14 Tips For Young Journalists Who Want Practical Reporting Advice

14 Tips For Student Reporters That A Professor Will Never Teach In A Classroom

Get the job done and do it well by following these tips and tricks.


The semester is starting again and as an editor of the student paper, I'm starting to see articles flood the system again that lack many, many components that make a good piece of journalism.

As a student reporter, the chances of you developing a ground-breaking article is slim, but if you're good at what you do, you can make the most uninteresting story interesting. Put in the work, follow these suggestions and you'll have a great semester.

1. Always audio record your interviews on your phone.

Don't worry about writing everything down, pay attention to what your interviewee is saying. When you audio record your interview, you don't have to worry about getting every quote right at that moment.

Focus on the details of what the interviewee is saying and transcribe it all later. Not only will you get more quotes out of the interview because you aren't wasting time, you're going to get better quotes because your subject feels like you actually are caring about what they are saying.

2. Some of the best stories are right under your nose.

I remember how scary it was trying to find stories to report on when I first started. I didn't even know where to begin or what mattered. I had no idea where to find a story, at all, and I was always pitching ideas last second that weren't even good. Here's my advice, pay attention to social media.

Join every student Facebook group and page, follow your school's Instagram pages and read the comments, and be active on Twitter about your school. On social media, people aren't afraid to talk so you are without a doubt going to find conflict or at least a root to a story.

Erik Lucatero

3. Have a small list of questions ready before the interview, but don't stick to them the entire time.

By all means, have some standard questions ready before the interview starts, but don't stick to them. Listen to what the person you are interviewing is saying and ask questions based on what they say. Make them dig deeper - don't just ask the surface level questions, otherwise, you're never going to get anything different. People have a lot to say, but sometimes you need to make them speak.

4. Bring a good camera.

Whether you need one photo or 20, always bring a good camera with you. Your school likely has DSLRs for you to check out so make sure you utilize them. The first thing someone sees on social media is not the headline of your story but the picture, so you need to make it clear, attractive and interesting.

Take photos of people in their rawest moments, not of a building. No one cares about a photo of a building unless it's the most beautiful thing they've ever seen and chances are, your photo will not deliver that to them.

Jack Douglass

5. Assert yourself in a situation when applicable.

If there is a crowd of people gathering, you need to get to the center. Don't worry about seeming rude or pushy - it's your job. Now, I'm not saying throw some elbows to get to where you need to go, but politely get your way through and see what's happening. Plus, why would someone accept an interview with you if you shoved them to the side to get through? Be kind, but be assertive.

6. Don't be afraid to ask the tough questions - it's your job.

I've pissed some people off in my time as a student reporter. When I was the SGA beat reporter, I had to ask some tough questions to people who were going through some controversial situations. Don't beat around the bush to get the answers you need, ask them straight up. You may make someone angry, but they also may start to word vomit, so referring back to tip No. 1, have your audio recorder ready.


7. Ask questions if you don't know something.

Don't be afraid to seem stupid to an editor or fellow reporter. If you have a question or are confused about something, ask it. People are going to think you're more stupid or that you don't care if all you do is mess up. If a question is common sense, try to think about it before bothering someone, but by all means, be straight up and get the answers you need to move forward.

8. Always have your AP Stylebook on your phone - it's the quickest way to make sure you're following the guide.

I always have a tab on my phone up of the AP Stylebook. When I'm writing a story on the go, I need to make sure that what I'm writing follows the guidebook and is accurate, otherwise, the editing process is always going to take longer. You are your first editor. Remember that, always.

Larissa Hamblin

9. Communicate with your editors.

If you are going to be turning in a story late, message them. If you need help with something, message them. If you have a question while you're heading to an interview, message them. If you need help writing a story, message them. The better the communication you have with them, the smoother the process will go. Let them help you iron out the small creases while you go instead of handing them a wrinkled mess in the end.

10. Don't be afraid to ask for help.

This goes back to communication and tip No. 7, but if you need help, get someone. Whether that means asking questions, needing someone to report on a story with you or needing a photographer at an event you're covering, get someone to help you. The last thing you need is to turn in a half-assed story because you needed help but were too afraid to ask for it.


11. Talk to everyone - always.

Sitting in a coffee shop, spark up conversation with the barista. Sitting at a sandwich shop on campus, talk to the girl sitting next to you. Standing in line to get a textbook at the bookstore, chat with the guy behind you. When you get to know people, you'll learn more about the campus and you may even be able to find a story.

As an introvert, I know how hard this can be, but you need to put your "journalist" cap on and put your personal fears aside.

12. Develop a list of constant sources and live by them.

Find people who are in positions of power and always have story ideas for you. Reach out to them constantly and ask them if they know of anything going on. Anyone on a campus club board or member of SGA will have a story at all times so make friendly relations with them. When they like you, they will work with you.


13. You also need to work with your sources when they need you.

If you have a source that constantly answers your questions and who has given you great story ideas before, you need to work with them too. If they want you to cover a not-so-interesting campus event, you need to go and do it. They want the publicity for it and a good turnout so be sure to scratch their back and if they've scratched yours.

14. Bring your laptop with you everywhere.

You never know when a story may pop up so you need to be prepared to write it. Typing up a story on your phone is never easy and it certainly takes more time than it would with a keyboard.

Anete Lūsiņa

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100 Instagram Captions You'll Want To Use Right Now

Quotes, lyrics, sayings, and other ideas for Instagram captions!

When it comes to Instagram we are often thinking about what to use as a caption for our photos that we take that we really want to post on Instagram. Sometimes we post the photo without a caption and sometimes we just use an emoji because we're stumped on finding a good caption to use for the photo. So we go the short route and just put an emoji as a caption for our photo. Well whether it is a selfie, a friend pic, group pic, or just need a caption for the photo, here are 100 captions to use for a photo. Some are lyrics, some are quotes, and some are just a quick caption to use on your photo. Also here are some accounts that are worth following:
















Here are Quotes To Use As A Caption/ Lyrics To Use As A Caption/ Quick Little Sayings To Use As A Caption: for your Instagram photo that you wish to post!

1. Life goes on, with or without you.

2. Don't Worry Be Happy! Bob Marley

3. Be Happy.

4. Be Confident.

5. Be Positive.

6. Don't be a liar, everyone hates a liar.

7. Chillin' with my peeps.

8. Go big or go home.

9. What's the deal?

10. The most important thing is to enjoy your life – to be happy – it's all that matters.

11. Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.

12. Life is a gift.

13. You couldn't handle me even if I came with instructions.

14. Forgive, yes. Forget, never.

15.There's a hole in my heart where you used to be.

16. I don't need any part-time people in my life.

17. Get the gist.

18. Boy, it's the 21st Century, get with the program.

19. Hey, I just met you, this is crazy!

20. I woke up like this.

21. Keep smiling because life is a beautiful thing and there's so much to smile about.

22. Beauty is power, a smile is its sword.

23. Last day of class!

24. I donut care!

25. Got my donut and coffee today.

26. Happy as a clam

27. Beach days are the best!

28. A friend will always make you smile, especially when you don't want to…

29. Always classy, never trashy, and a little bit sassy.

30. If only we could turn back time...

31. With you, I forget all my problems. With you, time stands still.

32. Life's a climb, but the view is great.

33. "Ohana, means family, family means no one gets left behind or forgotten." — "Lilo & Stitch"

34. We come to love by not finding the perfect person, but by learning to see the imperfect person perfectly.

35. If I ever write a story about my life, don't be surprised if your name appears a billion times.

36. She's got that red lip, classic thing going on.

37. I don't know what's tighter, our jeans or our friendship!

38. Best friends make good times better and hard times easier!

39. Not sure what I did to deserve you as my best friend :)

40. I don't need your approval to be me.

41. So call me? Maybe?

42. "I am who.I am, I am what I am, I do what I do and I ain't never gonna do it any different. I don't care who likes it and who don't." — Buck Owens

43. Take me as I am, or watch me as I go.

44. "Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars." — Ed Sheeran

45. Cause you're a sky full of stars — Coldplay

46 . I keep dancing on my own — Calum Scott

47. Can't keep my hands to myself — Selena Gomez

48. I just want to look good for you — Selena Gomez

49. Kill em with kindness — Selena Gomez

50. I am not perfect. I make mistakes. But when I say sorry… I mean it!

51. Me? Weird? Please! I am limited edition!

52. Turn that frown upside down.

53. Smile, it's the best thing a girl can wear!

54, Stay true.

55. Laughing is the best medicine you can ever get!

56. "You're the king, baby I'm your queen." — Taylor Swift

57. Best Friends Forever!

58.Throwing it back to the good ole days!

59. Ugg Life.

60. I know you like, first-name-basis.

61. *Sends selfie to NASA cuz I'm a star*

62. Basic white girl.

63. Frisky Friday!

64. My thoughts are stars that I cannot fathom into constellations. — "The Fault In Our Stars"

65. "Maybe our okays will be our infinities." — The Fault In Our Stars

66. So hold onto me because I'm a little unsteady — Unsteady

67. This has got to be the best day of my life.

68. She's the beauty and he's the beast.

69. "All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them." — Walt Disney

70. "If you can dream it, you can do it." — Walt Disney

71. "Hakuna Matata, it means no worries for the rest of your days." — "The Lion King"

72. "The past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it." — "The Lion King."

73. "Remember you're the one who can fill the world with sunshine." — "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"

74 ."The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all." — "Mulan"

75. "You don't have time to be timid. You must be bold and daring." — "Beauty and the Beast"

76. "All it takes is faith and trust." — "Peter Pan"

77. "A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference." — "Winnie the Pooh"

78. "If you focus on what you left behind, you will never be able to see what lies ahead." — "Ratatouille"

79. "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." — George Bernard Shaw

80. "A true hero isn't measured by the size of his strength, but by the strength of his heart." — "Hercules"

81. "Life's not a spectator sport. If watchin' is all you're gonna do, then you're gonna watch your life go by without ya." — "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"

82. "The things that make me different are the things that make me ME." — "Winnie the Pooh"

83. "Giving up is for rookies." — "Hercules"

84. "Happiness is the richest thing we will ever own." — Donald Duck

85. "Change is good." — "The Lion King"

86. "In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." — Abraham Lincoln

87. "An unexamined life is not worth living." — Socrates

88. "Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky." — Rabindranath Tagore

89. "The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart." — Helen Keller

90. "The sky broke like an egg into full sunset and the water caught fire." — Pamela Hansford Johnson

91. "Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success." — Swami Sivananda

92. "Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain... To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices. Today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity, but embrace it." — Kevyn Aucoin

93. "Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'," — Audrey Hepburn

94. "Keep your face always toward the sunshine and shadows will fall behind you." — Walt Whitman

95. "My power's turned on, starting right now I'll be strong." — Rachel Platten

96. "Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared." — Buddha

97. "Let your life lightly dance on the edges of Time like dew on the tip of a leaf." — Rabindranath Tagore

98. "I hated every minute of training, but I said, 'Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.'" — Muhammad Ali

99. "Why don't you be you, and I'll be me." — James Bay

100. Life is like a camera, we focus on the positives and develop from the negatives.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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What You'd Miss Out On If Video Games Went 100% Digital

Going 100% digital is not without its disadvantages.


It's 2019, and we are full on in the digital age.

It is no surprise that shopping is being done online a lot more now than 5-10 years ago. Online shopping does have its perks. However, some consumers still have appreciation and preference for going to an actual store to make some of their purchases. Video games, consoles, and accessories are no exception. Sure when you buy digital games, you limit the number of times you have to get up to change the game you are playing, but that is not a good enough reason to go 100% digital.

So, what would consumers miss out on if video games become 100% digital?

There are several things one would miss out on should the video game industry became 100% digital.

I still see a considerable share of video game collectors for both retro and current generation gaming consoles. They enjoy purchasing special editions of specific titles that comes with extra goodies such as steelbook cases.

The majority of gamers, such as myself, do not have a video game library that is 100% digital or 100% physical. I tend to prefer purchasing physical games, but if a specific title is either digital only or if it is significantly less expensive online, then I will make the digital purchase.

If you were to purchase a game physically and it ends up not meeting your expectations, you will have options as to what to do with the game. You can return it for partial or full value back depending on where you bought it. You can sell it online on websites like eBay or LetGo. You can even regift it to someone if you are feeling generous.

When you purchase a digital game, you are stuck with it. You can delete it from your system's hard drive, but you cannot get your money back for it or give it away to someone else.

Most current generation games have things you can purchase separately such as season passes, costumes, and weapons.

You could link a credit card to your console's account and possibly have another user make a lot of purchases of “just this one thing," resulting in a hefty credit card bill.

If you would rather avoid that happening, you can buy prepaid cards and codes at various retailers so you can either buy that one item you want or buy digital currency to add to your account so your credit card will not get charged until your account has no money or not enough money in it when you try to purchase something.

Some consumers also still enjoy conversing with a real live human being, which you do not get when you do everything online.

So while online game purchases can be more convenient, it is not necessarily always better.

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