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MCH8061 : Professional Subediting & Design

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr David Baines
  • Lecturer: Mr Ian Wylie
  • Owning School: Arts & Cultures
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


To give students an advanced insight into the purpose and practice of developing and maintaining a house style and of the ethical implications of the process.
To give students an advanced ability to edit material intended for publication for a variety of print and new media publications.
To develop an advanced ability to engage audiences with a publication through the synthesis of content and form.

This module introduces students to editorial production processes in print and new media.
It develops the skills of copy-editing, proof reading and the production of clear, concise, accurate and ethical news, features, and other newspaper, magazine and website content, combined with functional and engaging design. A critical awareness of key ethical issues relating to the representation and inclusion of diverse groups is integral to the curriculum.

Outline Of Syllabus

The curriculum may include but is not limited to:
• Working methods and developing house styles
• Editing news, features and other content
• Writing headlines
• Using photographs and art
• Elements of newspaper and magazine design
• Integrating design and content
• Legal and ethical aspects of editing and design

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1167:00167:00Preparing assessments
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00Learning consolidation. On campus but can be delivered online if required
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical112:0022:00Putting learning into practice in editing and design. On campus but can be delivered online.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The materials provided for research and reading introduce and develop concepts, knowledge and skills involved in the editorial production process and the identification of and engagement with diverse audiences.

The lectures further explore and consolidate knowledge skills and understandings introduced in the lecture materials.

The workshops provide students with the opportunity to develop and practice the professional skills and creativity required to prepare material for publication and design and produce a publication and to prepare their assessments.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M45Exercise is in three equally-weighted sections: a) 10 international 'news briefs'; b) Edited news report; c) Edited news feature.
Design/Creative proj2A40Redesigning a newspaper, supplement or magazine
Report2A15Reflective report on redesign, 750 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The three editing assessments allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills relating to the preparation of copy for publication and audience engagement and their ability to recognise and resolve concerns relating to professional competencies and ethical practice. The design-creative project consists of a redesign of a chosen publication and allows students to demonstrate an understanding of and ability to synthesise content and form effectively to engage and inform their audience. The reflexive report allows the student to demonstrate their ability to contextualise their practice conceptually within the field.

Assessment 1 (a, b, c) (45% - each element is equally weighted): (K2; S1)
Three sub-editing exercises: The student is given raw copy containing errors of fact, grammar and spelling and material raising ethical issues and is to edit it to length and to render it suitable for publication.
Part (a) is a series of international reports to be edited into a series of 50-word ‘briefs’ with headlines; Part (b) is a substantial news report featuring multiple sources;
Part (c) is a substantial feature on a controversial subject.

Assessment 2 (40%): K1; K3; S2; S4; S5
Redesigning a 4-page tabloid-format newspaper supplement or seven-page magazine format for a new audience.
The project allows students to demonstrate their ability to synthesise textual content and design elements in a manner which engages a specific audience.

Assessment 3: A Critical reflexive Report (15%) (K4; S3; S5; S6)
This analysis and evaluation on the redesign 750 words)allows students critically to situate and conceptualise their own practice within the field.

Reading Lists