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Core Modules


Introduction to Journalism Studies

This module will introduce students to the academic study of journalism in a global context. The first half of the course will introduce key debates and issues in journalism studies, including the sociology of journalism, the history of journalism cultures, the nature of news production, journalism ethics, and the diversity of journalism cultures in national and international settings. The second half will focus on changes and trends in journalism practice brought about by technological change, as well as broader transformations in the economic, financial and social landscape.

Politics of Global Communication

This module introduces students to core theories and debates in media and communication studies, with a focus on political aspects and with a global approach. It addresses international communication, from claims of ‘cultural imperialism’ to the ‘global public sphere’ to the different dimensions of the ‘globalisation debate’. The module discusses contrasting ideas of the transformative potential of global communication such as ‘communication power’, ‘global civil society’, and ‘communicative capitalism’. It analyzes central developments and issues in contemporary global communication from the perspective of ownership and regulation, political practice, as well as changing conditions within media production, distribution and consumption, and explores global news players, ‘global journalism’ and alternative forms of ‘citizen journalism’.

Putting Research into Practice 1 and 2

The aim of these two modules is to provide a thorough understanding of the research process and grounding in the research skills required to complete a dissertation in media and communication studies. Students will learn about the various skills and tasks needed to conduct and complete a research project and they will be introduced to a wide range of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies. Through participation in short workshops, students will learn to design research projects and apply methods such as media content analysis, discourse analysis, surveys, interviews and focus groups, and digital methods.

Mediatised Conflicts: The Politics of Conflict Reporting

This module engages with a wide range of scholarly studies of different mediated conflicts, and their changing theoretical frameworks and methodologies. Case studies of media reporting will include, for example, demonstrations and protests, riots and civil unrest; war (from the Crimea to the Gulf War and the 2003 US led invasion of Iraq); international terrorism and the events of September 11 2001; ‘race’, racism and ethnicity; political scandals; the environment and ‘risk society’; and the politics of difference and identity. Students will develop a sophisticated theoretical understanding of production processes, professional practices, political contingencies and media performance and how these impact on the representation of major public issues and concerns.

Optional Modules

In addition to the above core modules, there is a wide range of optional modules available, including Media Law; Social Media and Politics; Media, Activism and Participation; Citizen Media; Governing the Internet: Digital Freedoms and Restrictions; Crisis Reporting; Science Reporting; and others.

Dissertation

The dissertation gives students the opportunity to conduct their own original research, as it requires completion of an academic dissertation of between 15 ‑ 20,000 words. Students will plan their dissertation and develop a research proposal during a first-semester research retreat in rural Wales.

Individual dissertation supervisors will be allocated after this retreat. Students will also develop their research skills through the core module, Putting Research into Practice, and through regular meetings with their dissertation supervisor.