Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 Years, Part-time: 4-6 Years

UK/EU fee

£9,250 per year (2020/21)

International fee

£14,045 per year (2020/21)

UCAS code


Course level



BA (Hons)

Start date



Kedleston Road and Markeaton Street, Derby Campus

If you do not achieve the typical entry points required, you may want to consider studying this course with foundation year.

View with foundation year optionView with foundation year option

Course description

Journalism is featured in the top 20 in The Guardian University Guide 2020 and is rated 2nd for student satisfaction with feedback.

Combine your passion for football with high level journalism skills on the only course of its kind in the country.

Derby is the first university in the UK to develop a specialist BA (Hons) degree in football journalism. It offers you a clearly defined path to working in the football industry and meets the growing demand for highly knowledgeable, highly skilled multimedia journalists.

Top30for Journalism, Publishing and Public Relations**The Guardian University Guide 2021
94%overall satisfaction - Football Journalism**National Student Survey 2020
Football Journalism Student Playing Football on Beach

Three fully-funded football journalism scholarships

The University of Derby has teamed up with Derby County Football Club Women to offer this amazing scholarship. Three full scholarships are available for women starting the course in 2020.

Find out more about our football journalism scholarshipsFind out more about our football journalism scholarships
Why you should study Football Journalism at the University of Derby

Ahead of the game

Coverage of football in the mainstream media overshadows all other sports, underlined by the recent record £5.1 billion deal for Premier League TV rights.

Interest in our national game is so intense that it is regularly propelled from the back to the front pages of our newspapers, has led to an explosion of specialist football websites and has seen football clubs become global brands taking control of their own narrative.

This new degree reflects the public’s growing appetite for round-the-clock football news and comes at a time when clubs themselves are seeking well-qualified media professionals who can help them build their audiences and communicate directly with fans.

The course also supports national moves to attract more women into football-related careers, including in media roles: statistics suggest that fewer than 10% of sports journalists are female. Organisations such as the FA and Women in Football are now campaigning for a more ‘level playing field’ for females moving into the industry. Their calls coincide with growing interest in the women’s game too - with one billion TV viewers tuning into the 2015 Women’s World Cup across the globe.

New skills for a new era

New technologies are revolutionising the ways in which people receive their news. This dynamic course will equip you to rise to the challenge in the age of digital news.

You’ll learn how to deliver compelling content for both traditional and emerging media platforms - producing print, radio and TV reports as well as creating blogs and podcasts, digital photos, audio/video stories and content for websites.

While career opportunities for media professionals who can specialise in football are growing dramatically, we also ensure you have the foundation skills for journalism careers in the broader sense. You'll gain the core research and writing skills alongside knowledge of marketing, PR and media ethics.

Hone your expertise

Throughout your studies, you’ll have significant hands-on experience of reporting on football. You’ll cover all aspects of the news cycle from previewing matches to live reporting and post-match analysis, along with press conferences, interviews and sports features.

Gareth Southgate interview with the students of the University of Derby

You’ll draw on the general principles of journalism - developing your news values; building a strong network of contacts; learning how to source, research and produce original stories; conducting interviews; and delivering fair, balanced and accurate reports. By the end of the course, you will have an impressive editorial portfolio to show prospective employers.

Meeting industry demand

We are collaborating closely with the football and media industries to ensure that the degree delivers the right level of skills and knowledge - not only for the journalists who cover the sport but also for the growing number of professionals who work in media relations for football clubs.

The course has been developed following discussions with the football industry, major media companies like the BBC and newspapers, as well as football clubs themselves.

As part of your course, you’ll gain practical work experience within the football industry or relevant media organisations to expand your professional know-how and boost your CV. You’ll also hear from guest speakers who will share their experiences of football journalism and help you extend your professional networks. Recent speakers have included:

Football Journalism student, Molly Jennens

How Molly is chasing her football dream

Molly Jennens always wanted to be the next Gary Lineker. Now, she’s studying Football Journalism and, who knows, maybe one day she’ll be presenting Match of the Day alongside him.

Read Molly's storyRead Molly's story

Outstanding facilities

You'll be based at our Markeaton Street and Kedleston Road sites where you'll study in our excellent facilities including three radio studios, a fully equipped television studio, video editing suites, Mac suites and a newsroom featuring the latest software.

We're an Apple accredited centre and you’ll work with the industry standard recording and editing software that is used worldwide. It means you’ll be both confident and competent with up-to-the-minute technology - giving you a real advantage when you're looking for a job.

Where sport is taken seriously

The University of Derby has an excellent reputation for sport, boasting a new £10.8m sports centre, strong partnerships with the likes of Derby County Football Club and wide-ranging academic expertise in subjects such as sport science and coaching.

You’ll discover the University is a rich source of news, debate and topical comment on sporting issues and you will have every opportunity to work for the various print, radio and online news outlets on campus.

Study in America

You can choose to study part of your degree at one of  in America:

For a more general journalism degree, you can also study our BA (Hons) Journalism.

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What you will study

Year 1Year 1Year 2Year 2Year 3Year 3

Code: 4JN506

Introduction to Football Journalism

This module will present an introduction to journalism in print and online. You will gain knowledge and understanding of current journalism practice in print and the developing practices online as it relates to the area of Football.

The module will outline issues facing the industry, as well as presenting research and sourcing techniques applicable to further study. You will be introduced to some of the key laws and regulations affecting journalists, including libel and copyright. You will also study the issues around accreditation, licencing and access to grounds and matches.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 4JN507

Match Reporting

Match reporting is the foundation block which underpins the work of a football journalist. However, it has undergone – and continues to undergo – a transformation in its purpose, form, and platform.

This module will look at the match report in all its forms, from the traditional print runner and post-match articles, to today’s kick-by-kick social media live reporting, and computer-generated reports.
You will study how technology and changing audience habits affect the work of the journalist, along with the accreditation and licencing requirements of writing about football. You will also learn the skills required to produce match reports in a variety of formats, focussing on print and online. You will hear from a number of practising football journalists on how they do their work and how it is changing.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 4JN508


The role of the photographer in the media has undergone rapid and fundamental changes over the past decade. The introduction of digital technology and the ubiquitous camera phone, has meant that every journalist is now expected to take photographs. While specialist photographers still exist, more and more media outlets rely on the images captured by their reporters and readers.

This module will teach you the basics for capturing usable photographs and understanding the role that images play in telling a story. You will study how images have been used by the media over time and how a single photograph has the power to change opinion or to capture the essence of a moment or event. You will be encouraged to take photographs on a variety of cameras, ranging from your mobile phone, to more sophisticated DSLRs.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 4JN509

Football Reporting

This module builds on the Match Reporting module, allowing you to expand your skills into the wider requirements of the football journalist. It will take you beyond the match: you will get the opportunity to start to look at the game as a whole, considering all areas of the football industry, from the fans, to the clubs, to the governing bodies.

You will also get the opportunity to start to specialise in an area of interest to you as you are introduced to the concept of building yourself as an expert. You will hear from industry experts, both from the media and the football industry, and you will study the work of other journalists.

The module will further improve your knowledge of the role of technology, audience, and platform, and how they affect journalism. You will focus on print and online, including social media. The module will also build on your legal knowledge and encourage you to think about the ethics of your work.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 4JN510

Introduction to Audio and Video Journalism

This module provides an introduction to audio and video journalism skills. You will develop an understanding of how to construct story ideas in sound and vision and gain an induction to the range of technical skills required for audio and video journalism.
20 Credits

Code: 4JN511

Multimedia Practice

This module aims to advance you to the fundamental skills essential to create an online multimedia publication based on the subject matter of your choice to expected online industry standards.
20 Credits

Code: 5JN509

Football: History, Culture, and Governance

This module will look at the relationship between journalism and the world of football. It will analyse the role of the media in helping to make the sport a multi-billion pound business from its humble beginnings.

The module will trace the history of football. It will also look at the social and cultural impact of football on communities and its influence in society. The module will look at the emergence of the governing bodies which control the game and look at how they work.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN510

Video Journalism

This module provides you with an opportunity to advance your skills from Introduction to Audio and Video Journalism at Level 4. It will further your appreciation and understanding of the creative and technical processes involved in the production of video journalism.

It will also enable you to contextualise your practice within contemporary journalism, including issues such as ethics, regulation, editorial policy, and audiences. You will develop ways to present compelling ideas for factual video output and refine your appreciation of how to construct stories in pictures and sound. You will also work as part of an editorial production team on a series of news days, which will be part of your assessed work.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN503

Work-based Learning in Journalism

This module will enable you to link the theory and practice you have learnt on the course so far to current workplace practices and experience. You will undertake work experience within the journalism work environment, which will involve the completion of an agreed project and process analysis.

The work-based learning must be negotiated for no less than 14 days (112 hours) or its equivalent in the form of a project.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN511

Specialist Online Football Journalism

This online journalism module allows you to acquire knowledge and critical understanding of a specialist area of football journalism of your choice and to progress your digital journalism skills learnt at Level 4. You could choose, for example, football tactics, news, training programmes, football business, stats, or the transfer market.

You will study your chosen specialism’s place in the modern journalistic landscape. You will put into practice your journalistic skills by producing digital output centred on your chosen area.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN512

Public Relations and Media Management in Football

This module introduces you to the differences between working for the media and for an organisation within the football industry. Public Relations is about managing a corporate image and reputation.

The development of the internet over the past 20 years has given football clubs far more options when it comes to deciding how it wants to talk to its audiences. Traditionally, clubs had to go through the media to talk to their fans and other stakeholders. Managing the relationship with newspapers, radio and TV was the key role of the club press office. Now, while that relationship is still vital, the club can also talk directly to fans through a variety of digital platforms including their website, social media, and apps.

This module looks at the work of the press office, both at clubs and other football organisations, and is aimed at equipping you with the knowledge and skills required for a career in this area.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN513

Audio Journalism

This module provides you with an opportunity to advance your skills from Introduction to Audio and Video Journalism at Level 4. It furthers your appreciation and understanding of the creative and technical processes involved in the production of audio journalism. It will also enable you to contextualise your practice within contemporary journalism including issues such as ethics, regulation, editorial policy, and audiences.

You will develop ways to present compelling ideas for factual audio output and refine your appreciation of how to construct stories in sound. You will also work as part of an editorial production team on a series of newsdays, which will be part of your assessed work.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5JN514

MoJo: Mobile Journalism

This module is designed to enhance your knowledge and understanding of a diverse range of presentation methods in multimedia journalism. You will deconstruct and critically evaluate a range of multimedia editorial features from a variety of sources, which reflect a number of approaches in delivering to your target demographic.

The focus of the module is on how to use smart devices and associated technologies to tell your story. You will learn how to recognise the importance of matching your story with appropriate technologies to enhance the reader experience. You will learn by doing and you will be expected to create a number of story experiences through technology.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 5MR503

Media Research Project

This module provides you with the opportunity to develop a research project relating to a contemporary media debate or issue. You may choose to expand upon a topic covered in other modules. You may relate your case study to the historical issues which underpin your chosen topic. The module includes an introduction to research skills, a further consideration of study skills and an introduction to research methodologies. It prepares you for the Independent Study at level 6.
20 Credits

Code: 6JN506

Online Production Project

This module builds on previous modules to provide a realistic experience of content and production journalism for online. This is a practice-based module where you will work individually or as part of an editorial news team to plan, create content, and produce an online news site using professional workflows and editorial criteria. You will work within allocated roles over a defined production schedule to produce multimedia content to deadline. You will get the chance to specialise in an area of personal interest and to take on a variety of roles to produce pages for the University of Derby journalism website.
20 Credits

Code: 6JN505

Multimedia Portfolio

This is a practical workshop double module, which draws upon and develops skills and techniques of levels 4 and 5 practical journalism modules. It allows you to produce of a professional-standard portfolio of your own work.

This will be researched and produced across multi-media platforms to demonstrate your individual journalistic skills, newsgathering abilities, and production techniques. Lectures and seminars will enable you to contextualise your practice within current developments in technology and associated changes in traditional narrative and aesthetic practices. You will also work as part of editorial production teams in a series of newsdays.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN507

Print Production Project

This is a practice-based module where you will create content, and then plan and produce print-based pages using professional workflows and editorial criteria. You will work within allocated roles over a defined production schedule to produce content to deadline. We will also seek to partner with an external professional publisher to produce content for its publications. This will be an excellent opportunity for you to experience producing content to professional criteria and to build your portfolio of work for potential employers.
20 Credits

Code: 6JN508

Entrepreneurial Journalism

This module sets out to equip you to work as a freelance or set up your own business. While the number of journalists employed by mainstream media companies continues to fall, the number of people who say they make their living as a journalist is rising. Many of these extra journalists work for themselves, either running small online sites or selling their journalistic work as a freelance.

This module will cover both the technical side of setting up and running your own business, and the entrepreneurial skills required to come up with a business idea that can work. You will learn the basics of writing a business plan, including understanding revenues, costs, tax, cash flow, and profit and loss.

The module will also help you understand how the digitisation of news and information is changing the media scene, and the opportunities this presents for entrepreneurial journalists. You will look at how to find opportunities and how to exploit them. By looking at successful – and unsuccessful – businesses, you will understand the pressures and the opportunities of working for yourself as a journalist. 

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN509

Radio Journalism

This module provides a deep understanding of current radio broadcast journalism. It examines the history and current position of radio as a broadcast medium set against other modern journalism platforms.

It will take you through newsroom processes, from newsgathering, writing for radio, development of story ideas, treatment and eventual broadcast of these stories. Production values will be of a professional standard, you will explore the techniques used by professional radio broadcaster and learn to apply these with the same high quality.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN510

Television Journalism

This module will enhance the skills you have learned at Level 5 in Video Journalism, and concentrate on television journalism. You will produce professional standard television output.

It provides an opportunity to take part in the creative and technical processes involved in the production of contemporary television journalism. It will also enable you to contextualise your practice with theoretical debates and issues in ethics, regulation, editorial policy, and audiences. You will develop ways to present compelling ideas for factual TV programmes and refine your appreciation of how to construct stories in video.

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN511

Public Relations and Social Media in Football

PR has been massively changed by the advent of digital and social media. By its very nature, social media is amplified by the public, consequently any work by a press office can quickly become owned and controlled by others in a way that could never happen before the advent of the likes of Twitter and Facebook.

Football clubs have been amongst the early adopters of social media – top Premiership clubs have 10s of millions of followers – and it is a powerful, if sometimes dangerous, tool in the armoury of the club press office.

This module will nurture your skills to become an opinion former through social media with an eye on the media landscape, and analytics, to react, shape and manage your message. 

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN516

Reporting Football Business and Finance

This module will analyse the increasingly influential financial perspectives within modern football and the stories and processes that emerge.

With clubs and governing bodies increasingly dominant in the reporting of the game, journalists must be able to investigate finances critically and from original sources in order to distinguish between fact and PR. Understanding the business basis of football clubs allows reporters to write from a position of knowledge when faced with the complex nature of the rules and regulations which dictate many of the ups and downs of clubs and their players. 

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN517

Tactical and Statistical Analysis within Football Journalism

This module will look at the relationship between journalism and football data and tactics. It will analyse how the digital changes in the business have rendered statistical material and tactical data almost as important as interviews with players and managers.

It will consider how a detailed understanding leading to expert interpretation and use of the material is essential to the reputation of journalists. The module will also encourage a historical and holistic perspective on tactical developments. 

More information
20 Credits

Code: 6JN998

Independent Study in Journalism

Independent Study provides the opportunity for you to respond to issues raised in the course of your studies, building on themes studied in the modules at levels four and five and/or forging new areas of study.
20 Credits

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.

How you will learn

Teaching and learning

You’ll have opportunities to work on real-world projects, cover football news stories and undertake the full spectrum of match reporting as a matter of course. You’ll interview key figures in the game and write reports and features with accuracy. As well as concentrating on the core journalistic research and writing skills, you’ll study media law and ethics along with the history and culture of football.

You’ll be taught by a team which has vast experience in journalism and you’ll gain fascinating insights into the profession thanks to our programme of guest lectures by sports journalists, broadcasters and football industry insiders.

Practical experience

Our contacts within the sporting world, local and national radio, newspapers and TV will open the doors to a variety of work experience opportunities for you. In addition, you’ll have the chance to advance your skills by contributing to our student radio station, Phantom newspaper, our online news site and the sports website run by the Students’ Union.

Students will work alongside football clubs and media organisations throughout their course to gain experience of the industry. Trips to clubs and media organisations will also be organised as well as a series of external speakers.


You’ll be assessed in several ways, including academic essays, audio and video reporting, case studies, editing skills, examinations, extended reports, journalistic writing, presentations, process analyses, production design and content production, production skills in image manipulation, reflective diaries, report writing and self-evaluation.

Supporting you all the way

We offer a high level of support to students, including a unique personal tutor system to help steer your academic and professional development.

Who you will meet

The course is taught by highly skilled lecturers who have many years of first-hand experience in staff and freelance journalism in print, stills, documentary, radio, TV and online media. Most of them also have national and international awards.

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

Who will teach you

Keith Perch

Keith Perch
Programme leader

Keith is the Head of Journalism, teaching on all Journalism programmes, specialising in print and online Journalism.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

September 2021 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points 112
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSE GCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
IELTS 7.0 (with 6.5 in each skills area)
Interview / Audition



Yes - see portfolio information

Alternative entry qualifications:

We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.

Offers will be made initially based on your application, including predicted grades and/or grades you have already achieved. Following this, if you submit a strong portfolio we will make you an unconditional offer, to reflect the quality of your work and your potential.

Please note that admission for the course is conducted on a gathered field basis and this course has an application deadline of 15 January. To find out more about the definition and process of a gathered field please see our Gathered Field Policy.

Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.

Fees and funding

2020/21 Fees


£9,250 per year

£1,155 per 20 credit module


£14,045 per year


Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

UK/EU students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS.

Part-time students should apply directly to the University.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

Please note that admissions for the course is conducted on a gathered field basis and this course has an application deadline of 15th January 2020.

To find out more about the definition and process of a gathered field, please see our Gathered Field Policy.


Equipped for an exciting career

This course develops the broad range of knowledge and skills you need to become a multimedia professional, adept in the production of content for print, online and broadcast outlets. While it equips you to work in football journalism specifically, it also prepares you for careers in broader areas of journalism, online or broadcast media production, PR, advertising, corporate communications, law and public administration or politics.

The research and communication skills of a journalist are highly transferable to a huge variety of graduate level jobs. Our students have gone on to work for magazines and local newspapers; BBC, commercial and community radio; and BBC and commercial TV. Others have set up their own digital businesses or worked for online agencies. Three current students launched their own football-based media company in their second year. 

Ensuring you’re ‘work-ready’

Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with support from day one of your course to ensure you leave Derby as a ‘work-ready’ graduate - industry aware, motivated and enterprising. Throughout your studies, you’ll also benefit from our Personal Development Planning (PDP) scheme which enables you to reflect on your learning and develop your career ambitions. The support continues once you’ve completed your course too: you are entitled to further help and guidance from the Careers and Employment Service for up to three years after leaving the University.

Contact us

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.

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Additional information about your studies

Teaching hours

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

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Optional costs not included in your fees


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.

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