Shorthand – the journalist’s secret weapon – is an invaluable skill that has helped news reporters get information accurately and quickly.
Jschool Journalism College is one of the few journalism schools to teach shorthand to its students – winning the praise of newspaper editors who see the skill as essential.
The form of shorthand taught at Jschool is Teeline, which has become the industry standard, replacing the older Pitman’s shorthand.
Asked his advice to young people wanting to be journalists, celebrity TV presenter, columnist and former Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan was blunt:
According to the National Council for the Training of Journalists in the UK, shorthand is ‘indispensable for any court reporter, and a vital skill for journalists in all sectors who need an easily accessible and permanent note of every conversation in their working day’.
Shorthand is being recognised as valuable in non-journalism areas as well. Personnel expert Sarah Austin has stressed the importance of shorthand at the ‘senior end of the jobs market’.
‘The role of the personal assistant and executive assistant has evolved and there are more business assistants, which means the need to record detailed accurate minutes from board meetings, client pitches or confidential meetings is more important than ever,’ she said.