Mark Hanna

MA (Oxford)

School of Journalism, Media and Communication

Emeritus Fellow

A profile photograph of Mark Hanna.
Profile picture of A profile photograph of Mark Hanna.

Full contact details

Mark Hanna
School of Journalism, Media and Communication

Mark studied English Literature and Language at Oxford University before training as a reporter. He worked on newspapers for 18 years for various titles including the Western Daily Press, Sheffield Morning Telegraph and Sheffield Star, specialising in crime reporting and investigations, and also for The Observer as northern reporter. He won awards at national and regional level, including Provincial Journalist of the Year in the British Press Awards. He joined the School of Journalism Studies as a lecturer in 1996 and was promoted to senior lecturer in 2008. He was awarded emeritus status on his retirement in 2020.

Since 2009 Mark has been co-author of McNae's Essential Law for Journalists. Among UK journalists this is the best known legal and ethical handbook and is kept in many newsrooms. It was first published in 1954. The most recent edition – the 22nd – was published in 2014. It is also a leading textbook for university journalism departments. Mike Dodd, legal editor of the Press Association national news organisation, is co-author.

Mark tweets on media law, ethics and journalism generally. His Twitter account is @MarkHannaMedia.

Research interests

Mark's research interests are media ethics, media law, investigative journalism, court reporting and journalism history.

His research has included the biggest survey yet conducted of UK journalism students, at 10 universities. The data have been published in international academic journals. Students were asked their views on journalism's roles in society and on media ethics. This data helped assess how staff can best teach these topics.

Mark has written about the characteristics of the UK journalism workforce, controversies concerning media coverage of family courts in the UK, and concern about 'chequebook journalism' in media payments to witnesses in court cases.


Journal articles

  • Hanna MN (2012) Irreconcilable Differences: The Attempts to Increase Media Coverage of Family Courts in England and Wales. The Journal of Media Law, 4 (2), 1-29. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hanna MN & Sanders K (2012) Perceptions of the News Media's Societal Roles: How the Views of U.K. Journalism Students Changed during Their Education. Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, 67, 145-163. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hanna MN, Sanders K, Berganza M & Aranda J (2008) Becoming Journalists: A Comparison of the Professional Attitudes and Values of British and Spanish Journalism Students. European Journal of Communication, 23, 132-152. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hanna MN & Sanders K (2008) Did Graduate Journalism Education Make a Difference? A Study of British Journalism Students' Views on News Media Roles. Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, 62, 344-359. RIS download Bibtex download


  • Hanna MN & Sanders K (2012) British Journalists In Weaver D & Willnat L (Ed.), The Global Journalist in the 21st Century (pp. 220-233). New York: Routledge. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Hanna MN & Sanders K (2010) Should Editors Prefer Postgraduates? A Comparison of United Kingdom Undergraduate and Postgraduate Journalism Students In Franklin B & Mensing D (Ed.), Journalism Education, Training and Employment (pp. 177-192). New York: Routledge. RIS download Bibtex download