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Undergraduate study
Media and Communications

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

 
 
  • January 2021: Apply now to start January 2021.
 

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.

Discover what it would be like to study one of these degree subjects and get advice on careers in the industry with one of our interactive sTUdio12 sessions.

 

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.

Creativity and Design

You develop your design and drawing styles, essential for the creative development of interesting and innovative visual solutions.

You are guided through a range of techniques and encouraged to push your ideas and designs in alternative directions, expanding your creative thinking and developing your ideas in new ways.

You produce a range of visual images and worksheets to develop your drawing and image-making styles and process. Throughout the module, you are encouraged to experiment with a variety of drawing and mark-making media and techniques.

You are also encouraged to make connections between seemingly unrelated beginnings and outcomes with briefs that allow creative freedom and broad interpretation.

Final Project

This module aims to guide you through the production of a small-scale individual project defined in part by you, with guidance from the tutor. The final project aims to develop an individual working approach and good project management. You will develop original ideas and concepts for an appropriate project in your chosen field of study. These may take the form of a short story, artefact, report, campaign, comic, concept art or other appropriate form related to the arts and media 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

Bootcamp Post Production

You develop general digital production skills with an additional focus on post-production. The module enhances effective practical, technical and aesthetical approaches required to create a variety of digital media artefacts across a variety of digital delivery platforms with more relevance to the subject specific disciplines. You learn a variety of advanced sector specific and industry standard digital delivery methods and production techniques surrounding the acquisition, manipulation and operation of media production hardware and software applications. You also have access to freelance resources during the module. You are assessed on two pass/fail components. The first assessment involves a series of practical exams that determine your proficiency across a range of digital media production disciplines. The second is a digital portfolio of the culmination of work developed during the module.

Bootcamp Production

You are introduced to effective practical, technical and aesthetical approaches required to create a variety of digital media artefacts across a variety of digital delivery platforms. You learn a variety of sector specific and industry standard digital delivery methods and production techniques surrounding the acquisition, manipulation and operation of media production hardware and software applications. In addition to the supervised contact time, you also have access to freelance resources. You are assessed on two pass/fail components. Your first assessment is a series of practical exams that determine your proficiency across a range of digital media production disciplines. Your second assessment is a digital portfolio of work developed during the module.

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.

Introduction to Media Theory

Media theory provides the foundations of understanding on how any form of moving image media communicates meaning. You explore what media theory is and further your understanding of a moving image text using canonical analytical codes. You are introduced to critical theory and the technical processes of writing analytical work such as essays. Your assessment is producing an essay, critically analysing a chosen moving image text through the application of media theory.

Storytelling: From Page to Screen

You write short narrative pieces for the radio and screen. You examine the way that stories have been recycled and reinvented over time, and develop an understanding of the common plot archetypes through exploration of various examples of screenplay structure, as well as gaining an understanding of the three key elements of theme, character and plot, and how to effectively combine these to construct unique and compelling scripts.

 

Year 2 core modules

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.

Film Genre

You develop an understanding of how genre within the moving image media is formulated and constructed. You explore what film genre is and how you can further your understanding of a moving image text using genre conventions. You deepen your application of critical theory and further your ability to write analytical work. Your assessment is an essay critically analysing a chosen moving image text through the application of genre theory.

Media Project

You work on industry-based projects that form part of your developing professional portfolio of work. You respond to time-based and/or live briefs in your allocated role within a professional network or team. You experience working within a professional network, reflecting your specialist area of media industry practice. For assessment, you submit a final product and a supporting research portfolio.


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.

 

and one optional module

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.

Documentary Production

Following your earlier learning within the Bootcamp module, this module builds on the foundations of group working, technical skills and the creative development of documentary content. You are encouraged to experiment, push yourself creatively and not be afraid to pursue ambition, excellence and innovation.

You focus on the production process rather than just the final product – this ensures that you are appropriately rewarded even if an ambitious project ultimately 'crashes and burns'.

This module culminates in you working as part of a production team to create a five to ten-minute documentary to a set brief. You submit this documentary for assessment.

Live News Production

You experience a simulated live news environment to gain discipline and working practices associated with the industry. A key focus is on working to tight deadlines, using a model of repetition and reflection. Newsroom sessions are student led and you can develop independent learning and leadership skills. Reflection is used in debrief sessions so you can analyse and assess your own performance and professional practice. You build on skills and knowledge from your degree and produce a range of multimedia content for a specific audience.

Radio and Podcast

You research, pitch, write and produce reports for broadcast radio and a podcast using the TUXtra media platform. You learn more advanced presentation skills and receive practical development work to attune your voice so its suitable for radio and podcasting. You learn how to operate radio equipment and familiarise yourself with industry standard technology such as web newsroom software and digital online production delivery techniques. The stories you investigate involves analysing news and current affairs programmes, making editorial decisions and the practical, ethical and legal implications of broadcasting with regards to privacy, consent and copyright law.

 

Final-year core modules

Client based Production Project

Working within a professional context, you respond to a live brief with an external client.

Current Issues in Media Production

You develop your individual research interests in an extended essay to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a specific, relevant and contemporary issue that you choose. Given the contemporary or future nature of your enquiry, you are encouraged to do primary research with relevant industry professionals and/or commentators as well as draw on a wide range of sources in your research.

Exit Strategy

You devise an exit strategy from education to your first career destination. You develop a detailed strategy with clear and achievable milestones, targets and schedules, which will begin implementation within the module.
You also explore business planning, marketing and markets, brand and brand management, new and emerging forms of funding and distributing content. You explore both career development and project development so it's applicable if you are looking for employment or looking to build your own business or proposition.
Your assessment is 100% ICA.

Media Production Project

You carry out a self-managed exercise of professional practice and critical evaluation. You work on your own or collaboratively to facilitate a major creative project, film, digital campaign or showreel showcasing production skills, demonstrating production planning, audio, video, web design, and associated technologies, while showing consideration for associated legal, social, ethical and professional issues. You explore and experiment with creative digital film TV or broad-cast production. The emphasis is on content and its creative treatment, originality and narrative structure as well as technical execution. You explore your chosen subject area in-depth, and in a critical presentation. You demonstrate the ability to analyse and synthesise what you have studied on the programme and its application in production of a substantive project, whilst also demonstrating professional, critical and evaluative skills, and awareness of entrepreneurial potential.

Media Research

You complete the earlier stages of a negotiated, self managed research project that investigates a substantial area of media and communications. You gain a critical introduction to the foundational principles of researching media, outlining the key philosophical paradigms and methodological approaches needed to undertake a larger media research project. You acquire the critical skills necessary for the further interrogation and evaluation of research methods. You design and propose original, bespoke research in your own writing and practice. You gain a substantial yet varied knowledge of the different approaches to media research, providing you with the theoretical and conceptual foundations necessary for your final year project. You develop autonomy in decision-making, including the initial negotiation of the project topic, allowing you to advance on your research, analysis, evaluation, critical reflection, and communication skills through a field of study that is relevant to your own interests.

 

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 provide an inclusive and empowering learning environment and have specialist staff to support disabled students access any additional tailored resources needed. If you have a specific learning difficulty, mental health condition, autism, sensory impairment, chronic health condition or any other disability please contact a Disability Services as early as possible.
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

Typical offer
• Year 0 entry (UCAS code P306 BA/MCFY): flexible, each application is considered on a case-by-case basis
• Year 1 entry (UCAS code P300 BA/MC): 96-112 points

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth using the UCAS tariff calculator. If your qualifications are not listed, contact our admissions team as we may accept alternatives.

We may also be able to help you meet the entry requirements through our Summer University modules.

Maths and English
Acceptable qualifications in maths and English include:
• GCSE grade 4 (or higher)
• Level 2 Key Skills (Communication and Application of Number)
• Level 2 Functional Skills.

We also accept alternative equivalent or higher level qualifications.

For additional information please see our entry requirements

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 enrolment adviser

 
 

Full-time

Entry to 2020/21 academic year

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

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£13,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants


What is included in your tuition fee?

  • Length: 3 years or 4 years with a foundation year
  • UCAS code: P300 BA/MC
    P306 BA/MCFY for Year 0 entry
  • Enrolment date: September or January (Year 1 entry only for January)
  • Semester dates
  • Typical offer: 96-112 points

Apply online (full-time) through UCAS

 

Part-time

2020/21 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
  • Semester dates

Apply online (part-time)

 
  • On video

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  • Student and graduate profiles
     
 
 
 

Facilities

ExpoTalent is a unique opportunity to meet businesses to secure placements, internships and future employment opportunities.

 

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

 

Open days

 
 
 

Foundation year

Part-time

Part-time DiscoverUni data