ECU and WA Police working together to give students a cutting edge
Thursday, 26 August 2010
Journalism students interviewing detectives outside the mock courtroom
Journalism students from ECU’s School of Communication and Arts have joined budding detectives from the WA Police Detective Training School in a joint initiative to give trainee journalists and detectives real-life experience.
The program, first held in May and again in June this year, saw groups of 10 journalism students attend the Police Academy in Joondalup to work as a competitive media pack, interrogating detectives as they emerged from the Academy’s mock court.
Detectives also presented evidence gathered as part of the mock crime investigation, allowing students to fine tune their court reporting skills while listening to the presentation of the facts.
Senior lecturer in journalism, Dr Kayt Davies is excited about the collaboration, which exposes student journalists and detectives to realistic crime investigations and creates a high pressure setting in which students and journalists learn how to ask and answer questions effectively.
“The program is mutually beneficial, testing students to see if they have the ability to ask the tough questions and creating real life situations for detectives, who are asked to speak to the media on a regular basis.
“It also gives students experience in working in a media pack, and teaches them how to raise their voice and make their questions heard.”
ECU journalism student, Roxanne Taylor, thoroughly enjoyed the program.
“It gave us experience in taking notes in a court room situation and in asking relevant questions that would give us a good angle for a news article.”
The next program will take place in November, with journalism students teaming up with detectives to cover a mock case complete with a crime scene, actors hired to play witnesses and victims with students interviewing detectives at the crime scene as opposed to outside the courtroom.
For more information on the program, contact Dr Kayt Davies on firstname.lastname@example.org.