Quick Questions to Consider

Hard news stories

Hard news stories are factual and answer the questions; who, what, where, when, why and how.

Hard news stories are written so that readers get the important information as quickly as possible.

The headline provides a brief summary of the story. Important facts are contained in the lead paragraph(s). Details are presented in descending order of importance in the remaining paragraphs.

Find a hard news story. Read it carefully.

Answer the following questions about your news story.

  • Who is the reporter?

  • What is the source of the story?

  • Other than those mentioned in the story, who does the story affect?

  • How do you think the reporter got the information needed to write the story?

  • Does the reporter tell both sides of the story? How?

  • Do you think the story is fair? Why?

  • Should the reporter do a follow up on the story? Why? Why not?

  • What is the best quote in the story? Why do you think so?

  • On the whole, how would you evaluate this story?

Make a chart like the one below. Complete your chart by showing where the information was found in the story.

Headline Lead Other Paragraphs
Who?
What?
Where?
When?
Why?
How?
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