Study Publishing and Journalism by Distance Learning for a career in the publishing industry
COURSE STRUCTURE AND CONTENT
Course Duration: 900 hours.
Start Date: Start at any time - study at a pace that suits you, and with full tutor support for the duration of your studies.
Content: The course requires the successful completion of seven Modules plus a 200 hour Workplace (Industry) Project. The Modules are: Office Practices, Business Operations, Management, Marketing Foundations, Publishing I, Freelance Writing, and Editing I.
The Modules are summarised below. Further details may be accessed by clicking on the links in the titles for each.
Office Practices VBS102
For a business to function correctly on a day to day basis, it is vital that offices and departments operate efficiently, with well- motivated staff who can provide the appropriate support for the business. This 8 lesson module looks at core areas which contribute to the smooth running of an office. Lessons include verbal and instant communications – face to face, inter-employee and with clients, and electronically; written communications – such as the writing of business letters and reports, and memorandums; the use of electronic mediums – organising data, and use of software; how to make the best use of office space; health and safety considerations. This module will provide the student with practical skills and knowledge that they can apply directly to their work.
Business Operations VBS006
Through 6 lessons, this module aims to provide the student with the building blocks in business planning and operations. The module covers areas of business law, finance and financial management, business planning, and mistakes to avoid in business. The module is driven from a financial perspective as this is primarily what business is about – making the investment, planning the financial outlay balanced against expected income, and making a profit on your activities. The process of considering a business from a financial and operational perspective, coupled with students developing a (real or hypothetical) business plan will focus the student on the key areas which enable a business to maintain viability.
A lack of good management can seriously impact upon the viability of a company or enterprise. This 7 lesson module explores the facets that contribute towards good management. Students will consider the structures of different organisations and look at different theories and practices of management. Managers will face different challenges and the module will take them through different styles of management and how to address, resolve, and act upon problems. From taking the decision to employ the people most suited to roles and the company culture, to determining the best ways to managing staff, this module aims to provide a complete overview of the critical elements of management.
Marketing Foundations VBS109
Marketing Foundations is a 10 lesson module which seeks to provide the student with a broad range of knowledge in marketing. The module looks at the what marketing is and how it works, with lessons explaining the different types of market, the importance of understanding a market place, and the marketing mix – the primary elements of product (features of the product or service), place (where the product or service is made available to customers), price (how much customers will pay for the product), and promotion (how customers find out about the product). Knowledge in these areas will be critical to the success or failure of a venture. Also understanding how to get to know your customers is important, and two lessons – on Customer Service and Market Research – provide students with the guidance of how to gather, asses and use information in these areas. The module is completed with a lesson on business organisations, looking at law, financial management, business structures, and the terminology used in business.
Publishing I BWR107
This 10 lesson module will provide students with a solid introduction to the publishing industry. Students will look at different publishing techniques as well as studying different types of publishing. They will also learn about the evaluation of content – what sorts of illustration or graphical content is necessary or appropriate for inclusion in a publication. As well as research and marketing, the module also includes a lesson looking at the impact of ethics and the law and how a publisher will need to be aware of relevant factors. The module is concluded with a publishing project which will provide students with the opportunity to apply their learning from this module.
Freelance Writing BWR102
This 10 lesson module will familiarise students with the writing industry and equip them with the knowledge of how to go about approaching potential clients for work, and the processes involved in the publishing industry. As well as developing quality and accuracy of students writing, the module looks at the process of planning what to write – from a concept, through to the synopsis, the actual writing process, and referencing. Students will complete lessons on writing for different types of publication and applications, such as newspapers, magazines, books, and advertising. The module concludes with the student reviewing their work before embarking on a project to plan and produce a written manuscript.
Editing I BWR106
This module provides students with an introduction to editing. Through 8 lessons, the module considers what the role of editing is, what tools are used, and how it fits in with publishing. Students will consider what constitutes clear writing and the use of correct spelling, punctuation, grammar and so on. They will look at how to assess manuscripts, what they should be looking for and what form their relationship takes with the author of a document. The module then focuses specifically on the editing process and what is involved with editing a document, proof reading it and checking final proofs before printing/publishing.
To complete this qualification, you are also required to complete a workplace project lasting 200 hours.
There are 4 options available to you to satisfy this requirement. The options will be different dependent upon whether or not you currently work within the industry. The project can be work experience, voluntary experience, a project you carry out, other training you have already undertaken and there are other options. Don’t worry if you are not sure how to proceed at this stage, as your tutor will be there to discuss how to proceed and help you every step of the way.
WRITING IS A BUSINESS
Successful writers often need to also be successful business men or women.
You must use common business practices in order for your business to be successful and to provide you with a good income. Things you need to consider include:
- How to create an image; writers like any other business need to create a brand. The brand in this instance is the writer themselves. The writer needs to have exposure. You can achieve this through networking with potential clients, your peers and through blogs and social media pages. It is important to always project a very sharp and professional image.
- See everything you write as an opportunity to generate income. You may have had a moment of inspiration, for example, and then written an article that could be of use to one of your contacts.
- See opportunities as they arise – this may not necessarily be more work. An opportunity may also be the possibility of generating more income in the future. A good writer will develop a good reputation and use this reputation to gain references and recommendations, which in turn will generate more income into the future.
- When you run any business you have to have consistent output. If you were running a shoe store (for example) you wouldn’t open the door to the public only when you felt like it, or when you need money to pay your bills – you would go broke in a very short time! The same principles of business apply to writing as a professional – don’t open the shop only when you want to generate income, you must consistently generate new work, establish new contacts and approach established ones with your work.
- Keep abreast of what is happening in the writing world. Read blogs generated by your peers. Try to attend seminars and conferences attended by your peers. Knowledge of what is happening in the writing world can give you an edge – it will also inform you if certain publications are going out of print or going broke. It will give you an idea of what is selling, what isn’t and what the latest trends are. It also gives you an opportunity to network and further develop new possibilities.
- Be organised – being disorganised can cost you income. Keep records of when, how and who you did work for and the type of work that was accepted by each of them; you can then look back over your records at any time to determine who you can submit work to, and how much you are likely to receive in payment.
- How to minimize your income tax - there are many things you can claim as a writer - make sure that you are aware of what these are and that you keep receipts, travel logs etc. as required by the tax office.
- Learn how to be a debt collector - don’t sit back and allow non-payers get away with it. Be prepared to follow up non-payments and be ruthless enough to send a solicitor’s letter if needed. Remember always that at the end of the day you are running a business.
- Understand the importance of marketing and improving your work. As we said in the title of this chapter, “Not all Professional Writing is Profitable”, but you as a writer can do something to change that – whether you are a paid author or a self-published one. If you are a paid writer, the speed and quality of your writing can bring you more paid work. For a self-published writer, the more you work on marketing your work and improving your work, the more you can potentially sell.
Once you are established as a writer, you can start to become more selective about the work you take on. Spending many hours each day working for low pay rates making just enough to pay your bills, can burn you out. Having the confidence to reject some assignments (once you have established a network of work contacts) can be to your advantage. This is particularly true if the rate of pay for the work you do take on is also higher for the amount of output required.
How the Advanced Certificate is Assessed
The Advanced Certificate In Applied Management (Publishing And Journalism) requires approximately 900 hours of study. It is made up of seven 100 hour modules and a workplace project lasting 200 hours
To pass the course:–
1. Pass all assignments on the seven 100 hour modules. There will be an assignment at the end of each lesson to submit to your tutor for marking and feedback.
2. Pass eight examinations – one on each module. These are usually taken at the end of the module and can be arranged at a time and location to suit you.
3. Complete a Workplace Project. The project should last around 100 hours. There are four options available to you to satisfy this requirement. Don’t worry if you are not sure at this stage, your tutor will be there to help you every step of the way. This includes evidence of work experience or other studies or workshops, a research project or completion of Workshop I.
This qualification is accredited by IARC
If you are not ready to study for the Advanced Certificate In Applied Management (Publishing And Journalism), then each of the modules are available to study as a course in their own right.
THE ADVANTAGES OF STUDYING WITH ACS
- You can start the course at any time and study at your own pace.
- Fit your studies around your own busy lifestyle - we provide full tutor support for all the time you are studying.
- Study where you want to - online studies offer the flexibility for you to determine where and when you study.
WHY SHOULD YOU STUDY THIS COURSE?
- Keep ahead of your competition - your professional writing skills are nurtured and developed throughout the course.
- You learn about the whole industry - by studying with us you are laying a foundation to develop more specialised skills if you so choose.
- Writers are both employed (e.g. by publishers or advertising companies), and work freelance - this course will help you how to approach different roles.
- Learn how to market your own business or freelance services.
Go to “It’s Easy to Enrol” box at the top of the page and enrol now.
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