Broadcast Journalism - PgDip

Attendance:
Full Time
Starting:
September 2016
Campus:
Fees:
£6,335 for UK/EU Full Time 2016 entry (view all fees)

Succeed in today's British journalism industry with our postgraduate broadcast journalism course.  Accredited by the Broadcast Journalism Training Council, it will teach you everything you need to know to start working in a broadcast news environment.

Our intensive 25-week taught postgraduate course focuses on ‘hands-on’ journalism, with very strong links to major UK broadcasters. You will find our former students filling a whole range of on air and production posts in the BBC, ITV News and Sky. Our alumni include foreign correspondents, local regional and national reporters as well as news readers on BBC and commercial radio and TV programmes. Many are senior broadcast journalists working for programmes such as ‘Today’ on Radio 4, 5-Live Breakfast, BBC TV’s Breakfast and ITV's News at Ten.

You will find stories and record, edit, and report on them, primarily for radio but also for television and the web. Practical work is accompanied by a study of public institutions as well as media law and regulation. We expect you to be an all-rounder with a real interest in news.

What's covered in the course?

This course will give you an in-depth understanding of UK broadcast journalism. Along with the basics of broadcast journalism techniques, processes and practices, you'll gain an understanding of ethics, professional standards and the law, which enables you to operate safely in a live environment.

Your practical skills will be tested when we run our two-week broadcast station in the second semester, where you work on a rota with different shifts and responsibilities. You are also required to take a four to six week work placement in a broadcast newsroom – in the past, our students have had placements at the BBC, commercial and local radio, national network radio and TV, and regional TV.

Based in our state-of-the-art media centre at Parkside, you will have access to our industry standard facilities. You will learn to use all the equipment needed to communicate the news, from radio studios and television cameras, online platforms, audio recorders and digital editing.

Throughout the course you will be given plenty of feedback in order to develop your critical skills. Our staff are experienced professionals, having worked for the BBC in radio, television, online and print journalism, and include a contributor to a new book on the subject of journalistic ethics and the deputy chair of the Broadcast Journalism Training Council.

Why Choose Us?

  • The Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism is professionally accredited by the Broadcast Journalism Training Council. This – and its excellent links with industry – mean the course has an outstanding record of getting students into jobs.
  • Guest speakers in the last year alone have included BBC Financial Journalist and Presenter Dominic Laurie, ITV Assistant News Editor Darryl Murphy, the BBC’s Diversity Editor Neila Butt and freelance broadcaster and presenter Marverine Cole – all of whom are former students. In addition visiting lecturers have included the Parliamentary Outreach Team, West Midlands Police anti-terrorism unit and our visiting Professor Rick Thompson who founded BBC World TV News.
  • Birmingham School of Media saw 88 per cent of its 2011 postgraduate leavers in employment and/or further study within six months (DLHE survey), with 93 per cent of those achieving a graduate-level position.
  • The school is recognised as a key centre of excellence in interactive media training, television production and education by Creative Skillset, the UK Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industries.
  • The state-of-the-art facilities in our £62m Media Centre are industry standard, and include the largest TV studio floor of any UK university, and one of only two MILO motion capture cameras in universities in Europe.
  • The course includes a six-week placement window (the required minimum is four weeks), with students typically going to BBC and Independent local radio stations, ITV news, Sky News or BBC or ITV regional programmes.
Visit our open day

Postgraduate Open Day

Our next Postgraduate Open Day will be in Autumn 2016. The date will be confirmed soon and registration will open shortly.

In the meantime, register your details and we'll contact you when more information is available.

Sign up for Open Day info

This course is open to International students

Birmingham School of Media

Discover the Birmingham School of Media

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • BBC
  • ITV News
  • Sky

And in jobs such as:

  • Foreign Correspondent
  • Local, regional and national reporters
  • News reader

This course is accredited by:

Broadcast Journalism Training Council

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

Applicants should have studied to degree level or equivalent, or have considerable experience in a related field. They should be able to demonstrate a passion for news.

UK journalism requires a very high level of competence in the English language. This embraces spelling, all aspects of grammar and fluency. It is therefore essential that the candidate demonstrates a full command of spoken and written English. All candidates will be interviewed.

International/EU students

Applicants should have studied to degree level or equivalent, or have considerable experience in a related field. They should be able to demonstrate a passion for news.

Candidates for whom English is not the mother tongue should be able to demonstrate high standards at IELTS 7.5 or equivalent in all four elements of reading, writing, speaking and listening. Where this standard is not achieved, the BJTC (our accrediting body) will require evidence of alternative remedial measures.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
PgDip Sep 2016 FT 25 weeks £6,335

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
PgDip Sep 2016 FT 25 weeks £12,000

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Additional costs

Our courses include activities such as performance, exhibitions, field trips and production of works or artefacts which may require you to purchase specific equipment, instruments, books, materials, hire of venues and accommodation, or other items. Many of these activities are essential and compulsory parts of your learning experience.

The link below gives you an estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

BAFTA Scholarships

Students applying to our Pg Dip Broadcast Journalism course at Birmingham City University are eligible to apply to BAFTA – the British Academy for Film and Television Arts – for one of their competitive scholarships worth up to £12,000. Last year one of our students was a BAFTA Scholarship winner.

The award also gives you an industry mentor and free access to BAFTA events for a year. For more information, and to submit an application, view more about scholarships on BAFTA's website.

The deadline for submissions is Friday 17 June 2016. Please direct any queries to scholarships@bafta.org.

Broadcast Journalism PgDip is currently the only course at Birmingham City University eligible for the BAFTA Scholarship.

Apply for a BAFTA Scholarship

This course is not available part-time

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our pdf application form instead.

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible postgraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Did you know that you will soon be able to apply for a postgraduate loan of up to £10,000?

Postgraduate loans

Stage 1: Postgraduate Certificate

Modules explained:
Broadcast Journalism and Law
30 credits

In this module you will learn the basics of broadcast journalism and gain a clear understanding of professionalism. By learning the laws affecting journalism you will be able to work capably within their constraints, and intelligently exploit the reporting opportunities your knowledge of the courts presents.

Radio, Television and Online Skills
30 credits

This module is all about the techniques, processes and practices, learning how to use the technologies that put news stories 'on air'. From the behind the scenes digital recording and editing, to doing 'pieces to camera' and carrying out interviews, this module will allow you to develop keen critical faculties with your own and others' work.

Stage 2: Postgraduate Diploma

Modules explained:
Reporting Institutions
15 credits

In this module you will learn about the different public institutions and regulations that reporters must understand in order to carry out their jobs as effectively as possible. These include those in education, health, criminal justice, and local, regional, and national government, as well as OFCOM.

Newsroom Practice
15 credits

This module will prepare you for your placement, and more essentially, for your working life as a broadcast journalist. Our two-week live webcast exercise takes what you have learned in earlier modules and requires you to do it faster, and better – just like a real broadcasting environment.

Professional Studies
30 credits

Spending between four and six weeks on placement in a newsroom or production environment, you will develop and consolidate your mastery of key journalistic skills. This module encourages and tests your initiative and independent practice, conducted outside the classroom with support from a tutor.

You can choose a placement anywhere in the UK, and possibly to more than one company. It may be in radio, TV, or online.

This intensive 25-week course begins with an immersion into the journalism subject, where you will be expected to listen to and watch a lot of news broadcasts and bulletins. You will be taught to identify news stories, how to find them, and the basic rules of reporting.

You will learn how to use the equipment you need to communicate the news, ranging from radio studios to television cameras and online platforms and from digital editing to audio recorders. Alongside practical work we will make sure you have a thorough understanding of the law, ensuring you are set up to work safely in a live news environment.

All assessments aim to put your skills, knowledge and experience gained in your modules into practice. There is a practice-based exam for law.

Assessment methods

There is one exam for law. All assessments aim to get you to put into practice the skills, knowledge and experience gained in modules.

Student stories

Marverine Cole

Having completed a postgraduate diploma in Broadcast Journalism, Marverine Cole has since built a successful broadcasting career working for ITV Central, the BBC, Sky News and, most recently, shopping channel QVC. She has also become known as one of the UK's leading real ale aficionados, writing the popular 'Beer Beauty' blog and appearing as an expert on TV shows including This Morning and The Alan Titchmarsh Show.

This course is accredited by the following organisation:

Broadcast Journalism Training Council
Broadcast Journalism Training Council

The course is accredited by the Broadcast Journalism Training Council, responsible for setting a standard for broadcast journalism training in the UK. The BJTC Accreditation system is widely regarded as a model of best practice, and works in partnership with the BBC, ITV, ITN, Associated Press, Sky News, Channel 4 News, National Union of Journalists, Creative Skillset, Reuters and The Radio Centre.

Our continued accreditation by the BJTC shows we provide you with relevant and necessary skills that work on a practical level in the industry. We are visited every three years to ensure continued quality. Accredited courses are highly valued by both teachers and employers.

Further Study

Birmingham School of Media offers a number of complementary Master’s level courses. The MA International Broadcast Journalism; MA International Journalism; and MA Online Journalism would be the perfect way to specify your interests in the field and further your studies.

Trips and Visits

As part of the course you’ll learn not just about the industry, with trips to the BBC, ITV and commercial radio, but also the institutions on which you’ll be reporting. So there will be opportunities to go to court, council meetings, and Parliament.

Student experience

Tom Garry, Freelance Broadcaster shares his thoughts on starting the Broadcast Journalism course.

Enhancing your employability skills

By studying with us you will gain an understanding of the key principles of journalism which will help you get a job in the field. From the principles and practices of broadcasting to the courts and the law to practical learning activities and assessments, you will learn how to work effectively and safely in a live news environment.

By working on real-life and problem-based workshops and exercises, particularly during the ‘Newsroom Practices’ and ‘Professional Studies’ modules, you will learn to use your problem-solving creativity on a limited timescale. The acquisition of ‘research conducted to a strict deadline’ is a core skill of this programme that is taught and reinforced at every level. You will develop excellent interpersonal and communication skills, both written and spoken, through visits to different broadcasters, tutor-led workshops, and exercises and Masterclasses from eminent practitioners.

You’ll learn how to use industry-standard equipment and software in both radio and TV, from the Avid edit system, to the digital radio studio suite and the Burli news production system.

The transferrable skills you will gain from this course will set you up for your career in broadcasting. From self-reliance and self-criticism to flexibility when working with new technology, you will leave this course well-rounded and able to work independently or as part of a team. Our graduates have gone on to roles in production, journalism, and newsreading, with prestigious institutions including the BBC, Sky, and ITV.

Placements

During the course, you are required to at least four weeks in a newsroom or production environment. The course tutors will provide advice, information and support in finding and applying for placements.

Where you go is up to you – it can be anywhere in the UK, in radio, TV, or online. In the past, our students have spent their placements in the BBC, commercial and local radio, national network radio and TV, and regional TV.

Sarah Chaundler

Sarah Chaundler

Already working as a radio producer, Sarah wanted to become a journalist at the BBC, and embarked on a postgraduate course at Birmingham City University on the recommendation of a former colleague.

During the course, she secured a work placement at the local BBC radio station, which in turn led to a full-time role with the corporation. She then used the skills and experience she had gained to set up her own film-making company.

More about our placement opportunities...

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Graduate jobs

You will find our former students filling a whole range of on air and production posts in the BBC, ITV News and Sky. Our alumni include foreign correspondents, local regional and national reporters as well as news readers on BBC and commercial radio and TV programmes. Many are senior broadcast journalists working for programmes such as ‘Today’ and ‘PM’ on Radio 4, 5-Live Breakfast, BBC TV’s Breakfast and the News at Ten.

Marverine Cole - credit QVC Since her graduation from the Broadcast Journalism course in 2003, Marverine Cole has built an incredibly successful career in broadcasting. Her CV boasts of work for ITV Central, the BBC, Sky News, and most recently, shopping channel QVC.

Fellow graduate Dominic Laurie moved straight from the university into a career at BBC Radio Oxford as reporter, producer, and newsreader. The practical skills and focus on getting into the workplace of this course ensured his success – with the Working Lunch TV programme, the BBC News channel, and the Today Programme on Radio 4 under his belt. Dominic is currently also working for BBC World News.

Using industry software

You'll learn how to use industry-standard equipment and software in both radio and TV, from the multi-layered ProTools desk in TV Studio and thee Avid edit system, to the digital radio studio suite and the Burli news production system.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Our international students

The Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism has proven to be popular with students from the USA, with its focus on the UK broadcast industry making an excellent complement to courses focussing on international journalism.

The Diploma gives international students an in-depth understanding of the UK media. As an accredited course, the PgDip is designed specifically to enable students to work in UK newsrooms.

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Popular home countries

Our students come from around the world but our broadcast journalism course is most popular with international students from:  

USA Flag

USA

Parkside - City Centre Campus
Parkside - Milo Studio
Parkside - Photography Studio

Birmingham School of Media is recognised as a key centre of excellence in interactive media training, television production and education by Creative SkillSet, the UK Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industries.

State-of-the-art facilities

You will learn in our state-of-the-art facilities - including the £62m fully-digital Media Centre - located on the City Centre Campus. You will enjoy access to extensive studio and workshop space including four TV studios, six radio studios and broadcast-standard edit suites, as well as cutting-edge equipment and software.

Facilities include the largest TV floor of any university in the UK, a ‘green screen’ and the MILO motion control camera - we are one of just two universities in Europe to offer MILO technology.

Edit Suites

Our four broadcast-standard edit suites are based on the industry-standard Avid editing system, used in almost all films and the majority of UK television. Two of the suites are specialised for Audio Finishing and Colour Grading. Our six digital radio studios are all linked an equipped with the best news and production software.

Dubbing Suites

You will have access to our full broadcast-standard dubbing suites, which are based on a multi-layered ProTools desk and can dub both film and TV with up to 120 simultaneous sound sources. We also have an ADR (Additional Dialogue Recording) booth and the ability to record Foley (additional live sound).

Meet our staff

Our staff are experienced professionals, having worked for the BBC in radio, television, online and print journalism, and include a contributor to a new book on the subject of journalistic ethics and the deputy chair of the Broadcast Journalism Training Council.

Professor Diane Kemp

Professor of Broadcast Journalism

Diane worked for BBC radio and television as a broadcaster, reporter and producer and for a number of commercial radio stations before joining the University. She is course director of several postgraduate broadcast journalism courses and is deputy chair of the UK’s national accreditation organisation, the BJTC.

Bob Calver

Senior Lecturer

Bob has more than four decades of journalistic experience, including 18 years as a reporter, producer and editor with the BBC. He has worked in regional newspapers, for online news sites and for magazines. Alongside his role at the University, where he teaches broadcast journalism and media law to postgraduate students, he edits two magazines - one of which he also owns and publishes. This work forms the basis of his current PhD by practice research.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 5478