Day 3 Journalism Ethics lesson

Prepared by: Jami Williams, Mexico High School, Mexico, Missouri

Students will create a code of ethics for their journalism class.


  1. Group work
  2. Use of Online News Association Build-Your-Own Ethics code website


  1. Level 2 (Proficient) application of understanding of ethics as exemplified by a student-generated code of ethics.


  1. Access to the Online News Association website

Steps to check for student understanding

  1. Teacher will do frequent comprehension checks in the form of Classroom Assessment Techniques (thumbs up, thumbs down; exit slip in the form of post-it note summary); for more CAT’s go here:
  2. Summative assessment will be submission and acceptance of a code of ethics for the journalism class based on the work done by the students.


  1. Suggested bell ringer: Did you find the Path of Nine Steps helpful as you made your decision? Why or why not?
  2. Teacher may or may not ask students to share some of their writing from the night before and offer discussion about their feelings on the nine steps.
  3. Teacher will introduce the students to the ONA online ethics code builder at
  4. Teacher will divide the students into seven groups. Each group will work on one of the varying modules, leaving the last module for the teacher.
  5. Students should work on developing the most applicable code of ethics for their classroom setting.
  6. Teacher will ask students to present their various modules that are completed and the class will vote on the code of ethics.


  1. Exit slip: Do you feel that the code of ethics will be a help or a hindrance when it comes to doing your job as a journalist? Explain your feelings.