Below you'll find answers to commonly asked questions.
Need something else? Just ask us.
What is a self-directed course?
These are the ultimate in e-learning flexibility. Choose what course you want to take, when and where you take it and how to apply what you've learned. Most self-directed courses take just an hour or two to complete. You can work on your own schedule, starting and stopping whenever you like and coming back as many times as you want to review the material. The modules make use of interactive technology, so they're more engaging than a mere collection of Web pages.
Are there any pre-requisites for self-directed courses?
Anyone can enroll in our self-directed courses. Our Journalism Basics are typically designed for people with little or no professional background, ideal for students, the general public with an interest in journalism, or those new to the field. The Software and Technical Training modules cover the most basic through more advanced material in the same module.
How do I pay for News University courses?
To purchase a Webinar, Online Group Seminar, Workshop or other course, simply log into your account at www.newsu.org with your user name and password, then click on the title of the course. You will find an Enroll button in the dark box on the right side. Click on it and then on the Checkout button. We accept payment by credit card or PayPal. Enter the name and address applicable to your credit card or PayPal account, then the biling information (if you have a Promo Code or Gift Certificate Number, enter it on this page, below your billing information but above the credit card number) and click on Review Order. If all is correct, click Submit. As soon as the transaction is approved by the bank, you will be able to print a receipt from that page.
If you are paying by P-card, you would enter the same information as above. Some P-cards have institutional blocks that prevent you from using them on our site. If your P-card transaction is denied, please contact the issuing bank for assistance.
If you do not have a credit card, we will accept payment PayPal instead of check or wire transfer.
How can I get a receipt for payment?
Click on the name of the course for which you need the receipt. There will be a link called "Receipt" just under the course title. When you click on it, a receipt will appear.
What forms of e-learning do you offer?
News University offers several kinds of e-learning: self-directed modules, online group seminars, Webinars, tutorials, seminar snapshots and technology training.
Self-Directed Learning Modules. (In e-learning language, they’re called “asynchronous” modules.) These are the ultimate in e-learning flexibility. Participants can start and stop whenever they like, progressing entirely at their own pace and going back as many times as they want to review the material. The modules make use of interactive technology, so they're more engaging than a mere collection of Web pages.
Online Group (or "semi-synchronous") Seminars. Participants gather in a virtual space, logging in from anywhere, day or night, over the course of several days or several weeks. A faculty member guides the group through new material, moderates discussions and provides individual feedback.
Webinars or eSeminars ("synchronous" modules). Webinars allow you to join online presentations led by Poynter faculty and other leading industry professionals from your home, office of classroom. Not only can you see and hear these presentations, you can join the discussion—asking questions and answering questions posed by the speakers. All you need to join our virtual classroom is Internet access and a telephone line. Your registration also gives you unlimited access to the archived replay of the presentation and any additional resources.
Broadcasts. Watch live presentations at The Poynter Institute and chat with other online participants during the live sessions. Your registration gives you access to the live event and the recorded replays of each session.
Seminar Snapshots. These are edited video highlights and other materials that capture the key learning points of seminar presentations at The Poynter Institute or at other training events.
Tutorials. NewsU Tutorials will help you get started with Web applications and tools. Using step-by-step instructions and screengrabs, these guides demonstrate the basics of working with these applications. You can start and stop on your own schedule and come back as often as you like.
Technology Training. NewsU Tech is our training library to help you develop your software and technical skills. Each module in a NewsU Tech course creates software simulations that give you a feel for working in the program. Using audio, slideshows and offline activities, you'll explore how to use the software without having to buy or install any program.
Video Tutorials. Learn as Poynter faculty teach tightly focused lessons on key journalism skills. Loaded with practical examples and instruction, each tutorial gives you tools you can put to work for you right away.