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Video Journalism


Admission requirements

Required course(s):



In this introductory course in video journalism, we approach the topic from a theoretical and a practical perspective.

In the theoretical part, students will explore the ins and outs of (video) news, in terms of newsworthiness, different ways of visual storytelling in the digital age, and the ethics of journalism. Questions that will be answered are: “What makes a story worth broadcasting?”, “What are the most appropriate ways to draw the viewer in your story?”, and “What ethical dilemmas does a newsmaker face along the way?” During these lectures, students will also assess and discuss (question) various theories concerning the added value of audio-visual journalism is, as well as its strengths and limitations. Moreover, we will reflect on changes in the media landscape brought about by transitions from the age of print to the age of television followed by the uniquity of online news reporting.

In the practical part, students will learn about the basics of producing, filming and editing TV news reports as well as online videos. We deal with questions such as “How is a TV news report different from a documentary style web video?” and “How can video be combined with other ways of storytelling in an online context?” Moreover, the seminars will focus on the various skills needed for video reporting, including how to shoot and edit video, script design, interview techniques, how to deal with sound and how to voice your own reports for TV and web. The main emphasis of this course will be on students doing it themselves. Student-produced videos will be shown and discussed in class.

Please take note: in courses focusing on journalism, journalistic practice and the journalistic production process, all events and opinions found in society which are reported on can be up for discussion. This includes opinions (focus/language use) that might be perceived as unpleasant or different. In the pursuit of a valid and valuable academic learning experience, an open exchange of ideas and perspectives from different angles is not only encouraged but required.

Course Objectives

After successful completion of this course, students are able to:

  • analyse video news items’ news values and the connected storytelling techniques;

  • explain how and why decisions are made in television news, including the ethical dilemmas faced by executives, reporters and editors;

  • understand the strengths, and the weaknesses, of visual communication through television reports and web videos;

  • produce TV news reports and web videos, i.e., master the skills of filming, getting natural sound, interviewing, editing, writing and voicing video reports.


Timetables for courses offered at Leiden University College in 2023-2024 will be published on this page of the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

Lectures on the above-mentioned topics are combined with seminars dealing with the various skills needed to produce video reports. Student-produced videos will be shown and critically discussed in class.

Assessment Method

  • In class participation: 10%

  • Presentation + Discussion: 25%

  • TV News Report: 20%

  • Web video: 20%

  • Final essay (1,500 words): 25%

Reading list



Courses offered at Leiden University College (LUC) are usually only open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Leiden University students who participate in one of the university’s Honours tracks or programmes may register for one LUC course, if availability permits. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator,


O. Porcu,
W.L. van Rooijen,