Participants received the Farsi version of the UNESCO Model Curricula accompanied by a CD-ROM, which were produced prior to the workshop

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