English and Journalism with a Foundation Year - BA (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Q30C
Attendance:
Full Time (4 years)
Starting:
September 2019
Campus:

Get practical, professional preparation for a career in journalism with our BA (Hons) Journalism with Foundation Year degree course.

The course is housed in the School of English where you will be taught by world-leading academics and practitioners offering a diverse range of modules in literary studies, linguistics, creative writing and drama. Your degree will allow you to tailor your studies to your individual interests and career aspirations with both a local and global outlook.

The programme focuses on the development of core knowledge and skills for English study and work experience placements on live stories in media environments will teach you how to craft a story in a way that engages the audience.

By the time you graduate, you’ll be a thinking journalist with a specialism in news, broadcasting, features, or design. You’ll also be adaptable to the changes that the industry faces. Our graduates have gone on to work for Sky, BBC, Trinity Mirror and a wide range of regional newspapers. Others have scooped prestigious awards at the Midlands Media Awards while still studying.

About foundation courses

This four year programme has been specifically designed to allow you to undertake additional level 3 study, to ensure you are successful on their chosen degree programme. The foundation year helps students to develop skills such as academic writing, referencing and researching, as well as important transferable skills such as project management and team work.

After successful completion of your foundation year, you will have the flexibility to switch (should you wish to change direction) onto a number of related undergraduate degree programmes within Birmingham School of Media.

Alongside this you will develop core skills in research, critical analysis, planning and evaluation, creativity and effective communication. Understanding how English is studied in context, developing that knowledge and applying it through a range of assignments and assessments, will provide you with a strong foundation upon which to progress to degree-level study at the School of English.

What's covered in the course?

The course brings together a study of English with knowledge of journalism practice and professional development. Combining the study of literature, language, drama and creative writing from the School of English with the development of skills to become a thinking media worker with the School of Media, you will benefit from subject knowledge and transferable skills from both disciplines.

Through study of English you will develop an ability to work as an independent researcher, to communicate effectively in spoken and written discourse, to critically evaluate the work of others and respond imaginatively to original briefs.

Understanding how language works in practice and how language and literature engage with societies are both vital aspects in understanding how the discipline connects with the wider world, enabling you to focus on the production, interpretation and negotiation of meaning.

These skills are transferrable to the journalism component, where you will publish your stories, use blogs - including the student-run Birmingham Eastside website, runner-up in the Guardian Student Media Awards - create wikis, and employ social media channels and other interactive media to support your work and self-development.

Work experience placements on live stories in media environments will teach you how to craft a story in a way that engages the audience.

Teaching for the journalism component takes place in radio, TV and photography studios, editing suites and computer suites in our £62 million Parkside Building, part of our City Centre Campus, where you will build on your skills as you begin to make contacts in the industry and make your first moves into media work.

Why Choose Us?

  • You will benefit from student-focused and research-informed teaching in a friendly and supportive learning environment where you will be taught by world-leading academics and expert practitioners.
  • English at the University is, by definition, interdisciplinary. Students can collaborate across disciplines to gain new perspectives on the relevance of their study in the wider world.
  • English is a global language; its culture has an international reach. Understanding how English has been shaped and reshaped by its engagement with the world at large is a key principle of the programme. You can also take advantage of the study abroad semester offered through the Erasmus scheme in year two.
  • By the time you graduate, you’ll be a thinking journalist with a specialism in news, broadcasting, features or design. You’ll also be adaptable to the changes that the industry faces. Our graduates have gone on to work for Sky, BBC, Trinity Mirror and the Express & Star. Others have scooped prestigious awards at the Midlands Media Awards while still studying, and seen their work appear on a number of national and regional outlets during this time.
  • Access to state-of-the-art media and production facilities throughout your studies, and visiting lecturers from specialist areas, such as national newspapers, TV, radio, data, online and mobile journalism, offer in-depth advice on a range of topics. You also have the opportunity to be taught by undercover reporters, current BBC reporters, freelancers and mobile journalism experts.

BA Eng and Journ overview

Students outside Millennium Point

Open Days

Our next Open Day for this course will take place on Sunday 25 November 2018. Book your place to see our facilities and speak to our staff and students.

Book your place

This course is not open to International students

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work in jobs such as:

  • BBC
  • Express and Star
  • 90minutes.com

And in roles such as:

  • Social Media Editor
  • Digital Content Producer
  • Reporter

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

UK students
Essential

At the point of application, you must have GCSE at Grade 4 or above in English Language. Equivalent qualifications can be considered in lieu as long as the required subject is covered.

80 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level

Typical Offers
A level  CDD. A minimum of 2 A Levels required (must include English A-Level) although other 6-unit qualifications can be considered in lieu of one A-level subject. Applicants with 2 A Level qualifications or equivalent can combine with AS levels to achieve required points.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

MMP
Access to HE Diploma 60 credits overall. Minimum of 45 credits at level 3. In a relevant pathway.

Scottish Advanced Higher

DDD. Must include English Language.

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

Obtain a total of 10 points or above from three higher level subjects. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificate.
Students must have grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level) and English Group A – Grade 4 or above or English Group B and Ab initio – grade 5.
A combination of GCSEs, A-levels and IB certificates will be considered on a case by case basis.

OCR Cambridge Technical Certificate

Must be offered along with either A-levels, AS-levels or BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/BTEC 90 credit diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification/Foundation Diploma in Art and Design/ UAL extended diploma to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma

DM will be considered in combination with either A-level, AS-levels or BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/BTEC 90 credit diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification/Foundation Diploma in Art and Design/ UAL extended diploma to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2019 FT 4 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS

International Students

Sorry, this course is not available to international students.

Fees for 2019/20 will be published as soon as possible. The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Guidance for UK/EU students

UCAS

UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
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 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Portfolio Guidance

You are not required to submit a portfolio for this course.

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 your course. 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.

View additional costs for this course

Additional costs

The additional costs listed at the bottom of the page are to be used for indicative purposes only and are based on the additional costs for the 2018/19 academic year. The additional costs for 2019/20 will be published as soon as possible.

Foundation year

During your foundation year you will be taught in small classes where active participation is part of the teaching methodology.

Your study will involve reading and analysis, discussion and debate, and practical activities which allow you to test and implement your skills and knowledge. In addition to attending classes you will be required to complete preparation and follow-up tasks and activities to support your learning.

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits):

Language and Creativity
20 credits

This module builds upon the knowledge gained in the Language and Texts module. In Language and Creativity you will use your knowledge of linguistic theory to produce your own texts across a range of forms and genres. You will consider topics including persuasive language, metaphor and parody, as well as humour, puns and other wordplay. You will also explore language change over time: how new words are formed and how existing words develop new meanings. You will study and create literary texts as well as non-literary texts, such as advertisements, political speeches, newspaper headlines, comedy sketches, song lyrics, graffiti and memes.

Download the full module specification

Language and Texts
20 credits

This module is designed as a gentle introduction to English Language study. Instead of looking at abstract theories about language rules, you will learn through the close analysis of real texts. These will include literary texts such as novels and non-literary texts such as newspaper articles, advertising and social media. We adopt a broad definition of ‘text’ which also includes multimedia texts like videos and memes. You will examine these texts in terms of their structure, the words used within them, and their impact on the reader (introducing you to the linguistic concepts of lexis, semantics, syntax, grammar and pragmatics). In doing this you will develop core skills in data collection and analysis, and in summarising and evaluating key findings.

Download the full module specification

Literature in the World
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to identify and discuss examples of literature which are drawn from different cultural contexts. You will study a range of texts which will provide you with a broad knowledge of the relationship between literature and culture and you will identify and discuss the ways in which literary form has been adapted and appropriated to accommodate different cultural contexts and the retelling of canonical tales. You will do this by studying a range of paired texts which offer contrasting and often competing viewpoints and which reflect upon both literature’s place within the world and its power to shape the world.

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Literature In Time
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to identify and discuss specific examples of literature as part of major literary movements within a specific historical context. You will study a range of texts which will provide you with a broad knowledge of how they respond to their own time period and to literary movements specific to that age. As you will study literature from different time periods you will also be able to draw connections between different literary movements and discuss their relationship to one another. You will also focus on different literary genres, for example plays, novels, poems and nonfiction, and be able to identify their specific formal features and discuss their creative use.

Download the full module specification

Researching in English
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to identify appropriate research methods and material for the study of English. You will learn how to select research material, discriminate between sources, evaluate their relevance and summarise and explain key ideas. You will do this by developing skills which are integral to the study of English at university-level, such as close reading, critical analysis and data compilation and evaluation.

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Writing Development
20 credits

This module will develop the research skills acquired in the semester 1 module ‘Researching in English’ by focusing on the practical application of your knowledge and ideas through the production of a series of formative pieces of academic writing, which will culminate in the submission of a longer length piece of written work. You will develop core subject skills in the effective communication of ideas and will progress from writing about concrete objects to discussing abstract ideas. To do this you will focus on integral steps such as planning and ordering ideas, prioritising points, developing ideas, relating points to evidence and formulating and communicating clear arguments. You will also develop your knowledge of scholarly conventions and matters of presentation.

Download the full module specification

Year one

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits):

Foundations of Language
20 credits

This module will introduce you to some of the key topics in contemporary linguistics and language studies, such as pragmatics, sociolinguistics, and psycholinguistics. You will learn to apply linguistic concepts and terminology to real-life examples of spoken and written language in use. You will study a wide range of analytical frameworks which will deepen your understanding of the structural characteristics of English, and will be introduced to the role language plays in other areas of English studies and the humanities. The module will help you develop your skills in critical thinking, in analysing different forms of data, in identifying and synthesising information from a variety of sources, and in presenting your findings in a coherent and well-organised way

Download the full module specification

Key Critical Concepts
20 credits

This module will introduce you to how theoretical texts and literary criticism can improve the tools with which we carry out close reading. Each week we will read a theoretical text that covers a different concept and learn how to apply that knowledge to literary writing. You will develop the skills to close read and analyse both primary texts (literature) and secondary texts (criticism and theory). This module will help you to critically reflect on both types of text, as well as on what we bring to a text when we read it, and to pay careful attention to literary form, style, and genre.

Download the full module specification

Professional and Academic Development
20 credits

This module draws on your experience of undertaking a placement, asking you to consider how workplace organisational structures and practices observed during your placement impact upon the nature of media products and services. Through reflecting on your own performance and new skills acquired as a result of this experience, you will plan methods for addressing professional and academic ‘skills gaps’. You will set new targets and objectives to be achieved during a further placement.

Download the full module specification

Introduction to Media Contexts and Practice 1
20 credits

This module is delivered in Semester 1, over 10 taught weeks, and comprises a set of parallel specialist workshops covering a range of media production areas.

The workshops will include both practical and theoretical elements, and will develop your basic technical, editorial and critical skills in the particular specialist area. The approach is practice-led, with theoretical knowledge applied. Depending on the workshop, you may learn to operate particular technical equipment and specialist software, as well as developing your editorial ideas, and ability to develop, plan and organise activities. Each Workshop will be situated in its media industry context, both nationally and internationally, and will help develop your employability, as potential creative industry workers. You will be encouraged to be creative and innovative in your practical work, and to evidence the production process through appropriate industry-related documentation. You will also develop skills of reflection and critical evaluation, analysing your own work and the skills you have learnt, enabling you to set yourself new goals

Download the full module specification

 

Introduction to Media Contexts and Practice 2
20 credits

This module is delivered in Semester 1, over 10 taught weeks, and comprises a set of parallel specialist workshops covering a range of media production areas.

The workshops will include both practical and theoretical elements, and will develop your basic technical, editorial and critical skills in the particular specialist area. The approach is practice-led, with theoretical knowledge applied. Depending on the workshop, you may learn to operate particular technical equipment and specialist software, as well as developing your editorial ideas, and ability to develop, plan and organise activities. Each Workshop will be situated in its media industry context, both nationally and internationally, and will help develop your employability, as potential creative industry workers. You will be encouraged to be creative and innovative in your practical work, and to evidence the production process through appropriate industry-related documentation. You will also develop skills of reflection and critical evaluation, analysing your own work and the skills you have learnt, enabling you to set yourself new goals.

Download the full module specification

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

Language in Action
20 credits

This module will introduce you to a number of advanced topics in contemporary linguistics and language studies, such as phonetics, grammar, and corpus linguistics. You will expand your knowledge of linguistic concepts and terminology and develop your ability to apply this knowledge in the analysis of real-life examples of spoken and written language in use. You will be introduced to the phonetic and grammatical characteristics of English and you will analyse these phenomena in context. The module will help you develop your skills in critical thinking, in analysing different forms of data, in identifying and synthesising information from a variety of sources, and in presenting your findings in a coherent and well-organised way.

Download the full module specification

Craft of Writing
20 credits

In this module, you will explore key elements of effective writing, such as character, setting, action and dialogue, and the techniques used to create and control style on the page, such as showing and telling, detail and description, imagery and viewpoint. You will examine each element or technique in a given text and then apply what you have learned in your own writing. Each lecture and workshop will inform a different element of your writing technique, feeding into three new pieces of writing to be submitted for assessment at the end of the semester. This module provides a strong foundation for further study and practice in creative writing in years 2 and 3.

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Modern Drama
20 credits

This module focuses on a period of theatre history characterised by formal innovation and revolutionary ideas. You will learn about the intersection between notions of ‘modernity’ and dramaturgical styles associated with ‘modernism’. You will engage with the artistic movements that developed in Europe from the late nineteenth century and identify key playwrights and practitioners that brought significant changes to the stage, on the continent and in Britain. You will examine seminal works from this era, both as written texts and in performance, concluding the process with your own practical interpretation of a chosen play, which will be informed by historical and critical research.

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Literature and Conflict
20 credits

This module seeks to engage you with a focused analysis of poetry, drama, the novella and the novel as specific forms and to equip you with the scholarly tools used to investigate them. We will examine a range of genres and periods, exploring the concept of conflict from war and revolution to social class and gender, as well as at a psychological level. Conflict creates dramatic interest in narrative, but many forms of criticism assume that conflict should ideally be resolved. We will query this and consider how more overtly ideological criticism might explore the contradictions within a text and disclose what the text itself cannot say. This may lead to questioning of conflict, resolution and even how a historical understanding of conflict is important in our contemporary world.

Download the full module specification

 
Please note list of optional modules is indicative only. Students’ choice will not be guaranteed for optional modules but a fair and transparent process will be adopted and shared with students.

Year two

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits):

Key Critical Traditions
20 credits

This module introduces you to the most influential twentieth-century schools of thought within English. The module builds on the knowledge and understanding developed in the first year module Key Critical Concepts, and offers you the opportunity to develop and deepen key competencies within the wider field of literature and drama. The lectures and seminars will encourage you to employ different critical perspectives for thinking about literature and related art forms, while also focusing on critical and theoretical works in their own right. You will learn to use different tools of analysis that can reveal the unexpected, surprising and exciting possibilities of critical thought. You will also gain an insight and overview of how criticism and theory in English studies has developed historically, as different traditions build on – or break away from – previous traditions.

Download the full module specification

Advanced Media Contexts and Practices
20 credits

This core year 2 module is delivered in Semester 1, over 10 taught weeks, and comprises 7 parallel specialist media production workshops.

The workshops will include both practical and theoretical elements, and will build on the technical, editorial and critical skills you learnt in year one, taking them to a more advanced level. The approach is practice-led, with theoretical knowledge applied. Depending on the specialism, you may further develop skills in operating particular technical equipment and specialist software, as well as developing your editorial ideas, and ability to develop, plan and organise activities. Each Workshop will be situated in its media industry context, both nationally and internationally, and will help improve your employability, as potential creative industry workers. You will identify a target audience for your work, and create a cross-media/multi-media product/s in order to help engage your audience.

Download the full module specification

Professional and Academic Development
20 credits

This module draws on your experience of undertaking a placement, asking you to consider how workplace organisational structures and practices observed during your placement impact upon the nature of media products and services. Through reflecting on your own performance and new skills acquired as a result of this experience, you will plan methods for addressing professional and academic ‘skills gaps’. You will set new targets and objectives to be achieved during a further placement.

Download the full module specification

Collaborative Practice
20 credits

The module is an opportunity to learn and critically reflect on the skills of collaboration by enabling you to create an interdisciplinary project with students from complementary disciplines, or with academic staff. Collaboration is a vital employability skill within the Creative Industries and this module allows you to develop these skills, making use of University facilities and with the support of academic staff. Within this module framework, several kinds of collaborative opportunities are available. For example, with the approval of your supervisor, you can determine a project based on your own interests; your supervisor may set you a predetermined project to enable you to work with other students in a way that is appropriate to your subject area; or there may be opportunities for you to collaborate with staff on research projects. In all cases, you must apply your subject skills to an interdisciplinary project which will be agreed in advance with your supervisor.

Download the full module specification

Live Project
20 credits

This module provides an opportunity for you to apply your knowledge and skills to an external, professional brief. The brief will be set by an external client/ agency, in consultation with your supervisor, and it could be a ‘real life’ problem to be solved, or a simulation. It is an opportunity for you to engage in a professional manner with an aspect of your subject area, which contributes to the development of employability skills within the supportive infrastructure of the University. Where appropriate, the project may involve interdisciplinary collaboration with students from other courses. In this way, it reflects the collaborative, flexible nature of employment within the Creative Industries.

Download the full module specification

In order to complete the English route, you could choose to successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

Documentary Drama
20 credits

This module will provide you with knowledge and critical understanding of one of the most enduring forms of socially engaged performance: documentary drama. You will study different styles of factbased drama for stage and television, both historical and contemporary, and will be able to identify associated traditions such as ‘tribunal’, ‘verbatim’ and ‘testimonial’ plays; ‘dramadoc’ and ‘docudrama’. You will discuss the balance between fact and fiction in documentary work, the ethical dilemmas and responsibilities involved in creating drama from real-life stories, and the political and artistic value of this type of performance. You will apply this knowledge to the development of your own documentary project, derived from factual material to be compiled, shaped and delivered as a stage performance.

Download the full module specification

Early Modern Literature
20 credits

This module will provide you with knowledge of key social, political, religious and theatrical contexts relating to literature from the Early Modern period. You will combine this knowledge with key critical and textual analysis tools that will give you the skills to examine several historical, dramatic and poetic texts from the late fifteenth to the early eighteenth centuries. You will focus on the vital role of the early modern period in the formation and transformation of an English literary canon, and discuss key concepts such as materiality, versionality, collaboration and authorship. To do so, you will develop an ability to read closely and analyse textually the language and the literary techniques and devices of this key period, as well as formative skills in archive management.

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Foundations of Screenwriting
20 credits

This module will teach you the essential skills of, and principles behind, the writing of short films. Although these principles apply primarily to screenwriting for film and television, this module will instead be concerned with the writing of short films. You will study a number of freely available short guides to screenplay layout and formatting and be trained in the practical application of screenplay formatting software. You will write three short scripts, given as fortnightly writing exercises, and receive detailed formative feedback on one of the scripts, which you can use to improve and develop your work for your final portfolio. You will focus on visual storytelling, layout conventions, and the issue of writing to scale (budget). You will also be encouraged to analyse, but also critique, dramatic construction in terms of character function, motivation and genre.

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Gender, Sexuality and Culture
20 credits

This module explores two concepts central to our understanding of what makes us ‘modern’: gender and sexuality. We will challenge ‘common sense’ understandings of gender and sexuality by interrogating cultural identities, such as queer, heterosexual, homosexual, gay, lesbian, straight and trans. It will introduce you to gender studies and sexuality studies as theoretical, social, cultural, political and historical fields of investigation. There will be a broadly chronological approach to texts and theoretical approaches, moving between examples of twentieth-century fiction, popular culture and theory. You will be given an introduction to literature, culture, and theory as a dynamic field in which issues of gender and sexuality are debated and explored. We will begin by considering where studies of gender and sexuality stood at the start of the twentieth century, and then consider how a number of literary and theoretical texts explore and investigate gender and sexuality. Through these texts we will consider topics such as desire, identity, sexual classification, repression and liberation, the body, transgression, and normality and deviance.

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Language in Society
20 credits

This module will introduce you to the different intersections of language and society and outline the ways in which language can vary according to class, gender, and age. You will develop your understanding of how to collect, analyse and present language data and results in an ethically responsible and methodologically sound way. You will also examine how language is used to construct social identities, the role of language in wider contemporary society and how sociolinguistic research can be utilised in a non-academic context. You will develop your skills of visual communication, data analysis and data presentation, alongside a careful understanding of the body of research literature within sociolinguistics and how it informs your own work. This module will ultimately allow you to critically evaluate different approaches to the study of linguistic variation and apply your knowledge in designing a research project to investigate language in society.

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Literature and the Child
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to critically evaluate the representation and function of the child and childhood in both literature for the child and that for an adult audience. You will study a range of texts which will provide you with a broad historical knowledge of the changing role and function of the child in literature and which you will read alongside sociological, philosophical or educational treatise on childhood. In doing so you will gain a broad historical knowledge of the development of ‘theories of childhood’ from the eighteenth century to the present day and examine how these are engaged with in the literature of the day. You will be able to identify and evaluate how literature has conversely figured childhood as a space of discipline, regulation, play, innocence, higher moral purity, and lived social experience. You will be able to apply these ideas to theoretically informed, critically evaluative readings of a range of texts.

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Multicultural Writing
20 credits

Multicultural Writing focuses on the history of British multiculturalism in literature and criticism from the 1950s up to the present day. Exploring a range of Black, Asian and other multicultural writing, you will develop a critical awareness of how literature and criticism deal with questions of racism, stereotyping, colonial discourse, cultural hybridity, migration and asylum. The overall aim of the module is to develop your aesthetic, critical and historical awareness that will inform your critical thinking about, and imaginative responses to, contemporary multiculturalism. The module spans a diverse set of literary texts (poems, short stories, novels) produced primarily by ‘minority’ writers in Britain since the post-war era (e.g. Black, Asian and other groups who belong to the less established immigrant groups in Britain today). You will study these texts alongside relevant histories of migration, theories of representation, and critical debates about multiculturalism.

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The Victorians
20 credits

This module covers the poetry and prose of the Victorian period, through which you will learn about the formal properties and trends of literature of the period and the innovations which arose, as well as the historical context including social change, gender roles and religion. You will be encouraged to read widely, and to look backwards and forwards through literary history to enable you to situate the literature of the period in context. There will be a strong emphasis on the close reading of texts and on the importance of research and reading relevant works of criticism; you will be encouraged to develop your research and writing skills and to work independently, which will support your work across this and other modules. We'll also think about Victorian culture and how this remains an important determining factor within modern society.

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Writing Audio Drama
20 credits

The United Kingdom commissions, produces and broadcasts more audio drama – i.e. online, on digital and on radio – than any other country in the world. In this diverse and dynamic medium, writers are able to tell human stories set anywhere in time and space, at a fraction of the cost of television and film production. What’s more – as an old industry saying goes – ‘you see it better on radio’. In this module you will learn how to write compelling audio drama scripts, and engage practically and theoretically with the key principles and techniques involved. You will also be introduced to editorial collaboration, the pitching of projects, and appropriate methods of presentation. Through your workshops, you will learn how to communicate ideas clearly, accurately and effectively both orally and in writing. In devising, developing and writing your own audio drama scripts, you will initiate, manage and complete an independent creative project.

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Writing Poetry
20 credits

This module introduces writing contemporary poetry. You will learn from the work of a diverse range of contemporary poets, explore the distinctive characteristics of the form, and experiment with techniques involved in writing both set forms and free verse. You will identify, practise and apply elements of craft such as metaphor, imagery, lexical choice, metre and rhyme and be introduced to editing and rewriting. You will share your work-in-progress with other students for constructive criticism, and explore ways of giving effective feedback, as well as reflecting on how to improve your own work. As contemporary poetry is a means of social communication, we will read poems aloud and use Twitter as an educational tool for the publishing of short poems and for engaging with poetry social networks.

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OR to pursue the Journalism route, you could choose to successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

Bi-Media Drama
20 credits

This optional module will help prepare you for undertaking a drama related final Major Project in your final year, in either radio or television. Studying the Bi-Media Drama module will enable you to develop specialist, and integrated skills in radio and television drama production. You will undertake a series of practical workshops, including developing ideas for drama, structuring dramas, directing fiction for radio and television, producing actors, foley work, audio mixing, camera movement.

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Television Studio
20 credits

This module will help prepare you for undertaking a television studio related final Major Project in your final year.

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Lifestyle and Branded Media Content
20 credits

This module explores the emerging media which sits at the boundary between journalism and public relations. You will consider the range of different motivations which drive this type of media production and how they influence both the product and process of creation. You will research and analyse the professional context which informs media production and learn the practical skills to create interesting and lively multi-media content for a client or audience of your choice. In order to do this well you will need to have a good understanding of the commercial objectives and organisational restraints which frame this area of production and how it is shaped by social, legal and ethical issues as well as the demands of your client or audience. Whether you’re interested in lifestyle journalism or creating content for a promotional purpose this module will help you to produce carefully crafted and targeted material that can engage audiences in different ways.

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Campaigning and Investigative Journalism
20 credits

Campaigning and Investigation Journalism is an optional module for all journalism specialists which provides a grounding in key concepts and techniques in the process of journalistic investigations and campaigns. In the first stage of the module you are introduced to key principles of investigations and campaigns across multiple platforms, and typical challenges involved in investigative and campaigning projects, as well as practices of idea generation and planning. This context then provides the basis for exploring a range of investigative and campaigning techniques. The content maps closely with the assessment task.

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Music, Media and Digitalisation

The ways in which we consume, conceptualise, and interact with music is being constantly redefined in the face of rapid technological change. This Level 5 module, Music, Media, and Digitalisation invites you to engage with a range of contemporary arguments and challenges relating to the digitalisation of music as a media form, and to consider the implications that these arguments and challenges bring to bear on the ways in which you, and others, understand and engage with music. Across this module you will examine and explore a range of critical perspectives on music, media, and digitalisation, examining the histories and developments of digital music technologies, and the disrupting effects that these have had, and continue to have, on the ways in which we access, listen to, and talk about music.

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Digital Content Distribution
20 credits

Recent and emerging technologies have created opportunities for bootstrapped media projects—low budget, lean start-ups—to break new ground, to tell stories in innovative ways, and to find an audience. What could you do with the opportunity to make and publish the stories which matter to you? On this module you will get together with likeminded students to develop and publish stories which take into account the affordances of new technologies. Working as a collective, you will publish a range of media products online and will host an event to showcase the work.

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Advanced Visual Communication
20 credits

This module is available as an option to all students who wish to advance their graphic design abilities.

A series of skills workshops and directed study tasks will enable you to refine your understanding of the principles of graphic design and develop your ability to apply those principles within the context of your own practice. During the course of this workshop, you will explore professional working practices and current creative stylistic approaches with due consideration to client needs, key practitioners, and current and future developments that inform production.

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Music Industry Promotional Practices
20 credits

Building upon on a number of media production skills established at Level 4, Music Industries Promotional Practices will introduce you to concepts, principles, and practices related to the promotion of music, and musical acts. In this module you will explore and develop promotion and PR techniques and gain insight into how music industries workers build successful working relationships with music and other interrelated media. You will develop a working knowledge of marketing and PR theory applied to music promotion practice and builds up your skills in promotional writing, visualisation, strategy development and campaign management. It also provides a practical insight into the organisation of tours, album and video releases and online promotion. This module develops individual and group project skills and a number of transferrable and critical skills.

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Commercial Production for Radio
20 credits

This module develops a ‘real world’ understanding of contemporary approaches to commercial production for radio and audio platforms. Topics include idea generation, producing scripts / copy, multi-track digital editing, use of music and sound effects, voice over / talent production, pitching concepts, and scheduling principles. The interdisciplinary nature of audio advertising across various forms of media, such as the Internet and Social Media, will also be assessed. The module explores the wide range of roles and compliance responsibilities associated with commercial radio production, including the positions of account manager, traffic scheduler, creative director, copywriter, voiceover, producer. You will produce an original, series of radio commercials as MP3 audio files for a targeted audience, accompanied by a written report of 2000 words. This report will document your production processes, and include client research, evidence of idea development, audience and platform research, as well as scripts. The report will also include a critical reflection, which evaluates your performance and sets goals for future development.

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Radio Documentary
20 credits

This module will encourage you to develop original ideas for innovative radio documentaries, within a recognised professional industry context. You will identify a clear target audience for your work. You will produce an individual, self-contained radio documentary with an accompanying reflective written report. A live presentation will showcase your documentary concept and its audience / station in a mock ‘commissioning’ style pitch.

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Fashion Photography
20 credits

This module is for students wishing to further their photographic abilities. You will explore the professional working practices and creative stylistic approaches specific to fashion photography with due consideration to the fashion media, client needs, key practitioners, as well as current and future developments that inform production.

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Photojournalism
20 credits

This module is for students wishing to further their photographic abilities, exploring the professional working practices and the visual language specific to photojournalism with due consideration to the context in which photojournalists and documentary photographers, music photographers and sports photographers operate within the media industries. You will continue to develop camera, lighting and post-processing techniques to a more advanced and appropriate professional level as a complementary skillset to your media interests.

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PR Planning and Delivery
20 credits

PR Planning and Delivery develops the planning and delivery skills needed to undertake a Public Relations Major Project at Level 6.

Primarily based in workshop sessions, this module helps you to explore a wider range of tools and techniques used by the PR industry to develop campaign proposals and persuade clients to adopt them. You will learn how to employ a variety of techniques to audit and evaluate the persuasive communication needs of a range of organisations and use this information to build strategies for change and improvement.

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Please note list of optional modules is indicative only. Students’ choice will not be guaranteed for optional modules but a fair and transparent process will be adopted and shared with students.

Year three

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits):

Professional Media Contexts and Practices
20 credits

This core Level 6 module is delivered in Semester 1, over 10 taught weeks, and comprises parallel specialist media production workshops.

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Professional and Academic Development
20 credits

This module will help you consolidate your skills and experience and prepare you to find employment through the development of self-promotion skills specific to your area of professional interest. You will continue to audit your skills and reflectively analyse your placement experience and evaluate its impact on your personal and professional development strategically applying new skills learned to present yourself as a media professional.

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Major Project
40 credits

The purpose of the module is to enable you to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed research project exploring an area that is of personal interest to you. It is important that we can support you appropriately, so you will be guided towards choosing a research topic which is relevant to your discipline and in which your lecturers have expertise. The outcome may take the form of a written dissertation or a practice-based portfolio.

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In order to complete this course you must successfully complete at least 40 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules.

Writing Creative Nonfiction
20 credits

This module introduces you to writing creative nonfiction. You will investigate the nature of creative nonfiction, exploring the distinctive issues it raises for writers in recent published works and in the original writing you produce during the module; these issues include the ethical considerations involved in drawing from real-life subjects as source material, the nature of truth, the role of research, and the interplay between ‘fact’ and ‘fiction’.

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Writing Short Films
20 credits

This module will enable you to build upon your current reading and writing of short films, and to develop your range, technique and sophistication as a contemporary screenwriter, applying your knowledge to the writing of a short film script of 10 minutes in length. You will study a guide to writing short films and build on your practical application of screenplay formatting software. You will write one ‘Academy’ short screenplay of 10 pages, on which you will receive detailed formative feedback, enabling you to rewrite towards your portfolio assessment. You will focus on visual storytelling, layout conventions, the issue of writing to scale (budget) and will work collaboratively on writing, planning, shooting and editing a short film of 3-minutes’ length. While a group mark will be given for the collaborative component of the assessment, your moderator reserves the right to mark individually if it is apparent that individuals have contributed more or less than others.

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Nature Writing
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to create focussed observational writing based on personal interaction with the natural world. You will develop the skills to compose poetry and creative non-fiction based on your own research and observations. You will learn how to make precise scientifically-informed and researched description, creating a balance between observation and evaluation and between the presence of the author-narrator as a character in the text and the otherness of what you are describing. Finding an appropriate language for describing the non-human is often a central concern of contemporary nature writing. At the end of this module, you will be able to situate your own practice as a writer of poetry and prose within contemporary nature writing.

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Forensic Linguistics
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to critically analyse linguistic data and apply the results of the analysis to legal settings, focusing mainly on legal discourse, courtroom discourse, police interviewing, authorship analysis, and plagiarism detection. You will study a wide range of topics which will provide you with a broad understanding of different sub-disciplines of forensic linguistics and language and the law, each with its own methodological approach. You will develop skills necessary for interdisciplinary research at the intersection of linguistics, forensic sciences, legal studies and psychology. You will focus on how to ensure your data is representative, to develop robust methodological approach, and to present your results in a logical way meeting the requirements set by relevant bodies in a range of legal contexts.

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Language and Gender
20 credits

This module will introduce you to the main critical debates, concepts, and research approaches in the field of language and gender. You will discuss a variety of key theoretical areas, supported by relevant scholarly research, and you will learn to critically evaluate the role that language plays in gender relations and gender stereotypes. You will carry out independent fieldwork on a topic of your own choice related to language and gender, and you will develop your skills in data collection, analysis, and evaluation. The module makes use of a variety of data sources, including electronic corpora, written, visual and spoken media, questionnaires, and you will learn to apply your knowledge of language and linguistics to investigate and analyse such data. Over the course of the module, you will also acquire a range of skills which will support your long-term personal and professional development, including self direction in problem solving, communication skills (written and verbal), independent critical thought, and effective time management.

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Teaching English as a Foreign Language
20 credits

The module is based on experimental and experiential techniques allowing you to encounter TEFL teaching methods, as well as improve your knowledge of phonetics and phonology, grammar and vocabulary, syntax and punctuation. The module will equip you with a solid understanding of TEFL approaches alongside a practical skill set for planning lessons and courses, assessing language proficiency, facilitating the learning process, and managing classroom dynamics. The module will help you utilise skills and linguistic knowledge gained during your first two years of study in the applied settings of teaching English as a second/foreign language. You will also draw on literature, drama and creative writing strands of the programme due to the emphasis on the inherent value of cultural and literary experiences in the foreign language acquisition process. You will focus on developing engaging teaching materials for potential learners and practise completing tasks similar to those required as part of the interview selection process for TEFL jobs. Throughout the module, special emphasis will be placed on continuous professional development as well as identifying career options in the UK and abroad. You will be provided with several voluntary opportunities, including providing language support for international students, teaching English classes for international students within the Faculty, or observing commercial classes in Birmingham.

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Literature, Art and Philosophy
20 credits

This module is concerned with philosophical aesthetics that is the branch of philosophy that deals with questions about the nature of art and beauty. We will take a historical view of aesthetic theory, beginning with Plato and Aristotle and moving through to twentieth-century thinkers such as Collingwood via Kant and the Romantics. Major forms of aesthetic theory – from the mimetic to the mystical – will be considered with reference to individual works of art. The bias is towards literature, but we will also study painting, sculpture and other visual arts. The first part of the module covers a broad history of ideas (indicated above); the second part focuses on notably ‘philosophical’ works of literature by Shakespeare and Shelley. The idea is to study some works of literature in depth to understand how the various theories might be applied to individual works, and also to think about the limitations of this process.

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The Gothic
20 credits

This module focuses on literature in the gothic tradition from its inception through to the present day. During the module, the development of the gothic form will be traced from its origins through to recent manifestations of the genre. Gothic literature often reflects social and cultural trends as well as providing a space to manifest cultural anxieties, expressing a society’s suppressed desires and fears in an acceptable literary form. Such texts can therefore be read not only as escapist, but as serious texts which seek to express often radical, socially unacceptable or psychologically-submerged ideas. The module will enable you to identify these undercurrents as well as to explore the major themes and aesthetics of the genre. You will be encouraged to interrogate texts with an eye to these issues, including those of gender, race and class, and to contextualise the texts in order to analyse and understand the changing concept of Gothic.

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Psychology in Victorian Literature
20 credits

The module explores the relationship between literature and the development of psychological thought in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries before the advent of laboratory-based experimental work. Ideas about character formation which inform the literary examination of character in nineteenthcentury poetry and prose will be placed in the context of philosophical and scientific descriptions of mental development during the period. The connections between nineteenth-century psychology and "pseudo-scientific" discourses such as phrenology and mesmerism will also come under scrutiny, as will the close relationship between psychology and Victorian medical discourse.

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Speculative Fiction
20 credits

What if a book was discovered that revealed an advanced alien civilisation? What if humans could merge with machines? What if the world were slowly crystallising around us? What if humanity had all but destroyed itself? The ‘what if’ in these questions signals a moment of hesitation, a gap that opens up between what is and what could be. This is speculation. Speculation is something we all do. It allows us to reimagine the past, recontextualise the present and consider new futures. It can be a liberating but also a destabilising activity because it asks us to question the ways in which we make sense of who we are and the world around us. In this module you will consider how literature can be a vehicle for speculation. You will be able to identify the formal literary techniques and devices used to enable speculation and then apply them to a series of texts from the late twentieth century and twenty-first century to consider how these can help us think about new pasts, new societies, new identities and new futures.

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Shakespeare Studies
20 credits

This module will consider a range of primary and critical texts relating to Shakespeare’s canon. In general, you will consider the reasons for Shakespeare’s prominent position in the English canon and in wider popular culture and society. You will focus some attention on Shakespeare’s social context, early modern theatrical settings and conventions, and the language of Shakespeare’s works. You will also consider how Shakespeare’s works operate in performance and film. To do the above, you will examine in detail a selection of Shakespeare’s comedies, tragedies, histories and poems, considering textual aspects meticulously, while relating the texts to wider issues of reception and impact. Emphasis will be placed on using a range of critical interpretative methods when approaching the plays, as well as on utilising digital literacy (such as online archives) in order to develop a knowledge of key research skills required by early modern literary scholars as well as basic archival skills.

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Moral Philosophy
20 credits

With the study of ethics at its heart, this module draws on the wide range of intellectual disciplines which are used to understand and critique both longstanding and current issues with moral and political dimensions. It seeks to foster the capacity for independent thought, critical awareness of other perspectives, and an ability to think through the wider picture. In doing so the module assists in articulating the value of the humanities in a democracy as well as developing an appreciation of the values of citizenship, especially in terms of the challenges and opportunities which globalisation gives rise to. The module will enable you to write about contemporary moral and political issues for an educated general readership in a way that is both serious and engaging. As such, it forms a crucial link between the experience of academic study and its application to a range of graduate careers.

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Milton’s Epic
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to critically evaluate one of the most important works in English literature: Milton’s major epic poem, Paradise Lost. This module focuses extensively on this poem and its various contexts. You will read the entire epic thoroughly in order to enable you to analyse the themes, characters, settings and language of the work. You will develop an understanding of Milton’s political, religious and literary ambitions in relation to his key works. You will also read and discuss some of his non-epic works.

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Film
20 credits

This module allows you to apply your knowledge of existing formal, narratological and historical concepts to the medium of film, and to develop further conceptual frameworks derived from or unique to film. The module will be concerned with the structural and cultural features which can be seen to determine readings of film narrative. Generally, though not exclusively, the module will find its location in the area of popular film. It will take as a starting point the model derived from what David Bordwell calls ‘The Classical Hollywood Cinema’. This will enable you to begin to theorise issues such as Genre and Auteurism as well as the semiotics of film, so that the general formations can be analysed with reference to their subversion by counter-cultural formations. Particular reference will be made to three generic sets: Film Noir, Melodrama and Horror. By referring to these case-studies, you will be encouraged to develop critical/theoretical analyses of films of your choice.

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World Literature
20 credits

World Literature explores global dimensions of literature and introduces key debates in Comparative and World Literature. You will widen and deepen your knowledge and understanding of literary movements you have studied on previous modules, especially modules focusing on the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries. World Literature will provide new insights into how certain literary trends in Britain were pioneered, paralleled or developed overseas whilst also offering you the opportunity to join up major lines of development in global literary history. Exploring a variety of novels from different parts of the world, the module emphasises what is distinct about literatures from specific geographical areas. You will look at how novels considered as part of ‘World Literature’ have developed in formal terms, from nineteenth-century realism to the contemporary cosmopolitan novel. You will develop a global outlook on literature by tracing how realism as a form has been challenged by and renewed in successive ‘moments’ or ‘turns’ of literary history. You will explore the major debates and theories of World Literature through international literary history, comparative literary analysis, looking at themes, and tracing the recurrence of images and motifs.

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The Uncanny
20 credits

This module explores ‘The New Phenomenology’ which deals with experiences of the self. We will read Freud’s classic essay on ‘The Uncanny’ and associated materials bringing contemporary philosophy to bear on some literary and film texts. Place and displacement, anxiety, melancholia and unease feature in this work.

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Please note list of optional modules is indicative only. Students’ choice will not be guaranteed for optional modules but a fair and transparent process will be adopted and shared with students.

The programme combines traditional teaching and learning approaches with innovative, multi-platform learning support, grounded in a student-partnership model which will encourage engagement beyond the scope of the course and ensure that students develop key transferable skills to enhance their employment.

The modules you study will involve critical analysis, investigative skills and imaginative thinking.

In your first year, you will focus on developing core knowledge, including theory and practice-based elements, across English Studies. In the second half of year one, you will be able to specialise further in your chosen area of study, and expand on that in your second and third-year modules.

You’ll study a blend of practical production modules, sourcing, developing, designing and publishing real stories, and learning the art of crafting a compelling story.

We maintain close contacts with a variety of media, including Sky, BBC, Maverick Television and Future Publishing, which means you’ll benefit from masterclass sessions from visiting tutors and guest speakers, to enhance and enrich your learning.

Your professional studies will prepare you for at least two placements – previous students have worked with organisations such as the BBC, Maverick Television, Warwickshire County Cricket Club, newspapers, magazines, PR companies and local radio stations.

Teaching and learning activities

Teaching and learning activities may include lectures, seminars, workshops, field trips and guided independent study. You will also have access to a wide range of extracurricular opportunities, including seminars by prestigious guest speakers and published authors, and a programme of scholarly and creative events. Online facilities, such as the University’s Virtual Learning Environment Moodle, are used to guide, support and enhance your learning experience. You will benefit from tutorial support and spoken or written feedback on your learning and preliminary work to help you in preparing for and reflecting on your assignments. A wide range of assessment methods are used in the programme, including essays, presentations, exhibitions, conferences and creative portfolios, giving you the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills.

We pride ourselves on giving students real journalism experience through practical activities. These have included reporting live on breaking news stories, as well as planning and implementing coverage of major sporting, cultural and political events alongside professional outlets.

You will also get the chance to see your work published on the award-winning Birmingham Eastside website which is run by students on our Journalism modules.

77 per cent of research undertaken by lecturers from the School of English, classed as world-leading or internationally excellent.
The Research Excellence Framework (REF2014)


Student work

A partnership with other local news organisations has seen students create and run live blogs on issues such as local and general elections.

Students are using virtual reality and 360 degrees technology to tell stories in innovative ways – work which has led to coverage on a leading industry website.

Multiplatform reporting is allowing our students to create unique and powerful ways of telling real stories using a range of skills and different types of media.

View more examples of student work...

Trips and visits

Previous visits have included BBC newsrooms in Salford, London and Birmingham, helping provide a first-hand glimpse of how professional journalists operate. You will also get the chance to visit places where the news happens, such as courtrooms and live events across Birmingham. 

Further study

The School of Media offers the following MA courses as progression for your study:

The School of English offers MA Creative Writing and MA English Linguistics as progression options.

Enhancing Employability skills

Employability is embedded across our programme, from sector and industry-specific skills in creative writing, drama, linguistics and literature, through to transferable skills that hold real value regardless of your employment direction.

These skills include literacy and numeracy, time management and organisation, oral and written communication, team work, initiative and enterprise, creative and analytical thinking, self-direction and discipline, independence, information gathering and interpersonal skills.

You will have multiple opportunities to engage in problem solving and problem-based learning, particularly through individual assessments and collaborative practice modules, and to reflect on your own career development needs through participating in the Graduate+ scheme and other employability schemes over the course of your degree.

The course will equip you with first-hand practical expertise and provide you with the rigorous academic knowledge you’ll need to fulfil a career in your chosen communications and journalism field.

As one of our graduates, your skills will be very highly sought after because we teach valued transferable skills, in addition to providing solid academic grounding and practical skills in real-world application.

Our modules regularly adapt to cover live news events as they happen. For example, our students have covered general election counts across the region through the night alongside staff and professional journalists.

Because we use industry-standard software and equipment, and focus on creating content for a modern world, you’ll be capable of covering a story for any outlet and have the adaptable skills necessary to thrive in this fast-paced industry.

95 per cent of our English graduates are in work or continuing their studies.
(2015/16 DLHE statistics)


Exhibit This

Our third year students showcase their final year work at our Exhibit This event at the end of each academic year. It offers a springboard for our graduates and a chance for industry to spot emerging talent.

Placements

The university is committed to developing strong links with employers in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Several language and creative writing modules have explicit employer and industry engagement, where you work in collaboration with employer and external partners over the course of the semester, and are encouraged to adopt industry-standard practices to facilitate connections and links independently with external partners.

In the case of the work placement module, you will have the opportunity to develop skills and abilities in a sector-specific context, while ensuring that academic aims and objectives are met as part of your wider learning journey.

You’ll be expected to undertake at least two placements during your course, a two-week placement in your first year and a three-week placement in your second year. You’ll identify which placement will suit your needs – some of our previous students have chosen to work at newspapers, while others have opted for magazines and independent online publishers.

Placements should reflect the broadening horizons of journalism through such organisations as hyper local publications, or websites and specialist publications.

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.

Links to industry

We regularly seek out opportunities to build further links with partner organisations in the region, including Creative Black CountryBirmingham Literary FestivalBirmingham Museums Trust (including Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery), Black Country Museum Trust, Arvon Creative Writing FoundationFlatpack Film FestivalWest Midlands Screenwriters' Forum, and other Schools within the University, in addition to publishers, charities, third sector organisations, and more, in Birmingham and beyond.

Regular guest speakers and visiting lecturers from newspapers, broadcast, magazines and online publications will provide you with an insight into the modern journalism industry. By working with specialists in their field you will be able to learn how to bring stories to life.

You’ll also get the chance to engage directly with industry through activities such as hack days and projects with the likes of the BBC, The Times and Trinity Mirror. We have excellent links with a number of national, regional and local outlets, with students regularly taking up placements with the likes of Sky and the BBC.

Graduate jobs

Our graduates are characterised by their extensive subject knowledge, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, reflected in the skills and abilities that will enable them to adapt to a wide range of career paths, employment opportunities, or further study at Master’s or PhD level. Graduates are known to go on to careers in teaching, librarianship, marketing, journalism and public relations.

The journalism side of the course is highly respected in the industry and will prepare you well for a career in your chosen field. You’ll complement your studies by building contacts in the industry, and working on live, meaningful projects. It’s what makes our graduates highly sought after by employers.

Our graduates have gone to pursue careers with respected organisations such as the BBC, Sky, Trinity Mirror, and the Midlands News Association.

Parkside and Curzon Buildings

Our Facilities

When you join Birmingham City University, the first thing you will notice is the high standard of our campuses. With an investment of £260 million across our buildings and facilities, we are committed to giving you the very best learning environment to help shape your experience.

The Curzon Building

Our School of English is housed in the Curzon Building, a £63 million development, located on our City Centre campus, in the vibrant second city that is Birmingham.

Discover your bright and open learning spaces, your 24 hour (during term time) library, drama, media and radio studios, along with state of the art lecture theatres, and a variety of sociable break-out areas, all adding to your unique learning experience.

The Curzon Building
Curzon Building entrance
Lecture theatre in The Curzon Building.
ADM English Discussions
ADM English Discussions 2
Curzon Building - Social space
Entrance to Curzon Library, which is open 24 hours a day during term time.
A selection of books in our six storey library.
English Drama Workshop 3
English Drama Workshop 1
English Drama Workshop 2
English Drama Workshop 4
Drama room controls 1
Drama room controls 2
The ASK desk – your first point of contact for all queries related to university life.
The light filled atrium leads into the café and restaurant.
The restaurant has a diverse menu with affordable and high quality food.
Curzon Building - Eagle and Ball bar
Eastside Park

Our Staff 

Our teaching staff comprises specialists in their respective fields, including academics and industry professionals, all of whom are perfectly placed to offer a wealth of experience and knowledge. Birmingham School of Media students also benefit from access to high-profile guest speakers from across the industry.

A dynamic community that is responsive to the changing face of the media industry, Birmingham School of Media is the perfect starting point to your media career

Ross Hawkes

Ross leads the journalism pathway. He was previously a sports writer, sub-editor, page designer, news reporter, web editor, features writer and editor, before leading Trinity Mirror's digital programme in the Midlands. He also founded and currently runs award-winning hyperlocal website, LichfieldLive, which has been used an example of excellence in the hyperlocal scene.

Paul Bradshaw

Course Leader (MA Multiplatform and Mobile Journalism)

Paul Bradshaw leads both the MA in Data Journalism and the MA in Multiplatform and Mobile Journalism at Birmingham City University, and works as a consultant data journalist in the BBC England data unit.

He is also the founder of the investigative journalism crowdsourcing site, Help Me Investigate, which was shortlisted in 2010 for Multimedia Publisher of the Year and won the Talk About Local Investigation of the Year award the same year. His other awards include the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist Awards 2016 for an investigation into Nigerian football agents, and the BBC England 2017 Data Journalism award for a story on discrimination in the housing sector.

Read Paul's full profile