A practical journalism writing course filled with plenty of exercises

  • This writing course is taught by a former Sydney Morning Herald editor who's worked across almost every section – from travel, entertainment and health to business and IT. He also has marketing and PR experience in addition to having taught at UTS and the University of Sydney.

  • Study at your own pace.

  • There are six sessions that each take between 45 minutes to an hour and a half, making this equivalent to a full-day course.

  • Suited for all skill levels.

  • You can get personalised feedback or workshop your own writing with an optional one-on-one Zoom session for an additional AU$180.

What will you learn in this writing course?

Engaging and easy to follow, the Writing Essentials online course will show you tips and techniques you can immediately apply to your work. More specifically, it covers:

  • why short sentences are key to good writing
  • how to write in the active voice
  • how to use positive language
  • writing with confidence
  • using the right tone of voice and style
  • cutting copy
  • making your intros stronger
  • showing, not telling
  • tips on writing in plain English
  • writing with the reader in mind
  • commas
  • using the correct tense
  • how to write in the inverted pyramid style
  • top 10 news criteria (what makes a story interesting)
  • frontloading content
  • writing a news feature
  • grammar and punctuation
  • considering the medium – and the purpose – of your writing
  • proofreading tips
  • writing great headlines.

How much does it cost?

Your instructor

Learn from someone with over 25 years of newspaper, magazine and marketing communications experience.

Dan Kaufman 


Dan Kaufman began his career in magazines, where he worked as a journalist, sub-editor and an editor for a variety of lifestyle and technology publications. 

He then moved to The Sydney Morning Herald, where he worked as an editor and a journalist for over 10 years. During that time he wrote for and edited almost every feature section – from travel, culture and entertainment to business, technology, health and science.

Since then he has: 

  • taught at the University of Sydney, UTS and the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism (ACIJ)
  • worked as an online content specialist, copywriter and communications manager
  • consulted to PR and marketing organisations
  • taught writing and editing courses for over a decade to a wide variety of organisations, from government departments to corporations, across almost every industry.

He is the director of both Media Survival and Writing Elementals.


“It was truly a great class! I was not sure what to expect from it at first, but going through the lessons I was pleasantly surprised. The lessons were short and to the point with great examples. I really took a great deal away from this writing course.”

Justin Carr

“I found this course really useful – just what I was looking for.”

Carol Bosnjak

“Thanks for a great writing course.”

Steve Cook

“Excellent course that challenged me to consider the messages/emails/articles I write as part of my role. Particularly made me think about the reader and methods I could use to engage with them better.”


“Dan was great! Lots of fun and I learnt a lot.”

Tristan Tulloch

“Really excellent. I particularly appreciated the writing exercises and your expertise!”


“An entertaining, informative and thoroughly enjoyable workshop.”

Peter M

“The workshop was informative and relevant. The presenter has a lot of knowledge on the topic.”

Kelly Li

“I enjoyed the Writing Essentials workshop and am already incorporating the tools in my work.”

Lissa Tucker

“Great course – I will definitely implement these tips in my day-to-day working life. A good refresher too.”

Josephine Avati

You will receive:

  • a handbook filled with writing tips (PDF)

  • a certificate of completion (PDF)

  • a free copy of Dealing With Grumpy Editors (an ebook that explains how to pitch stories to the media)

Who will benefit from this online journalism writing course?

This course will help you regardless of whether you're writing: 

  • news stories
  • features
  • marketing copy
  • press releases
  • profiles
  • reviews
  • event listings
  • newsletters
  • blog posts.

In other words, it's not just for journalists and editors, but also for those who work in:

  • content marketing
  • public relations (PR)   
  • communications
  • sales. 

It's also suitable for anyone who wants to improve their general writing skills. 

The course is taught in such a way that everyone can get something out of it – whether they're a novice or an experienced editor.