Lay the foundation for a career in management or small business, as a writer or publisher.

Study four core units (ie. Management, Office Practices, Business Operations and Marketing Foundations); three stream units covering publishing and writing and a workplace project on the publishing industry.  Professional writing skills are nurtured and developed throughout the course. Writers are both employed (eg. by publishers and advertizing companies), and work freelance. The publishing industry is much more than just writing. It employs editors, graphics technicians, photographers, artists, salesmen, clerks and managers. Learn about the whole industry; and lay a foundation to develop more specialised skills.

Some people can write well, but never make it commercially. Others have the commercial and management skills, but struggle with writing. If you have a flair for writing and a little common sense; this course can develop both writing and management skills, to give you a set of skills, and an awareness of industry that can vastly increase your chances of a successful career in the publishing industry.

The course has three parts:

  1. Core Studies -building your management, business and communication skills
  2. Stream studies -building writing and publishing skills
  3. Workplace Project -building your awareness and networking within industry


1. Office Practices

Develops basic office skills covering use of equipment, communication systems (telephone, fax, etc) and office procedures such as filing, security, workplace organisations, etc.

2. Business Operations

Develops knowledge of basic business operations and procedures (eg. types of businesses, financial management, business analysis, staffing, productivity, etc) and the skills to develop a 12 month business plan.

3. Management

Develops knowledge of management structures, terminology, supervision, recruitment

and workplace health and safety.

5. Marketing Foundations

Develops a broad understanding of marketing and specific skills in writing advertisements, undertaking market research, developing an appropriate marketing plan and selling.


1. Publishing I

There are ten lessons as outlined below:

1. The Publishing World

Nature & scope of publishing, types of publishers, how books are published, market research.

2. Publishing Procedures & Techniques

Colour or black & white; film or digital imaging, types of printing, alternative ways of doing layout (eg. typesetting, paste up, electronic layout with Adobe products or MS publisher), comparing types of digital graphic files, printing costs, etc

3. Desktop Publishing

Word Processing, Alternative publishing methods: Printing on a Computer Printer; Supplying a "Master" to a commercial printer, or publishing electronically (eg. Internet or CD)

4. Desktop Publishing

Software options, use of colour, black and white, use of graphics, putting it together, etc.

5. Illustration: Graphics

Line illustrations, cartoons, photos etc. Freehand work, Computer graphics, etc

6. Illustration: Photography

Photographic Equipment & Materials; Composition; Development of Photographic Style Portraiture, Posing for Photographs, Planning a Photo Session, Studio Photography, Fault Finding, etc

7. Researching

Types of Research (Exploratory, Experimental etc), Primary & Secondary Data sources, Planning a survey, Conducting an interview

8. Marketing in Publishing

Understanding marketing & publicity -what makes a publication succeed or fail, launches, press releases, etc.

9. Publishing: Ethics & The Law

Public attitudes, accuracy of writing, bias, monopolies, media ownership concerns, etc


2. Freelance Writing

The ten lessons cover:

1. Introduction to freelancing

Scope of freelance writing (types of writing, where to begin, styles, etc). getting help, finding resources & contacts, understanding industry terminology.

2. Basic writing skills

What is communication, types of communication, types of language, clear wording, concise wording, parts of speech, grammar, punctuation.

3. The publishing world

Periodicals, books, remaindering, copyright, publishers advertising conditions, public lending rights, contracts, selling.

4. Manuscripts

Types of printing, preparing a type script, etc.

5. Planning what you write

Mechanics of writing, developing an idea, sentence structure, precis, planning what you write, building a paragraph.

6. Newspaper writing

Newspapers, regular columns, fillers, short features, etc.

7. Magazine writing

Travel writing, magazine articles/features, determining potentially marketable articles.

8. Writing books

Non fiction, fiction, short stories, determining what to write and developing an idea.

9. Writing advertising

Writing a press release, writing an advertisement, writing for public relations, etc.

10. Special project

Planning and developing a manuscript for a small book.


3. Editing I

There are eight lessons as folloes:

1. Introduction to Editing - the role and scope of editing; tools for editing; editing skills; the production process: an overview; who does what in publishing

2. The Mechanics of Clear Writing - spelling, punctuation, grammar, language; style; tense

3. Assessing Manuscripts - readability; word length; structure; consistencies and inaccuracies; the reader's report; substantive editing; the author's responsibilities; the author/editor relationship

4. Copy Editing I - what the copy editor does; the procedure; house style; style sheets.

5. Copy Editing II - marking up; parts of a publication; editing non-text material;illustrations

6. Preparing Copy for Printing - type design and page layout; proof stages

7. Proof Reading

8. The Final Stages - indexes; blurbs; checking final proofs


Examples of Tasks You May Encounter:

Here are some examples of the type of thing you will do:

  • Plan and write at several major articles and one short story manuscript.
  • Analyse different articles.
  • Survey the scope and current status of the publishing industry and interpret a range of indicators to the viability of different existing or proposed publications.
  • Explain the publishing industry, the procedures (stages) in bringing a publication to print and the different people (& jobs) involved.
  • Explain how to present a manuscript to a publisher.
  • List the differences between audiences for different types of publications.
  • Explain the differences between types of writing required for newspaper publishing compared with magazine or book.
  • Prepare or select appropriate illustrations (graphic or photographic) for publishing.
  • Explain the processes involved in the production and use of these illustrations.
  • Conduct and report on several interviews.
  • Take a number of photographs with the intention to use them to illustrate a publication.
  • Plan the contents and publishing procedure for different types of articles.
  • Plan the contents and publication of a small book, booklet or magazine.
  • List the scope of statistical information available through government agencies and report on the relevance of such information to the publishing industry.
  • Write copy for different advertisements and different promotional leaflets or brochures.
  • Design the layout for two promotional brochures, and determine the cost of typesetting, paste up and printing each.
  • Compare the scope and nature of business conducted by different publishers.
  • Plan and determine costs for the publication of a new newspaper, newsletter or magazine.
  • Use prescribed reference books and other resources to gain relevant information.


What is required for Workplace Projects to be satisfied?

Essentially we will accept anything that constitutes "Learning in a real world relevant situation" -as distinct from our "normal way of delivering a distance education module.

The term "Workplace Project" is often used to embrace any type of "learning" experience. that is "real world" oriented. This includes:

  • Attending industry meetings (conferences, seminars, study tours, committee meetings, etc)
  • Work experience (paid or voluntary)
  • Attending workshops run by another institution; or supervised by a professional person working the student through our "workshop curriculum documents"
  • Undertaking any of the following modules: Workshop I, II, III or Research Project I, II, III or IV
  • Undertaking where appropriate other PBL based modules including Editing Practice I, or Journalism Practice I or II

We DO NOT organise and conduct what you might think of as a "traditional" workshop.

The student DOES NOT need to sit exams for the above....but they do need to show documentary proof (in the cases of a, b or c. Fees Apply for d & e but not a, b, or c (where the fee is incorporated into the qualification fee.

We have the following on some of the web sites for these things:



This course will improve your professional skills in a way that may develop improved opportunities for employment and career advancement in a wide variety of situations, including:

  • Electronic Publishing: ezines, blogs, web marketing, web site development, electronic books, etc.
  • Print Media Publishing: newspapers, magazines, children's books, educational publishing (text books), academic publishing, technical publishing, novels, etc
  • Marketing : advertising literature, catalogues, brochures, advertisements, etc
  • Technical Manuals, etc.

Publishing opportunities exist on a wide variety of levels, both public (government) and private industry sectors; and both in very small businesses (one person operations) through to large multi national media conglomerates.

The publishing industry is immense, the diversity of jobs huge and the opportunity for a rewarding and exciting career is strong for anyone with the right skills set.

The key to making a publication viable is to make it stand out from the crowd. For a publication to be unique, the publisher needs staff who are also unique; who produce writing and images that are different and catch the attention of the readers. Publishers recognise this fact, and seek staff who in turn are "a little different" to the rest.

We've found over the years that our graduates are often successful because we try very hard to produce graduates who are "different"


If you want to be successful in publishing, you need certain basic skills, a strong awareness of the industry....but also training that's 'outside the box!" This course will head you in that direction.

Course Duration
: 900 hours