Art and Techniques of Headlining (261182)

Learning Outcomes

This course aims to provide students of basic knowledge, essential for the domain of headlines creation techniques on written press and the web.

Study Program

  1. In the beginning was not the title

1.1. History and stories around the titles of the written press


  1. What is a journalistic title?

2.1. Indispensable character of titles

2.2. The alleged difficulty in producing titles

2.3. The journalist's anguish when faced with a blank page

2.4. The life of titles

2.5. The weight of the fat ones

2.6. Showing and at the same time hiding

2.7. The title as a promise of information

2.8. Place of transition and transaction

2.9. Creativity in the straightjacket of concision

2.10. Title as authoritative element, programmer of reading

2.11. The various functions assigned to titles

2.12. Virtualities and weaknesses of the classification guidelines of titles


  1. Titles today

3.1. Titles in the realm of overabundant information

3.2. The “News Objectors”

3.3. Titles in the “newspaper that wraps the gift” era

3.4. The need for reader loyalty

3.5. Titles for those who don't have time to read

3.6. The different levels of reading a newspaper

3.7. Level of memorization of texts

       3.7.1. Short/medium term memory

       3.7.2. Long-term memory

       3.7.3. Immediate memory

3.8. Readability studies

       3.8.1. Flesch Comprehensibility Index

       3.8.2. Fog index

       3.8.3. The Eye Track

3.9. Suitability to the titular culture of a specific publication

3.10. Functions of style books

3.11. Responsibility for preparing titles


  1. Techniques

4.1. The set of title armor

4.2. Imbrication of the title with the lead

4.3. Various types of entries

4.4. Use of the Keyword

4.5. Bifurcated headline

4.6. Five W Rule

4.7. Three C’s Rule

4.8. Linguistic reductions

       4.8.1. Deletion of conjunctions and relative

       4.8.2. Verb deletion

4.9. Division into parts technique

4.10. Cheap oranges techniques

4.11. Degreasing technique

4.12. Liabilities on assets technique

4.13. Use of verbs in titles

4.14. Judicious use of quotation marks

4.15. To be avoided: wax nose, newspaper, etc.


  1. Art / Language Games

5.1. Denoted titles

5.2. Connotative titles

5.3. Lexical creativity

5.4. The double semantic nature of characters

5.5. Unstable nature of the title/co-text relationship

5.6. Text-appeal

5.7. Acoustic resonance of headlines

5.8. Language games

5.9. Journalism and Literature

5.10. Appealing titles

5.11. Expressed relations of opposition between title terms

5.12. Emphatic exploration in titles

5.13. Provocation of phonetic games

5.14. Accented Titles

5.15. Homophony games

5.16. Homographic games

5.17. Ambiguity enhancers

5.18. Vocalic changes

5.19. Use of proverbs, sayings, popular expressions

5.20. Question/answer, cause/consequence titles


  1. Image Games

6.1. The Broadloidization of the reference press

6.2. Semanarization of newspapers

6.3. Iconographic properties of titles

6.4. Relational play between titles and images

6.5. The imbrication of titles with the page as a whole

6.6. The pernicious effects of the graphic nouveau-rique

6.7. Reading habits

6.8. The logic of formats

6.9. The vertigo of graphic remodeling

6.10. Iconically differentiated composition

6.11. Iconotextuality

6.12. Plasticity of texts

6.13. Weight of fonts

6.14. Reading diagonal

6.15. Primary optical area

6.16. Terminal optical area

6.17. Pistol mockup

6.18. Modular mockup


  1. Controversies

7.1. Titles in the drift of sensationalist information

7.2. Imposter titles

7.3. Foreign words in titles

7.4. Use of acronyms in titles

7.5. People’s names in titles

7.6. Interrogative titles

7.7. Exclamatory titles

7.8. Use of neologisms

7.9. Use of parentheses

7.10. Negative titles

7.11. Use of ellipses in headings

7.12. Bifurcated headlines

7.13. Use of the present periphrasis


  1. Intertextuality/Intertitling

8.1. The dynamic conception of the literary text

8.2. The pleasure of imitation

8.3. The mixing strategy

8.4. The aesthetics of the reception

8.5. Titles glossing film titles

8.6. Titles glossing book titles

8.7. Titles glossing song titles

8.8. Titles glossing television program titles

8.9. Titles glossing titles of plays

8.10. Titles glossing radio program titles

8.11. Titles glossing advertising slogans

8.12. Titles glossing party-political slogans and slogans

8.13. “Warmongering” Titles

8.14. Current hitchhiking titles



ALVES, Dinis Manuel. “Foi Você que Pediu um Bom Título?”, Quarteto Editora, Coimbra, 2003.
REBELO, José. “O discurso do jornal”, Editorial Notícias, Lisboa, 2000.
RICARDO, Daniel. “Ainda bem que me pergunta – O 1.º manual de escrita jornalística editado em Portugal”, Casa das Letras, 2.ª edição, Março 2010