How do you get your news? Upon asking this question to my mum, my best friend and my cousin I received 3 different answers. If I were to ask myself the same question, I would genuinely struggle narrowing it down to one.

My research topic will explore the ways that university students access news and the reliability of their sources. Essentially finding out how they get their news delivered to them, and why they choose that specific platform. In doing this, I will be able to understand what makes university students read/watch their news platform, whether that be the aesthetics, the reliability, the ease of access or any other reasons. Once this has been established it will be interesting to then test the reliability of their sources, are they user-submitted news articles (Reddit)? A trusted source of international news (ABC)? We will soon find out.

Firstly, I will survey a mixed group of students about the platform/s in which they access their news. This will be as simple as creating a survey on Google Forms and tweeting out the link with the #bcm212, as well as attaching it to the BCM212 spreadsheet so students in tutorials can answer it also. The first question on the survey will be a simple yes or no question to ensure that the person taking the survey is a university student. Once this is established, there will be a list of common news sources (ABC, CNN, BBC, Newspapers, Magazines, Buzzfeed, TV News Shows etc.) or ‘Other’ allowing the student to input their chosen source. Then following this the google form will have a text box where students will be encouraged to talk about their reasoning for accessing this specific news platform, to give an idea of why this platform appeals to them more so than another. For example, they might get their news of ‘Buzzfeed News’ (https://www.buzzfeed.com/news) because it can be found on Facebook or Snapchat, so they don’t need to go out of their way to access it because they are already using these apps.

Through conducting this survey, I will gain insight into the ways that university students get their news, the reasons that they get it in that specific form, and whether or not their sources are reliable. This will make up my research project for BCM212.

‘Fake News’ image: http://www.motherjones.com/media/2016/12/if-its-on-the-news-it-must-be-true

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