module specification

SJ5005 - Photojournalism genres (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Photojournalism genres
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 300
50 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
160 hours Guided independent study
90 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 20%   Blog detailing work in progress
Coursework 20%   Portfolio of 10 images within one photographic genre
Coursework 60%   Website
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

This year long, 30 credit module builds on students’ earlier study and creative work in documentary photography and photojournalism generally, and focuses more intently on work in particular areas and genres of photojournalism that have been both historically significant for the development of photojournalistic practice, and are relevant to the practice of photojournalism today. Indicative genres that may be covered on this module include fashion, food photography, photographing interiors, anthropological and sociological approaches (“slice of life” photography), photographing conflict, environmental photography, portraiture, and campaigning photography.

The module will combine theory and practice, with a strong emphasis on the latter. Students will consider the way that knowledge of photographic genres can help them to position their work, can enable them to target particular markets for their work and there will be abundant opportunities for students to put their knowledge into practice by creating work within particular genres and deploying it to enhance their profiles as photographers. Global perspectives will be useful as will mobile photography.

Students’ work will be assessed through the production of a portfolio, blog and website that demonstrate their understanding of, and ability to work within different photographic genres. The practical and intellectual skills gained through this module are all transferrable and highly relevant to future employment and are directly relevant to the developing professional practice of the students as photojournalists.


The module will be organised into a number of discrete sections, each covering a distinct genre within contemporary photojournalism, which will be linked and structured by the overarching focus of the module on the production of work of the highest quality.  LO 1,2

Each section will include a theoretical element, promoting students’ understanding of particular genres within photojournalism today but will be mostly based around practical workshops and other exercises within which students will begin to produce work within particular genres. Guest speakers with expertise in particular genres of work will further enhance students’ understanding of work within the genre within a real-world commercial setting.  LO 2,3

Further sessions relating to project design and management will be integrated into the module to enable students to develop their coursework and produce work that can enhance their reputation as photographers within a wider context.   LO 3,4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

In class teaching and activities:
81 hours, 3 hours a week for 27 weeks

Plus 3 news weeks a year – 9 hours

Guided Independent Study
160 hours

Preparation of material for assessment (including photography and final preparation for presentation)
50 hours

Students will be encouraged to make full use of online resources, to engage with the tutor via electronic communication methods such as skype. Students are expected to maintain a reflective, critical approach

Learning outcomes

At the end of this module, students who actively engage with the reading, practical and theoretical exercises will be able to:

1. Position their own photographic practice within a range of genres relevant to contemporary photojournalism
2. Plan and execute photographic projects aimed at particular markets
3. Use their understanding of contemporary genres in photojournalism to market their work
4. Present their work in the context of contemporary photojournalistic genres

Assessment strategy

Since the module consists, in large part, of workshop activities, there will be numerous opportunities to informally evaluate progress and provide oral feedback on areas of strength and those which would benefit from further work. Formative feedback is, therefore, an inherent structural feature of the mode of delivery of this module. More formal formative and summative assessment will be given via written feedback on CWK 1 – a blog providing a critical account of project work as it is progressing. This coursework falls due partway through the module, and feedback will be given in writing through weblearn. This feedback, insofar as it is formative, will specifically address areas that students can work on in preparing for the final summative assessments. Students will be able to discuss this feedback in individual tutorials with the course tutor.

A further opportunity for formative and summative feedback is presented by CWK2, a photographic portfolio demonstrating the student’s ability to produce work within particular generic constraints. This work is due midway through the second semester of study and students will receive written feedback indicating how the work might be improved in preparation for its inclusion in the final assessment for the module

CWK3, the final component of assessment is a website which will include revised versions of both CWK 1 (Blog) and CWK 2 (Portfolio) and a Gallery of the student’s work containing one additional portfolio of 10 images within a different genre. This element will be the major summative work for this module.


Identify core and additional reading
Liaise with Library Services to confirm availability of on-line licenses in academic year

Where possible, the most current version of reading materials is used during the delivery of this module.  Comprehensive reading lists are provided to students in their handbooks.  Reading Lists will be updated annually.


Core Text:
Wells, L.  ed. (2009) Photography: A Critical Introduction. London: Routledge

Other Texts:
Faris Belt, A. (2012) The Elements of Photography: Understanding and Creating Sophisticated Images. 2nd Edn.  London: Focal Press.

Modrak R., with Anthes, B. (2011) Reframing Photography: Theory and Practice. London: Routledge.


British Journal of Photography

Huck Magazine

Professional Photographer Magazine