Why has the NCTJ changed its name?

News reaches me through the feeds – that multistrand thism of knowledge – that the NCTJ are creating a new arm called the  ‘Journalism Qualifications Board’. For those outside the UK the NCTJ is the National council for the training of Journalists (newspaper).

The new board will bring together…

the NCTJ’s chief examiners for each of its journalism disciplines – newspaper journalism, public affairs, media law, shorthand, photography, sports journalism, sub-editing and video/online journalism.

It’s going to be led by ex Glasgow Evening Times editor Donald Martin who has big plans.

“I want this board to take a completely fresh look at the structure, content and assessment of journalism qualifications we offer to ensure they continue to meet the demands of modern newsrooms.

But in the absence of, say, anyone from the PTC or the BJTC it’s effectively still the NCTJ. So why the name change?

There is no doubt that many newspaper editors hold the NCTJ qualifications close to their hearts as a defining part of newspaper training. The NCTJ even describe themselves as “administering training to journalists, reporters and photographers for the UK newspaper industry”. So could it be that the NCTJ brand has become so ubiquitous with newspapers that they needed to re-brand to stay relevent .

Or could it simply be that the NCTJ are looking to ‘own’ journalism qualifications in the UK and this is their way of (not so subtly) parking their presses on the training lawn.

Of ocurse, as is my modus operandi this week, I will be reserving judgement. But I’d be interested in what others involved in J-schools here in the UK think.

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