International coverage of religion in the digital age

During the course, participants will:

  • Explore religion coverage around the world, sharing a wide range of professional approaches.
  • Examine the growth of new media and their influence in positive and negative ways.
  • Learn how to use multimedia tools to better cover complex religious issues.
  • Examine and debate how conflicting ideas of freedom of expression affect coverage of religion.
  • Explore the importance of the careful choice of language in describing religious groups and issues.
  • Learn how to interact with audiences online to provide more constructive religion reporting.
  • Receive specially designed resources to access the finest international research on religion.
  • Engage in a live chat with leaders in social media.
  • Share critical insights, resources and strategies with one another on the experience of covering religion around the world.
  • Develop collegial and mentoring relationships for international reporters to work together.

The course, which will be offered in English and Arabic, is designed to be a lasting resource for journalists leading the field in excellence in religion writing and reporting. Several participants also will be invited to a conference in Europe early next year to further work on ways to promote international cooperation in religion journalism.

The course will be run by:

David Briggs: In 25 years of national and international religion journalism for The Associated Press and metropolitan newspapers, Briggs has been consistently honored among the Top 10 secular religion writers and reporters in North America. In addition to teaching, he writes the Ahead of the Trend column on religion research for the Association of Religion Data Archives, and is often featured on the Huffington Post religion page.

Briggs holds a master’s degree in religion from Yale Divinity School and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism. His work has been published in newspapers throughout the globe, first as a religion writer for The Associated Press, where he was nominated multiple times for a Pulitzer Prize by the world’s largest news service, and then as a religion reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, where his work also was distributed by Religion News Service and Newhouse News Service. He served as president of the Religion News writers Association from 2000-2002.

The deadline for applications for the free course is April 12.

To apply, please follow these steps:

  • Click here.
  • Login or create a new account if you are a new user.
  • Click on "Applications and Public Courses."
  • Click on "Apply Now: International Coverage of Religion in the Digital Age."

For more information, please contact or Mohammad Al Abdallah at To read more on ICFJ's online courses, please visit:

Program Type
Online Course

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