The latest NCTJ NCE exam for press photographers has seen a big increase in the pass rate to 67 per cent – compared with a 20 per cent pass rate for candidates who the senior journalist test in November 2008.
Of the eighteen trainee photographers to take the exam this time around, twelve made the grade as seniors.
The press photographers’ and photo-journalists’ NCE is designed to examine all-round competence in a range of fundamental skills at a senior level.
The latest exam, which took place on May 6, at The Sheffield College, tested a range of photography skills, comprising a practical exam with a series of exercises, and a portfolio, advance project and logbook all prepared before the exam day.
Although not yet formally part of the NCE, candidates were also given the opportunity to submit a video report up to three minutes long on the credit crunch.
The practical exam required the trainees to submit their best action shot, along with an accompanying caption, from a mocked up scene where a fictional gangster had been “murdered” and a forensic sweep for a weapon was underway.
Trainees who gained distinctions (80 per cent or above) for parts of the exam include: Cara Edgington from The Sentinel for her work in the advance project and logbook; Richard Linley from the Lincolnshire Echo in the practical, and Joseph Riley from the North West Evening Mail and Paul Watson from the Evening Echo, who gained distinctions in the logbook.
Hannah Kinver from the South Wales Evening Post achieved distinctions in all four sections of the exam.
Other photographers passing the press photography exam this time around were Matthew Grayson from the Hounslow Chronicle, Robin Crossley from the Isle of Wight County Press, Victoria Middleton from the Westmorland Gazette, Samuel Reynolds from the Lancashire Telegraph and Christopher Rushton from the Essex Chronicle.
Adam Holt from the Enfield Gazette and Advertiser passed the photo journalism NCE.