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BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism

BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism video
  • UCAS Code:
    P500
  • Institution:
    B50
  • Delivery:
    Full time according to Funding Council definitions

If you want to get into the fast-paced world of journalism, but don’t want to specialise in a particular field, then this is the course for you! It will give you all the skills you need to work in a multi-disciplinary media environment, including TV, radio, newspaper, magazine or online journalism.

There's a strong focus on practical work, with many opportunities for you to get involved in writing copy, as well as producing radio and TV bulletins, all within state-of-the-art dedicated newsrooms and digitally equipped studios to replicate a professional working environment. This means that when you graduate, you’ll have a broad range of multimedia skills at your disposal, thus making you highly employable. The accreditation by the three main industry bodies - the BJTC, NCTJ and PTC - demonstrates the practical nature of this course, which has been developed in conjunction with the industry to ensure you have all the skills you'll need when you graduate.

As an NCTJ accredited course, you are able to sit the NCTJ qualifications in Reporting, Essential Law, Court Reporting, Public Affairs, Production, Portfolio and Shorthand while on course. These elements are integrated throughout the degree and taught by NCTJ qualified journalists, editors and practitioners. Students who take all the exams will graduate with a NCTJ Diploma in Journalism and the students who achieve A-C and 100wpm shorthand will graduate with a Gold Standard NCTJ Diploma. This highly recognised industry professional qualification will enhance your employability and credibility in the workplace. 

Hear more about our journalism courses from Dr Karen Fowler-Watt, Head of the School of Journalism, English and Communication

Key information

Next start date:

September 2017

Location:

Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus

Duration:

3 years including two short placements (or 4 years including a minimum 30-week placement). Full-time

Accreditations:

Broadcast Journalism Training Council (BJTC), The Council for Training of Journalists (NCTJ), the Periodicals Training Council (PTC)

Relevant subjects:

English Language or English Literature

Entry requirements:

For 2017 entry (we will use the new UCAS tariff) : 120 to 128 tariff points from 3 A-Levels, including 40 points in one A-level, or equivalent qualifications. BTEC Extended Diploma: DDM. For more information check out our 2017 entry requirements page.

International entry requirements:

If English is not your first language you'll need IELTS (Academic) 7.0 with minimum 6.5 in Writing and 6.0 in the other 3 components or equivalent. For more information check out our International entry requirements page

Course details

On this course you will usually be taught by a range of staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the unit. This will include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners, demonstrators, technicians and research students. You will also benefit from regular guest lectures from industry.

Year 1

Core units

  • Broadcast Journalism 1: An introduction to radio and television journalism, covering the concepts and techniques of newsgathering, video and audio storytelling, interviewing, writing for your audience and video production.
  • Features and Online 1: This practice based unit aims to give you the opportunity to develop the creative and practical skills needed to originate, research and write features for newspapers, magazines and online.
  • News and Online 1: An introduction to the basics of researching, gathering and writing news and using pictures, and graphics, plus you'll begin to develop skills in producing feature material.
  • Media Law: You'll learn all about confidentiality, copyright, defamation and contempt and the laws governing reporting for print and broadcast.
  • Public Affairs: This unit will concentrate on local and central government as well as political and economic processes as they relate to journalism
  • Media, Journalism and Society: Here you'll learn about the nature, history and structure of the media and the role of journalism within society.
  • Shorthand: This unit aims to improve your employability skills by developing and demonstrating an ability to write and transcribe Teeline shorthand.

You will be advised to complete a 2 week placement at the end of Year 1.

Contact hours

The hours below give an indication of how you can expect to spend your time during the first year of this course. You will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops and practical sessions. Your independent learning could include reading books and journal articles, working on group projects, preparing presentations, conducting library research and writing your assignments.

  • Learning and teaching: 232 hours
  • Independent learning: 968 hours
  • Non-assessed learning and teaching: 52

Year 2

Core units

  • Broadcast Journalism 2: You will progress towards professional standards of writing for broadcast, newsgathering, and recording and editing sound and pictures. Newsroom production techniques will be developed alongside more creative storytelling and production methods.
  • Features and Online 2: This unit will equip you with knowledge and understanding of the basic skills and techniques underpinning longer-form and investigative storytelling, whether print or digital.
  • Journalism Ethics and News Theory: You'll study communication research methods and develop an awareness of how images in newspapers and television exert influence. Ethical dilemmas confronting journalists and professional codes of conduct are also examined.
  • Global Current Affairs: Provides an understanding of developments in news, technology and geo-cultural systems. Students evaluate different interpretations of the concept of ‘globalisation’.
  • News and Online 2: This practice-based unit covers interviewing, writing, and research skills. There will be a particular focus on ensuring you can produce fair, accurate and balanced journalism under deadline pressure.
  • Shorthand: This unit aims to enhance your employability by developing and demonstrating an ability to write and transcribe Teeline shorthand.

You will be advised to complete a 4 week placement at the end of Year 2.

Contact hours

The hours below give an indication of how you can expect to spend your time during the second year of this course. You will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops and practical sessions. Your independent learning could include reading books and journal articles, working on group projects, preparing presentations, conducting library research and writing your assignments.

  • Learning and teaching: 237.5 hours 
  • Independent learning: 962.5 hours
  • Non-assessed learning and teaching: 54 hours

Year 3

Optional 40 week placement (or a minimum of 30-weeks for 2017 entry), giving you the chance to gain experience and make contacts for the future.

Year 3/4 (final year)

Core units

  • Major Multimedia Project: You'll produce a substantial multi-media project demonstrating the ability to source and package original content with journalistic rigor and technically professional expertise.
  • Professional Perspectives: This unit will provide an opportunity for you to debate key challenges and issues in journalism, to engage with visiting professionals and to reflect on your own professional development.
  • Converged News Days: Here you'll hone your skills by working in a professional converged news production environment, imitating industry practice to meet realistic deadlines.
  • Professional Placement: You will have the opportunity to reflect on and evaluate your professional and personal development over the course of the programme. You'll assess your professional placement/s in the context of industry experience, requiring engagement with employers and industry standards.
  • Shorthand 80WPM: You'll build on your shorthand speeds to a minimum of 80 words per minute.
  • Dissertation: This will provide you with the opportunity to explore a topic in the field of journalism.

Contact hours

The hours below give an indication of how you can expect to spend your time during the final year of this course. You will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops and practical sessions. Your independent learning could include reading books and journal articles, working on group projects, preparing presentations, conducting library research and writing your assignments.

  • Learning and teaching: 114 hours 
  • Independent learning: 1086 hours

Programme Specification

Programme specifications provide definitive records of the University's taught degrees in line with Quality Assurance Agency requirements. Every taught course leading to a BU Award has a programme specification which describes its aims, structure, content and learning outcomes, plus the teaching, learning and assessment methods used.

View the programme specification for BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the programme specification, the information is liable to change to take advantage of exciting new approaches to teaching and learning as well as developments in industry. If you have been unable to locate the programme specification for the course you are interested in, it will be available as soon as the latest version is ready. Alternatively please contact us for assistance.

Placement opportunities

At BU, we recognise that placements are extremely valuable and can give you a head start when it comes to your future career; therefore we now offer every new student the opportunity to undertake a work placement as part of their course.

We will provide a great deal of support to help you find the most appropriate work placement for the subject you’re studying and the career you’re interested in, which means you could be based anywhere in the UK, or even overseas.

A placement should be a highly rewarding experience for you and the employing company and we do our best to ensure that everyone involved feels that they have got the most that they can from the experience.

The benefits to you as a placement student are many. You will have the chance to:

  • Put the theory learnt throughout the course into professional practice
  • Enhance your study and help you decide on subject options (where appropriate)
  • Learn a wide range of skills such as time management, problem solving and team work (all of these are important to succeed in any career)
  • Make contacts, as it is not uncommon for our students to be offered permanent positions to return to after graduating
  • Gain a real insight into how the industry operates in roles that would be almost impossible to achieve for an outsider
  • Many of our students, during their placement, are given responsibilities normally associated with graduate trainees.

How long is the placement?

You will begin your placement after completion of your second year of study and can choose to complete 2 short placements or a minimum 30 week placement.

Find out more about placements and our student experiences here.

Your application

Background and experience

For BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism, we are looking for applicants who can:

  • Demonstrate both intellectual and creative abilities
  • Work well within a team as well as individually
  • Demonstrate good presentation skills
  • Demonstrate good written and oral communication skills.

We are looking for applicants that have a sound grasp of the English language, creative writing ability and a good presentational style. Students must be aware of world affairs and be able to express their own opinions and thoughts. We also like applicants to have undertaken some work experience within a media environment.

Students must have basic computer literacy, including knowledge of Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Selection methods

We’ll be selecting the candidates for this course by looking at their UCAS applications – there are no interviews or selection activities needed. For that reason, make sure your application really stands out from the crowd, and leave us in no doubt as to why you should be joining BU. You can find some handy hints about filling in your UCAS form on our how to apply webpages.

Our offer making process

Our offer making will typically be based on your three main graded qualifications, including any required subjects. Additional study may be valuable for breadth of study, and we will look at a range of qualifications and subjects, including the Extended Project Qualification and General Studies, although these may not be part of our offer.

If you do not meet the criteria of your original offer, we may still offer you a place. We will review your whole application and consider all academic qualifications (including those not in the offer) and the rest of the application to see if you have the academic potential to succeed on the course. If we feel the answer is yes, we will still confirm your place.

How we'll assess your application

We look at individual applications and make a tailored offer based on your potential to succeed on the course considering a range of factors, including your academic achievements, work and other experience, predicted grades, reference and personal statement, and in some cases, your performance at an interview/selection test.

If you meet one or more of our contextual data indicators for educational disadvantage (such as being in care, living in a low participation neighbourhood or in an area with less advantaged socio-economic characteristics), your offer could be between 20-60 points below the published tariff.

Unconditional offer scheme

Our Unconditional Offer Scheme seeks to reward exceptional applicants who are predicted to achieve top academic results. The scheme is offered to applicants on all courses who are predicted AAA at A-level/triple Distinction in BTEC Extended Diploma, or above, or equivalent, subject to any course selection measures and meeting other entry criteria (i.e. required qualifications). What’s more we’ll recognise your achievement if you meet these grades with an Academic Excellence Scholarship from £1,500 when you arrive*.

We believe that unconditional offers will reduce pressure on applicants who will continue to strive to achieve the best grades possible. Excellent grades will become a part of applicants’ CVs and are also required for BU’s scholarships. International qualifications are considered in the scheme; however applicants must satisfy the English language requirements.

*Our scholarships are subject to terms, conditions and eligibility criteria, detailed on our scholarships pages.

2017 entry requirements

The new UCAS Tariff will be used for September 2017 entry.

The entry requirements for this course are 120 to 128 tariff points from 3 A-Levels, including 40 points in one A-level, or equivalent qualifications. BTEC Extended Diploma: DDM

UCAS have created a helpful calculator so you can calculate points to use for courses starting from September 2017 onwards.

Excluded subjects: This course does not accept General Studies.

GCSEs: This course requires a minimum of 4 GCSEs grades A* - C (or grade 4 or above in the newly reformed GCSE grading) including Maths and English or equivalent qualifications.

Numeracy and literacy: We need to be sure that you can express yourself in written English and have basic numeracy skills. We look at Level 2 of the National Qualifications Framework, which includes, but is not limited to, GCSEs, iGCSEs, Key Skills and Functional Skills Level 2. If you do not have formal qualifications to this level or have alternatives, we may still be able to consider your application – please contact the askBU Enquiry Service to find out more.

Other qualifications

We have outlined below other qualifications that we consider for this course. If you are studying a qualification that is not listed, please contact the askBU Enquiry Service – it may be that we can still consider it.

Access Course: BU welcomes Access to HE Diploma applicants. This course requires applicants to Pass the Access to HE Diploma (with 60 Credits - at least 45 at level 3, remainder at level 2 or equivalent).  Any combination of grades to meet the overall tariff is acceptable.

BTEC Qualifications

Extended Diploma: This course requires Distinction, Distinction, Merit.
Diploma: This course requires a Distinction, Distinction in addition to an A-Level to achieve the overall traffic.
90-credit Diploma: The 90-credit Diploma will be accepted as part of your overall tariff but it must be accompanied by A-Levels or equivalent qualifications.
Subsidiary Diploma: This course requires a Distinction in addition to two A-levels to achieve the overall tariff.

A combination of BTEC qualifications to meet the overall course tariff is also acceptable.

Cambridge Pre-U Diploma: We welcome applicants studying the Cambridge Pre-U Diploma or a combination of Pre-U subjects and A-levels.

European Baccalaureate: Applicants are required to achieve a minimum score of 77%.

International Baccalaureate: The IB Diploma is welcomed as part of the International Baccalaureate (IB). This course requires 31-32 points including 5 points from each of the 3 Higher Level subjects

Scottish Qualifications: Scottish Advanced Highers, Scottish Highers and other Scottish qualifications are all welcomed providing that your results meet the overall course tariff.

Welsh Baccalaureate: The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma is welcomed alongside A-Levels or equivalent, to meet the overall course tariff.

OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Qualification: The OCR Extended Diploma or a combination of one Diploma plus one Introductory Diploma is acceptable for entry to this course.

Extended Diploma: This course requires Distinction, Distinction, Merit.

Other combinations of OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical qualifications to meet the overall course tariff may be acceptable.

Extended Project Qualification: The grade achieved for the Extended Project may be taken into account when considering whether or not to accept a candidate who has marginally failed to meet the conditions of their offer.

Deferred Entry: We are happy to consider applicants for deferred entry.

Non - academic entry requirements

Commitment to a career in journalism

You must demonstrate that you are keen to pursue a career in journalism. Typically, you will have developed a portfolio of your own work in print and/or broadcasting. Although this does not necessarily have to be in professional contexts, you must be able to discuss the origin of your work and the process that led to its completion.

Self-confidence

Journalists must be prepared to throw themselves into new environments and situations routinely. Therefore, you should have (or have the potential to develop) a self-confident manner.

Evidence of strong intellectual ability

We need to know that we are getting students with strong creative and intellectual abilities.

Creative thinking

As a journalist you will need to find new and original ways of reflecting the society you live in. Therefore you will need to have the ability to think laterally and creatively. The best journalism often sees the juxtaposition of old ideas in a new, interesting and challenging way. We will look for evidence in your Personal statement or at our activity days that you are capable of developing creative approaches to journalism or that you have the potential to develop these skills.

IT Skills

Journalism is being rapidly transformed by technological developments and structural change. Many newspaper journalists now lay out their own copy; radio reporters are expected to write for on-line news services; and television reporters often film and edit their own stories. To survive, the journalist of the future will need to know how and where to find stories and how to produce and present them for newspapers, magazines, radio, television and the Internet.

New technology is becoming an integral part of the journalist's working life. Multi-media journalism allows you to develop these skills in simulated professional environments. In addition, you will need to make the use of the University's extensive range of computer facilities.

You will have access to your own e-mail address. You will be expected to develop the ability to learn and use word processing, desktop publishing and broadcasting software. You may already possess a number of these skills, but if not, we will help you to develop them throughout the course.

Team working and good interpersonal skills

Often journalists work in teams in newsroom environments. You must be capable of working both on your own and alongside colleagues as required. These skills will be developed further on the course. Ideally, you should be able to demonstrate through your Personal statement, some evidence that you are capable of working as part of a team. Success in the industry frequently depends upon the ability to relate to others.

Communication

Evidence of strong communication skills, both written and oral, and an inquisitive mind. You will need to have good written and oral communication skills. Journalists need to have the ability to communicate effectively with their readers, viewers and listeners. You will also need (or have the potential to develop) strong skills in interviewing people. Journalists need to be able to ask the right questions and focus their work concisely. You need to show us that you are capable of doing so, or have the potential to develop in this area.

International entry requirements

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

IELTS (Academic) 7.0 with minimum 6.5 in Writing and 6.0 in the other 3 components, or equivalent.

View further information about our English language requirements.

If you do not meet the English language requirement for your degree then why not join our Pre-Sessional English course. Successful completion of our Pre-Sessional English course will meet your English language requirement, without the need to re-take IELTS.

Academic entry requirements

You can find details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our entry requirements for non-UK students’ page.

We offer a number of preparatory programmes through the Bournemouth University International College. These courses offer you progression from High School in your home country to a Bachelor’s degree at BU.

Options include:

Careers

The 24-hour news cycle has changed the way that journalists work and report. This course prepares you for a job in this field, where you're expected to work across a range of channels and using a variety of mediums. 95% of our graduates are in work or further study within six months of finishing their degree*, with our former students working for TV, radio, newspapers, magazines and online publications.

Our graduates have gone on to work for the likes of Sky News, CNN, the BBC, Capital Radio and Bloomberg, among many others. Roles they have taken on since they graduated include:

  • Journalist
  • Editor
  • Production assistant
  • Digital media manager
  • Football presenter, reporter and commentator
  • Freelance broadcast journalist
  • Digital journalist
  • Subtitler

This course was the first in the UK to be accredited by three professional bodies: the National Council for Training of Journalists (NCTJ), The Broadcast Journalism Training Council (BJTC), and the Periodicals Training Council. The BJTC is particularly relevant if you want to enter the world of journalism, as this organisation is a partnership between universities and the main employers in the UK broadcast industry, such as BBC, Reuters and Sky. All BJTC accredited courses are based on their direct practical experience, making them highly valued within the industry and giving you confidence that what you learn throughout your course will be incredibly useful once you enter the world of work.

Industries worked in

  • Media
  • Journalism
  • Digital.

Further study

Once you have completed an undergraduate Honours degree, you can further develop your education by studying for a postgraduate degree. Please visit our Postgraduate section for further details about our range of Master's degrees.

*All statistics shown are taken from Unistats, Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE), BU institutional data and Ipsos MORI (National Student Survey) unless otherwise stated.

Course statistics

The National Student Survey

The below information all comes from the National Student Survey completed by some of the students who graduated from this course last year.

  • Students agreed staff are good at explaining things - 74%
  • Students agreed staff made the subject interesting - 87%
  • Students were satisfied overall - 71%
  • Students agreed they got sufficient advice and support - 63%

At BU, we take our student's feedback very seriously. We have reviewed all the responses to the NSS survey, and we are implementing a number of new initiatives for our students. We are continually investing in new buildings with dedicated workshop, study and social spaces on campus. Why not visit us to see for yourself at an open day?

Other new support initiatives for our students:

  • Ensuring you have access to our facilities and teaching team outside of lectures and seminars
  • New students welcome pack has much more information about where to go for help and advice
  • Inviting more guest speakers from industry to give you an insider's view
  • Recruiting new staff to help you Grow@bu - a Faculty support service run by recent graduates who really understand student issues
  • ContriBUte: a brand new scheme run by the Student Union to give you the opportunity to get involved in making things happen at BU.

86% of the course is assessed by coursework

The majority of your assessed work will be coursework; however you will also be expected to undertake practical assignments and written exams as well.

Students must also start to produce a NCTJ portfolio of journalism.

17% is scheduled learning and teaching activities

This course offers you the opportunity to study for an innovative career-focused degree, which combines skills based units with an honours level academic education. In the first year of your course you will have a higher percentage of scheduled learning and teaching activities, which includes lectures, workshops and seminars. You will study news and feature writing and learn broadcast skills, including radio and television to an industry standard, as well as being introduced to online journalism.

In your second year you will work on placements and enhancing your portfolio, as well as progressing your shorthand to 80 wpm. You will also be required to take an NCTJ option to be examined in broadcast or production skills. In your final year you will be required to submit a 10,000 word dissertation and a multimedia journalism project. Employability is emphasised throughout all three years and industry experts lecture, assess and teach students throughout the degree programme.

Guided independent study will supplement scheduled learning and teaching activities across all three years.

What our students say

Laura McKenna

We brought live election updates throughout the night. Our coverage was unique, it had a different edge to it, was student focused and gave a younger edge.

Hear from our staff

Dr Karen Fowler-Watt

This course combines multi-disciplinary training in TV, radio, newspaper, magazine and online journalism giving you the skills you need to get the job you want.

What our graduates think

Guy Larsen

The Faculty of Media & Communication is saturated with people who will freely chip in to other projects, as they know the value of networking with people who have the skills they don’t...

How you can get involved

Nerve media

Nerve Media

Whether you're interested in the radio station or the monthly magazine, get involved with various writing and production opportunities.
Buzz online journalism website

Buzz Bournemouth

This online platform is used by students to upload the latest news and features as well as to showcase their final year multimedia projects.
The student newspaper

The Bournemouth Rock

A Bournemouth-based fortnightly newspaper hot off the press with the latest news, opinions, sports and features.

Additional information

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

Find out about fees and funding, including scholarships and bursaries.

Open Days

Open Days

Discover what makes Open Days so enjoyable and useful – and register to attend one of our events.

International students

International students

We have a strong international student community. Find all the practical advice and information you need here.