Browser does not support script.

Undergraduate Course

Media and Communication BA (Hons)

Discover how media and culture affects who we are, what we do, and how we interpret the world around us.

Student working at a computer

Find out how media influences society and culture. This varied degree lets you be creative as well as analytical. Explore the varied world of media, taking in film, television, digital media, advertising and more.

York campus

  • UCAS Code – P305
  • Duration – 3 years full time, 6 years part time
  • Start date – September 2021
  • School – School of Humanities

Minimum Entry Requirements

    104 UCAS Tariff points

    3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language.

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021 entry £9,250 per year full time

    International 2021 entry £12,750 per year full time

Discover why York St John is The One

Course overview

On this degree you will study the history, nature and impact of media and popular culture. You will investigate:

  • The power dynamics in contemporary media
  • How media responds to and impacts on pressing political and social issues
  • The impact of our ever evolving digital culture on the world, individuals, and on social and national identities
  • Issues surrounding the de Westernisation of Media Studies, approaching media in a global context.

The course includes many opportunities to get creative while also gaining employable skills. We will encourage you to contribute to the writing, production and marketing of our online magazine, Neutral. This allows you to work with industry professionals in these areas. You can also work with a graphic designer on a marketing-based module, developing an idea for an app and coming up with a rebranding project.

You will enhance your learning through visits from industry experts and academic specialists who provide practical insights into media in various commercial and creative contexts. You can also take part in events and field trips which let you explore media cultures locally, nationally and internationally. This includes a subsidised international trip in your final year.

Course structure

Year 1

Our academic year is split into 2 semesters. How many modules you take each semester will depend on whether you are st­udying full time or part time.

In your first year, if you are a full time student, you will study:

  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 2.

If you are a part time student, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Modules

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will explore some of the theories and concepts relating to the analytical interpretation of the media. We will introduce you to major issues that relate media to social and cultural contexts and to key You will also have the opportunity to assess and evaluate approaches to critical and analytical investigation.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module will help you to build the skills you need to succeed in higher education, and specifically for researching and analysing media. This includes skills in:

  • Researching
  • Referencing
  • Critical thinking
  • Academic writing
  • Presenting
  • Group work. 

We will make sure you are ready to take on the challenges of degree level study.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will investigate the relationship between media and power. This includes discussing the role of new media technologies in facilitating self expression and agency through creations like mash ups and fan fiction. You will also explore how these technologies impact the power and dominance of more traditional forms of media. We also discuss the positive and negative aspects of social media, from its role as a platform for activism to concerns about surveillance and privacy.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will think critically about how media informs, intersects and engages with concepts of identity. You will engage with contemporary discussion and debate surrounding identity, which will include considerations of:

  • Race
  • Gender
  • Nationality
  • Age.

You will use these varied perspectives to evaluate the theoretical, historical and socio-political influences and implications that contemporary mediated identities may communicate.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module is your introduction to media ecology, which encourages you to understand media as anything in which meaning or communication takes place. You will explore the deep history of media and allied technologies (for example writing, printing and painting) to examine how media can determine the possibilities of communication, creative activity and understanding. You will examine how traditional, new and emergent technologies influence our relationship with information and culture. You will also think about how these factors affect social organisation, aesthetic practice and political structure.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will explore the concept of ideology by analysing the viewing behaviour and beliefs of media audiences. You will study media communication models and their histories, engaging with research surrounding audiences. Through this you will explore the nature of contemporary mass communication and consider how ideology and meaning impact the communication process.

Year 2

In your second year, if you are a full time student, you will study:

  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 2.

If you are a part time student, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Modules

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will engage in debates about the production, reception and contexts of media and cultural products that have caused controversy. This includes debates about taste and the reception of text in different traditional, new and emergent media. We will introduce you to the terminology of aesthetic discussion and dispute, defining and discussing terms such as:

  • Propaganda
  • Artistic licence
  • Canonical status
  • Acceptability
  • Pornography
  • Censorship.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module considers the various forms and uses of music within the fields of cultural production, focusing on the evolutions of these processes and movements as indicators of cultural change. You will explore the possibilities for social, political and cultural exploration offered by the study of music, considering its use within the context of counter-cultural production, innovation, reception, distribution, protest and socio-cultural moments. You will discuss concepts and theories surrounding authorship, activism, mode of production, meaning and representation.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Through this module you will become familiar with important critical debates surrounding visual culture. You will come to appreciate the vital relationship between word and image, from traditional illustration all the way through to contemporary internet culture. This will allow you to investigate how visual strategies can be used to communicate complex ideas.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module is an opportunity to engage with the more vocational elements of working with media and explore your entrepreneurial potential. You will work in groups to produce a creative portfolio and will eventually pitch your idea to a panel. This could be, for example, a magazine, a film festival, or an exhibition. You must take into account:

  • Marketing and advertising
  • Business cases
  • Product development
  • Effective communication of ideas.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

An understanding of globalisation is essential for engaging with the processes of cultural, political and social change in the modern world. On this module we will introduce you to the major theoretical debates and ideas surrounding the contested idea of globalisation. You will also examine the role media plays in reflecting and reacting to the processes of globalisation, and its influence on emergent, resistant and dominant cultures.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module is an introduction to the theory and practice of convergence technology, transmedia activity and network theory. You will discuss the continuing development and evolution of communication technologies and how they shape our everyday lives. You will consider these developments in relation to social, political and cultural factors and speculate on how these may affect the production and consumption of meaning and content through media.

Year 3

In your third year, if you are a full time student, you will study:

  • A 40 credit Dissertation module studied across semesters 1 and 2.
  • 2 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 1 compulsory module and 1 optional module in semester 2.

If you are a part time student, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Optional modules will run if they receive enough interest. It is not guaranteed that all modules will run every year.

Modules

Credits: 40

Compulsory module

This is your opportunity to demonstrate your abilities as an independent learner through an extended piece of research. You will produce an extended critical and analytical examination of your chosen topic, engaging with the existing literature surrounding it and offering your own original take on the subject. You will apply many of the analytical and research skills you have developed over the course of your degree. A dedicated academic tutor will support you through throughout the research process.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will explore how new and emergent media, communications and technologies shape our way of living, acting and understanding the world and our place in it. Building on previous modules, you will learn about the development of various technologies and consider our changing relationship with them. You will consider how they contribute to and challenge philosophy, ethics, morals and meaning. We will also think about how these developments might influence aesthetic trends in production, consumption and cultural value.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

In this module we will explore and analyse different forms of animated film and video games. This will include analysis of the different visual styles and genres in animation. You will examine the production, distribution and consumption of animated films and video games in contemporary culture. You will consider both large media companies like Disney and Studio Ghibli and smaller, independent studios, engaging in debates about realism, hybridity and ideology in animation.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will explore concepts and issues surrounding globalisation, localisation, regionalism and national identity, particularly in relation to city cultures. You will consider the representations, symbolic and social structures, development, uses and experiences of the modern city. This will involve the experiential exploration of contemporary cities, as well investigating technological advances and futuristic narratives of the city. You will also have the opportunity to take part in an international field trip as part of this module. previous locations have included Istanbul, Madrid and Amsterdam.

Credits: 20

Optional module

On this module you will engage in debates concerning American mass culture and its relationship to social formation, cultural movements and modes of expression. We will examine contemporary popular culture as site of ideological, political and cultural discourse, considering how it uses and subverts America’s ideas and imagery. Through this we will assess how popular forms react to social and cultural changes. These forms include:

  • Animation
  • Comic books
  • Movies
  • Television
  • Websites
  • Music.

Credits: 20

Optional module

This module requires you to engage with a wide range of media representations of gender and sexualities. In doing so you will critically assess how certain forms, formats and practices of media transgress, reinforce or challenge assumptions and prejudices relating to gender and sexuality. This will build upon previous discussions about identity and representation from other modules, encouraging you to cultivate nuanced responses towards contemporary debates. We will also encourage you to reflect upon the evolution of critical perspectives on gender and sexualities.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching and learning

We use a range of different teaching methods to support your learning on this course. You will take part in:

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops
  • Task focused activities
  • Field trips and excursions
  • Engagement with media practitioners and those working in the creative industry.

You will typically study 3 modules each semester. Each module will normally have 3 hours of contact time each week, so you will have a minimum of 9 hours each week of teaching.

Alongside your timetabled contact time, you will be expected to study independently. You will need to spend time reading around the topics we cover and preparing for your taught sessions. This will ensure that you get the most out of your degree, as well as building valuable time management skills.

Our teaching draws on both our research and professional experience. This means your learning is informed by the most current thinking in the subject area. You can find out more about our research and backgrounds by visiting our staff pages.

Assessment

There are no exams on this course. You will be assessed entirely through coursework, which could include:

  • Essays
  • Portfolios
  • Individual and group presentations
  • Interactive digital portfolios (using platforms such as WordPress)
  • Creative visual pieces.

You will receive feedback on your work throughout each module, allowing you to improve before you take on your graded assessments.

Career outcomes

Your future with a degree in Media and Communication 

 A thorough understanding of the contemporary media landscape will be valuable in a variety of professions and industries. The skills you will build through this degree include project management, communication, use of digital technology, creativity, collaboration, analysis and research.

This degree could be the first step toward your career in:

  • Writing or producing for TV and film
  • Location management
  • Researching for TV and film
  • Marketing, PR and communications
  • Media buyer
  • Advertising.

Discover more career options on Prospects careers advice pages.

You could also progress onto a postgraduate degree and take your learning even further.

 

Whatever your ambitions, we can help you get there.

Our careers service, LaunchPad provides career support tailored to your ambitions. Through this service you can access:

  • Employer events
  • LinkedIn, CV and cover letter sessions
  • Workshops on application writing and interview skills
  • Work experience and volunteering opportunities
  • Personalised career advice.

This support doesn't end when you graduate. You can access our expert career advice for the rest of your life. We will help you gain experience and confidence to succeed. It's your career, your way.

Entry requirements

Qualifications

Minimum Entry Requirements

    104 UCAS Tariff points

    3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language.

Calculate your UCAS Tariff points

International Students

If you are an international student you will need to show that your qualifications match our entry requirements.

Information about international qualifications and entry requirements can be found on our International pages.

If English is not your first language you will need to show that you have English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.

International entry requirements

 

This course is available with a foundation year

If you do not yet meet the minimum requirements for entry straight onto this degree course, or feel you are not quite ready for the transition to Higher Education, this is a great option for you. Passing a foundation year guarantees you a place on this degree course the following academic year.

Liberal Arts foundation year

Mature Learners Entry Scheme

If you have been out of education for 3 years or more and have a grade C GCSE in English Language or equivalent, you are eligible for our entry scheme for mature learners. It's a scheme that recognises non-traditional entry qualifications and experience for entry onto this course. Information on how to apply can be found on our dedicated page.

Mature entry offer scheme

Terms and conditions

Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. You can read them on our Admissions page.

Fees and Funding

To study for an undergraduate degree with us, you will need to pay tuition fees for your course. How much you pay depends on whether you live inside the UK or EU, or internationally (outside the UK/EU). Tuition fees may be subject to inflation in future years.

UK and EU 2021 entry

The tuition fee for 2021 entry onto this course is

  • £9,250 per year for full time study
  • £6,935 per year for the first 4 years if you study part time.

These prices apply to all UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

You can find out more about funding your degree by visiting our funding opportunities page.

Funding Opportunities

Placement year funding

If you choose to take a placement year, and your course offers it, you can apply for the Tuition Fee and Maintenance Loan for your placement year. How much you are awarded is based on the type of placement being undertaken and whether it is a paid or unpaid placement. The tuition fee for your placement year will be reduced.

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021 entry £9,250 per year full time

    International 2021 entry £12,750 per year full time

International 2021 entry

The tuition fee for 2021 entry to this course is £12,750 per year for full time study.

This price applies to all students living outside the UK/EU.

Due to immigration laws, if you are an international student on a Student Visa, you must study full time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

Find out more about funding your degree.

International Fees and Funding

Additional costs and financial support

There may also be some additional costs to take into account throughout your studies, including the cost of accommodation.

Course-related costs

While studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.

Study Abroad

For more information on tuition fee reductions and additional costs for studying abroad, please visit our study abroad pages.

Accommodation and living costs

For detailed information on accommodation and living costs, visit our Accommodation pages.

Financial help and support

Our Funding Advice team are here to help you with your finances throughout your degree. They offer a personal service that can help you with funding your studies and budgeting for living expenses. 

All undergraduates receive financial support through the York St John Aspire card. Find out more about the Aspire scheme and how it can be used to help you purchase equipment you need for your course. 

ASPIRE CARD

Course highlights

More to explore

Join us in 2021

Two female students smiling in York

What makes us different

Get in touch

Cookie Settings