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Are you ready to immerse yourself in a dynamic and exciting environment, to learn about the ways media influences our daily lives and the world around us?

The BA (Hons) Mass Communication with Public Relations pathway course is an innovative media-based degree that allows you to develop specialist knowledge of the concepts, theories, practices and methods that characterise contemporary media, communication, and cultural studies.

From day one, you will be supported in developing an independent critical understanding of the key developments within mass communications, a field of study that encompasses a wide variety of media organisations, technological innovations, cultural industries, and audiences.

You will develop your knowledge, skills and abilities on a course that will enable you to critically evaluate contemporary mass communications industries and to understand the technological, social and political factors that shape those industries.

The course’s unique framework structure allows you to tailor your interest in media towards a particular career route in PR in your third year, specialising in specific modules that are directly applicable to your future employment, whichever career path you choose.

Northumbria was ranked top 25 in the Guardian University Guide 2017 for Journalism, Publishing and Public Relations

Course Information

UCAS Code
P3P2

Level of Study
Undergraduate

Mode of Study
3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department
Arts

Location
City Campus, Northumbria University

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2020

Fee Information

Module Information

Department / Social Sciences

Our Department of Social Sciences is a community that equips you to make a positive social change, become a critical thinker, a problem solver, and to challenge what you think, see and hear.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

As a pathway degree, the BA (Hons) Mass Communication framework provides greater opportunities to tailor your degree to your future career aspirations than most other courses usually offer.

The course’s core and option modules provide you with a detailed knowledge of mass communications, encompassing media and cultural theory, media organisations, technological innovations, creative industries, and consumers.

The first two years of the course will follow a core programme of study, whether you have chosen to study Mass Communication as a single subject or combined with advertising, business or public relations.

In your third year, you will specialise by undertaking specific Public Relations modules, and by completing a dissertation that is applicable to Mass Communications with Public Relations.

You will be assessed via a wide variety of methods including essays, presentations, exams and blogs. The variety of assessment mechanisms will develop your ability to present your ideas in a variety of forms, thereby encouraging you to become a flexible and dynamic thinker.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

This course has an excellent academic support system provided by knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff, who have a shared passion for their profession and this course.

Our tutors are leading experts in the fields of media, cultural studies and mass communications. Our staff bring a wealth of research experience to the course, with specialisms in digital technology, philosophy, contemporary cinema, popular culture, and audience research. Their research is underpinned by successful collaborative partnerships with external organisations such as the BBC and a number of international film festivals.

Our experienced academic staff will engage you in a range of stimulating, contemporary debates that explore the global influence of the mass communication industries and the factors that drive changes in media industries. Our tutors are committed to excellence in teaching and learning, and to delivering an outstanding student experience. 

 

Staff / Meet the Team

At Northumbria we know how important it is that you are taught by staff who understand the course you are studying. That's why all of our staff have industry experience and connections to help your learning.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

We provide a supportive and informal learning environment, staffed by tutors who are focused on your learning needs. This course encourages you to develop independent learning skills as well as the ability to work efficiently and effectively in a group. You will be taught discipline specific knowledge. You will also develop transferable intellectual and professional skills, which will be directly relatable to your future career.

We use technology to enhance your learning experience on this course, including tools such as electronic reading lists that will guide your preparation for seminars and independent research. Each module is accompanied by a ‘Blackboard’ eLearning portal that contains lecture slides and assessment information. Electronic Submission and Feedback (eSAF) is used to hand-in and provide feedback on your assessments.

You will have access to our award winning library, which not only provides access to a vast array of books and journal articles, but also supplies high quality training guidance materials that will support your personal and professional development. 

 

University Library

At the heart of each Northumbria campus, our libraries provide a range of study space and technology to suit every learning style.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Our team of academic staff on this course is comprised of highly research-active experts in the field, whose international influence has been demonstrated by our success in the last Research Excellence Framework assessment.

Our tutors are leading experts in the fields of media, cultural studies and mass communications. Our staff bring a wealth of research experience to the course, with specialisms in digital technology, philosophy, contemporary cinema, popular culture, and audience research. Their research is underpinned by successful collaborative partnerships with external organisations such as the BBC and a number of international film festivals. All of the modules on this course are informed by our team’s research expertise. 

 

Research / Social Sciences

The Department of Social Sciences adopts an interdisciplinary approach to research.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Prepares you to meet the challenges of employment or entrepreneurial endeavour in a society in which the cultural and communications industries play an increasingly central role.

On this course, conceptual thinking is used to analyse the trends that shape media and cultural industries. Historical knowledge is related to contemporary employment environments in a way that will allow you to anticipate and develop practical solutions to the complex, unpredictable challenges you will face in your future career.

This course is designed to equip you with the key transferable skills that you will draw upon in your career, so that you will be able to confidently meet the challenges of employment (including enterprise related activities). These skills include team-working, self-motivated organisation, and communication skills.

The course draws upon Newcastle’s status as a vibrant cultural city. The faculty has established partnerships with numerous local cultural hubs including the Baltic gallery, the Tyneside cinema, the Sage, and St James Park.

 

Student Life

A great social scene can be found at the heart of our campuses, featuring award-winning bars and a huge range of clubs and societies to join you'll be sure to meet people who share your enthusiasms.

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

On graduating you will have the knowledge and skills required for employment in a wide range of media-related professions, including careers in the creative and cultural industries, marketing, journalism, management, public relations and press offices.

This course is designed to instil key transferable skills that you will draw upon in your future career, including communication skills, literacy skills, and the ability to work in teams.

Graduates from this course are currently employed by high profile companies such as BBC Digital, Wolff Olins, Framestore and Nexus. 

Book an Open Day / Experience Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study Mass Communication with Public Relations. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Entry Requirements 2019/20

Standard Entry

GCSE Requirements:

A good GCSE profile is expected including Maths and English Language at minimum grade C or equivalent.  If you have studied for a new GCSE for which you will be awarded a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a minimum grade 4.

UCAS Tariff Points:

120-128 UCAS Tariff points including one or more of the following:

GCE and VCE Advanced Level:

From at least 2 GCE/VCE A Levels 

Edexcel/BTEC National Extended Diploma:

Distinction, Distinction, Merit 

Scottish Highers:

BBBCC - BBBBC at Higher level, CCC - BCC at Advanced Higher 

Irish Highers:

BBBBB  - ABBBB to include

IB Diploma:

120-128 UCAS Tariff points including minimum score of 4 in at least three subjects at Higher level

Access to HE Diploma:

Award of full Access to HE Diploma including 18 credits at Distinction and 27 at Merit

Qualification combinations:

The University welcomes applications from students studying qualifications from different qualification types - for example A level and a BTEC qualification in combination, and if you are made an offer you will be asked to achieve UCAS Tariff points from all of the qualifications you are studying at level 3.  Should the course you wish to study have a subject specific requirement then you must also meet this requirement, usually from GCE  level or equivalent. 

Plus one of the following:

  • International/English Language Requirements:

    Applicants from the EU:

    Applicants from the EU are welcome to apply and if the qualification you are studying is not listed here then please contact the Admissions Team for advice or see our EU Applicants pages here www.northumbria.ac.uk/international/european-union/eu-applications/

    International Qualifications:

    If you have studied a non UK qualification, you can see how your qualifications compare to the standard entry criteria, by selecting the country that you received the qualification in, from our country pages. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

    English Language Requirements:

    International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

    *The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2019/20 Entry

UK/EU Fee in Year 1: £9,250

International Fee in Year 1: £15,000

ADDITIONAL COSTS

There are no Additional Costs

Fees, Scholarships and Discounts

Click here for information on all fees, scholarships and discounts

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Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

MI4019 -

Personal and Professional Practice (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to provide you with a range of academic and professional practice skills, and an awareness of a range of professional contexts in which the knowledge of your degree study may be applied.

The module begins with a series of sessions dealing with generic and subject-specific research skills, including how to do presentations, literature reviews, e-learning and writing in different contexts (i.e. essays, portfolios, reports, criticism). These skills will allow you to become independent learners and will then be put into practice through the first assessment task, which is a ten-minute group presentation. The second half of the module is is themed around professional development. Through attendance at class, individual tutorials and directed and independent learning, you will explore a variety of professional contexts for your degree study. This will include visiting speakers and training sessions in relevant skills such as podcasting. This will culminate in the second assessment task, a ten minute podcast undertaken by your group.

More information

MP4015 -

Approaches to Media and Culture (Core,40 Credits)

This module will introduce you to the study of culture through popular media forms. Throughout the module you will examine examples of popular culture (ranging from tabloid newspapers, film and television) and critical concepts (such as “feminism,” “nationalism” and “retro”), and will be asked to consider how they analyse such objects and ideas: what knowledge is required to contextualise the analysis? How does one select and integrate theory into analysis? What primary and secondary sources are considered “legitimate” in academic analysis, and how are these decisions made?

The focus of the module is at once to allow you to engage with media and culture first-hand and develop your analytical skills (in terms of written work and collaborative group discussion), but also to provide you with a strong methodological framework—a foundation that will act as the basis of your future studies.

More information

MP4016 -

Writing for Digital (Core,20 Credits)

The purpose of the module Writing for Digital is to learn the basics of how to identify stories, source information, interview and write journalism for a range of publications including newspapers and online. As such you will learn to become an independent journalist, developing a sense of what is news and the best means to tell a story across a variety of media.

More information

MP4017 -

Key Debates in Media History (Core,20 Credits)

This module sketches the creation of the modern media and the development of modern ‘mass’ media communications and the significance this has for contemporary society. It begins with a consideration of pre-renaissance methods of communication, focusing on the importance of inscriptions to public communication and highlighting the enduring nature of this and other forms of public communication. The nature and function of early manuscripts and the significance of these to the social whole is explored. The module will chart the practice and social consequences of printing in the fifteenth century, photography and the news print media in the nineteenth; radio, cinema, television and, advertising in the twentieth century. The module concludes with an introduction to information and communication technologies (ICTs). The module aims to chart and debate the main historical developments in the creation of the contemporary mass media and relate these to politics and contemporary society.

More information

MP4018 -

Media and Morality (Core,20 Credits)

‘Media and Morality’ introduces you to a range of theoretical paradigms and arguments within moral philosophy. These ideas will be explored via contentious debates located in current affairs. Examples from news, media and popular culture will be drawn upon in order to a) illustrate the continuing relevance of moral concerns raised by classical thinkers such as Kant and Aristotle, and b) demonstrate the ubiquity of moral concerns in contemporary culture. The module aims to evince the ways in which moral theory can deepen our understanding of contentious issues that impact on our lives and rights as citizens. The module also aims to develop your ability to work with theoretical concepts and to present your views on such matters in the form of focused arguments (both during class discussion and the final written assessment).

More information

MP5017 -

Media Cultures (Core,20 Credits)

This explores the major trajectories of communication technology, cultural readings of communication technologies and their impact in terms of human communication, technological progression, economics, business, popular culture, and cultural human space. This module will take a case study approach to media cultures which will resonate explicitly with examples which are central to the daily lives of young people as a way to explore both these and wider issues of media and cultural engagement. Such examples include the online world of social media, the 21st century music industry and global consumer culture and can be applied to more unfamiliar media cultures. The second part of the module takes a historical turn. Moving from the contemporary to the historical gives the opportunity to reflect on the current historical moment and how this is linked to longer trajectories in the development of media cultures

More information

MP5019 -

Researching Audiences (Core,20 Credits)

This module will introduce you to several things. First, it will give you a grounding in some of the main recent traditions for thinking about and researching media audiences, and the historical contexts of these; the rise of the European cultural studies approach to audiences, the mainly American mass communications approaches, the reception studies tradition, and the growing interdisciplinary field of fan studies. What links all of these approaches is an emphasis on the contexts which shape how audiences engage with and respond to different media and cultural products.

The module will also ensure you are experienced at reading and evaluating original audience and reception research. In other words, that rather than just reading second-hand summaries or excerpts, you read in detail actual empirical work in order to think about and understand the processes undertaken, and assess what distinguishes good/strong from poor/weak research.

Finally, alongside tackling the intellectual issues of audience research, the module aims to do something quite unusual – to give you experience of the processes involved, and the challenges encountered, by giving you a chance to carry out your own small piece of audience research. This necessarily has to be small-scale and preliminary, in order to fit it within the confines of one module over one semester. But working in a small group you will design, conduct and compare some different ways of learning about audience responses.

More information

MP5021 -

Media Methodologies (Core,20 Credits)

The purpose of this module is to introduce you to key theories and approaches employed when researching media, and provide you with the practical skills needed to undertake a major independent research in your final year (the dissertation). In the first half of this module, you will engage with the key processes involved in designing an academic research project, undertaking the research work and analysis, and presenting the results. In the process, you will be shown how to position your work in relation to an intellectual context; construct research questions that are practical and realistic; implement appropriate methodologies; write research proposals; and structure longer written projects (such as dissertations). The second half of the module will put research approaches in focus; academic experts will provide sessions on particular methodological approaches such as analysing media texts and archival research.

More information

MP5022 -

Cultural Identities on Screen (Core,20 Credits)

The module will focus on the televisual representation and articulation of cultural identities in Britain and the US. We will look at how gender, ethnicity, national and regional identities are constructed through an examination of different genres and areas of screen media, such as drama, comedy and current affairs. We will explore issues such as class, gender and racial stereotypes, visibility of minority groups and integration. Throughout the course we will also consider the function of television, considering what its role might be in the construction of cultural identities.

More information

MP5023 -

Media Industries (Core,20 Credits)

You will examine mass communications in the context of contemporary practices, trends, developments and trajectories that have developed and are developing within contemporary mass communication industries. The module takes a distinctive pedagogic approach in that the core of the module consists of three team-taught and research-led ‘symposiums’ that address a specific debate, development or controversy within the field of mass communication industries (broadcast, digital, advertising) and enable you to acquire a critical, multi-perspective, and evaluative grounding in the issues shaping such industries. Complementing and reinforcing the Media staff-led symposiums will be a series of lectures provided by industry guest speakers (from television, radio, advertising and digital/web companies) that will provide practical and state-of-the-art insights into key issues underpinning mass communication operations and developments. Finally, two workshop sessions will be based upon you undertaking personal research into salient issues (the front-facing components of Apple stores, the ‘brand’ and customer typology) and research-informed reflexive approaches to social networking technologies.

More information

MP5024 -

Media Events (Core,20 Credits)

Following a case study approach, you will investigate the idea of media events in historical, conceptual and organisational terms. The module will explore how particular events (e.g. media festivals and award ceremonies) are developed, structured and organised. The aim is to consider how we, as scholars of media and culture, might conceptualise events and in so doing gain a clearer understanding of their dynamics, practices and their impact upon industry and society. In this way, the module will illustrate the key ways in which specific media events have been framed in scholarship and how these ideas might begin to be applied in the real world. As such, the module encourages you to develop a critical response to media events and, in so doing, reflect upon their broader historical, cultural and socio-political significance. The lectures will introduce key concepts that will be explored in the seminars. The main part of each seminar will focus upon group tasks and discussion of the theme, specific event or set texts. Seminar discussions are also intended to develop your communication skills and your ability to develop and respond to ideas in a collaborative environment. You are expected to prepare for the sessions by studying the set text(s) for each week, and also by carrying out additional recommended reading/viewing (which will be indicated in the module guide and on the e–Learning Portal).

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities & Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5017 -

Social Sciences Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AD5018 -

Social Sciences Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year of study abroad at a European University under the ERASMUS+ exchange scheme or at an approved partner University elsewhere. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

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AT5004 -

Year in International Business (This is made up of 5 modules studied in Newcastle (Semester 1) & Amsterdam (Semester 2) (Optional,120 Credits)

This overarching module descriptor covers the Year in International Business which is made up of 5 modules which students study in Newcastle (semester 1) and Amsterdam (semester 2).

This additional year of studies has been designed to develop students’ business awareness and their soft skills through a semester of study in the UK followed by engagement in studying in Amsterdam and working on real business projects to further enhance and develop this knowledge, skills and attributes.

Semester 1 in the UK comprises three 20-credit modules aimed at students new to business and management, which also equips the students for a semester in Amsterdam, working in teams on a “real-world”, client facing project. Of the modules studies in Semester 1 provide students with the “soft”, “analytical” and “project management” skills necessary to embark on a “real-world” client-centred consultancy project in Semester 2. In Semester 2, students will work move to Amsterdam and study two modules on Northumbria licensed premises. The first module, Group Business Consultancy Project, is a Level 5 40 credit Consultancy Project providing a supported and challenging experience with real business supervised by Northumbria and possibly Dutch academics. The final module complements the development of business knowledge and application through a contextualised consideration of International Business. This will also add to the Business Consultancy experience, thereby guaranteeing a coherent business experience.

The modules are outlined below:

Semester 1
HR9505 Managing People at Work (20 credits)
SM9511 Global Business Environment (20 credits)
AF5022 Financial Decision Making (20 credits)

Semester 2
AT5000 Digital Business (20)
AT5001 Group Business Consultancy Project (40 credits)

In semester 1, students will learn in an environment aligned to that of business students on full time programmes. A mixture of large group and small group sessions will take place. In semester 2, in accordance with the experiential learning pedagogical approach in the Business Clinic operated at Newcastle Business School, the group consultancy work will involve students working in groups, facilitated by academics but also independently and amongst their peers in collaborative project work to provide real business consultancy. Assessment has been developed in accordance with Northumbria’s Assessment for Learning principles including a broad mix of assessment appropriate to the learning outcomes being assessed and with opportunities for formative feedback.

A student who passes all modules will, on successful completion of their undergraduate programme of study, have the title “(Year in International Business UK and Amsterdam)” added to their degree award title. Students who do not pass 120 credits will have those modules that have been completed recorded on their transcript.

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MP6006 -

Media Dissertation (Core,40 Credits)

‘Media Dissertation’ involves the researching and writing of an 8,000-10,000 word media-related dissertation on a subject of your own choosing. You should attend a series of mandatory lecture/workshop sessions in which the fundamental requirements of preparing and researching a dissertation will be examined and explained. These sessions will be spread across semester 1 and semester 2. In Semester 1, you will develop your initial dissertation proposal up to the point where you are ready to start writing the dissertation itself. You will develop your information-retrieval skills, familiarise yourself with your chosen subject, find solutions to any problems arising out of your research design, consider the significance of any ethical constraints, formulate your principal research question, and determine the methodology you will use. You are required to complete a 2000 word dissertation plan as part of your progress (however, the module grade will be entirely assessed against your final 8000-10000 word dissertation). In Semester 2 you will develop and amend the ideas in your dissertation plan, carry out further research, prepare and write the final dissertation. Supervision will continue to be provided through regular meetings with your supervisor.

More information

MP6021 -

Mass Communication Case Study (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will provide a space to familiarize yourself with the case study as a tool for the investigation of social, economic, cultural and technological phenomena connected with the field of mass communication studies. Whether your interests lie in how working class people or standards of beauty are represented in the media, success stories in the market of mobile apps, use of social media for marketing purposes or how Twitter is used in discussion of popular television, this module will offer you a mix of knowledge, materials of reference and guidance to engage in choosing, planning, conducting and writing a case study for your assessment. A key component of the module will involve the study of iconic case studies such as Apple, Sony, Microsoft, Google, News International Corporation and Al Jazeera, through which you'll be able to identify the characteristics of well-designed study cases. The module will be a valuable experience to learn aspects of the research process you could apply for writing essays, under- and postgraduate dissertations, whilst providing you with skills you could apply in a variety of professions such as journalism, marketing, public relations, and policy-making.

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MP6029 -

Cinema and Society (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will critically examine the relationship between US filmic institutions (films and industrial bodies – hereafter “cinema”) and different social contexts, including, for example: changes to the Hollywood Studio System (and the birthing of the “New Hollywood”), cinema’s responses to war and global trauma, and cinema’s engagement with issues surrounding race, gender and sexuality. Taught through lectures, demonstrations (film screenings) and student-led seminars, the course explores many of the ways cinema has engaged with key societal concerns.

You will be required to read and reflect on specific theoretical and empirical academic work by leading scholars and commentators and, using your analytical and interpretive skills, relate this work to the issues raised in class and by the accompanying film screenings. The module is assessed by a 3000 word essay which is designed to test your knowledge of film history and industry (one of the world's major mass communications industries), to evidence a sophisticated understanding of the issues under scrutiny, and your ability to work to a deadline. Ultimately, the module asks you to consider: What is the significance of studying cinema as a mass communications industry, an outlet for personal expression, and as a political tool? What can cinema tells us about history? What can cinema tell us about ourselves?

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MP6031 -

Promotional Writing (Core,20 Credits)

In this semi-practical module, you will be introduced to a range of writing skills applicable to professional practice in promotional writing, focusing on marketing materials and press releases. The module aims to develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the practices of promotional writing, the contexts and practices of professional writing, and brand promotion and engagement with the audience through text. At the end of the module you will be able to demonstrate applied writing skills in the production of promotional materials; understand the nature and purpose of a range of promotional techniques; understand the role of writing in the management of corporate, brand and product identities; and understand the relationship between persuasive text, the audience and the medium. Inevitably this module will enhance your knowledge of promotional writing techniques, and give you the skills to consider how to best produce text within promotional materials. All of these outcomes applicable to a future within the advertising or public relations industries.

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MP6033 -

Public Relations in Context (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to develop your understanding of the principles of Public Relations theory and concepts so you can apply them to real-world public relations strategies. You will develop your skills in presenting and working in teams. The module will enable you to utilise a case study approach, involving the analysis of a public relations scenario. You will be briefed about the case study, analyse it in teams, and then deliver an assessed pitch for a contract. The module aims to develop skill-sets that are key to working in the Public Relations industry, and which will be invaluable in terms of future employability.

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MP6034 -

Current Affairs in Public Relations (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to develop your understanding of the relationship between contemporary issues and Public Relations, and how both shape each other. You will learn to analyse current affairs and issues in Public Relations in the light of contemporary PR theory. You are encouraged to develop a broader knowledge of issues and developments in Public Relations by investigating the issues raised by the tutor and your peers during the seminar sessions. You are expected to read widely in PR theory, and keep abreast of current affairs and contemporary issues affecting practice.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities & Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

MI4019 -

Personal and Professional Practice (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to provide you with a range of academic and professional practice skills, and an awareness of a range of professional contexts in which the knowledge of your degree study may be applied.

The module begins with a series of sessions dealing with generic and subject-specific research skills, including how to do presentations, literature reviews, e-learning and writing in different contexts (i.e. essays, portfolios, reports, criticism). These skills will allow you to become independent learners and will then be put into practice through the first assessment task, which is a ten-minute group presentation. The second half of the module is is themed around professional development. Through attendance at class, individual tutorials and directed and independent learning, you will explore a variety of professional contexts for your degree study. This will include visiting speakers and training sessions in relevant skills such as podcasting. This will culminate in the second assessment task, a ten minute podcast undertaken by your group.

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MP4015 -

Approaches to Media and Culture (Core,40 Credits)

This module will introduce you to the study of culture through popular media forms. Throughout the module you will examine examples of popular culture (ranging from tabloid newspapers, film and television) and critical concepts (such as “feminism,” “nationalism” and “retro”), and will be asked to consider how they analyse such objects and ideas: what knowledge is required to contextualise the analysis? How does one select and integrate theory into analysis? What primary and secondary sources are considered “legitimate” in academic analysis, and how are these decisions made?

The focus of the module is at once to allow you to engage with media and culture first-hand and develop your analytical skills (in terms of written work and collaborative group discussion), but also to provide you with a strong methodological framework—a foundation that will act as the basis of your future studies.

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MP4016 -

Writing for Digital (Core,20 Credits)

The purpose of the module Writing for Digital is to learn the basics of how to identify stories, source information, interview and write journalism for a range of publications including newspapers and online. As such you will learn to become an independent journalist, developing a sense of what is news and the best means to tell a story across a variety of media.

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MP4017 -

Key Debates in Media History (Core,20 Credits)

This module sketches the creation of the modern media and the development of modern ‘mass’ media communications and the significance this has for contemporary society. It begins with a consideration of pre-renaissance methods of communication, focusing on the importance of inscriptions to public communication and highlighting the enduring nature of this and other forms of public communication. The nature and function of early manuscripts and the significance of these to the social whole is explored. The module will chart the practice and social consequences of printing in the fifteenth century, photography and the news print media in the nineteenth; radio, cinema, television and, advertising in the twentieth century. The module concludes with an introduction to information and communication technologies (ICTs). The module aims to chart and debate the main historical developments in the creation of the contemporary mass media and relate these to politics and contemporary society.

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MP4018 -

Media and Morality (Core,20 Credits)

‘Media and Morality’ introduces you to a range of theoretical paradigms and arguments within moral philosophy. These ideas will be explored via contentious debates located in current affairs. Examples from news, media and popular culture will be drawn upon in order to a) illustrate the continuing relevance of moral concerns raised by classical thinkers such as Kant and Aristotle, and b) demonstrate the ubiquity of moral concerns in contemporary culture. The module aims to evince the ways in which moral theory can deepen our understanding of contentious issues that impact on our lives and rights as citizens. The module also aims to develop your ability to work with theoretical concepts and to present your views on such matters in the form of focused arguments (both during class discussion and the final written assessment).

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MP5017 -

Media Cultures (Core,20 Credits)

This explores the major trajectories of communication technology, cultural readings of communication technologies and their impact in terms of human communication, technological progression, economics, business, popular culture, and cultural human space. This module will take a case study approach to media cultures which will resonate explicitly with examples which are central to the daily lives of young people as a way to explore both these and wider issues of media and cultural engagement. Such examples include the online world of social media, the 21st century music industry and global consumer culture and can be applied to more unfamiliar media cultures. The second part of the module takes a historical turn. Moving from the contemporary to the historical gives the opportunity to reflect on the current historical moment and how this is linked to longer trajectories in the development of media cultures

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MP5019 -

Researching Audiences (Core,20 Credits)

This module will introduce you to several things. First, it will give you a grounding in some of the main recent traditions for thinking about and researching media audiences, and the historical contexts of these; the rise of the European cultural studies approach to audiences, the mainly American mass communications approaches, the reception studies tradition, and the growing interdisciplinary field of fan studies. What links all of these approaches is an emphasis on the contexts which shape how audiences engage with and respond to different media and cultural products.

The module will also ensure you are experienced at reading and evaluating original audience and reception research. In other words, that rather than just reading second-hand summaries or excerpts, you read in detail actual empirical work in order to think about and understand the processes undertaken, and assess what distinguishes good/strong from poor/weak research.

Finally, alongside tackling the intellectual issues of audience research, the module aims to do something quite unusual – to give you experience of the processes involved, and the challenges encountered, by giving you a chance to carry out your own small piece of audience research. This necessarily has to be small-scale and preliminary, in order to fit it within the confines of one module over one semester. But working in a small group you will design, conduct and compare some different ways of learning about audience responses.

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MP5021 -

Media Methodologies (Core,20 Credits)

The purpose of this module is to introduce you to key theories and approaches employed when researching media, and provide you with the practical skills needed to undertake a major independent research in your final year (the dissertation). In the first half of this module, you will engage with the key processes involved in designing an academic research project, undertaking the research work and analysis, and presenting the results. In the process, you will be shown how to position your work in relation to an intellectual context; construct research questions that are practical and realistic; implement appropriate methodologies; write research proposals; and structure longer written projects (such as dissertations). The second half of the module will put research approaches in focus; academic experts will provide sessions on particular methodological approaches such as analysing media texts and archival research.

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MP5022 -

Cultural Identities on Screen (Core,20 Credits)

The module will focus on the televisual representation and articulation of cultural identities in Britain and the US. We will look at how gender, ethnicity, national and regional identities are constructed through an examination of different genres and areas of screen media, such as drama, comedy and current affairs. We will explore issues such as class, gender and racial stereotypes, visibility of minority groups and integration. Throughout the course we will also consider the function of television, considering what its role might be in the construction of cultural identities.

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MP5023 -

Media Industries (Core,20 Credits)

You will examine mass communications in the context of contemporary practices, trends, developments and trajectories that have developed and are developing within contemporary mass communication industries. The module takes a distinctive pedagogic approach in that the core of the module consists of three team-taught and research-led ‘symposiums’ that address a specific debate, development or controversy within the field of mass communication industries (broadcast, digital, advertising) and enable you to acquire a critical, multi-perspective, and evaluative grounding in the issues shaping such industries. Complementing and reinforcing the Media staff-led symposiums will be a series of lectures provided by industry guest speakers (from television, radio, advertising and digital/web companies) that will provide practical and state-of-the-art insights into key issues underpinning mass communication operations and developments. Finally, two workshop sessions will be based upon you undertaking personal research into salient issues (the front-facing components of Apple stores, the ‘brand’ and customer typology) and research-informed reflexive approaches to social networking technologies.

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MP5024 -

Media Events (Core,20 Credits)

Following a case study approach, you will investigate the idea of media events in historical, conceptual and organisational terms. The module will explore how particular events (e.g. media festivals and award ceremonies) are developed, structured and organised. The aim is to consider how we, as scholars of media and culture, might conceptualise events and in so doing gain a clearer understanding of their dynamics, practices and their impact upon industry and society. In this way, the module will illustrate the key ways in which specific media events have been framed in scholarship and how these ideas might begin to be applied in the real world. As such, the module encourages you to develop a critical response to media events and, in so doing, reflect upon their broader historical, cultural and socio-political significance. The lectures will introduce key concepts that will be explored in the seminars. The main part of each seminar will focus upon group tasks and discussion of the theme, specific event or set texts. Seminar discussions are also intended to develop your communication skills and your ability to develop and respond to ideas in a collaborative environment. You are expected to prepare for the sessions by studying the set text(s) for each week, and also by carrying out additional recommended reading/viewing (which will be indicated in the module guide and on the e–Learning Portal).

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YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities & Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

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AD5017 -

Social Sciences Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

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AD5018 -

Social Sciences Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year of study abroad at a European University under the ERASMUS+ exchange scheme or at an approved partner University elsewhere. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

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AT5004 -

Year in International Business (This is made up of 5 modules studied in Newcastle (Semester 1) & Amsterdam (Semester 2) (Optional,120 Credits)

This overarching module descriptor covers the Year in International Business which is made up of 5 modules which students study in Newcastle (semester 1) and Amsterdam (semester 2).

This additional year of studies has been designed to develop students’ business awareness and their soft skills through a semester of study in the UK followed by engagement in studying in Amsterdam and working on real business projects to further enhance and develop this knowledge, skills and attributes.

Semester 1 in the UK comprises three 20-credit modules aimed at students new to business and management, which also equips the students for a semester in Amsterdam, working in teams on a “real-world”, client facing project. Of the modules studies in Semester 1 provide students with the “soft”, “analytical” and “project management” skills necessary to embark on a “real-world” client-centred consultancy project in Semester 2. In Semester 2, students will work move to Amsterdam and study two modules on Northumbria licensed premises. The first module, Group Business Consultancy Project, is a Level 5 40 credit Consultancy Project providing a supported and challenging experience with real business supervised by Northumbria and possibly Dutch academics. The final module complements the development of business knowledge and application through a contextualised consideration of International Business. This will also add to the Business Consultancy experience, thereby guaranteeing a coherent business experience.

The modules are outlined below:

Semester 1
HR9505 Managing People at Work (20 credits)
SM9511 Global Business Environment (20 credits)
AF5022 Financial Decision Making (20 credits)

Semester 2
AT5000 Digital Business (20)
AT5001 Group Business Consultancy Project (40 credits)

In semester 1, students will learn in an environment aligned to that of business students on full time programmes. A mixture of large group and small group sessions will take place. In semester 2, in accordance with the experiential learning pedagogical approach in the Business Clinic operated at Newcastle Business School, the group consultancy work will involve students working in groups, facilitated by academics but also independently and amongst their peers in collaborative project work to provide real business consultancy. Assessment has been developed in accordance with Northumbria’s Assessment for Learning principles including a broad mix of assessment appropriate to the learning outcomes being assessed and with opportunities for formative feedback.

A student who passes all modules will, on successful completion of their undergraduate programme of study, have the title “(Year in International Business UK and Amsterdam)” added to their degree award title. Students who do not pass 120 credits will have those modules that have been completed recorded on their transcript.

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MP6006 -

Media Dissertation (Core,40 Credits)

‘Media Dissertation’ involves the researching and writing of an 8,000-10,000 word media-related dissertation on a subject of your own choosing. You should attend a series of mandatory lecture/workshop sessions in which the fundamental requirements of preparing and researching a dissertation will be examined and explained. These sessions will be spread across semester 1 and semester 2. In Semester 1, you will develop your initial dissertation proposal up to the point where you are ready to start writing the dissertation itself. You will develop your information-retrieval skills, familiarise yourself with your chosen subject, find solutions to any problems arising out of your research design, consider the significance of any ethical constraints, formulate your principal research question, and determine the methodology you will use. You are required to complete a 2000 word dissertation plan as part of your progress (however, the module grade will be entirely assessed against your final 8000-10000 word dissertation). In Semester 2 you will develop and amend the ideas in your dissertation plan, carry out further research, prepare and write the final dissertation. Supervision will continue to be provided through regular meetings with your supervisor.

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MP6021 -

Mass Communication Case Study (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will provide a space to familiarize yourself with the case study as a tool for the investigation of social, economic, cultural and technological phenomena connected with the field of mass communication studies. Whether your interests lie in how working class people or standards of beauty are represented in the media, success stories in the market of mobile apps, use of social media for marketing purposes or how Twitter is used in discussion of popular television, this module will offer you a mix of knowledge, materials of reference and guidance to engage in choosing, planning, conducting and writing a case study for your assessment. A key component of the module will involve the study of iconic case studies such as Apple, Sony, Microsoft, Google, News International Corporation and Al Jazeera, through which you'll be able to identify the characteristics of well-designed study cases. The module will be a valuable experience to learn aspects of the research process you could apply for writing essays, under- and postgraduate dissertations, whilst providing you with skills you could apply in a variety of professions such as journalism, marketing, public relations, and policy-making.

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MP6029 -

Cinema and Society (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will critically examine the relationship between US filmic institutions (films and industrial bodies – hereafter “cinema”) and different social contexts, including, for example: changes to the Hollywood Studio System (and the birthing of the “New Hollywood”), cinema’s responses to war and global trauma, and cinema’s engagement with issues surrounding race, gender and sexuality. Taught through lectures, demonstrations (film screenings) and student-led seminars, the course explores many of the ways cinema has engaged with key societal concerns.

You will be required to read and reflect on specific theoretical and empirical academic work by leading scholars and commentators and, using your analytical and interpretive skills, relate this work to the issues raised in class and by the accompanying film screenings. The module is assessed by a 3000 word essay which is designed to test your knowledge of film history and industry (one of the world's major mass communications industries), to evidence a sophisticated understanding of the issues under scrutiny, and your ability to work to a deadline. Ultimately, the module asks you to consider: What is the significance of studying cinema as a mass communications industry, an outlet for personal expression, and as a political tool? What can cinema tells us about history? What can cinema tell us about ourselves?

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MP6031 -

Promotional Writing (Core,20 Credits)

In this semi-practical module, you will be introduced to a range of writing skills applicable to professional practice in promotional writing, focusing on marketing materials and press releases. The module aims to develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the practices of promotional writing, the contexts and practices of professional writing, and brand promotion and engagement with the audience through text. At the end of the module you will be able to demonstrate applied writing skills in the production of promotional materials; understand the nature and purpose of a range of promotional techniques; understand the role of writing in the management of corporate, brand and product identities; and understand the relationship between persuasive text, the audience and the medium. Inevitably this module will enhance your knowledge of promotional writing techniques, and give you the skills to consider how to best produce text within promotional materials. All of these outcomes applicable to a future within the advertising or public relations industries.

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MP6033 -

Public Relations in Context (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to develop your understanding of the principles of Public Relations theory and concepts so you can apply them to real-world public relations strategies. You will develop your skills in presenting and working in teams. The module will enable you to utilise a case study approach, involving the analysis of a public relations scenario. You will be briefed about the case study, analyse it in teams, and then deliver an assessed pitch for a contract. The module aims to develop skill-sets that are key to working in the Public Relations industry, and which will be invaluable in terms of future employability.

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MP6034 -

Current Affairs in Public Relations (Core,20 Credits)

This module aims to develop your understanding of the relationship between contemporary issues and Public Relations, and how both shape each other. You will learn to analyse current affairs and issues in Public Relations in the light of contemporary PR theory. You are encouraged to develop a broader knowledge of issues and developments in Public Relations by investigating the issues raised by the tutor and your peers during the seminar sessions. You are expected to read widely in PR theory, and keep abreast of current affairs and contemporary issues affecting practice.

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YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities & Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

To start your application, simply select the month you would like to start your course.

Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)

Home or EU applicants please apply through UCAS

International applicants please apply using the links below

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