Journalism Trainee Scheme


This scheme is now closed for applications for 2017 entry. Please follow @BBCGetIn for news of future schemes. Many thanks, the New Talent Team.

Latest news

  • Visit the BBC Academy website for more information
  • Read BBC Academy journalism schemes manager Bernadette Kitterick’s blog post, full of hints and tips.
  • Please follow @BBCGetin for the latest news about the scheme and tips about making the best of your application.

About the Journalism Trainee Scheme 

The BBC’s Journalism Trainee Scheme is the flagship journalism entry and training scheme run by the BBC Academy.

Many of the journalists we have trained are working in newsrooms and on programmes across the BBC.

The scheme offers vocational journalists the opportunity to immerse themselves in BBC News for high-quality training. Successful applicants need to be able to demonstrate creativity, resilience in a high-pressure environment and have an understanding of the role of the BBC’s journalism.

Our aim is to make sure you're in a strong position to apply for journalism jobs across the BBC once your traineeship ends. We also offer coaching and support when you are applying for jobs within the BBC.

We seek to recruit people with some journalistic experience who want to broaden their broadcasting skills, as well as people who might want a career change and can show evidence of journalistic potential. We place a premium on diversity and welcome applicants who can bring their different life experiences into the BBC’s newsrooms.

The BBC Journalism Trainee Scheme has a high retention rate – most of our trainees have gone on to land BBC journalism roles.

What’s on offer?

  • An 11-month fixed term contract paying £20,800 per annum plus a London allowance of £4,560 for those based in the capital
  • We also cover travel and accommodation expenses during training periods
  • First-class training led by the BBC Academy throughout the scheme by training specialists and senior BBC journalists
  • The chance to work on placements with BBC News on radio, television, digital and online

What you need to apply

Serious contenders for the Journalism Trainee Scheme follow news in all its forms: online, digital, social media, newspapers, radio and TV. First and foremost you see yourself as a journalist.

You will have an excellent grasp of the role of social media in journalism and an understanding of why and how to connect with audiences to improve your storytelling.

There is no upper age limit and the scheme also welcomes people who have ambitions to work in broadcast news but may have been pursuing a career in another field.

Our scheme is not for complete beginners. We need to see some solid evidence of your journalism so we can judge your potential in our application and assessment process.

If you're already working as a journalist, consider whether this scheme is for you – we do not want to duplicate training you have already had.

There are no academic entry criteria. We think talent, potential and determination count for more than an academic background.

You need to be flexible about where you live, as well as working hours. Working at the BBC is not a Monday to Friday nine-to-five job. You'll also be expected to demonstrate you can work with a wide range of colleagues and members of the public.

Specialist Placements

The Journalism Trainee Scheme offers general placements plus a number of specialist placements. If you are interested in applying for one of them you will be invited to state a preference on the application form.

A political news placement is available at the BBC’s Westminster office (the Gareth Butler placement). You can apply to train with the BBC World Service and there is a placement working with the Visual Journalism Unit in London. And there’s also a sports placement based in Salford.

You will also be given the opportunity to state a preference to work in one of the BBC's newsrooms in Salford.

Please note that applying for a specialist placement does not invalidate your application for the trainee scheme as a whole.

More information on how we organise Journalism Trainee Scheme placements is available on our Frequently Asked Questions page.


Application Process Timetable

If you are shortlisted, we’ll invite you to an assessment and interview. These will take place in July. Successful applicants will be invited to a mandatory welcome event and then begin on the scheme in September 2017.

You will have the opportunity to let us know if you have a disability both on the application form and before your assessment.

We can help you with any reasonable adjustments necessary for your assessment and for when you start on the scheme. 

Your work placements could be based at any of the BBC’s national or regional news centres across the Great Britain, including London, Birmingham, Bristol, Salford, Glasgow or Cardiff.

With the exception of our specialist placements, potential trainees cannot choose a particular location when they apply. Should you be selected, you will however be able to state a preference at the interview stage.