• Course Code:  JN23.1e

  • Term:  Self paced

  • Open for Enrollment

  • Self-paced

  • Course Author(s)
    Deborah Kelly

Reporting on COVID-19: VACCINES

Self paced

  • Circles
    Thomson Foundation


Please contact journalismnow@thomsonfoundation.org if you are having difficulties enrolling into this course


Course overview

Reporting on the drive to find the right vaccine and to vaccinate the world’s population against Covid-19 has become a major challenge for journalists. Navigating through the science, the data, questions of safety versus risk, the myths and misinformation. This course will help you understand how to balance your role as a journalist reporting the public health messages around the importance of vaccines whilst at the same time ensuring you maintain an ethical approach and journalistic standards. It includes advice and expertise from journalists who are covering the story daily and incorporates explanations and knowledge tests to help you to produce informed, accurate and relevant stories.


What you will learn

    • You will learn about the basic science behind the vaccines.
    • You will know who to include and how to create a community of trusted sources  
    • You will be able to approach and debunk the myths surrounding misinformation and understand how to acknowledge the concerns relating to “vaccine hesitancy” 
    • You will learn to be able to inform and engage your readers and audience by being able to critically analyse, question and explain through balanced and accurate content.


Deborah Kelly, your course instructor is the Director of Training and Communications at the Thomson Foundation. She has more than 30 years’ experience as a senior journalist and manager working for UK and international media organisations including the BBC, Al Jazeera, ITV News and Thomson Reuters.

She is joined by:



    • ANJANA AHUJA is a contributing writer on science for the international media organisation, the Financial Times. She has a PhD in space physics from Imperial College London, and is a visiting lecturer in science journalism at City University in London, UK.
    • VIASEN SOOBRAMONEY is Executive Editor of enterprise and development at the Africa News Agency, South Africa. At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic he set up a coronavirus monitoring news website. 

Course Outline

    • Section 1: Gives an overview of the course. 
    • Section 2: Looks at how to understand the science so that you are able to question and explain the information accurately and effectively.
    • Section 3: Considers “vaccine hesitancy” and the “ conspiracy theories” of the anti-vaxxers. How to report on reservations and debunk the myths.
    • Section 4: Looks beyond the vaccines to the treatments for Covid-19 and produces a “Wonder Drug” checklist.  


This course will take approximately 2 hours to complete 

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Reporting on COVID-19: VACCINES


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