University of Technology Sydney

57195 Entrepreneurial Journalism

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2022 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Communication: Journalism and Writing
Credit points: 8 cp
Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


This subject equips students with the ability to research, build and launch their own journalism start-up. It starts from the premise that if news is a product, then, like every other product, it needs to find a market and be 'sold' into it. Students learn and use the technical, financial and journalistic knowledge bases to build a ready-to-launch lean start-up. Via case studies, site visits and guest lectures, they explore the key steps in entrepreneurship, with an emphasis on building a for-profit venture. Students work individually or in groups on their own start-up with experienced industry professionals.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

a. Analyse market/audience for new content or product
b. Conceive and test new content or product
c. Collaborate with peers, mentors and other stakeholders
d. Reflect on own practice and entrepreneurial journey

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject engages with the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes (CILOs), which are tailored to the Graduate Attributes set for all graduates of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:

  • Possess an advanced understanding of the professional skills and techniques in a range of contexts appropriate to contemporary journalism practice (1.1)
  • Apply a high level of initiative to create content using multiple techniques and within industry accepted frameworks of accountability (1.2)
  • Reflect critically on the theory and professional practice of contemporary journalism (2.2)
  • Plan and execute a substantial research-based project, demonstrating advanced communication and technical research skills (2.3)
  • Demonstrate advanced skills in engagement to enable effective communication with multiple stakeholders, using traditional and emerging techniques (6.1)

Teaching and learning strategies

This subject will concentrate on developing the work readiness, skills acquisition and reflective abilities of students. Students will build on their existing understanding of the challenges faced by the media industry to solve a journalistic ‘problem’ they have identified. There will be industry visits, workshops and guest lecturers.

Students will use the lean business canvas as the framing device for this undertaking, developing skills around customer segments, market analysis, key metrics and the concept of having an ‘unfair advantage’. They will develop and test the assumptions for their solution using market analysis and interviews — and use project development tools to keep track of their progress.

The subject places an emphasis on independent work and collaboration with small groups and external stakeholders to define a distinctive vision. There will be expectation that students use self-directed online learning.

Each student will have access to an industry mentor. The subject will be taught in three blocks, each involving specific content and skills acquisition. The final block will culminate in a pitch to an industry panel that draws together multiple areas of knowledge. You will work as individuals but be expected to deliver constant peer-to-peer feedback and support.

Content (topics)

The major themes addressed in this subject are entrepreneurship, market and risk analysis, business and audience development. These themes are explored through the framework of the lean business canvas. Entrepreneurship will consider concepts of profit and not-for profit business models, customer segmentation and the need to develop an unfair advantage.

The subject is divided into 3 modules:

Module 1: Discovery

Module 2: Testing and Iteration

Module 3: Pitching


Assessment task 1: Entrepreneurial journal


a, b, c and d

Weight: 30%

300 words per entry plus one illustration a week (eg. graph, photograph, table or image)

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Depth of understanding of key concepts in entrepreneurship 40 a, b 1.1
Evidence of capacity to test assumptions and incorporate formative feedback from audience, research and peers 30 c, d 6.1
Insightfulness of critical analysis and reflection on challenges facing media industry 30 a, d 2.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 2: Two pitches: one to peers, the other to ‘professionals’


a, b, c and d

Weight: 40%

Pitch one 3 minute; pitch two 7 minutes.

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Clear, concise and engaging presentation 30 d 6.1
Depth of market research and project development 20 a, b 2.3
Sensitivity to market needs and context 20 a, b 1.2
Appropriateness of response participation in constructive feedback 30 c, d 2.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 3: Build a road map


a, b, c and d

Weight: 30%

1000 words (or 10 mins audio or video blog)

Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Rigour of research and risk analysis 50 a, c, d 2.3
Level of awareness and insight 50 a, b, d 1.1
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Minimum requirements

Codes of conduct

Students will be required to abide by any code of conduct of industry partners.

In this subject assessment tasks are cumulative so that each task builds understanding and/or skills, informed by formative feedback. Consequently, all assessments must be submitted in order for you to receive feedback. Students who do not submit all assessments will not pass the subject.