The course is great for really getting you out there and doing stuff on your own

A profile photograph of graduate Emily Smith.
Emily Smith
Researcher, BBC
Journalism Studies BA
2019
Journalism Studies BA graduate Emily is now a TV researcher and says that her time at Sheffield helped prepare her for the world of professional journalism work.

After graduating from Sheffield I did two weeks' work experience with BBC Studios on The One Show. At the end of the two weeks I was offered a job as a Junior Researcher on the show, and I have just moved to the show Rip Off Britain as a Researcher. I’ve already made films on a huge range of topics.

My highlights so far have included exposing the plastic in tea bags, how 'buy now, pay later' schemes are getting young people into debt, and highlighting hair discrimination in the workplace.

The role of a TV researcher mainly involves coming up with loads of ideas for films, casting and interviewing people, background research, writing up film pitches, setting up films, fact-checking scripts and occasionally helping out on shoots.

My time at Sheffield set me up for this massively – being able to spot a good story, ring up and interview people over the phone, and knowing how to write for TV have all really helped prepare me. And even though everyone dreads the law modules, I have ended up using what I learnt from them every day – especially now that I am investigating consumer stories.


The role of a TV researcher mainly involves coming up with loads of ideas for films, casting and interviewing people, background research, writing up film pitches, setting up films, fact-checking scripts and occasionally helping out on shoots. My time at Sheffield set me up for this massively

Emily Smith

Journalism Studies BA


All of the big final projects in third year were brilliant. Creating a magazine and documentaries were hugely rewarding and fun, and they make you realise just how much you’ve learnt over the three years.

I think what Sheffield does so well is covering every aspect of journalism – from radio, TV, print, online and magazines. This means that when you finally graduate into the real world you feel like you could choose a career in any area of journalism and be prepared for it.

The course is also great for really getting you out there and doing stuff on your own – you’re definitely not spoon-fed anything. You’ll be thrown straight in at the deep end, doing voxpops in the street and phoning people up, as soon as you start. It will feel so out of your comfort zone at first – but stick with it, you’ll thank them later!

A profile photograph of graduate Emily Smith.

My advice to applicants would be to not close your mind too early to the exact job you want to do. Learn as much as you can about all the different aspects, as it might be what gives you the edge later on. Or you might discover that you are really good at something you hadn’t even thought about.

And don’t shy away from picking up the phone – as scary as it might seem at first! I talk to people all day, every day on the phone and wouldn’t be able to do my job if I did everything by email.

Make the most of being on such a fantastic course, as well as being in Sheffield – it’s a great city to live in and everyone really is as friendly as they say!

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