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MPs limit journalism profession to BA degree holders

By Khaled Neimat - Apr 08,2014 - Last updated at Apr 08,2014

AMMAN — The Lower House on Tuesday defined the eligibility of any individual aspiring to become a member of the Jordan Press Association (JPA), limiting the journalism profession to holders of bachelor’s degrees.

The decision was taken during deputies’ deliberations over the draft amendments to the JPA Law. 

MPs endorsed a provision in the legislation under which holders of high school diplomas can no longer become JPA members. 

Excluded from this stipulation are journalists who have been practising the profession for at least eight years and can prove it, as well as photo journalists.

Under the new amendments, MPs also decided to extend the training period for holders of media and journalism diplomas to three years from two years in the current version of the bill.

The aim of these changes, according to several MPs, is to protect the profession from any “intruders”, who usually violate the rules of journalism and its code of conduct.

Under these amendments, only holders of bachelor’s degrees in any field are eligible to join the JPA and practise journalism, while those who specialise in fields other than media and journalism will have to undergo two years of training before they can join the association. 

Undergraduates who studied press and media must train for one year before they can register as members of the JPA, while holders of master’s degrees will have to undergo a six-month training course before they can join the association.

However, PhD holders can join immediately, according to the new amendments, which make it impossible for high school graduates to join the JPA from now on. 

In addition, the amendments stipulate that diploma holders from any polytechnic institute who specialised in fields other than media and journalism cannot join the JPA unless they go through a three-year training course in advance.

The Lower House will continue its deliberations over these draft amendments during Wednesday’s session. 

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