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Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations

  • Arts Council
  • North West News Group
  • Ulster University
  • Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster
  • Local Radio
  • Newspapers

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles

  • Journalist
  • PR
  • marketing and communications co ordinator
  • Reporter
  • Researcher

Overview

Journalism theory and practice: news-gathering, reporting, newswriting and sub-editing for television, radio and web in a changing media landscape.

Summary

Study Journalism with English at Ulster University in the United Kingdom.

Journalism is part of the combined campus subject programme at Ulster Coleraine. It is the only university degree programme in the subject in Northern Ireland and offers students the opportunity to study the theory and practice of journalism in context with determining factors such as law, economics, politics and technology. It is not a professional training programme but delivers a range of relevant practical and professional skills (with the exception of short-hand).

As a major subject programme (four modules per full-time year), Journalism at Ulster is combined with another, minor subject in the Arts (two modules per full-time year) to make up a full degree programme. There is a range of subjects to choose from as your minor (Education, English and History).

English as a minor supplements your Major Subject by enabling you to progress from a broad awareness into a critically informed knowledge of English literature. The minor allows you to study both English Literatures historical range and depth but also its contemporary examples.

Taking English as a Minor will allow you to develop a critically-informed knowledge of English literature in its historical range and depth. Through the study of literature across different genres, you will hone the ability to analyse text and form critical arguments, both in spoken and written form. A Minor in English comprises of two from the total of six modules you complete per year (three each semester). These draw on extensive staff expertise and internationally-recognised research. In addition to compulsory modules, you can pursue your own interests through a range of optional modules including 'Restoration & 18th-century Literature’ in second year, or 'Words in Freedom: Modernist Revolution in Literature’ in third year, among others. A Minor in English ensures you are well-equipped for the wide variety of careers that require advanced communicative skills, including publishing, journalism and the media, public relations, the creative arts, marketing and retail, arts administration, and many sectors of the civil service.

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About this course

In this section

About

Structure & content

The programme is organized into modules, or units of study, worth 20 credits each. In full-time mode, you will take six modules per year over three years. In part-time mode, you will take no less than 2 modules per year and no more than 4 modules per year over a maximum of 6 years.

In either full-time or part-time mode, you will take 18 modules amounting to a total 360 credits.

In Year 1, you will take modules that give you a good basic grounding in the academic study of the media and in practical journalism skills that you will need to underpin your more advanced modules in Years Two and Three. At this level you will take modules that introduce you to critical issues in journalism (history, sociology, economics and technology), journalism law and regulation, and journalism practice (newsgathering, report writing, sub-editing, newspaper design and production and broadcast journalism techniques).

Your commitment in time and effort will be intensive and demanding, much more so than those subjects that have no practice component. As well as on-campus activities, you will also learn about reporting from the local court and council offices. At the end of your second year, you will be encouraged to seek a placement with a local newspaper or other news based outlet.

Programme

The programme uses a range of teaching methods including lectures, small group seminars and practical workshops. These are delivered and supervised by experienced teaching staff, including former journalists.

You will have access to a wide range of learning resources, including professional standard newspaper production and design software such as Adobe InDesign, and digital sound and video software. You will also work in a simulated newsroom environment.

The programme assesses your work using a variety of different assessment methods including traditional academic essays, critical book reviews, examinations, class-tests and practical journalism assignments in reporting and writing.

Full-time students studying English as a Minor are expected to complete 120 credits, usually broken into two modules per year (one in each semester). Most modules offer 3 hours of teaching time per week (2 lectures and a seminar), plus additional contact time as required for tutorial consultation or general guidance. Independent reading and study, which will also be guided by module coordinators, is expected to occupy 13 hours per module per week. We endeavour to make lecture and seminar times convenient for those who have to travel far or who have part-time jobs.


English as a Minor in year 1 has two compulsory modules - ‘Elements of Criticism’ (Semester 1) and ‘Modes of Reading’ (Semester 2) - designed to equip you with some basic tools of literary criticism and introduce important concepts of critical theory.


English as a Minor in year 2 offers a wide range of optional modules that draw on staff research and scholarship. Students studying English as a minor subject choose two modules (one in semester 1, one in semester 2). At present, depending on staff availability, this includes the following options: Early Modern Culture; Rhymes of Passion: Love Poetry; Sex and the City of God; Writing the North; Restoration & 18th-Century Literature; Romantic Narrative; Self-Help Writing; Gender and Creativity; Beat Literature and Culture; Angels, Madwomen and Whores; Modern British Fiction; Samuel Beckett Studies.


English as a Minor in year 3 offers a wide range of optional modules drawing on staff expertise, internationally recognised research and leading scholarship in the field. Depending on staff availability, students studying English as a minor subject can choose two modules (one in semester 1, one in semester 2) from the following: Words in Freedom: Modernist Revolution in Literature 1909 - 1930; Romantic Poetry and Theory; 19th-century American Literature; Adaptation and Historical Fiction; From the Vote to the Pill: Twentieth-century Women’s Writing; Twentieth-century Literature; The Victorian Novel; Twentieth-century American Literature; Body, Mind and Soul; Ulster-Scots Literary Tradition; Renaissance Drama 1485-1625.

*Modules offered are dependent on staff availability and compulsory requirements.

Associate awards

Diploma in International Academic Studies DIAS

Find out more about placement awards

Attendance

Attendance

Full time mode: three years.


Attendance200 hours per module per semester as follows:
36 contact hours per module per semester.
164 independent study hours per module per semester.

FAQ:

How many hours per week will I attend as journalism student at Ulster?

All full-time degree programmes in the Faculty of Arts require a minimum three hours contact time (e.g. lectures and seminars) per module. However, programmes with a practice component, such as Journalism, will demand, by their very nature, additional contact hours for attendance on practical workshops and may require occasional assignments off campus, e.g. to local court or council. In addition to attendance at teaching sessions, the programme will require up to 20 hours per module per semester of independent learning and study (e.g. library research and coursework preparation). In that light, the attendance requirement in part-time mode depends on how many modules taken per semester (one or two).

Start dates

  • September 2016
How to apply

Entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

In this section

A level

The A Level requirement for this course is 280 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum of BBC at A2.

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for the final A level grade in the above grade profile (C grade) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by UCAS.

BTEC

Overall BTEC Extended Diploma profile requires a minimum of 280 UCAS tariff points with DMM award profile to include a minimum of 8 distinctions in level 3 units.

BTEC Diploma

The Diploma may be accepted in isolation or in combination with A levels. Where A levels are offered as part of a profile then they should be achieved at the upper end of the standard A level offer profile (i.e. if one A level is offered with a Diploma and our standard A level offer is BBC then we normally ask for a B at A level with the Diploma offer at the appropriate differential to satisfy the total tariff points - see further below).

280 = Distinction*, Distinction* (To include 10 distinctions)

260 = Distinction, Distinction* (To include 9 distinctions)

240 = Distinction, Distinction (To include 8 distinctions)

200 = Distinction, Merit (To include 7 distinctions)

180 = Distinction, Merit (To include 6 distinctions)

160 = Merit, Merit (To include 10 merits)

BTEC SUBSIDIARY DIPLOMA

The Subsidiary Diploma may be accepted in combination with A levels. Where A levels are offered as part of a profile then they should be achieved at the upper end of the standard A level offer profile (i.e. if two A levels are offered with a Subsidiary Diploma and our standard A level offer is BBC then we normally ask for BB at A level with the Subsidiary Diploma offer at the appropriate differential to satisfy the total tariff points - see further below).

140 = Distinction* (To include 5 distinctions)

120 = Distinction (To include 4 distinctions)

100 = Distinction (To include 3 distinctions)

80 = Merit (To include 5 merits)

Irish Leaving Certificate

The Irish Leaving Certificate requirement for this course is 280 UCAS tariff points based on an overall Irish Leaving Certificate minimum profile BBBCC at higher level.

Scottish Highers

The Scottish Highers requirement for this course is 280 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum of AAAA.

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for the final grade in the above grade profile (A grade) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by UCAS.

Scottish Advanced Highers

The Scottish Advanced Highers requirement for this course is 280 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum BBC.

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for the final grade in the above grade profile (C grade) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by UCAS.

International Baccalaureate

Overall International Baccalaureate profile minimum of 25 points to include 12 at higher level - 280 UCAS tariff points.

Access to Higher Education (HE)

For Access qualifications validated by Ulster University or QUB the entry requirement is as follows:

Overall average of 65-69% - 70-71% (280-300 UCAS tariff points).

For GB QAA accredited Higher Education Diploma qualifications the entry requirement is as follows:

Overall pass in a related subject area, achieving merit or distinction in all of the 45 level 3 graded credits (plus English level 2 equivalences where required).

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Additional Entry Requirements

Applicants holding a HND should achieve 120 credits at level 5 including a minimum of:

2 distinctions, 2 merits and 4 passes (for entry to Year 1).

Applicants holding a HNC will be considered on an individual basis for year 1 entry.

Applicants holding a Foundation Degree should achieve an overall average of 50% in second year modules for Year 1 entry.

The University will consider applications on the basis of experiential learning for those who do not hold the normal entry qualifications. Those applicants seeking entry with advanced standing, (eg. Transfer from another institution) will be considered on an individual basis but should note that this process can be more difficult in subject combination programmes as both subjects must be satisfied.

Teaching and learning assessment

Assessment will be by way of a mixture of formal examination, essay, class test, coursework, individual/group projects and assessment of practice projects, dependent on the nature and rationale of the module concerned.

Careers & opportunities

In this section

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations. Here are some examples:

  • Arts Council
  • North West News Group
  • Ulster University
  • Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster
  • Local Radio
  • Newspapers

Job roles

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles. Here are some examples:

  • Journalist
  • PR
  • marketing and communications co ordinator
  • Reporter
  • Researcher

Career options

While a degree in Journalism at Ulster does not lead directly to a professional qualification in journalism, it will prepare you for application to higher degree and professional courses.
In common with all other undergraduate Arts degree programmes, journalism offers you very real opportunities for personal growth and self-development.

Where these opportunities are taken with enthusiasm and determination, you will undoubtedly enhance your long-term employability and the skills developed while studying journalism will be valued by a wide range of employers.

The BA Hons Journalism programme is not accredited by the journalism industries (Ulster’s accredited programme is at Masters level, MA Journalism).

For information on postgraduate research opportunities see: www.arts.ulster.ac.uk/rgs

Students completing a course with English as a minor are well equipped to undertake postgraduate work in relevant areas of study. A degree containing a significant element of English equips you for the wide variety of careers that require advanced communicative skills, both written and oral, including publishing, journalism and the media, public relations, the creative arts, marketing and retail, arts administration, and many sectors of the civil service.

Work placement / study abroad

There is no formal work placement or study abroad within the course structure.

Students may consider taking part in the Erasmus Exchange programme, to European Universities, usually for one semester in second year.

Students may take part in the exchange programme with universities in the USA. This would be a year long exchange and attracts an additional university academic award on graduation.

Exchanges with universitiies in other countries may also be possible, arranged through the International Office at the university.

Academic profile

Dr Colm Murphy, research in Journalism and the Digital Economy, Director NCTJ, former journalist at the Irish Times

Dr Greg McLaughlin, Senior Lecturer, research in Journalism and Conflict

Ms Maggie Swarbrick, Teaching Fellow, former trainer and journalist at BBC, examiner NCTJ

Mr Milne Rowntree, Teaching Fellow, former print and online journalist, examiner NCTJ

Apply

Applications to full-time undergraduate degrees at Ulster are made through UCAS.

How to apply

Start dates

  • September 2016

Fees and funding

In this section

Fees (per year)

Northern Ireland & EU:
£3,925.00
England, Scotland & Wales:
£6,000.00
International:
£12,890.00

Scholarships, awards and prizes

Brum Henderson Award for best Journalism Project

Additional mandatory costs

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel and normal living are a part of university life. 

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them in the online prospectus. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.

We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.

There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course. 

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees. 

Please contact the course team for more information.

Contact

School of Media, Film and Journalism

Tel: +44 (0) 28 7012 4196

‪‪For further information please contact Sally Quinn:

s.quinn@ulster.ac.uk

For application queries please email arts@ulster.ac.uk.