The post-graduate degree in investigative journalism (organised since 2004) is an initiative of Thomas More (Mechelen, Belgium) and Journalismfund Europe.
The course targets people with a master education of whatever nature (or with a bachelor’s degree in journalism) and provides insight into how a successful, properly substantiated and credible investigative journalism project can be set up. The course consists of three modules: Investigative journalism, International reporting and Portfolio. The course takes 136 hours and takes place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings (during the academy year).
The ultimate goal of the course is to teach students how to make news. The students are familiarised with techniques where mainstream journalists have little or no knowledge of. For instance, considerable attention is paid to data analysis and visualisation, searching on the internet, making use of the Freedom of Information legislation, etc.
Considerable attention is also paid to cross-border cooperation and entrepreneurship.
The guest lecturers are all experts in their field with extensive experience: Evert De Vos (Groene Amsterdammer), Henk Van Ess (Worldwide web open-source research, ...), Maxie Eckert (head of the science team at 'De Standaard'), Delphine Reuter (ICIJ), Maarten Lambrechts (expert data journalism and visualisation), Sigrid Melchior (Investigate-Europe), Ine Renson (De Standaard), Kristof Clerix (investigative journalist Knack), Luuk Sengers (Story-based Inquiry), to name but a few. Every year, we also schedule a guest lecture given by a former IRJ student who successfully completed the course and is now working as a journalist.