A proposal for a digital newspaper

A proposal for a digital newspaper

Learn how to write a proposal.


Do the preparation task first. Then read the text and tips and do the exercises.

Reading text

There are plans to stop production of your university newspaper. You feel that the newspaper should be saved. You decide to write a proposal to the university suggesting a digital version of the paper.

A proposal for a digital version of the university newspaper


This proposal intends to outline how a digital version of the university newspaper, The Scallion, could function and aims to show that an online paper is viable for the future of the newspaper. It draws on the views of 3,000 students surveyed in May.


The Scallion is printed weekly and distributed free in faculty buildings, with a readership of approximately 10,000 students. It is written and produced entirely by students. The survey shows that the newspaper is highly valued by university students and staff for entertainment, cultural enrichment and work experience.

Current problems

The cost of printing newspapers is significant. Furthermore, some students do not have easy access to the paper, since the only way to obtain a copy is to physically go to university. An additional environmental issue is that a large number of copies end up as litter on campus.

Proposed solution

It is proposed that the newspaper could shift to an online format. An overwhelming majority (95 per cent) of survey respondents were 'keen' or 'very keen' on this.

The key benefits would be:

  • Lower costs. Electronic publication is much cheaper than printing, and the website would require minimal maintenance. Although there are considerable initial costs of developing a website, these would be offset over time.
  • Improved accessibility. Students unable to collect a copy and those with visual impairments would be able to read the paper online.
  • Eco-friendliness. A website would reduce paper usage and produce no litter.
  • Digital media experience. For student journalists, gaining experience in running a web-based news site would be invaluable for any job which involves digital communication.


One issue is information management. The site would have to comply with data protection and privacy laws. Advice should be sought from the IT department.

Another drawback may be personal preference. Twenty-five per cent of survey respondents liked having a physical paper to flick through in a café. However, as this is a minority view, I would suggest that the benefits of the online paper outweigh the inconvenience on this issue.


The results of the consultation suggest that moving the paper online is the best option given that it would reduce costs, be more environmentally-friendly and reach a larger audience. A change to a digital format is therefore recommended to maintain the benefits of the newspaper while addressing its current difficulties.



  1. Start by reading the question carefully. Brainstorm all your thoughts about the proposal first. Then choose your best ideas and plan your paragraphs.
  2. Use subheadings to make the structure clear. Start by stating the aim of the proposal (Introduction) and giving information about the context (Background).
  3. Next, move on to the Current problems and your Proposed solution. You can also mention the Drawbacks and how to address them before you finish (Conclusion).
  4. You should use an impersonal, formal tone for your proposal. Passive verb forms (e.g. It is proposed that … , Advice should be sought …) are a useful way to avoid I think or You should.
  5. The final section should include an overall recommendation based on your previous points.


Worksheet83.81 KB

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Submitted by Ehsan on Tue, 17/08/2021 - 13:49

surly due to benefits that a online newspaper has, I prefer to read that type.

Submitted by Dibesciak on Thu, 29/04/2021 - 02:34

I really dont mind if newspaper which I am readinng is online or in physical form. Is depend on situation when I want to read something. For example when I lie on my bed before sleep is better for me to read articles on my smartphone. Also,when I am at work is more convenient to read on my mobile ;) On the other hand physical format is better when I am in the places where there is no Wi-fi, for example in the long journey by train. Furthermore, I guess the overwhelming majority of the people can read only paper format newspaper while taking the flight unless they downloaded some online version to a notebook before. Drawback of the paper format is that it costs more money in production and is worse for our enviroment. On the other hand online newspaper require constant access to the internet.
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Submitted by Riza on Fri, 01/01/2021 - 13:40

I used to read newspapers and magazines only on paper during my childhood and university time! However nowadays I could rarely see them. Most of the time I just open the Internet and surf for some information online. The most favourite newspaper for me is New York Times. Although I sometimes miss the time when I was able to read the newspapers by bringing them from mailbox.

Submitted by TadyEriel on Sun, 11/10/2020 - 04:55

I prefer online newspaper, due to its advantages such as portability, cheaper, and links to get more data about certain topics. Apart from, it is feasible to share a piece of information inmediatly. Perhaps a drawback could be the hours that involves be in front of a light screen. Nevertheless, it's up to you. You can always manage a schedule which suits you in order to avoid an overwelming use of cellphone.

Submitted by Ugulhan on Sat, 10/10/2020 - 02:00

As I was a child, I subscribed to a journal. I enjoyed flicking it through in my home, and it was a physical paper that I could collect it. Over time, everything in our lives has become changes, and we see now digital newspapers as a result of the development of technology. I like reading online books or news. The overwhelming readers would be preferred to reading online. The benefits of the digital newspaper will offer environmental friendliness and low costs for subscribers. There is no produce litter, such as papers that are left lying in public places. As Drawback, I would say, it could be if it has not been connected to internet then you will be missed the digital information.
That's so true. I'd add. Unfortunatelly, plenty of people doesn't have internet access, therefore they don't have option. Hopefully, it will have improved in the coming years.

Submitted by Miyu on Wed, 12/08/2020 - 05:02

I prefer to read a newspaper on paper. I have two reason. Firstly, it is easy to hold while reading to be made of thin paper. Thanks to the specific paper, it is easy to read and bring anywhere. In addition, to operate terminals are not needed for us comparing with reading newspapers online. Secondly, a paper does not cost much. Although online newspaper has a problem that it needs communication line and devises while reading news, a paper does not need them. On the other hand, there are some problems. One issue of newspaper on paper is it uses too spacious space in the room of our house. We have to dispose of them regularly. Also, the article we can read on paper may be limited for particular articles. However, those issues can be solved by selecting whether the Internet or paper depending on circumstances. Therefore, reading on paper is better than reading online in that papers is possible for bring without selecting places and not being worried about high cost while reading.
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Submitted by OlaIELTS on Sat, 16/05/2020 - 18:26

I do prefer reading online news to paper.
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Submitted by Magedelabd on Sun, 26/04/2020 - 20:46

I prefer to read the newspaper in paper format than the online one . Because in the paper format I feel that I can the whole page without any limitations.

Submitted by farid007 on Thu, 09/04/2020 - 04:09

While digital newspaper is quite comfortable source of getting information, I prefer reading paper newsaper. It could be argued that digital newspaper is environmentally friendly and less costly to produce. It is because we do not cut trees to produce paper and we pay only fee for mataining and creating website where we can publish news. While one may also argue that digital news is good also for invalids, I believe that the benefits of digital newspaper is outweighed by its costs. It is irrefutable that unlike to paper newspaper, digital newspaper have some some advers effect on eyesight. Secondly, people with visual impairment and blinds may not read digital newspaper while its possible with paper newspaper. They can read and become familiar with news by touching letter. Also, newspapers have got a lot of games such as crosswords, and prizes when you are loyal subscriber of paper newspaper. Moreover, one can flip through the pages of newspaper , highlight and write on memorable point of newspaper or one can just cut this piece and save which is not possible with digital newspaper. Thus, I believe that advantages of reading paper newspaper outweighs digital newspaper. Paper Newspaper protects us from adverse effects of computes and mobile on our eyes, afford us playing games and memorizing notable events and information.