A Whole New Ball Game: How Sky Sports News Journalists Are Learning From The Academy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article outlines an academic development programme at Sky Sports News (SSN), a 24-hour rolling news television channel in the United Kingdom. The course counters negative industry perceptions of journalism education. It demonstrates that a major news organization and a significant employer of sports journalists in the United Kingdom considers that academia has an important role to play in the professionalization process. SSN’s commitment to resourcing such a programme should also be seen as an attempt to raise professional standards and overcome the derogatory ‘toy department’ reputation that has hampered sports journalism. This article outlines how industry professionals are connected to academic learning and encouraged to critically reflect on their practice. The article intends to raise awareness of the programme across contexts and countries and, in doing so, provides a blueprint for similar industry-academic collaborations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-181
Number of pages12
JournalAustralian Journalism Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019


  • sports journalism
  • Sky sports News
  • journalism education
  • sports journalists
  • pay television
  • television news


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