module specification

SJ6P05 - Major Photojournalism Project (2020/21)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2020/21
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Major Photojournalism Project
Module level Honours (06)
Credit rating for module 60
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 600
120 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
432 hours Guided independent study
48 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Practical Examination 10%   In-Class Presentation
Practical Examination 10%   In-Class Presentation
Coursework 30%   Critical Journal
Coursework 50%   Dummy Photobook
Running in 2020/21

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Wednesday Afternoon

Module summary

This module builds on the work undertaken by students in the areas of practices, theories and history of photojournalism, especially the level 5 module Research for Photojournalists. The module allows students to develop higher-level skills in research and photojournalism through independent, self-directed study in collaboration with an academic supervisor; by devising, developing and executing a major, self-contained and coherent photographic project, leading to the production of a substantial dummy photobook. This dummy photobook is the major coursework component for this module, and will reflect the student’s development as an independent and self-sufficient photojournalist over the course of the degree.

The module will provide a supportive setting to encourage students’ development into mature, independent photojournalists, capable of recognising projects with potential to be transformed into major pieces of work, demonstrating conceptual rigour, ethical execution, and aesthetic and technical excellence.

Students will be assessed by way of in-class presentations, through the production of a dummy photobook, and the production of a critical journal explaining the rationale for the research project and documenting the student’s critical reflections on both process and the final book.  The process of producing this work will provide a supportive context for students to develop their own distinctive approach to photojournalism and their own photographic style The practical and intellectual skills gained through this module are transferrable and relevant to future employment. The dummy photobook produced as the final ‘product’ of this module will be a valuable addition to students’ portfolios, for use in self-marketing and promotion beyond the university.

Prior learning requirements

Level 5: Research for Photojournalists


This substantial module will consist of several parts. The first five weeks of the module will consist of seminars and workshops covering fundamentals of practice-based research design; methods in visual anthropology; risk assessment, safety and ethics; and dissemination and marketing of the final dummy photobook. This section of the module will culminate in students’ presentations of their Research Proposals in week 6 and assignment of supervision for the remainder of the module.  LO 1-4

The second section of the module (the remainder of semester 1) will be occupied by students working on the production of the photographs they will need to realise their project. During this phase, students are expected to have regular tutorial sessions with their supervisor in order to monitor the progress of the work and ensure successful completion. During this phase, supervisors may establish individual deadlines for particular milestones as appropriate for each student. LO 2,3,4

The second semester of the module will begin with in-class student presentations of a first edit of the best images they have produced for the project in the preceding weeks. Students will receive oral feedback on progress to date and indications of how to proceed with the project in the coming weeks. Work on the project will continue with regular tutorials between student and supervisor. LO 2,3,4,5

Students are expected to complete all photography by week 22 and proceed with the editing and sequencing of images for the final photobook dummy. This final phase of the module will begin with a workshop in week 22 focusing on the sequencing, layout and design of a photobook and the use of Adobe InDesign to create the photobook. Thereafter students will continue to work with supervisors to produce the final book dummy and the accompanying journal.  LO 1,5,6



Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

In class teaching and activities:
120 hours: Although this is primarily an independent research based module, students will receive some formally taught sessions and will be expected to engage with regular supervision meetings with tutors. Over the course of the module these activities will average approximately the equivalent of 4 hours a week for 30 weeks

Guided Independent Study (including principal photography, editing and processing images in preparation for creation of book)
360 hours

Preparation of material for assessment (final preparation of image files for incorporation into the book, preparation of the book itself and output either as a printed hard copy or a print ready PDF file)
120 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 to their work.

Learning outcomes

At the end of this module, students who actively engage with the reading, practical and theoretical exercises will be able to:
1. Conceptualise and design a practice-based research project in photojournalism
2. Make use of a range of research methods applicable to research into photojournalism and photographic practice
3. Make use of practices of visual anthropology in the realisation of an independent research project
4. Undertake risk assessments for their independent creative projects
5. Edit and sequence a coherent portfolio of photographs
6. Design and create a photobook using Adobe InDesign

Assessment strategy

This module is primarily an independent study module leading to the production of a substantial extended project, and a critical reflection on process and outcome, which together carry the greatest proportion of marks for the module and operate as the definitive summative assessment instruments employed in the module. The first two assessment components are, therefore, intended to represent opportunities for dialogue between students and tutors on the development of their work in progress, and to provide signposts to students as to possible directions for development. Their function is therefore primarily formative and, accordingly, these assessment components carry a much smaller proportion of the marks available for the module as a whole. Students will receive face to face formative feedback on the work presented in class and may request written confirmation of the points addressed by the feedback. Students will also have opportunities to interrogate the feedback in tutorial sessions with their supervisor and/or the module leader.


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:
Banks, M. and Zeitlyn, D. (2015) Visual methods in social research, 2nd Edn.  London: Sage.

Other Texts:

Devereux, L. and Hillman, R. (1995) Fields of Vision: Essays in Film Studies, Visual Anthropology, and Photography. LA, Berkeley: University of California Press.

Pauwels, L. (2015) Reframing Visual Social Science: Towards a More Visual Sociology and Anthropology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Pink, S. (2001) Doing visual ethnography : images, media and representation in research. London: Sage.


European Photography
Visual Anthropology Review.
Photography and Culture
British Journal of Photography 


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