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Guidelines for news articles

How do you write a good news article? Here are a number of guidelines to help you.

First a few general guidelines.

  •  Introduce people (state their job title after their name)
  •  Avoid the passive tense and jargon or bureaucratic language
  •  Write through the eyes of the reader rather than the organisation
  •  Focus on the news item

Headers

  •  Write a short, powerful title (preferably one line, 25-70 characters)
  •  Keep the title separate from the article (it shouldn’t run into the intro)

Intro

  • Keep the intro short: preferably no more than 150 characters. Otherwise it will be cut off in the news overview and newsletters
  • Make sure the intro can be read separately
  • Don’t include links in the intro
  • Write a timeless intro (and text) (so don’t say things like ‘yesterday’ or ‘last Tuesday’)

Article

  •  Don’t make the article too long: 450 words maximum for the whole text (including the intro)
  •  Use informative sub-headers
  •  Use short paragraphs (maximum 100 words)

Photos

  • Find an appealing, clear photo (the first photo in particular because this appears on overviews and newsletters)
  • If you can’t find a suitable photo, it is fine to publish an article without one. You may be able to buy a stock photo via Strategic Communication & Marketing. For more information see our Visual Material website.

Using links

  • Include informative links in the article. Use an internal link if there is one.
  • If you are writing about a PhD defence or other event, link to the related diary item.

Selecting news

When selecting news articles for the homepage and newsletters, we look at the following: is it topical? Is it relevant to society? Does it contribute to the six goals of the strategic plan? And does it raise the profile of our research?

The aim of a news article can be to inform the press (this can also be done in a press release) and/or the general public of things like an important event, research findings or a new degree programme. The University’s expertise on a topical theme also counts as ‘news’. The editorial team also publishes human interest stories that give a face and voice to staff, students and alumni of the University.

If you have news that you want to publish in a news article, please contact:

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