Socialising Journalist Interns

Gitte Gravengaard and Lene Rimestad

In this research project, we investigate socialisation practices in the newsroom. The analyses demonstrate how journalist trainees are socialised into this professional culture and community of practice, thus learning through practice about the implicit newsroom policy.

By looking at the practitioners’ talk-in-interaction it becomes possible to investigate how certain items of knowledge are socially constructed through systematic discursive procedures in the newsroom. Therefore, we draw upon conversation analysis in order to perform micro-level analysis of actual everyday conversations, making it possible to capture some of the intangible and blurred parts of the socialisation process.

The analyses are based on empirical studies of 12 Danish journalist trainees during their one-year trainee period. The trainees were interns at two national daily newspapers, two national tabloid newspapers, and two national Danish TV stations.

The research design consists of: 1) participant observations made during a year following all trainees three times each; 2) a range of semi-structured interviews with the journalist trainees before, during and after their trainee periods; 3) e-mail enquetes during the internship period, and 4) semi-structured interviews with the supervisors in the media organisations.

Read more about the publications and presentations here.