Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

Changing minds through media

Fake news, misinformation, polarization, propaganda and shrinking spaces- modern journalism is under threat. Our biggest most trusted tool “facts” seem to be failing. When facts and fact checking alone are not enough what else can be done to turn the tide?

As targets of state-sponsored or hate-group online trolling, journalists and civil society actors face intimidation and lack the proper tools, knowledge, or support mechanisms that can help them fight back.

This 3-week course looks at the information crisis and provides practical tools to combat disinformation, build counter-narratives, utilise fact-checking tools, and increase outreach in local media. Combining state of the art techniques on media literacy, alternate messaging and campaigning, we explore what can be done to fight back.

Nathaniel Branden

“The first step toward change is awareness”


Nathaniel Branden

About the course

RTNC is the first training institution to offer a structured course aimed specifically at counteracting disinformation. This course is one of our media for behaviour change group of courses.

Each of our trainers is experienced in creating and running successful campaigns. They work closely with students to ensure a full understanding of the material. The course covers:

  • Learning the proven strategies used in counter disinformation
  • How to implement campaigns that propose alternates to state sponsored messages 
  • Understanding the basis of polarization, propaganda tools and malinformation strategies used to target society and ways to counter these.
Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

Course details


This is a three-week online course spread over four weeks.


This course takes place online. 


Academic Year: 2021
Course fee: € 5650,-

Producing Media to Counter Disinformation 2


  • Understanding the dominant ideological messaging and key narratives in polarizing social issues.
  • Producing multimedia material which changes attitudes and behaviours, using proven persuasion theories
  • Learning from actual counter disinformation programmes and real-life cases that have been successful.
  • Learning how to use creative techniques to deliver alternative narratives to micro-target audiences
  • Developing a counter disinformation strategy
  • Learning basic digital security principles to keep you safe online

For more information contact [email protected]

Producing Media to Counter Disinformation 3
Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

Producing Media to Counter Disinformation

The course is aimed at all media professionals taking on the challenge and responsibility of combatting disinformation. It’s crafted for all journalists, media and communications staff from NGOs, and campaigning organisations. The skills learnt in this course are applicable to all media across platforms, globally. 

Upon graduation

Upon graduation

You'll understand the universal theories of story, format, and audience mapping, and how to apply these as an antidote to disinformation. The Counter  Disinformation course teaches effective strategies to respond to the distortions of radical propaganda, enabling communities to seek alternatives.

Seasoned international journalists

Seasoned international journalists

RNTC’s pool of trainers includes seasoned international journalists with experience across new media on different platforms. They have worked with renowned  organisations like the BBC, CBC, MTV, and RNW Media (formerly Radio Netherlands Worldwide). Using their expertise, they nurture and develop your skills, enabling you to produce media to counter disinformation and polarisation and basic digital security principles. 

Persuasion techniques

Persuasion techniques

By the end of the course, you will understand how to implement persuasion theories to change perceptions and attitudes. You’ll also be able to use creative techniques to deliver alternative narratives.

Deliver powerful stories

Deliver powerful stories

After the course, you will know how to deliver powerful stories in the best format for your micro-audiences, learning from experts working with disinformation initiatives.

Once you have graduated

Once you have graduated

You will be confident and skilled in mapping techniques, to ensure you can identify your target audience within larger communities and address their motivations accurately. 

This three week course provides all the tools you need to craft convincing and emotional narratives that change minds and counter disinformation. Working with professionals, this course offers participants the chance to make a difference in polarised communities with their campaigns by:

  • Learning the proven strategies used in counter disinformation
  • How to implement campaigns that propose alternates to state sponsored messages 
  • Understanding the basis of polarization, propaganda tools and malinformation strategies used to target society and ways to counter these.


The first week includes several small group interactive sessions and workshops to ensure that you learn by doing. 

Module 1: Know your target audience 

  • Where do ideas come from?
  • How to zero in on an audience
  • Mapping your target audience
  • Influencers, agreed realities and emotional payoffs
  • Using mapping to discover target audiences
  • Using social media for insights
  • Developing target audience statements
  • Pitching target audiences

Module 2: Persuade your target audience 

  • What is learning and why is this important to understanding audiences?
  • How do people learn? Information, skills, and behaviours
  • The ingredients of persuasive aims
  • Why you need different credible sources
  • Why you should craft emotional appeals
  • The benefits of formulating a logical approach
  • Investigating examples – persuading target audiences
  • Applying persuasion to your own context

Module 3: Storytelling for media professionals 

  • Narrative journalism versus information journalism
  • The eight essential elements of story
  • Symbols and universal truths
  • Studying real examples illustrating the eight essential elements of story
  • Story detective sessions: develop your own story
  • The micro story: story in a tweet
  • Create characters to engage audiences
  • The importance of character: identifying people like us
  • The types and tropes of drama characters
  • Character histories and how to craft them
  • Hero journeys and creating powerful character growth

Module 4: Creative formats to engage audiences

  • How do we tell stories using media?
  • Ten engaging formats and what makes them unique
  • Which formats are good for conveying information versus conveying emotions?
  • Types of formats and the ideas box
  • Combining ideas creatively
  • Investigating formats: interviewing
  • Investigating formats: the discussion
  • Practice: engaging audiences with the discussion format


  • We draw on lessons learned by counter disinformation experts in what is working and what is not.
  • We explore concepts of disinformation and malinformation and how it works in polarising societies.
  • We explore key issues in digital media that are driving misinformation: echo chambers filter bubbles and sponsored advertising. How these work and how they can be interrupted.
  • We examine media risks through interactive immersive exercises designed to break habits of amplification of messaging.
  • Create counter narratives that focus on our own contexts
  • Examine social media strategies and their efficacy
  • Delve into the potency of offline strategies such as media literacy and school programmes


In the final week, we combine the learning of the first two weeks and use the RNTC method of “learning-by-doing".

Students will create their own positive alternative messages in a variety of media (audio, text, still image, or video), for various platforms (including radio, TV, print, web, and social media) in an effort to put the theories learned, into practice.

Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • You are a media professional with radio, TV, online, or video/film experience
  • You have a minimum of three years' working experience in media or in a campaigning organisation.
  • You can provide original proof (or a properly certified copy) of your most recent educational qualification in secondary or higher education.
  • You are fluent in English – written and spoken – as this is the working language of our course

After you have completed all the course sessions and assignments you will receive an RNTC certificate and join the ranks of our more than 6,000 RNTC alumni worldwide.

Do you qualify for a scholarship for an RNTC course? The most commonly awarded scholarships for our courses are the OKP and MSP (MENA) scholarships.

For more information, please visit our scholarships page:

Everywhere you want

RNTC Media Training Centre trains journalists, social activists, programme-makers, media and communications professionals worldwide in achieving social change through media.


Next to our open courses, we also provide tailor-made trainings for individuals and organisations. RNTC prides itself on being innovative in both subject matter and method of delivery.

50+ years, 6000+ students

RNTC is the internationally renowned training centre of RNW Media. Over the past 50 years, RNTC has gained invaluable expertise in delivering courses to media professionals around the world.

Are you ready to take your career to the next level?