For the Record Course - how to document stories from a war zone


This course is an asynchronous course delivered on the EBU Academy Learning Platform.

Reporting from a war zone is challenging. Documenting conflicts is core to the journalist’s duty to inform the public – but has implications for their personal safety and mental health. It requires careful planning, ethical considerations, and a commitment to accuracy and thorough risk assessment.

Eurovision News, part of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), in partnership with the training experts from the Thomson Foundation, has created a training course designed to equip reporters both out in the field and in newsrooms with the skills and knowledge needed to report from a war zone effectively.

For The Record – How to Document Stories from a War Zone is aimed at both seasoned journalists looking to enhance their skills and newcomers who are entering the challenging world of conflict journalism.

Who it's for

  • Reporters and their crew
  • Newsroom journalists


  • Legal and logistical challenges.
  • Understanding conflict dynamics:
  • Safety and risk assessment.
  • Ethical considerations.
  • Field reporting techniques.
  • Digital tools and technology
  • Archiving processes
  • Post-assignment trauma
  • Collaboration with newsrooms

Programme Outline

Introduction and experts

Module 1: War crimes defined

  • Helping journalists understand what may or may not be a war crime
  • The main categories
  • How the ICC works
  • Getting the language right
  • The EBU Archives & key takeaways

Module 2: Reporting from a war zone

  • Dealing with the unexpected
  • Documenting what you see
  • Documenting what’s needed
  • At the Scene
  • The EBU Archives & key takeways

Module 3: What's your role?

  • What would you do?
  • Holding the line
  • Journalists & the law
  • The EBU Archives & key takeways

Module 4: Dealing with traumatised survivors

  • How prepared are you?
  • The ethical approach
  • Journalists and justice
  • The interview
  • Key takeaways

Module 5: The archiving process

  • In the field
  • Security
  • Key takeaways

Module 6: Caring for yourself

  • Signs of trauma
  • Understanding trauma
  • Getting help
  • Looking after yourself
  • The EBU Archive and key takeaways


  • 3-4 hours of online course delivered through the EBU Academy learning management platform.
  • Modules combine slides, videos and quizzes.
  • The course is asynchronous allowing trainees to organize their learning at their own pace.


The course contributors bring decades of combined experience in conflict journalism. They include Ole Solvang, Senior Human Rights Officer, United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine; Dr Anya Neistat; International Human Rights Lawyer at the Clooney Foundation; and Quentin Sommerville, BBC News Correspondent.



With 60 years’ experience in nearly 100 countries, the Thomson Foundation is a global leader in media development, providing expertise for journalists by journalists.