Writing news articles
In this Web Skills module on writing news articles you will find out what news is, what is news worthy, learn how to structure a news story and how we can help you.
You can find lots of examples of good news articles on the main College News site.
Writing news menu
1. What is news?
A good news story, with good news value,s has one or all of the following:
- Human Interest – this matters to someone I know.
- New – we didn’t know this before.
- Timely – why are you telling me now?
- Quirky or surprising – doesn’t happen all the time.
- Controversial - causes debate.
2. The five ‘W’s of a news story
3. The inverse pyramid of news
- Overall length of the article and page layout.
- Paragraph and sentence length.
- Plan your teaser and summary
- Constructing the story - what looks good, will you use; pull quotes, subheadings, the side bar content for background info, additional photos or multimedia, slideshows, and links?
- Write your story in a word document first
- Quote an named person.
- Use pictures of something or someone.
- Use plain English.
- Stay active. Active - Dr Jones is using this equipment to study malaria. Passive - 'Malaria was studied using this equipment' or 'This equipment was used to study malaria'.
- Stay positive - say what you’re doing, not what you’re not doing!
- Someone in unconscious , not that someone is not conscience.
- Link to external sites.
- Link to related Imperial stories.
- Go on too long.
- Use heavy graphs and charts.
- Use Jargonand abbreviations (TLAs)!
Too many adjectives. Avoid using brilliant, excellent, etc. Use the quotes and facts in your reported text to demonstrate to the reader what is excellent about it – let them reach their own conclusion.
4. What if it’s not very newsworthy?
5. Uploading news
You can find out how to upload news by following the instructions on the Uploading News Web Skills module.
6. Need more help?
- Digital Image library (photos).
- iMedia library (audio and video).
- Add to social media .
- Get featured on the Homepage.
- Get featured on your Faculty theme page by contacting your Faculty Web Officer.
- Is it worth external media attention? Ask the Research Communications team.
- Find out how to upload your news story.