If you have set your sights on a career in the dynamic world of media and communications, this exciting, stimulating and innovative top-up course is the ideal preparation for professional success.
- Develop a strong understanding of the media industries and trends in media culture and communication - exploring media texts and platforms, institutions and new emerging media
- Benefit from our strong links with employers in media and creative industries
- Enjoy real-world learning opportunities throughout the course with hands-on projects and live creative briefs in advertising, communication, branding, and documentary production
- Learn from a highly experienced team of subject experts and industry professionals who are keen to share their knowledge with you
- Challenge your thinking with new ideas and perspectives
- Build a combination of practical and transferable skills, creative thinking and academic knowledge so that you stand out from the crowd in a fiercely competitive job market
The aim of this course is to equip you to work in the media industries, whether within the creative media industries themselves or as a press, PR or communications professional helping organisations to get their messages across.
A broad scope for your studies
While exploring broad aspects of media, cultural and communication studies, you will focus on issues and challenges facing the media industries today - from media ethics to audience research.
You will also consider the importance of media awareness, including how emerging forms of digital media are being harnessed in all aspects of economic, social and political life today and how these have impacted on the print and broadcast media industries and their products and uses.
Throughout the course, you will develop an understanding of the changing nature of the media industries and media communication - from the role of the print tradition, cinema and broadcasting, to new digital media products such as social networking and video games. You will look at how the film and television industries have developed in different national contexts as well the increasing globalisation of these media institutions and communications networks in terms of political and ideological communication, legislation, regulation and censorship.
There is also a fascinating focus on media audiences, usage and consumption. You will explore popular media culture, examining questions of identity and representation in contemporary media and considering the significance of media in contemporary life.
Hone your practical skills
You will explore different forms of content production, such as journalism, blog writing, public relations and promotional writing, script or treatment writing and the essentials of visual production and editing and have the opportunity to focus on an area of interest to you, working on projects to develop your skills.
Strong industry partnerships and high-profile guest speakers
This course offers modules featuring work-based learning and projects in which you will be expected to work with external institutions, giving you the opportunity to receive academic credit for gaining real-world work experience.
We’ll help you to raise your profile, thanks to our excellent contacts with media and communications professionals across many sectors. Your studies will be enriched by our partnerships with a wide range of organisations such as newspapers, radio stations and independent film companies.
Case studies, guest lectures and work experience opportunities will give you vital insights into the media, creative and cultural communications industries.
Our guest speaker programme offers you invaluable insights into the industry. You will learn from creative directors for multimedia production agencies, film and television directors and producers, bloggers, marketeers, photographers, branding and social media experts and artists.
Pursue your own interests
There is the opportunity to tailor part of this course to reflect your own career aspirations and personal interests. You will have the option to undertake in-depth research into a topic of your choice. In the past, our Media students have chosen to explore topics such as sport and the media, television and representation, the significance of video games and social media and influencer culture.
Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.
Teaching and learning
You will learn through formal lectures, seminars, tutorials, group exercises, workshops, debates and screenings. You will also benefit from many real-world learning opportunities throughout the course in areas such as publishing, journalism and web writing.
Assessment is 100% coursework based. This incorporates a range of different tasks including essays, document analyses, writing and creative projects and digital production, dissertation work, individual and group oral presentations, work-based learning and seminar participation. Some modules will feature choices of assessment, enabling you to tailor your skills and learning to your career plans.
Supporting you all the way
In the National Student Survey, our students have been particularly positive not only about the quality of teaching on offer but also about the academic support they receive. You'll have a personal tutor to help and advise you throughout your degree.
Joining in Year 2
For September 2021 entry only there is the option to join this course in Year 2 where you will study the following core modules:
- Interfacing with the Truth: With the ever-growing ownership of ubiquitous mobile devices, smart TV’s, as well as wearable tech, you'll explore creating new methods of communication and media consumption
- From Pitch to Product: This module will develop your skills and understanding of multi-platform communication and as a content producer in the media and communications industries. The module will give you the essential experience of working for a creative department or agency in conceptualising and creating media content based on client briefs
- Researching the Audience: This module will develop your skills and understanding of critical concepts surrounding audiences and practical methods of audience research.
and choose from the following optional modules:
- From Premise to Page: You will have the opportunity to acquire techniques and methodologies in screenwriting and explore techniques of structuring and developing narrative for the screen to apply to case studies and your own work
- Entertainment and Identity: In this module you will examine the emergence of lifestyle media and the significance of personal identity in the consumption of popular media. You will explore forms of lifestyle media such as magazines and their relationship with other cultural industries, in particular global entertainment industries such as film and television
- Work Experience Project: This module is designed to enable you to gain, and reflect upon, experience that contributes to your employability and understanding of working in the media, cultural and creative industries and related careers.
Who you will meet
You will be taught by our team of engaging, passionate and inspiring subject experts and industry professionals. They include:
Dr Nathan Hunt, Programme Leader and Senior Lecturer in Film and Media Studies. Nathan’s research interests span fandom and cult media, taste and popular culture, Hollywood cinema, science fiction and horror, consumer cultures, magazines and the cultural industries, audiences and reception, video games and game culture, masculinity in the media, and postmodernism in film and television. He has published on themes ranging from cult TV to film fan cultures, contributing most recently to a collection on The Zombie Renaissance in Popular Culture (Palgrave).
Teresa Forde, Programme Leader for Film and Television Studies. Teresa’s research interests include film, television, science fiction, soundtrack, memory, time travel and the posthuman. Teresa has written about television drama, science fiction and soundtrack, including chapters in Cultures of Addiction (Cambria), Science Fiction across the Media: Adaptation/Novelization (Gylphi) and a chapter in Doctor Who: Fan Phenomena (Intellect). She is currently working on a chapter for a collection on Doctor Who companions and an article on time travel.
Personal academic tutoring
Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.
Find out more about personal academic tutoring
You need to have either a HND, Foundation Degree, equivalent to an Advanced Diploma or a 3 Year Diploma in a relevant subject. When you apply, please send us a transcript of the modules you have already studied so that we can make sure that the qualifications are compatible with the top-up programme.
English language requirements
IELTS: 6.0 (with at least 5.5 in each skills area)
2021/22 Fees (August 2021 - July 2022)
£9,250 per year
£14,045 per year
Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.
Additional costs and optional extras
Our Media graduates work in a wide range of professions including PR, communications, marketing and local government. Some of our former students have gone on to secure roles in TV research, film and TV production, film archiving, radio presenting, radio production and journalism.
There is notoriously strong competition for jobs in the world of media and communications. At Derby, we maximise your potential for success by offering regular careers talks and enabling you to network widely to build up your contacts within the industry.
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
Additional information about your studies
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Additional costs and optional extras
We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.
The information below is correct for entry in the academic year September 2020 - August 2021 only. Entry for future academic years may be subject to change.
Included in your fees
- Access to technical resources such as cameras, editing, web design software is all included in the fees for the course
- All compulsory reading materials will be available from the library, and wherever possible will be made available in digital form
- All compulsory study and induction trips are included in the fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
- Access to a smartphone or tablet with a camera would be useful
- Advice on these will be given in specific modules. SD cards are cheaply available and large capacity hard-drives are available for less than £200
- Purchase of an external hard-drive with good transfer speeds (USB 3) suitable for video editing would be recommended
- Students will likely be required to purchase SD cards (class 10 suitable for digital cameras) for use in digital camera equipment in some practice based modules
Optional costs not included in your fees
- Students may wish to consider the purchase of their own tablets and or laptops for study and practice work. This is not compulsory and advice will be available from module tutors
- Optional Work Based Learning modules require students to engage in work experience for academic credit. Depending on the work experience obtained this may incur travel and accommodation costs that will need to be met by the student
- Some non-compulsory trips require a contribution to the costs of the trip. For example a regular trip to the Warner Brothers Harry Potter Experience. This is heavily subsidised and the approx. cost to you is £10
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.