Examiners say some journalists sitting their national qualification in journalism (NQJ) had “poor shorthand”.
The NQJ tests confer senior journalist status.
The National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) has reported the lowest NQJ pass rate in five years, with a 47% success rate.
“It was evident that some candidates had poor shorthand and some had not read through their copy before it was submitted, therefore not spotting easily avoidable errors.”
A lower number of candidates sat the exams on Friday, 6 July across five centres, a total of 36 candidates compared to 53 in July 2017.
Of the 36 candidates who sat the exams, 17 were successful in all four parts – media law and practice, news report, news interview and e-logbook – achieving ‘senior journalist’ status.
The news report exam asked candidates to report on a story about twin brothers arrested on suspicion of drug smuggling in Peru, and produced an overall pass rate of 47 per cent.
The moderator attributed the lower-than-usual pass rate to poor shorthand, and candidates not blending both existing and new information into one comprehensive story.