• Course Code:  JN04

  • Term:  Self Paced

  • Open for Enrollment

  • Self-paced

  • Course Author(s)
    Sue Llewellyn
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Social Media Newsgathering

Self Paced

  • Circles
    Thomson Foundation



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

This course carries 4 hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credits. 


In support of the Journalism Now Scholar Programme, for a limited time, there is no charge for the course certificate.  



This course will help give your use of social media a journalistic purpose.  You'll learn how to find good stories, whether you're using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media. Once you've completed the course, you will be able to understand each of the social media platforms - they all have their own system which you will be able to get to grips with and you will discover how to refine your searches so that you get the information you need more easily.  The course will help you become a good 'social listener' by giving you the best hashtags to use, as well as the best keywords.


"The content is really good, I enjoyed it because I went in without knowing much but finished the course more knowledgeable. I learnt a lot of things." Pheladi from South Africa




• How to use SOCIAL MEDIA to FOLLOW breaking news and to FIND STORIES as well as sources. 

• How to use ADVANCED SEARCH TECHNIQUES as a tool for finding information and locating experts.

• How to use social media to verify if a BREAKING NEWS story is true.

• How to establish the ORIGIN OF PHOTOGRAPHS and how to verify them.




SUE LLEWELLYN is your course instructor. For the past 10 years, Sue has worked as a trainer for thousands of journalists, teaching them how to use social media. Before that, she was a journalist for 15 years in the BBC Newsroom. 


Helping Sue is a team of experts (from left to right):

  • Matt Cooke works at the Google News Lab, Matt is an ex-BBC newsman who is a specialist in digital storytelling. 
  • Anne-Marie Tomchak is the former presenter of BBC Trending who's now UK editor of Mashable. 
  • Fred Mwasa is Deputy Editor-in-Chief at Kigali Today.  Fred has a massive following on Twitter, with the highest number of followers for journalists in Rwanda. 



The course is divided into four sections:

  • Section 1 provides an overview and introduces the course instructor and media experts
  • Section 2 explains the use of different social media platforms as sources for newsgathering.
  • Section 3 demonstrates how advanced search techniques in Google can be used for newsgathering.
  • Section 4 is the course summary.



You will be presented with a practical exercise based on the concepts discussed which you will need to complete together with your feedback.



You can complete this course within 4 hours over multiple sessions.

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Social Media Newsgathering


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