Newspaper article/editorial

Newspaper article/editorial assessments help students learn to develop a wide range of skills.

When to use a newspaper article/editorial

A newspaper article or editorial can be a useful assessment task for assessing critical thinking and the ability to make judgements.

These types of assessments align with learning outcomes related to:

  • developing arguments
  • evaluating
  • assessing
  • judging
  • identifying problems
  • analysing data
  • reviewing
  • managing information
  • interpreting sources
  • demonstrating knowledge and understanding
  • relating
  • synthesising
  • researching
  • communicating.

Advantages and limitations

  • Generally have a standardised structure for student guidance and rubric construction.
  • Are a good tool for critical analysis.
  • Allows students to demonstrate creativity.
  • Can be useful in all disciplines (of particular relevance to communications).
  • Relevance may be difficult to justify unless there is a direct relationship.
  • Standardised structure can lead to rubrics focused on format rather than learning outcomes.
  • May be unfamiliar to students, so requires scaffolding in preparation.
  • Can advantage students with well developed writing skills.
  • Targeted by contract cheating services.

Things to keep in mind

When developing newspaper article/editorial assessments:

  • Make sure the topic is aligned with learning outcomes and subject content.
  • Clearly define the topic and scope.
  • Show and discuss examples of format, structure and style. For example, an editorial places more emphasis on the communication of opinion.
  • Include the requirement to conduct research.
  • Emphasise the need to base the article on supported factual information.
  • Identify the intended audience.

More resources

The resources below provide examples of assessment tasks that incorporate newspaper articles:

The following resources are for students, and are useful as resources in subjects. They also provide guidance in terms of designing newspaper article assessment: