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University Expert in

Event and Investigative Journalism - La Sexta

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University Expert in Event and Investigative Journalism La Sexta

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Student profile: Mainly journalists and journalism students, as well as professionals from the world of communication and information who wish to improve their professional training.
It will not be necessary to have an official university degree, therefore, current Journalism students, non-university graduates and university graduates may access the degree. Students from foreign education systems will not need the homologation of their degrees.

Official degree:University’s own degree.
University Expert in Event and Investigative Journalism - La Sexta.

Learning center:Communication and Arts. Journalism. School of Communication and Arts

Center where it is taught: Madrid-Princesa.

Duration: 370 hours.

Schedule: Friday from 15h to 22h, and Saturday from 9h to 15h.

Places offered: 25 places.

Price: 3.500 euros

Academic year it was implemented: 2016/17

Academic Regulations: General student’s regulations. Credit transfer and recognition. Regulation of student participation.

University Services: [+info]

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Event and investigative journalism - courts, corruption ... - is taking up more and more space in television, press, radio and digital media, and requires professionals who know how to handle language, terms and concepts very precisely, and know the types of sources of information to use, how to access them. In events and investigative journalism, it is true that "you are as worthy as your sources".

With this expert course in Event and Investigative Journalism, which is directed by Manuel Marlasca, Head of Investigation of La Sexta and one of the most recognized experts in event and investigative journalism in Spain, the student will learn to differentiate between the different criminal phenomena, will get along with the different sources of information of this journalistic genre (police, judges, confidants, documentary sources), understand and handle the different terms of court language, and learn the main techniques of investigative journalism. La Sexta is part of the Atresmedia group, the leading communication group in Spain and the only audiovisual company with key positions in all sectors in which it operates (television, digital and multimedia development, cinema, radio, internet, and even event organization).

Logo La Sexta

La Sexta is one of its flagship brands, along with Antena 3, Onda Cero, Europa FM, etc. This group is a leader in information, changing the way of organizing and conducting debates, with the success of the historic debate.

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The specific objectives of this expert degree in event and investigative journalism are the following:

  • Provide journalists with basic knowledge of criminal and procedural law in order to accurately handle terminology and essential concepts when preparing information on courts and events.
  • Introduce journalists to all variants of the criminal phenomenon, from murder to complex plots of economic crimes, and corruption or cybercrimes.
  • Provide students with advanced notions about criminal investigation and forensic science so that they know the techniques and work methodology of the professionals they will talk about in their information, and what they should have as sources of information.
  • Instruct students to extract the important, accessory and sensationalist parts of the information accessed, in order to avoid event journalism be synonymous with yellow journalism.
  • Provide journalists with the necessary techniques and tools so that they can reliably handle open, semi-open and closed sources.
  • Provide students with the necessary knowledge to use the new information technologies and the network to turn them into tools to help their work, never in one medium.
  • Teach journalists to prepare chronicles, news and reports of event and investigative journalism with precision and rigor, without common places nor sensational elements.
  • Offer the students the essential keys to enter groups that are usually closed off for different reasons: police, civil guards, judges, prosecutors, military, marginal groups, inmates...

Specific competences

  • Acquire basic knowledge of criminal and procedural law.
  • Management of the different sources of information and knowledge of investigative journalism.
  • Acquire the methodology for the development of a work or research report.
  • Knowledge in new research-oriented technologies.
  • Identification of the work techniques and methodologies of criminal investigation and forensic sciences.
  • Ability to function in closed-off environments in order to carry out their research and journalistic work.
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The student must take 16 ECTS

3 ECTS | The criminal phenomenon
Understanding the criminal phenomenon is essential to be able to write or tell information related to them rigorously and to deal with the sources of information we will need in the work of a reporter - police, forensics, civil guards...
In this subject, students will have a broad overview of the entire criminal typology: organized crime, crimes against people, crimes against sexual freedom, economic crimes, property crimes, crimes against public health, cybercrimes, crimes related to corruption…
They will learn to distinguish them, to correctly focus the information related to the criminal phenomenon and they will know which police units are responsible for each.
3 ECTS | Investigative journalism techniques
In this subject, students are prepared to be reporters, to perform their work in the street with reliability and to later translate the information they have obtained into articles, news and reports. The student will know what legal resources can be used to obtain information from an official entity -transparency, right of access to information- and how to track information that comes from other areas.
3 ECTS | Court Information
Knowing how to distinguish a complaint from a lawsuit, an investigator from a defendant, or a private prosecution from a popular one, is as important for a court journalist as it is for an economic journalist to know what the trade balance or risk premium are.
Students will receive notions about criminal and procedural law to distinguish the phases of a criminal process and the persons immersed in any procedure -investigated, accusations, defenses, prosecutor, court ... In addition, they will learn to differentiate and catalog criminal offenses from those most frequently spoken about in the media.
3 ECTS | Information sources
One of the most important parts of the work of an event and investigative journalist is the obtaining of sources of information: keep a source and make it grow and trust the journalist. This subject will teach the journalist to deal with sources and to retain them. Students will learn to manage and access open, semi-open and closed sources. From dealing with a press and communication office, to accessing sources as tight as police investigators, through information provided by commercial or property records. All this with an eminently practical intention, in which everything will be aimed at providing them with a collection of sources that guarantee reliable and rigorous work.
4 ECTS | Final project
Students will present a monographic research paper on a proposed or chosen topic. These assignments will be directed by Manuel Marlasca.


The course will have the collaboration of visiting professors, among which there will be policemen, lawyers, criminologists, civil guards, judges, members of press offices, investigative journalists, all of them currently active and who will contribute their daily professional experience.

Manuel Marlasca

Manuel Marlasca

Journalist. Head of investigation in La Sexta

With a Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Complutense University, Manuel Marlasca is Head of Investigation at La Sexta. In his long professional career, he has collaborated with the main media outlets of the country, such as Onda Cero, Antena 3, TeleMadrid, Canal 9, El Mundo and Grupo Zeta.
He has numerous awards and recognitions: Police Award for the best blog 2015, Police Journalism Award 2013, Cross for police merit awarded at the proposal of the Central Narcotics Brigade 2014, Medal of Honor of the Spanish Society of Criminology and Forensic Sciences 2015, etc.