Course specification and structure
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UDMEDCOM - BSc Media and Communications

Course Specification


Validation status Validated
Highest award Bachelor of Science Level Honours
Possible interim awards Bachelor of Science, Diploma of Higher Education, Certificate of Higher Education, Bachelor of Science
Total credits for course 360
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Subject Area Creative Technologies and Digital Media
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 3 YEARS  
Part-time 4 YEARS 6 YEARS
Course leader Luke Tredinnick

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

Media and Communications studies seeks to understand how the media shape the way we live, and how the media are related to the world around us. The media are central to the experience of modern life: television, radio, print media, cinema and the Internet all operate as channels for information, education, politics, art and entertainment. They can build and connect communities locally, nationally and globally. They can shape our views of the world, our identities and our fantasies.

Media and Communications Studies engages with all these aspects of contemporary cultural life. Key questions in this field of Study are: how the various media are produced; the development of the media and their contemporary transformations; the relationship between the media and questions of gender and race; how the media are used and understood by particular audiences; how the media are regulated and the role of transnational organisations; and how the media now integrate with wider industry through product placement and advertising. The course approaches these questions from a variety of perspectives: theoretical, social, historical, textual, political, economic, creative and practical.

Throughout this Media and Communications Studies degree programme, a student will develop an informed and critical understanding of the difference the media make to the social, political, and economic worlds we inhabit, as well as the ways in which they shape our symbolic world: the world of perceptions, meanings and values. Further, a student will develop a factual understanding of the institutions and operations of the media, its modes of representation and its place within a wider ‘Circuit of Culture and Industry’. Knowledge and a comparative understanding of media in a range of historical and contemporary contexts, and in a variety of national and global environments will also be acquired. Additionally, the student will also become familiar with a range of interdisciplinary approaches to media institutions, media texts and media audiences; and will engage critically with major thinkers, debates and intellectual theories within the field.

The course is taught using a combination of traditional, and innovative teaching methods, fostering problem-based and inquiry-based learning, and reflective engagement. This active learning is supported by a combination of lectures, workshops, seminars, tutorials, specially prepared online resources, work placement and field trips. Development of employability and professional practice is integrated into the curriculum. Students are encouraged to reflect on their learning process, preparing for knowledge creation, life-long learning and leadership.

A blended learning strategy is employed to enhance the learning experience, facilitate communication between students and tutors and develop collaboration among students. The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) will be used as a platform to support online activities, facilitate formative assessment and related feedback, as well as a tool to integrate useful online learning materials provided by research institutions, academic publications, professional organisations and other relevant sources.

In addition, students will be able to develop practical skills in a range of cutting edge IT programmes in addition to audio and audio visual skills such as those in dedicated modules in community radio and documentary making. A student will also be developing transferable skills that will be of value in a variety of academic and employment contexts, with various modules helping to develop a range of critical abilities, a creative and imaginative approach to problem solving, and skills of analysis and presentation.

Course aims

The aims of the course are to prepare students and give them an education that will provide them with the tools to live and work in an advanced industrial society. In this context the Media and Communications programme of education and its aims are rooted in the central role played by media and communications as it is integrated into every aspect of our social, political, economic and cultural life.

The aims of the programme are to:

Establish a sound theoretical and methodological framework for the coherent and systematic exploration of the languages and forms of the mass media and the relationship between production, distribution, reception, and the construction of meaning in the media.

Develop a knowledge and understanding of the media and culture in their historical contexts through the examination of an appropriate range of materials and practices.

Explore the cultural and ideological debates underlying the development of the academic frameworks of media and communications studies, with particular reference to mass media’s negotiations of power, gender, sexuality, race, and class.

Develop in students a confident understanding of their particular interests and abilities and the ways in which these might be directed in relation to contemporary media and cultural concerns and aspirations.

Introduce students to a range of approaches that will enable them to analyse the structures and processes whereby media and popular culture texts and practices are produced and consumed.

Understand various global and international contexts increasingly influenced by media, communications and cultural industries.

Explore and analyse national and international power relations in media and communications.

Expand the intellectual and imaginative capacities of students, through the development of an understanding of the changing nature of communications and culture in society, by emphasising their responsibilities for reflecting on and questioning the diverse ideas, values and practices which underlie these changes.

Provide students with an integrated and thorough understanding of the ways in which social practices and cultural processes inform our consciousness of our affiliations and ourselves.

Introduce students to a range of theoretical approaches focusing on the interconnections between various forms of public and media culture and the structures of individual, everyday lived experience.

Consider the critical importance of the mass media as a significant area of contemporary culture.

Widen access to higher education and to create an enabling environment for non-standard and standard students, thereby promoting equality of opportunity for UK, EU and international students.

Provide opportunities for students to acquire a range of transferable skills that will enable them to engage critically and creatively in contemporary media and popular cultures.

Course learning outcomes

The following learning outcomes incorporate and depend on systematic understanding of the key aspects of the knowledge base of Media and Communications, including a coherent and detailed knowledge of some specialist areas in depth.

On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

deploy accurately established techniques of analysis and enquiry within Media and Communications;

devise and sustain arguments, and/or to solve problems, using ideas and techniques, some of which are at the forefront of Media and Communications;

describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research, or equivalent advanced scholarship, in Media and Communications, recognising the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of knowledge;

manage their own learning, and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources (for example, refereed research articles and/or original materials appropriate to media and Communications;

apply the methods and techniques that they have learned to review, consolidate, extend and apply their knowledge and understanding, and to initiate and carry out projects;

critically evaluate arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and data (that may be incomplete), to make judgements, and to frame appropriate questions to achieve a solution - or identify a range of solutions - to a problem;

communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences;

exercise initiative and personal responsibility, including decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts;

undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature.

Course learning outcomes / Module cross reference

- deploy accurately established techniques of analysis and enquiry within Media and
Communications:

SM4002 Media Theory(I)
SM4003 Media History (I)
SM5001 Cultural Industries (P)
SM5050 Digital Culture (P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (P)
SM5054 Media, Citizens and Communities (P)
SM6002 International communications (A)
SM6005 World Cinema: Hollywood and Beyond
(A)
SM6052 Media, Power and Politics (A)

- devise and sustain arguments, and/or to solve problems, using ideas and techniques, some of which are at the forefront of Media and Communications:

SM4002 Media Theory (I)
SM4004 New Media Technologies and
Cultures (I)
SM5001 Cultural Industries (P)
SM5004 Media, Citizens and Communities (P)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6055 Individuals, Groups and Media
Narratives (A)
SM6P01Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (A)
.
- describe and comment upon particular aspects of current research, or equivalent advanced scholarship, in Media and Communications, recognising the uncertainty, ambiguity and limits of knowledge:

SM4001 Media Genres (I)
SM4002 Media Theory (I)
SM4003 Media History (I)
SM5001 Cultural Industries (P)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (P)
SM5050 Digital Culture (P)
SM5051 Crime and the Media (P)
SM5052 Youth, Culture and the Media (P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6003 Media Culture and Identity (A)
SM6005 World Cinema: Hollywood and Beyond
(A)
SM6052 Media, Power and Politics (A)
SM6054 Analysing Popular Music (A)
SM6055 Individuals Groups and Media
Narratives (A)

- manage their own learning, and to make use of scholarly reviews and primary sources (for example, refereed research articles and/or original materials appropriate to media and Communications:

SM4002 Media Theory (I)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (P)
SM5051 Crime and the Media (P)
SM5052 Youth Culture and the Media (P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6005 World Cinema: Hollywood and Beyond
(A)
SM6054 Analysing Popular music (A)
SM6P01 Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (A)

- apply the methods and techniques that they have learned to review, consolidate:

SM4001 Media Genres (I)
SM4003 Media History (I)

- apply their knowledge and understanding, and to initiate and carry out projects:

SM5001 Cultural Industries (P)
SM5004 Media, Citizens and Communities (P)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (P)
SM5051 Crime and the Media (P)
SM5052 Youth Culture and the Media (P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6052 Media, Power and Politics (A)
SM6054 Analysing Popular music (A)
SM6P01 Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (A)

- critically evaluate arguments, assumptions, abstract concepts and data (that may be
incomplete), to make judgements, and to frame appropriate questions to achieve a solution or identify a range of solutions - to a problem:

SM4001 Media Genres (I)
SM5001 Cultural Industries (P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6003 Media Culture and Identity (A)
SM6005 World Cinema: Hollywood and Beyond
(A)
SM6052 Media, Power and Politics (A)
SM6P01 Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (A)

- communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences:

SM5004 Media, Citizens and Communities (I,
P)
SM5054 Media Audiences (I, P)
SM6002 International Communications (A)
SM6003 Media Culture and Identity (A)

- exercise initiative and personal responsibility, including decision-making in complex and unpredictable contexts:

SM4003 Media History (I)
SM5004 Media, Citizens and Communities (P)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (P)
SM6P01 Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (A)

- undertake appropriate further training of a professional or equivalent nature:

SM5004 Media, Citizens and Communities (I,
P)
SM5006 Television Studies: Theory and
Practice (I, P)
SM6P01 Media and Communications Studies
Dissertation (P, A)
SM6W51 Media and Communications Work
Placement

Principle QAA benchmark statements

- Communication, Media, Film and Cultural Studies

Assessment strategy

The course combines practice-based and theory-based modules, and through the curriculum aims both to critically analyse the media and communication’s sectors and explore how these fit into contemporary industrialised societies. Relationships with other sectors of industry and national and transnational organisations are explored. Core modules require students to engage with both theory and practice in the field and option module choices enable students to extend their expertise in specific areas of media, information and communications. The dissertation module enables students to develop an in-depth understanding of a sector of their choice.

The course makes use of formative and summative assessment strategies. Self-assessment and reflection on the process of learning are part of the modules’ assessment strategies. All assessment is coursework based.

Assessment tools for each module are determined by the aims of the module and its learning outcomes. Students are expected to produce a mixture of written, visual and oral work and are required to demonstrate working within a team, working with different media and with multidisciplinary concepts.

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

A work placement forms part of a level five module: Media, Citizens and Communities. The student will have an opportunity to engage with work experience in a media organisation and prepare a reflective piece of assessment associated with this placement. In addition, students have the opportunity to be part of the Study Abroad programme which involves an exchange with universities in the United States. Further, our students can engage with the Erasmus study programme and spend a semester at a university in another European country.

Career opportunities

Previous graduates have found employment in news organisations, advertising, digital media, education, market research, media production, public relations and publishing. Graduates can also go on to undertake postgraduate study.

Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • a minimum of grades BBC in three A levels (or a minimum of 112 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC National or Advanced Diploma)
  • English Language GCSE at grade C/grade 4 or above (or equivalent)

Applications are welcome from mature students who have passed appropriate Access or other preparatory courses or have appropriate work experience.

Applications are welcome from mature students who have appropriate Access or preparatory courses or appropriate work experience, or those without formal qualifications who are able to demonstrate enthusiasm, commitment, and the ability to benefit from higher education.

If you don’t have traditional qualifications or can’t meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the Media Communications Extended Degree BSc.

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2013/14 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 01 Sep 2013 Last validation date 01 Sep 2013  
Sources of funding HE FUNDING COUNCIL FOR ENGLAND
JACS codes P300 (Media Studies): 100%
Route code MEDCOM

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 04 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
SJ4030 Approaches to Film and Television Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
          NORTH SPR+SUM MON PM
SJ4046 Moving Image and Sound Practice Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR FRI AM
          NORTH AUT+SPR FRI PM
          NORTH SPR+SUM WED PM
SM4001 Media Genres Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
          NORTH AUT+SPR MON AM
          NORTH SPR+SUM    
SM4013 Media Histories Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE AM
SM4050 Introduction to Digital Media Core 15 NORTH AUT FRI PM
          NORTH AUT FRI PM
SM4051 Developing Your Career Core 15 NORTH SPR FRI PM

Stage 1 Level 04 January start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
SJ4030 Approaches to Film and Television Core 30 NORTH SPR+SUM MON PM
SJ4046 Moving Image and Sound Practice Core 30 NORTH SPR+SUM WED PM
SM4001 Media Genres Core 30 NORTH SPR+SUM    
SM4013 Media Histories Core 30        
SM4050 Introduction to Digital Media Core 15        
SM4051 Developing Your Career Core 15 NORTH SPR FRI PM

Stage 2 Level 05 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
FC5W52 Work Related Learning for Media 1 Core 15 NORTH AUT THU PM
          NORTH SPR    
SM5011 Television Studies Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR FRI PM
SM5013 Media and Communities Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR WED AM
SM5068 Researching Media Audiences Core 15 NORTH SPR THU PM
SM5051 Crime and the Media Option 15 NORTH SPR THU AM
SM5052 Youth Culture and the Media Option 15 NORTH SPR THU AM
          NORTH AUT THU AM
SM5062 Digital Humanities Option 15 NORTH SPR FRI AM
SM5066 Documentary Photography and Photography Journalism Option 15 NORTH AUT FRI AM
OL0000 Open Language Programme Module Option 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT    

Stage 3 Level 06 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
SM6003 Media, Culture and Identity Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR TUE PM
SM6064 Globalisation and the Media Core 15 NORTH AUT MON PM
SM6P05 Media and Communication Dissertation Core 30 NORTH AUT+SPR WED PM
FC6W52 Work Related Learning for Media 2 Option 15 NORTH AUT    
          NORTH SPR    
SJ6060 Documentary Filmmaking Option 15 NORTH SPR MON AM
SM6052 Media, Power and Politics Option 15 NORTH SPR WED AM
SM6053 Digital Video Post-Production Option 15 NORTH AUT FRI AM
SM6054 Analysing Popular Music Option 15 NORTH AUT WED AM
SM6065 Situation Comedies Option 15 NORTH SPR WED AM
OL0000 Open Language Programme Module Option 15 NORTH SPR    
          NORTH AUT