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
- identifying problems
- analysing data
- managing information
- interpreting sources
- demonstrating knowledge and understanding
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.
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: