MJ5100 Investigative Journalism and Cross Border Cooperation Course description

Course name in Norwegian
Investigative Journalism and Cross Border Cooperation
Study programme
Masterstudium i journalistikk, heltid / Masterstudium i journalistikk, deltid / Journalism and Media Studies, Exchange Programme
Year of study
Course history


Journalism is changing and so is investigative journalism. Amongst the factors that affect investigative journalism are emerging digital media and changing technology. This course aims to encourage investigative journalism in digital times, and gives students the opportunity to collaborate across borders using digital technology. A rising trend within international investigative journalism is to collaborate across borders and exchange useful information and data. Similarly, investigative journalists increasingly work in interdisciplinary teams drawing on expertise from such fields as law, economy, information technology and social science. The course seeks to deepen the understanding and knowledge of such investigative journalism.

The course will emphasize digital ways to investigate data. Students will learn principles of big data harvesting and analysis, and they will collaborate internationally with other students either on analyses of digital working methods or on doing more practical research related to investigative stories.  

Another important aspect will be securing digital life and protecting sources when doing collaborative investigations across borders.

Required preliminary courses

No prerequisites

Learning outcomes

The student should have the following learning outcomes upon successful completion of the course:


The student

  • has acquired thorough knowledge on the variety of theories and methodologies within digital investigative journalism of all sorts. Examples might be the use of Social Network Analyses, various harvesting methods of data online, understanding of where to locate data that might be analyzed in larger and even internationals projects 
  • has acquired solid knowledge of both traditional investigative journalism and more recent digital investigative journalism
  • has got advanced insight into how to collaborate across borders and extend international cooperation by utilizing digital tools
  • has developed an advanced understanding of investigative techniques such as freedom of information requests - particularly when used online
  • has developed an advanced knowledge and understanding for ethical perspectives of digital investigative journalism



The student

  • can use appropriate theories, methods and knowledge of genres and demonstrate an advanced ability to conduct an investigative journalistic project with digital methodologies   
  • can analyze and reflect upon both traditional investigative journalism as well as recently developed methods and genres 
  • can analyze theory and methodology of investigative journalism and also develop new ways to reflect upon modernized genres
  • has developed research skills with a particular focus on investigation in an international perspective


The student

  • is able to reflect upon and analyze both organizational and practical aspects of investigative journalism
  • is capable of gathering data in national as well as international contexts and analyze ethical and legislative concerns as a result of such work
  • is capable of analyzing other aspects of working with investigative journalism



The focus is on investigative journalism, data journalism and collaboration across borders.   Key research issues include:

  • how is investigative journalism affected by digital harvesting of data?
  • how is collaboration amongst journalists affected by cross border investigative journalism?
  • how is investigative journalism challenged by and profiting from developments of digital technology?  

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and workshops.

Course requirements

There are four assignments: All four assignments are connected to workshops where students will work in groups with support from experienced journalists, accountants and digital safety experts to learn skills and acquire knowledge necessary to do cross border investigative journalism. All assignments must be written in English. These assignments are to be handed in in the course of the study. The assignments will be discussed in groups with other students and a teacher. The student will then have the opportunity to improve the assignments before the final handing in.

The details of the assignments will be given in the beginning of the semester. The lengths shall be 3 - 5 pages. All assignments must be approved in order to qualify for the exam.


The exam is a 7 days written home examination of 7 - 9 pages.

The paper may be written in either English or Norwegian.

Grading scale

The exam will be assessed according to a grading scale where A (highest) to E (lowest) denote a pass and F denotes a fail.


They will be assessed by an examination committee with one internal and one external examiner.

Admission requirements

A bachelor's degree. The minimum academic requirement for admission is the grade C, in accordance with Regulations Relating to Admission to Master's Degree Programmes at HiOA (OsloMet).

Single course applicants apply for admission in SøknadsWeb. You can read more and apply for admission on the following website: https://oslomet.no/studier/sam/enkeltemner-master-journalistikk