Undergraduate study
Media and Communications

P300 BA/MC (P306 BA/MCFY for Year 0 entry)

 
 
 

Course overview

You study the key media thinkers and theories, and explore all aspects of the media including television, radio, journalism, popular music and social media.

There’s never been a more important time to scrutinise the media – with a reality television star becoming US President, the rise of `fake news’ and social media dominating our lives in this on-demand world.

You learn to read, understand, create and use broadcast and social media, and see how it shapes our lives and our understanding of the world.

We cover a wide range of topics, exploring our social history, arts and pop culture, and look at a range of topics that have influenced our lives, from Beatlemania to Beliebers, Frankenstein to Farage.

 

Course details

Year 1 introduces you to key practices, theories, concepts and histories associated with producing and analysing media texts. Year 2 develops your production, analytical and conceptual skills within more specialised modules. Year 3 is about consolidating knowledge and skills, and working more independently.

Please note that option module titles may be subject to change.

Course structure

Year 0 (foundation year) core modules

Creative Media Production

You explore the basic technical components of the process of making video or audiovisual materials for outputs such as online publishing, documentary or drama. You are introduced to media languages and how to communicate clearly to target audiences.
The module is project based and you carry out writing, composition and editing of your own short video or online publication. You learn basic skills in risk assessment for technical equipment, filming, editing and using online resources.
Your assessment is the creation of a video in response to a brief and the submission of a written review.

Critical and Contextual Studies

You gain an historical and contextual overview of the history of art, animation, film and games. Aimed at technical, arts, games and animation students, this module equips you with an introductory level of understanding in the context of your chosen field of study.

Through a series of lectures and seminars, you engage in research and discussion based on your chosen areas of art, animation and game history. You learn how to effectively seek out appropriate academic sources on which to base and construct these discussions in seminars and in writing.

Foundation Project

You are guided through the production of a small-scale individual project, defined in part by you with guidance from your tutor. The foundation project guides you to a more autonomous working approach developing your project management skills and consolidating other skills already learnt in other modules.

You develop original ideas and concepts for the pre-production of an appropriate project in your chosen field of study. This may take the form of a game design document, modest game prototype, animation or game pre-production, concept art or another appropriate form related to the games, animation and film industries.

Storytelling

Here, you apply acquired knowledge and skills to a selected project according to an area of your individual interest or specialism. This module provides an overview of professional graphic practice and enables you to reflect on your own learning and personal career aspirations. You review work from modules through your portfolio presentation and set goals for the next stage.

Study Skills

You explore learning skills for undergraduate study at University, providing you with a range of learning material and practical sessions. You develop your professional skills including teamwork, researching a topic, report writing and delivering presentations, as well as time management and learning practice.
You learn by a combination of lectures, e-learning material and support.

You are introduced to the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) at Teesside University, exploring e-learning material and reading lists, and student support and learning resources.

Your assessment is a portfolio based on set tasks, including research into set problems.

Understanding Media

You explore a range of contemporary media theories and ideas in their broader historical, social, cultural, technological and economic context. You learn how these contexts can help us understand the power and influence of the media and how to begin to read the media through identifying codes and conventions.
Your assessment is a short essay that researches one area of media production.

 

Year 1 core modules

Branding and Identity

This module looks at the ideas, concepts, and practicalities of developing a professional online presence. It takes a critical look at social media and considers how best to make use of existing online communities and tools. You design and create something that represents you in an online presence, using a range of available technologies and third-party applications (web authoring, blogging systems, social media, file sharing and networking systems), to act as a PR tool in promoting your career or specific media-related activities to a specified audience.

Convergent Cultures

We are all fans of something, and with the development of multimedia platforms for media products such as Game of Thrones and The Avengers, audiences don’t just watch a film anymore, they get involved in all areas of that world. This module explores areas of audience interaction, extreme fandom, and the results of immersing ourselves in the various media multi-verses.

Creating Media Narratives

The basis of all media is storytelling so, for this module, you write a short story and then adapt it into another media form – film script, blog, even song lyrics – to create a new piece of media.

Critical Approaches to Video Games

Video gaming is a global multi-billion pound business, which is also an art form in its own right, so it’s important we understand how it operates, and explore the developments across the sector, including content, representation, and issues around violence and censorship.

Film Genre in Practice

Your chance to create your own piece of digital media…without using dialogue! Music, sound effects, still photography, video, digital visual affects; use them all to tell a story of your choice.

Visual Perspectives

We live in a visual culture. This modules explores how we see and take meaning from images across a range of media platforms including television, cinema, the press and the visual arts.

 

Year 2 core modules

21st Century Television

You focus on the ways television is examined, explored, understood and used. You explore how television is different (and, in some ways, similar) to other media such as film, radio, and the internet. Each week you focus on a particular idea, central to the examination of television. Television is explored as an industry, a range of texts, and a social activity. You explore examples from other countries, but the primary focus is 21st Century television British and American television, examining key genres, movements texts and content producers.
You explore theoretical elements of audience interactivity, transmedia, new models of fandom, and television viewership in the digital age. You challenge orthodoxies and critically review theoretical perspectives, and apply perspectives to a range of televisual texts. You present your findings to fellow students in the form of a summative assessed group presentation. Once feedback is given, you submit a critical evaluation on your audience research project.

Your assessment is 100% ICA, by a proposal pitch (40%) and 1,800 word essay (60%).

Advertising for the Creative Industries

We are bombarded with advertising material all day, usually not even realising it – this paragraph is advertising this module for example. In this on-demand, digital world, how we understand and are made aware of advertising has never been more important. You create an ad campaign, and also analyse a range of meanings (sometimes hidden) across a range of media platforms.

Case Studies in Censorship

From Psycho to Fortnite, from the Blair Witch to the Beatles, there have been notorious cases where the media has been censored, shut down, and classified and categorised as dangerous. This modules explores a range of examples and asks the reasons why we need protection from what can be seen as simple entertainment.

Live Campaign

A chance to put your creative ideas into practice as you produce a media awareness campaign around a topic of your choice, creating advertising and marketing material, as well as a video or audio product

Media: Truth and Lies

Fake news has been around longer than we think (Orson Welles invaded America with Martians on the radio over 70 years ago). This module helps you to understand how news can skew stories across a range of topics. You get the chance to create your own journalism portfolio where you approach stories from a myriad of different angles. Is the truth out there?

Popular Culture in Context

Every film, TV show or story we see or read has been influenced by its context, when and how it was made, and has a range of different meanings that make it what it is. The novel Frankenstein is not just a horror tale, but also one of the earliest science fiction stories. It is also a exploration of what makes us human, and the movies it has spawned have created a new genre. This module puts a range of popular media texts under spotlight.

 

Final-year core modules

Careers in Transmedia

There is no longer just one type of media industry anymore – working as a journalist also means using social media, creating blogs, and making videos and audio clips. This module prepares you for a modern-media world and allows you to think about a range of potential careers paths.

Digital Communications: Emerging Technology

You explore the diverse range of technologies, platforms and techniques existing and emerging designed to connect audiences, brands and content. Digital technologies include VR, AR, 360 photo, live streaming, blogging, vlogging, apps.

Through a series of ‘real world’ case studies and industry analysis, you identify and critically analyse the impact and consequences of digital technologies on the world of PR, media and digital communications.

Your assessment is 100% ICA: research portfolio and report.

Media & Communication Project

Your final piece of work is a written dissertation around a topic of your own choice – recent topics include The Avengers Multi-verse, Tim Burton as auteur, women in the horror film, and the fandom of Star Wars. You also get the chance to create a related piece of media for yourself – a short film, a script, a piece of audio or a blog.

The Researching Practitioner

In this module, you complete a self-managed research project that investigates an area of the arts, and may link to an areas of study in practice, academia, teaching pedagogy and/or business and entrepreneurship.

The module develops your autonomy in decision-making including negotiating the project topic, form and assessment format. You can use and advance on your research, analysis, evaluation, critical reflection and communication skills through a field of study that is relevant to your own interests and potential future career prospects.

You engage in a range of experiences of staff and external professionals’ research projects. You are also encouraged to join and contribute to a community of scholars and place your work in conjunction with the current arts industry and research landscapes.

 

Modules offered may vary.

 

How you learn

A wide range of learning experiences blends practice with in-depth subject knowledge. Theory modules are usually delivered by a combination of lectures, seminars and independent study. Practical modules are delivered through extended workshop sessions, and could include video and audio production, web design, scriptwriting and creating blogs.

How you are assessed

You are assessed on a wide range of assignments including written submissions and portfolios, presentations and production work. There are no formal examinations on the course.


Our Disability Services team helps students with additional needs resulting from disabilities such as sensory impairment or learning difficulties such as dyslexia
Find out more about our disability services

Find out more about financial support
Find out more about our course related costs

 
 

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

A typical offer is 96-112 tariff points from at least two A levels (or equivalent), or 64-80 for entry to Year 0 (Foundation Year).

For additional information please see the entry requirements in our admissions section

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country


You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL

 

Employability

Work placement

You are encouraged to undertake a range of work experience. Our close relationship with local and national media companies provides a variety of opportunities for you to pursue. In the third year you undertake a 'live' communication or media brief for a client organisation.

Career opportunities

You gain a range of skills and knowledge around a wide range of topics in media and popular culture. You also develop your transferable skills in areas such as presentation techniques, visual communication and technical skills used across the media and creative industries. Recent graduates have gained employment in BBC radio, as full-time journalists, international television sales, professional bloggers, and a range of social media management, marketing and public relations jobs.

The course is also an excellent starting point to move into teaching, and we have graduates that currently work full-time in primary, secondary and further education.

 

Information for international applicants

Qualifications

International applicants - find out what qualifications you need by selecting your country below.

Select your country:

  
 

Useful information

Visit our international pages for useful information for non-UK students and applicants.

Talk to us

Talk to an international student adviser

 
 

Full-time

Entry to 2018/19 academic year

Fee for UK/EU applicants
£9,250 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for non UK/EU applicants
Find out more

What is included in your tuition fee?

  • Length: 3 years or 4 years including foundation year
  • UCAS code: P300 BA/MC
    P306 BA/MCFY for Year 0 entry
  • Typical offer: 96-112 tariff points

Apply online (full-time) through UCAS

 

Part-time

From Sept 2018 entry

Fee for UK/EU applicants:
£4,500 (120 credits)
More details about our fees

  • Length: Up to 6 years
  • Attendance: Daytime
  • Enrolment date: September
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 342639

Apply online (part-time)

 

Choose Teesside

iPad

Are you eligible for an iPad, keyboard and £300 credit for learning resources?

 

Accommodation

Live in affordable accommodation right on-campus

 

Campus

Study in our town-centre campus with over £270m of recent investment

 

Industry ready

Benefit from work placements, live projects, accredited courses

 

Get in touch

 
 

Facilities

Study media at Teesside University and you can use our convergent newsroom, broadcast news studio, multimedia publishing studios and computer suites.

 
 
 

Open days

17 November 2018
Undergraduate open day

Book now