My Media: Morag Shepherd, psychology student

MORAG Shepherd is an undergraduate psychology student, at the University of Strathclyde.

What are your media habits?

I keep up-to-date with news via the Daily Mail website. I also rely on social networking sites such as Twitter, for breaking news from the BBC which I then look at in more depth on their website.

Any particularly favorite journalists, and why?

Not really, I pay more attention to the news stories being covered than to who has written them.

To what extent has the media become an increasing or decreasing part of your professional life?

The media has recently become more important for me as I am currently a research intern looking at feelings and experiences associated with the of reporting suicide in the journalism sector.

This has required me to research the current guidelines for the reporting of suicide and look for academic journals surrounding the media’s adherence to such guidelines.

I have also been reviewing all articles from The Guardian and the BBC published between June 2012 and December 2012, regarding suicide and murder suicides.

To what extent is New Media (websites, social networking, etc) part of your media world?

Social networking sites are one of the key ways I stay up-to-date with current affairs as I tend to find out most news stories via friends posting on Facebook or Twitter before I have looked at news websites.

How would you rate the media understanding, and coverage, of your sector?

I believe that media coverage of psychology is improving, as stories covering sensitive issues often include comments/interviews with professionals in the field eg. stories about criminals often include interviews with forensic psychologists.

If you were an editor (newspaper, television, etc. state which) for a day, what would you do?

I would do an in-depth story about mental health issues and how those in need can be identified and helped.