8 free downloads that can help your publication today

It’s the start of a new school year — and that means it’s time to rev up your newsroom. To help you do this, we’ve compiled a huge variety of resources that we hope will make your goals more achievable. You can read the full list on our Info Hub, or catch the highlights every couple weeks on the blog. Last time, we talked about resources that will make you a better digital journalist.

We all love free stuff — especially when it helps us do better work. This week, we’re featuring eight free PDFs that are jam-packed with journalism advice from our award-winning advisors. They’ll help you with everything from interviewing to improving your organization’s public image.

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Student media application

We’ve got a detailed template to help you create an application for interested students to fill out. It covers coursework, interests, job descriptions and more.


This is an excellent primer on how to nail an interview with a source — and it’s worth reading in-depth, whether you’re looking to brush up on your skills or you’re just trying to avoid crashing and burning during your first interview. You can also send this to new reporters or use it as inspiration for interview training.

Covering meetings stories

Ah, yes, the titillating meetings stories. But they don’t have to be dull (or miserable to report on). This PDF offers tips for what to do before the meeting and ideas for how to cover them in an interesting way.

Student publication orientation

Not sure what to talk about with new students? This slideshow from ACP adviser Laura York Guy offers a wide overview of topics that need to be discussed upfront in order to make sure new students are comfortable and on the same page when it comes to expectations.

Improving your organization’s image

We all know media gets a bad rap. Some of that is unavoidable — but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to change people’s minds. Taking the time to connect with your audience will improve your on-campus relations (and help you recruit a wider range of staffers!). This document offers 10 practical tips for how you can improve your publication’s image.

The role of an adviser

What exactly is a college media adviser supposed to do? This slideshow explains the many roles of an adviser in an applicable, clear way. Whether you’re an adviser yourself or you’re a frustrated student, we hope this will offer some insight.

Writing better leads

There are a lot of bad leads out there — and we’ve gathered 27 of the worst. This PDF will help you learn from others’ mistakes and think about ways to write engaging, interesting leads.

Interviewing and newsgathering — again!

Because who doesn’t need more help with interviews? We’ve got another (very) detailed presentation that will offer perspective on interviews, things to look out for and even what kinds of quotes are best to use.