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A closer look (1): The structure of newspaper articles

herr-stritt 27. November 2021

A closer look (1): The structure of newspaper articles

Newspaper articles are usually structured in a very similar way. Of course, there are differences between longer articles, in which you include more information, thereby using longer paragraphs, and shorter articles, where you need to be compact and concise. Either way, an article usually contains the following elements:

1. A short and snappy title.

Not much to be mentioned here – you should know everything about titles already.

2. A summary at the beginning.

It should not give everything away, but contain the very essential element of your article, so that the reader knows straight what the article will be about. (Often it helps to focus on the question „What happend?“ in this sentence or paragraph.)

3. A paragraph structure.

Paragraphs help you structure any piece of writing. In newspaper articles they help you especially well to group your information together. Try to give each paragraph a special focus!

4. Direct quotations.

Quotations, either of people directly involved with the action, or of other people who are somewhat connected with the events, help to give your reader insight into feelings or viewpoints and make your article much more lively.

5. Connected knowledge.

We do not only write articles in order to say what happened, but also to speak about the „Why?“ and the „How?“. Here we can inform and educate our readers on (historical) facts, developments and future plans that are connected with this event.

6. A conclusion.

Round off your article by giving an outlook into a certain or uncertain future. Tell your reader what is going to happen after your event – however bleak or blissful the future might be.

7. An image or graph.

Many readers are more attracted to articles where a picture or graph is shown, and that is a fact. What is more, it helps your reader to understand and imagine the action better. Always include a caption that summarizes what the picture or graph is about, and a source if the image or graph is not your own.

Advice: You can find royalty free images on Pixabay or Unsplash!

Think about your own story!

At this point, you might want to revise your PDF from the steps before in this course. Reflect: How could you put these structural details into practise in your article? Which information would you group together, what needs to be said in your first sentence, which experts or development should you include? Write down as many ideas as possible. (A mind map can help you!)