Media Production with a Foundation Year - BA (Hons)

  • UCAS Code: P31A
  • Level: Foundation
  • Starting: September 2020
  • Study mode: Full Time (4 years)
  • Location: City Centre

Please note

This course and the information on this page is indicative based on the 2019/20 academic year. The final details for this course starting in 2020/21 may be subject to change and will be confirmed in June 2019.

Our BA (Hons) Media Production with Foundation Year degree course develops the key skills you’ll need to enter the profession, alongside a range of transferable skills, which will help you gain employment in a range of careers. Previous School of Media graduates have gone onto employment in careers such as researchers, producers, editors, reporters and many more!

Highly regarded across the creative sector, our school of Media has fantastic links with industry, thanks to our blend of technical and academic studies - meaning your learning will always be relevant and up to date with current media industry practices.

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 your chosen degree programme.

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.

What's covered in the course?

You’ll create your TV content in our four industry-standard TV studios, learning about all the important roles as you go. You’ll learn how to shoot single camera and edit on Adobe Premiere and Avid suites and develop the technical and personal skills you’ll need to operate a TV studio effectively. You’ll also learn how to research, develop and pitch your own ideas, a necessary skill in today’s competitive industry.

When you work in our enviable complex of six radio studios, you’ll be getting to grips with how to operate a studio, present a show, record interviews, and use digital technology to edit and mix sound. As you progress through the course, you’ll put together music radio shows, short features and podcasts, with the ultimate aim of running a live radio station at the University.

A truly stimulating course, which will immerse you in the practical aspects of programme-making and content creation, you will have ample opportunity to make documentaries, dramas, music shows, and studio programmes for both television and radio.

Throughout your time with us, you’ll be supported by academic staff who have years of experience in the broadcasting sector. You will also be taught by visiting lecturers who still work in industry, widening your knowledge and experience of the sector.

Why Choose Us?

Work on a live production from the very start! You’ll produce content in radio and television, reaching audiences across Birmingham.

  • Learn in our £62 million Parkside building, home to our industry standard television and radio studios.
  • Our broadcast-quality digital radio studios are supported by the latest audio production tools and are used by media companies who also work with our students as guest lecturers and on their joint projects.
  • You’ll be taught by award-winning academic staff who continue to work in industry, and have an accomplished track record in television and radio production.
  • Gain invaluable insight, and contacts from your two (or more) industry placements.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to make media abroad on a specialised field trip, or choose to study with an overseas partner.

Similar Courses

Students outside Millennium Point

Open Days

Our next Open Day for this course will take place on Saturday 28 September 2019. Register your interest and we'll send an email update nearer the time. Visit us to see our facilities and speak to our staff and students.

Book your place

This course is open to International students

Where our students go

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

And in jobs such as:

  • Production Runner
  • Junior Researcher
  • Production Co-ordinator

Course Accreditations

This course is accredited by:

Screenskills

Entry Requirements

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

Essential Requirements

80 UCAS tariff points.

Typical Offers (UK students)

At the point of enrolment, 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.

Plus, you must have achieved or be completing one of the following:

UK Qualification Requirements
A level  CDD. A maximum of three subjects are considered. Other 6-unit qualifications can be considered in lieu of one or two A-level subjects. Excluded subjects General Studies and Critical Thinking.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

MMP
Access to HE Diploma 60 credits overall - 15 credits at level 2 and 45 credits at level 3
GCSE English language at grade 4 (C) or above or equivalent qualifications must be achieved at application stage.

Scottish Higher

Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved from either five Highers or a combination of two Highers offered with two Advanced Highers.

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

Obtain a minimum of 24 points overall. For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) Group A English Group A - Grade 4 or above. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma and who achieve the minimum of 11 points from two Higher Level subjects, will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates. OR English Group B - Grade 5 or above from the IB will be accepted.

OCR Cambridge Technical Certificate

Must be offered along with either two A-levels or two BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diplomas of 80 tariff points. Cannot be offered as a standalone qualification.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma

MM. Can be offered along with either one A-level or one BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.

Scottish Advanced Higher

Achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
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.
Additional information for EU/International students
Essential

Please see your country page for further details on the equivalent qualifications we accept.

In addition to the academic entry requirements listed above, international and EU students will also require the qualifications detailed in this table.

EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications Requirements
IELTS

Minimum overall score of 6.5 with no sub-test below 6.0.

If you do not meet the required IELTS score, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English courses. Please note that you must have a Secure English Language Test (SELT) to study on the pre-sessional English course. More information.

Mature Applicants

Applications from mature students (21+) with alternative qualifications and/or considerable work experience will be considered on their merits.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2020 FT 4 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2020 FT 4 years £12,800 per year Register your interest

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
 Login to UCAS
 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

Foundation year

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

Cross Media Production 1
20 credits

The purpose of this practical production module is to explore media production techniques in radio, audio production, online video and television. The module is designed to recognise that many media professionals no longer work in specialised areas and are often asked to make use of a range of skills and platforms across different media in order to reach their audiences. Throughout the module you will be supported to develop industry-level practical skills through a range of production activities and workshops.

Cross Media Production 2
20 credits

This purpose of this practical production module is to explore media production techniques in journalism, public relations, and events management. The module draws together the skills needed for writing and producing content for print and online, as well as developing communications campaigns that connect with audiences dispersed across digital platforms. The module is designed to recognise that many media professionals no longer work in specialised areas and are often asked to make use of a range of skills and platforms across different media in order to reach their audiences.

Media Context and Production
20 credits

The purpose of this module is to introduce you to the key concepts aligned to studying media and communication. The module will focus on making connections between theory and practice and will support your wider understanding of the media industry and the context of your own work. You will have the opportunity to engage with theoretical perspectives that focus on the political economy of the media which will enable you to see how media texts are shaped by the organisation, ownership and regulation of the media industry. You will identify and reflect on political, moral and ethical issues raised by the relationships between the media, culture and ideas of power in local, national and international contexts.

Professional and Academic Skills
20 credits

The purpose of this module is to assist you in developing the academic skills needed to succeed in higher education, and the professional skills required to support your ambitions to be a media worker. You will be introduced to the wide range of academic and practical support that the university offers.

Practice project
40 credits

The purpose of the module is to enable you to undertake a production project in the subject specialism of your choosing, exploring an area that is of personal interest to you. The outcome can take the form of a written or a practice-based outcome. You will be able to evaluate and reflect critically on your work. Your final work will be a key step in your progression as a student of the media and as a media worker. You will be expected to work independently for the most part but you will receive one-to-one support from a supervisor as well as being able to connect with wider support within the School’s academic team.

Year One

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

Live Production 1
40 credits

In Live Production 1 you will be introduced to the core skills of your production specialism. You will explore the organisational structures and roles within media production and be introduced to key aspects of producing media content. You’ll then put these into practice with a series of regular production days designed to help you develop a practical knowledge of the skills required to work with a real audience and real deadlines to adhere to.

 
Introduction to Media Contexts and Practice 1 – Television Production
20 credits
 
Introduction to Media Contexts and Practice 2 – Radio Production
20 credits
Global and Community Impact
20 credits

This module will develop an understanding of the terrain in which organisations with a global and local community focus attempt to work, considering the issues which they attempt to tackle, and the political, economic, social and cultural contexts in which they work.

Media Storytelling
20 credits

This module is designed to help you develop an understanding of how stories are constructed and told through audio and video platforms. Narrative structure is explored through the critiquing of existing media texts. You will learn to critique different media texts, and to understand the techniques they are utilizing in order to construct a narrative. You will then apply the principles and frameworks you have identified in the work of others, to your own television or radio practice, leading you to develop and produce your own creative story.

Year Two

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

 
Advanced Media Contexts and Practice 1 – Television Narratives
20 credits
 
Advanced Media Contexts and Practice 2 – Radio Programming and Production
20 credits
Live Production 2
40 credits

In Live Production 2 you will build on skills developed in production work in year one. You will research, plan and develop production material relevant to your production specialism. You will learn industry-level, specialist practical skills and develop your own professional practice through a range of production activities and workshops. The aim is to encour

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

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.

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.

Work Placement
20 credits

The purpose of this module is to enable you to develop professional attributes and subject skills through experience in the work place, and to critically reflect upon your learning in that context. You will normally be expected to arrange your own placement, with support from academic staff and ADM Careers+.

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

Gender, Sexuality and the Body
20 credits

This module applies and develops critical and theoretical study of gender, sexuality and the body across a wide range of media. This module will prepare students who wish to undertake work on gender, sexual dissidence, queer theory and identity in their final year. The module will draw from cultural theory and a range of qualitative and ethnographic research to explore historic and contemporary discussions, issues and debates around gender identity, sexuality and sexual practices, and the body. The module will develop key modes of analysis and research related to the study of gender, sexuality and the body. You will explore how associated socio-cultural, political and ideological contexts ‘produce’ issues, but also how certain identities and ‘practices’ offer ways to challenge ideological views concerning gender, sexuality and what we ‘do’ with/to our bodies. During the module you should be able to link theoretical debates to your own production practice and consumption. The module will critically explore the issues and debates raised by scholarship in the field of gender, sexuality, the body and identity studies; and also issues (ethical, practical and moral) around the application of methodologies in media, communication and cultural studies. The module will add the consideration of ethics and intersections within the study of gender, sexuality and the body (i.e. class, gender, ethnicity, race, education, culture, etc.). As the module applies an extensive critical engagement with theory, students are therefore encouraged to widen their reading and interaction with contemporary research in the areas of gender, sexuality, the body and identity.

Alternative Lifestyles
20 credits

This year two module will unpack the various ways in which lifestyles, identities and certain ‘taboo’ practices are created and contested through media artefacts, leisure time activities and pursuits, and social practices. The module explores a range of bodily projects, leisure time pursuits and lifestyle choices to develop how we can understand, study, and ‘feel’ about alternative lifestyles. You will also be able to see the limitations through exploring stigma, pathologisation and Othering lifestyles or identities which are seen to be taboo, temporary or morally corrosive. The module aligns itself with developments in society, law and ‘moral’ frameworks. The module explores hedonistic, emotional, experiential and self-affirming qualities found in a range of alternative lifestyles, leisure time pursuits and practices. The reappraisal of alternative lifestyles will also include the issues, points of tension and ruptures inside alternative modes of self, sexual and bodily expression. A deeper understanding of the complexities and nuances in alternative lifestyles will pave the way for a fresh and innovative stance on identity, lifestyles, diversity youth, and bodily politics. As the module applies an extensive critical engagement with theory, students are therefore encouraged to widen their reading and interaction with contemporary research.

Comedy in Media and Popular Culture
20 credits

You will build on your previous studies by developing skills in connecting research and practice. Through set readings, class discussions, e-learning and directed study tasks, we will identify and explore key debates, theoretical perspectives and concepts in humour and comedy studies so that you can develop your familiarity with these theoretical fields. You will then test theoretical perspectives and key concepts through your own innovative comedy production. In this work, you will offer researchbased, critical reflection on your own practice and on political, moral and ethical issues that emerge from the relationships between humour, comedy and power, on both a national and an international scale.

Perspectives On Community And Alternative Media
20 credits

This module offers you the opportunity to investigate community and alternative media practices and organisations, drawing on a range of theoretical perspectives to help you understand the value generated by media produced outside of the mainstream.

Race, Ethnicity and the Media
20 credits

Race, ethnicity and the media introduces students to key theories and debates on race and ethnicity in relation to the media, including critical race studies, post-colonial theory, intersectionality and work on equality/diversity within the cultural industries. It will be based around debates around ‘race’ in the UK, but these debates will be situated within a global context. The historical development of concepts of race, ethnicity and immigration will be explored, highlighting their impact on contemporary British society and media.

Media and Materiality
20 credits

In a media landscape which is increasingly defined by digital technologies and our relationships with them, this Level 5 module encourages you to consider the role of material, analogue media artefacts and practices in shaping the way that we engage with and understand digital media. From the role of analogue aesthetics in film practice, to the resurgence of the vinyl record, this module will explore a range of issues and debates relating to media, formats, materiality, and digitalisation. You will be presented with a range of critical perspectives on materiality in media, and required undertake research which applies these critical perspectives to your own media interests and practice.

Fandoms and Subcultures
20 credits

This module offers an introduction to some of the ongoing academic debates on media fandoms and subcultures. Through readings, lectures, seminars and independent research, you will engage with key theoretical perspectives, methodological approaches and case studies in these academic fields. This module is intended to develop the knowledge and skills that you established in your first year, to develop your critical thinking and research skills and to enable you to gather, organise and use secondary and primary sources to express arguments coherently and effectively.

Communities of Practice: Culture, Heritage and Space
20 credits

This module will develop your understanding of what defines ‘community’ and how this definition is subject to negotiation and change through the use and appropriation of space. Using a structured framework this module introduces you to the issues, debates, and practical considerations around the use of space, communities, and culture. We will first establish agreed definitions of what we mean by communities, contested landscapes, culture, and heritage. This will enable you to identify key theoretical positions and approaches, which you will then see in action through case studies (in taught sessions) and your own application (in assessment and own case studies). Secondly, we examine through the use of case studies ways in which people navigate around these issues and debates in their media and artistic practices. Finally, the module will invite you to propose solutions to some of the limitations of space uncovered throughout the module’s discussions. The module will be inclusive and will suit those on: events and exhibitions, music industries, production and broad course pathways.

Film Cultures
20 credits

This module will look at the way films tell their stories, transfix their audiences, and draw an emotional response. It will focus primarily on the various film narratives, but will also engage in the broader context of film criticism and film theory within which the form has been understood. We will examine films drawn from a range of periods, countries, and traditions, exploring film form and the powerful influence films have had, not only on their immediate effect on audiences but on the wider cultures within which they exist. We will also investigate how these films are using traditional and new methods to market to audiences wide and niche and the ways in which many studios are now inviting fans to get involved with the marketing process.

Media Censorship and Regulation
20 credits

This module explores the current state of academic knowledge and real world issues relating to media censorship and regulation. The module is designed to encourage you to think about and reflect upon your own assumptions and preconceptions and to think critically and systematically about challenging topics.

Celebrity Culture
20 credits

This module develops transferable skills in research, analysis, problem solving, teamwork and communication, and you will connect research and practice through formative activities and assessed work.

Creating Compelling Content
20 credits

The ability to create compelling content is an essential communication skill and the key to employability in a range of media careers, not least in Public Relations. As well as being engaging and accessible, effective communication almost always involves the ability to produce professional content across a range of platforms and channels. This module concentrates on developing the writing and crafting skills that are highly valued by media employers.

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.

Television Studio
20 credits

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

Lifestyle and Branded Media
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.

Campaigning and Investigation 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.

Music, Media, and Digitalisation
20 credits

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.

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.

Advanced Visual Communication
20 credits

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

Music Industries 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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

 
Core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Year Three

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

Live Production 3
20 credits

In Live Production 3 you will further develop production skills from your first two years. You will research, plan and develop production material relevant to your production specialism. You will take an experimental and innovate approach to develop your own professional practice through a range of production activities and workshops. The aim is to encourage you to synthesis skills in research and production in order to showcase your creativity whilst recognising professional contexts and audience demands.

 
Media Innovation
20 credits
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.

Major Project
60 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.

All staff at the School are established media professionals who bring with them a range of expertise. They are able to recognise and respond to the rapidly changing demands of the media, ensuring that the course remains relevant to the industry.

The School maintains close contacts with a variety of media organisations including Global Radio, Sky, BBC, and visiting tutors and guest speakers regularly hold master class sessions to enhance and enrich students’ learning.

Student work

Our students produce a range of professional quality work in both television and radio, including dramas for festivals, documentaries, music and promotional videos.

One successful video project involved time-lapse photography illustrating different aspects of Birmingham life. The resulting video presented Birmingham as a vibrant and exciting place to live and work.

Yassmine Benalla produced a radio documentary that retraced her family’s Moroccan roots. She travelled to Casablanca and Marrakesh in an effort to discover what her life would have been like if she had been born in Morocco instead of the UK. As a fluent speaker of Arabic, Yassmine translated the stories of the young women she met and investigated the challenges they face. Yassmine received the Silver Award in the Best Student Documentary category of the New York Radio Festival in the 2016.

“My documentary was initially something I’d made for coursework – but it turned out to be something that a lot of industry people were interested in. So it has definitely been encouraging and made me think about the possibilities of radio, and what I can do in the future. It’s confirmed things for me – and let me know that this is something I can really do.”

This course is accredited by:

Screenskills
Screenskills

Tick courses are endorsed by ScreenSkills as offering industry-relevant teaching. Working with industry experts, ScreenSkills awards the quality mark of the Tick to practice-based degree courses that most effectively provide students with the skills and knowledge required by employers in the screen industries.

The ScreenSkills Tick is an invaluable signpost for potential students, apprentices and employers to indicate those programmes that provide the most up-to-date and relevant industry training and education. It identifies the UK’s most industry-focused courses and apprenticeships enabling universities, colleges and employers to recruit the brightest talent.

Further Study

As a School, we invest significantly in our postgraduate provision as we recognise that more specialist and professional courses are required across the media industry. Our postgraduate courses include MA Event and Exhibition Management, MA Media Production, MA Public Relations, and MA Multi-Platform and Mobile Journalism.

See all postgraduate media courses

Trips and visits

We organise a number of trips, masterclass and workshops with inspirational professionals. For example last year we took a group of students to the Royal Television Society masterclasses in London, as well as taking students on educational trips elsewhere within the UK and abroad.

Media blog

School of Media blog

Take a look at our blog to see the latest news and events from the School and get an insight into life as a student at Birmingham School of Media.

Read the latest post 

Enhancing employability skills

The aim of our BA (Hons) Media Production course is to prepare you for a career in the fast-paced world of media and broadcasting. Thanks to our outstanding facilities and our reputation for producing work-ready, highly skilled graduates, our students are readily sought after.

As well as your industry-specific skills, you will also develop a range of transferable skills, which will boost your employability, while your network of contacts – from work experience/placements, masterclasses and guest lectures – will be invaluable when you begin to look for employment after graduating.

Placements

You’ll undertake a two-week placement in your first year and a three-week placement in your second year. Although you’re expected to find the placements yourself, you’ll receive as much support as you need from staff, and you’ll also have opportunity to apply for one of the several placement schemes we operate with the BBC and Sky. We operate an electronic jobs noticeboard, which includes many opportunities, and there are frequent masterclasses from companies that offer placements.

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

Graduates have gone on to roles including:

  • Assistant producer BBC Sport
  • Camera operator for BBC Birmingham, on the continuing drama series 'Doctors'
  • Freelance edit assistant
  • Television ingest and playout operators at Sky

Links to industry

Inside the University our students collaborate with other specialists, for instance actors and composers from Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

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:

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

Overseas students

Birmingham School of Media is very popular with students from overseas and this Communications and Television BA (Hons) course has seen students come from India, Malaysia and China, as well as study abroad students on exchanges from our Erasmus partners.

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

Our cutting-edge facilities, including the largest University TV studio, are housed within a purpose-built Media Centre at The Parkside Building, part of our City Centre Campus.

There are four TV studios within the Media Centre, including a large green screen studio, with Milo. Three of the studios are able to do live multi-camera production and all studios (TV and radio) can be interconnected. It’s taken 22km of wire to make that happen! The Media Centre is fully digital.

Studio A

At over 2000sq ft and three stories high, Studio A’s TV floor is the largest of any University studio in the UK. Studio A could easily accommodate shows like ‘Deal or no Deal’, ‘Blue Peter’, ‘The One Show’, ‘Watchdog’ and ‘Newsnight’ to name but a few.

Studio A’s Gallery Suite #1

Studio A’s Gallery Suite #1 (TV) is where production, lighting, camera control, graphics and Autocue are controlled. Sony Broadcast have supported us in the development of the Media Centre, meaning we have professional standard Sony monitors and three of their new full-HD digital vision mixing desks– some of the first examples in the UK.

Studio A’s Gallery Suite #2

Studio A’s Gallery Suite #2 (TV) is an audio gallery where the sound for the studios and the communication for interconnection are controlled. This gallery is also professional standard thanks to Studer audio and a multi-layered ProTools desk. The desk allows for the three audio galleries to be used as independent sound studios or dubbing theatres. Each desk can control up to 120 sound sources in six banks of 20 channels. The desk alone cost £50,000.

Studio B / Milo (TV)

Studio B is a green screen studio for recording material that will then have CGI (computer-generated imagery) added to form the final image. The studio has a motion control camera, ‘Milo’, which can reproduce the same programmed move repeatedly. This allows the CGI and the live image to be synced.

Like Studio A, Studio B is three storeys high. The height allows the heat from the lights to be removed so that the studio floor remains at a reasonable working temperature. All the excess heat generated in the Media Centre will be recycled into hot water for the Parkside Building.

Studio C’s Studio Floor (TV)

Studio C is 1900sq ft, and has a separate production and sound gallery on the same floor. Like all the studios, it is built as a box within a box (to enhance the acoustics for sound recording) and the lighting has been designed so that staff and students will not have to work at height to change the lighting design, this is done through the use of lights and bars which are moved across the grid by poles.

Post-Production Suites (TV)

The Media Centre has four fully professional standard edit suites, based on the industry-standard Avid editing system, which is used in almost all films and the majority of UK television. Though all of the suites can edit, two of the suites are specialised for Audio Finishing and Colour Grading. The Media Centre has a further 20 Avid machines in the post-production teaching suite on Level 0.

Dubbing Suites (TV)

parkside dubbing suites

The Media Centre has full professional standard dubbing suites. Based on a multi-layered ProTools desk, the suites can dub both film and TV projects with up to 120 simultaneous sound sources. There is an ADR (Additional Dialogue Recording) booth and the ability to record Foley (additional live sound, like footsteps). If additional Foley activity is required, for example to cover a crowd scene, then one of the radio studios or TV studio floors can be used and the sound delivered to a dubbing suite through the technical integration system.

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.

Ellie Tomsett

Ellie Tomsett

Lecturer – Programme Lead for Foundation

Ellie is a lecturer in media and course director for the School of Media's Foundation Programme. Before joining BCU Ellie worked in Higher Education for four years. Ellie taught film studies and screenwriting students at Sheffield Hallam University and contextual studies to filmmakers, animators and photographers at Manchester School of Art. Before teaching in HE Ellie worked in the UK film education sector, during this time she delivered training to teachers, youth workers and professional filmmakers across the country and organised filmmaking and theory activities for large organisations such as The BFI, The Industry Trust and Transformation Trust.

Ellie's research is focused on contemporary feminisms and stand-up comedy and she has been Researcher in residence with the UK Women in Comedy festival since 2014. In 2017 she co-founded Mixed Bill a comedy and gender research network which seeks to engage comedy industry professionals, researchers and members of the public in discussions and activities that address the under-representation of minority groups within the comedy industry. She has published on feminist and post-feminist stand-up comedy, self-deprecatory comedy and body positivity as well as more recently exploring comic reactions to the Brexit

Read Ellie's full profile

Vanessa Jackson

Course Leader - Media Production

Course director Vanessa worked as a BBC series producer, working on factual and documentary programmes, lifestyle and makeover shows, and live studio and outside broadcasts. She also worked as a project manager for the BBC series ‘Coast’, and was part of the team to win the first BAFTA to be awarded for interactivity.

Read Vanessa's full profile

Catherine Chambers

Catherine Chambers

Lecturer in Media Production

Catherine began her career as a freelance journalist for rock magazine Kerrang!, writing on music and film, before joining BBC Radio 1 in 2003 where she worked on specialist music shows working with presenters Steve Lamacq and Huw Stephens and produced the music documentary ‘Can’t Stand You Now’ about band-break ups. In 2005 she worked on Radio 4’s flagship arts programme Front Row before returning to music radio at BBC 6 Music.

Read Catherine's full profile

Dharmesh Rajput

Dharmesh worked for the BBC Asian Network on a range of television, radio and online projects.