National Qualification in Journalism (NQJ).

Welcome to the National Qualification in Journalism, the NCTJ's industry senior-level qualification. The course programme is divided into seven sections, completed in order and beginning with the first section: National Qualification in Journalism Introduction before moving onto Gathering and writing the story and so on. Management is the final sectionThis programme will also explain each of the three final assessments including what is required to complete the e-logbook. It will provide you with the necessary advanced journalistic skills and knowledge to prepare you for the two online exams; Media Law and Ethics in Practice and the practical skills-based exam (Big News Story).

If you have purchased the NQJ course via the NCTJ website (, this is where you will find your learning materials. Provided you have received your login details, you will find the learning materials unlocked below. If you have not yet decided to go ahead with studying for the NQJ and would like further information, please visit the following link: Find out more.

If you have any questions about our distance learning programmes, or if you are experiencing any technical problems accessing your materials, please contact

NQJ exams

Exams for distance learners are offered 3 times per year. Exam dates and booking information is published on the NCTJ website: NQJ exams.

Available courses

Announcements and support forum

A support forum can be found here. Any qualification announcements will also be posted here.

National Qualification in Journalism: An introduction

This first section introduces the NQJ qualification and assessment.  It will also help you familiarise yourself with the structure of this course.  You should complete this section before attempting the others. Average estimated time: 100 hours (includes on-the-job hours compiling your lo…

Gathering and writing the story

This section looks at the foundations of all great journalism, research, development and writing.

Average estimated time: 15 hours

Media law and ethics 1

This is the first of two sections on Media Law and Ethics. You should complete this section before attempting part two.

Average estimated time: 30 hours

Taking stills and video

This section focuses on the skills needed to take photographs and create video content for print and online.

Average estimated time: 10 hours

Media law and ethics 2

This is our second section on Media Law and Ethics. You should not complete this section before tackling Media Law and Ethics 1.

Average estimated time: 10 hours

Data Journalism

Data journalism skills are highly sought-after. This section considers what you need to know to report data in an accessible way that is accurate and fair.

Average estimated time: 20 hours


The NQJ should prepare you for your first steps in management. The unit explores key management behaviours and skills.

Average estimated time: 5 hours