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Masters Degrees (Digital Sociology)

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Programme description. This programme will provide you with a rigorous introduction to the sociological study of digital society and digital culture. Read more

Programme description

This programme will provide you with a rigorous introduction to the sociological study of digital society and digital culture. The programme will introduce you to the core theoretical and methodological issues that arise when sociologists investigate the increasing prevalence of digital technology, digital infrastructure, and data production, capture, and analysis in everyday life. It will also allow you to study the very social conditions (economic, political, and cultural) that give rise to such technologies and their circuits of power. Students in this programme may take up the following specialised topics, including (but not limited to) the sociological analysis of digital technology and new forms of data on the fields of contemporary culture, work and labour, leisure, health, education, government and law, and finance.

While this programme will be primarily suitable for those with some background in the social sciences, the MSc in Digital Society is intended for anyone who wants to understand, as well as learn to study, analyse, and critique digital technologies and the complex ways in which they shape society, social institutions, and culture. The degree combines seminar teaching on specific topics with individual research supervision by leading researchers in the emerging field of “Digital Sociology”, in the UK’s top-ranked department for sociological research.

Programme structure

You will take compulsory courses that give you a sociological perspective and prepare you for independent dissertation research. Your four further option courses can address digital media, social and cultural theory and research training, as you prefer. The dissertation, a piece of self-designed research with supervisory support, allows you to put your personal stamp on your studies.

Learning outcomes

As well as providing students with , studying for this degree will allow you:

  • A foreground the sociological analysis of digital technology, digital media, and the social relations they engender.
  • To foster critical analysis of the social, economic, and political conditions that give rise to digital technology/media and data infrastructures.
  • To engage with, as well as critically assess, digital research tools and platforms via the necessary methodological training.
  • A focused academic background in social and cultural theory, as relevant to the study of digital society.
  • To become conversant in the digital research methods relevant to their topic of study, with an emphasis on cultivating the ability to assess the social impact of such research.
  • To engage with ethical issues that are raised by digital sociological work.

Career opportunities

This degree is well-positioned for a wide range of careers in the public, private, and third sectors. It is particularly relevant for those who have aspirations for a career in digital research or digital media design and development. The programme is also key for those who wish to engage with digital technology and data in their own personal lives or on a wider scale as an activist, artist, manager, practitioner, or policy maker. You may go on to undertake roles in social media analysis, Internet research, journalism, education, and law and government. The programme also offers a route to a PhD programme in social research. You will gain highly transferable skills in research, communication, and project management applicable to roles in many fields.



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Designed for students interested in new ways of exploring and understanding the social world through the use of visual, sensory and other experimental approaches, this programme allows you to study sociological issues alongside innovative methods. Read more

Designed for students interested in new ways of exploring and understanding the social world through the use of visual, sensory and other experimental approaches, this programme allows you to study sociological issues alongside innovative methods.

The MA will enable you to examine, represent and intervene in the social world. You will develop the ability to undertake empirical research and present it publicly in a variety of media and materials. You will engage with sociology as an inventive research practice, deploying creative research methods to address classic and changing sociological problems.

An introduction to debates in visual research

The MA in Visual Sociology provides an introduction to the range of debates in visual research, encouraging you to build on these by using visual, sensory and inventive methodological practices to carry out critical social research in your areas of interest, whether this is science and technology, contemporary capitalism, gender and sexual cultures, race, human rights, globalisation, or other aspects of social life.

A hands-on approach to sociological research

The programme combines lectures and seminars with practical sessions and workshop-based projects in which you develop a hands-on approach to sociological research, providing a skills base in methods which could be used in public sector contexts, art/media research, design or commercial application.

As well as presenting your ideas through writing, during the MA you will have the opportunity to produce different outputs, including film/video, photography, sound and multi-media pieces. You will also organise and curate some of this work in an exhibition. Critical feedback sessions function as a testing ground for individual projects, and themed projects allow you to further develop a portfolio of research outputs geared to a variety of audiences.

Throughout the programme is a concern with the research process, and you will have the opportunity to design and reflect on your own research projects. The dissertation allows you to undertake a substantive research project on your individual interests, supporting by one-to-one supervision with a member of staff. You will have access to the Visual Media Lab, which offers post-production and editing stations, as well as equipment for photography and video. Students can also borrow equipment from the Media Equipment Centre.

At the forefront of the discipline

The MA is based in the Department of Sociology, home of the The Methods Lab and at the forefront of research using live methods. It is taught by staff with a wide range of experience in both sociology and interdisciplinary research, including visual and experimental approaches. The course is suitable for applicants from a wide variety of backgrounds, including art, design, anthropology, media and communications, cultural studies, geography, and sociology.

Modules & structure

In the first part of the course you will take ‘Empirical Social Research’, a module that takes you through the empirical research cycle in the context of the transformation of sociology in the age of visual, digital and other empirical methods. The module Theories and Debates in Visual Research' enables you to address debates within visual sociology, and also encompasses more recent issues surrounding the notions of media, interdisciplinarity and translation which become significant if sociology works with visual and other sensory materials. Assessment of these modules is by essay.

Alongside these modules you will take a core practical component, ‘Visual and Inventive Practice A’, that offers the opportunity to gain skills in photography, sound and video and to develop materials that engage a sociological imagination. A central focus is on how to translate a research question into a variety of materials or media and to be able to critically discuss the selection and use of these.

In the second term you continue with a practical module in inventive sociology, ‘Social Research for Public Engagement’, in which you will work individually or in groups to respond to a theme to create a visual, sensory or experimental object or media to be exhibited to a particular public. Assessment of the practical work includes a diary of research process alongside documentation of work.

These core modules are taught in Sociology. In the second term you will also take an option that may be chosen from Sociology or may be taken from departments across Goldsmiths including the Departments of Anthropology, English and Comparative Literature, Politics and International Relations, Media and Communications, Educational Studies, Music, and the Centre for Cultural Studies.

In the summer term you will complete a dissertation involving a major practical project consisting of any media and addressing a specific sociological problem. You will meet for individual supervision with a member of the Sociology staff. The dissertation is a substantive piece of research in which you develop a visual, inventive or experimental approach to a topic of your choice.

If you follow the MA part-time over two years, you will take ‘Empirical Social Research’, ‘Visual and Inventive Practice’ and ‘Social Research for Public Engagement’ in year 1, and ‘Theories and Debates in Visual Research’, the dissertation and an option in year 2.

Core modules

Option modules

You will chose an option module to the value of 30 credits from Sociology or from departments across the College including the Departments of AnthropologyEnglish and Comparative LiteraturePoliticsMedia and CommunicationsMusicEducational Studies, and the Centre for Cultural Studies.

Modules in Sociology address themes such as:

  • contemporary capitalism and inequality
  • human rights
  • globalisation and urban life
  • gender and sexuality
  • science, technology and medicine
  • digitisation of social life 

Assessment

Assessment consists of coursework, extended essays, reports, presentations, practice based projects or essays/logs, group projects, reflective essays, and seen and unseen written examinations.

Skills & careers

This programme attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds, including art and design, business, and the third sector, as well as those with social science degrees. This means the careers that they are interested in pursuing are wide and varied. 

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths



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The MA in Digital Media is unique in its combination of practical and theoretical approaches to contemporary media and technology. Read more

The MA in Digital Media is unique in its combination of practical and theoretical approaches to contemporary media and technology.

The established and exciting degree is designed to help you understand digital transformations in media, culture and society and apply this understanding in practice, in the media and creative industries and in further research. You will be equipped with skills that can be applied to current and future developments in digital media, social media, computing and other aspects of technology.

The MA in Digital Media educates aspiring media practitioners and academics as well as early and mid-career professionals who seek to reflect on their roles in a structured and stimulating learning environment designed to give all students up-to-the-minute knowledge of digital media and the skills to apply that knowledge to future developments.

The MA offers two pathways:

Pathway 1 is a theory programme where you learn about developments in digital media and technology from a wide range of perspectives

Pathway 2 is a theory and practice programme where you can explore transformations in media, culture and society through the practice of contemporary digital communication. You will work with one or more of the following to create installations, apps and single- and multi-screen work that's responsive to the continually changing digital landscape:

  • Animation
  • Photography
  • Video and other forms of moving image
  • Software and web design
  • Hybrid forms of image making

Acclaimed academics and practitioners

Benefit from the experience and expertise of one of the world’s leading media and communications departments. The programme is co-convened by Professor Joanna Zylinska and Daniel Rourke, and you will be taught by theorists and practitioners of international standing.

Work placements and internships

The MA in Digital Media regularly attracts offers of work placements and internships. In the past these have come from GoogleThe Science Museum and N1creative.com. There is also £6,000 bursary available for UK students studying this course. Find out more about the Stationers' Postgraduate Bursary Scheme on our departmental awards page.

Facilities

Our students have access to state-of-the-art facilities including well-equipped lecture and seminar rooms, exhibition spaces, computer facilities and digital media suites.

The department is also currently host to the renowned philosopher of media and technology, Bernard Stiegler and students will have access to his modulein Media Philosophy as well as priority access to the innovative and popular option After New Media. Designed to complement the MA in Digital Media, this course provides a framework for thinking about the current media environment as well as future forms of human and computer interaction.

An established record

The MA in Digital Media has been redefining media theory and practice since 2004. Our students become proficient in:

  • the history, sociology and philosophy of digital media
  • the application of critical conceptual skills to specialist areas and future forms of media
  • multimedia skills in image making (photography, video, animation, graphic art) script writing, journalism and documentary 

MA Digital Media students have access to the pioneering option ‘After New Media’, currently a non-assessed online module which explores the themes of self mediation, ethical mediation and intelligent mediation, and develops a framework for thinking about 'life' after new media. As well as accessing a series of podcasts, students are offered reading groups and a masterclass with Professor Sarah Kember co-author of the book Life After New Media on which the course is based.

Modules & structure

Overview

The programme consists of:

  • Two compulsory core modules
  • Pathway 1 - between two and four option modules (worth 60 credits) OR
  • Pathway 2 - a two-term practice block (worth 30 credits) and either one or two option modules (worth 30 credits)
  • The dissertation or the practice/theory project

Core modules

Assessment

Seen take-home paper; essays; dissertation or practice/theory project and other production work for image-making.

Skills

We provide graduates with skills that are cutting edge: in the critical analysis and/or creative production of digital media; in the disciplinary knowledge and conceptual frameworks necessary for current and future forms of media and technology; in the awareness of how digital media and technologies are re-shaping society from the ways we communicate (through social media and web 2.0) to the increasingly ‘smart’ environments in which we live.

Careers

Our programme provides a theory and practice pathway and prepares students for work in the following areas:

  • media and creative industries; advertising, marketing and PR (graduates of the MA Digital Media have found work with Virgin Media, Google, the BBC and other leading organisations worldwide)
  • research and academia (graduates from this programme have gone on to study for PhD degrees in higher education institutions around the world and also here with us)
  • media production and new media art (graduates have exhibited, published and produced work in photography, journalism, TV, documentary, film and multimedia)


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Digital processes are transforming culture, the economy and society. This course explores the origins and impact of these changes. Read more
Digital processes are transforming culture, the economy and society. This course explores the origins and impact of these changes. It gives you the training to understand and make use of digital media
critically, creatively and productively.

If you’re pursuing a professional career in knowledge-based companies, whether in museums, marketing agencies, businesses, charities, new-media production companies, public relations or think-tanks, this course is for you. It will equally qualify you with the academic skills for further doctoral study.

You’ll develop a critical and practice-based understanding of the impact of links, queries, downloads and uploads, file formats, archives, databases and networks more generally. Core modules introduce you to the conceptual and methodological dimensions of the digital realm. You then select two or three option modules in areas that cover the theoretical and socioeconomic aspects of digital culture, urban science, big data and complexity. A dissertation allows you to explore your own questions and interests in more depth.

Core Modules

-Approaches to the Digital
-Digital Objects, Digital Methods
-Dissertation

Masters Optional Modules

-Visualisation
-Social Informatics
-Big Data Research
-Hype or Revolution?
-Complexity in the Social Sciences
-Media and Social Theory
-Digital Sociology
-Post Digital Books
-User Interface Cultures
-Design, Method and Critique
-Playful Media
-Ludification in the Digital Age

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This programme offers a comprehensive understanding of current developments in digital media and their wider social significance. Read more
This programme offers a comprehensive understanding of current developments in digital media and their wider social significance. Smartphones; social networking, blogging and tweeting; online shopping; communication by email; and the delivery of news, film, music and e-books over the Internet: these are just some of the most striking ways in which the digital is penetrating and transforming contemporary society.

The programme is delivered by a diverse interdisciplinary team with a strong profile in, for example, digital culture, media, sociology, anthropology and communication studies.

Core study areas include media and cultural industries, digital futures, media and cultural work, textual analysis research techniques, production and reception analysis and a dissertation.

Optional study areas include politics of representation, media and modernity, communication and citizenship, sex industries, global communications, media, nations, and nationalisms, digital cultures, digital economies, cultural memory and the heritage industries, and marketing politics.

See the website http://www.lboro.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/programmes/departments/social-sciences/digital-media-society/

Programme modules

Compulsory Modules:
- Digital Cultures
- Digital Futures: explorations in new media
- Production and Reception Analysis
- Digital Economies
- Digital Methodologies
- Dissertation

Optional Modules:
A selection of the following options will be available:
- Media and Modernity
- Media and Cultural Industries
- The Politics of Representation
- Popular Music and Modern Times
- Citizenship and Communications
- Media, Nations and Nationalisms
- Global Communications
- Media and Cultural Work
- Tourism, Culture and Society
- Sex Industries
- Cultural Memory and the Heritage Industries
- Marketing Politics

Assessment

Coursework plus a dissertation of 10,000 words on an agreed topic.

Careers and further study

The degree is designed to develop specialist understanding of contemporary developments in digital media and culture. This will be relevant to anyone pursuing a professional career in this rapidly growing sector and to those with an interest in these significant social changes. Students will also acquire research skills which will be of value in both media-related and academic careers.

Why choose social sciences at Loughborough?

The Department of Social Sciences has long been recognised as an international centre of academic excellence and for its cutting-edge interdisciplinary work.

This recognition of excellence has been a major factor in enabling the Department to recruit a lively community of postgraduate students that currently numbers around 100.

In the Department of Social Sciences we offer a rich variety of taught postgraduate masters. The courses are delivered by an internationally renowned interdisciplinary team, through the use of contemporary case studies and research-informed applied teaching and learning.

The courses provide training in digital culture, media, communications, sociological and anthropological, theory, as well as quantitative and qualitative methods

- Research
All of our academic staff are active researchers, working within and across the following disciplinary boundaries – Communication and Media Studies, Criminology, Social Policy, Social Psychology, and Sociology.

Loughborough is home to the most world-leading, original and internationally excellent research in communication, media studies, sociology, and social psychology. Our research has excellent impact, with staff working with a wide range of public and third sector bodies (e.g., BBC Trust, the Metropolitan Police, the Electoral Commission, the College of Mediators, UK Drug Policy Commission, Department of Health). Our social policy and criminology research also has world-leading impact, particularly in services for children and minimum income standards.

- Career prospects
Our programmes prepare our graduates for the real world of the television industry, marketing, academia, publishing, plus many more industries. They go on to work for companies and organisations such as China Development Research Foundation, Elsevier Ltd, Image Line Communication, Institute of Psychiatry, Metropolitan Police Service, Oxfam and X-Pert Med GmbH.

Find out how to apply here http://www.lboro.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/programmes/departments/social-sciences/digital-media-society/

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MA Film & Television at Falmouth University reflects and interrogates the highly fluid nature of the contemporary screen media environment. Read more
MA Film & Television at Falmouth University reflects and interrogates the highly fluid nature of the contemporary screen media environment.

Our MA is distinguished from traditional courses in that it specifically addresses the diversity and crossover of today's film and television culture with the aim of producing adaptive thinkers and highly creative practitioners. Our academic focus engages and interrogates film and television's status in the 21st century, which is often defined in terms of the digital age and digital culture.

On the course you will be required to examine, interpret and contest the notion of digital culture historically, socially, politically and artistically through both your research and creative practice. You will interrogate the increasingly blurred boundaries between film and television, art and technology, production and consumption, with the outcome being a fracturing of traditional categorisations. We reflect an era in which screenwriters Aaron Sorkin (Newsroom, The West Wing) and Lena Dunham (Girls, Tiny Furniture) experiment with dialogue and narrative, while conceptual artists Sam Taylor-Wood (Nowhere Boy, Love You More) and Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave, Shame) have shifted from the art gallery to the cinema. Directors such as Ben Wheatley (A Field in England, Sightseers) and companies such as Curzon and Film4 are making use of multi-platform release schedules, and brands including HBO, Amazon and Netflix are shaping the very nature of not only what, but how, we watch. MA Film & Television understands this fundamentally shifting zeitgeist.

In examining industrial structure and visual form you will theorise the shifting dynamics of an age where anyone with a phone and a laptop has the ability to record, edit and disseminate visual projects. Such 'democratisation' has arguably made both creative uniqueness and clear industry pathways less discernable, but has provided a new and fruitful framework for those who have the ideas, talent, dedication and adaptability to embrace such immense transitional potential. However, despite these multitudinous transformations attributed to digital culture, the ethos of our MA contends that fundamental skills remain the basis of both sound academic work and creative practice. Rather than being fearful of what is to come, or nostalgic for the past, this course gives you the confidence to look at film and television critically, and acquire cutting edge creative skills in order to produce intelligent, innovative and inspirational visual work.

Our philosophy is one of flexibility, so you'll shape the curriculum around your own interests, whether in theory, creative practice, or a combination of the two. Drawn from the fundamentals of history, theory and criticism, our theoretical strand develops tomorrow's cineastes, cultural commentators, journalists and academics. This also underpins our approach to practice. The most successful film and television makers are students of their chosen medium, highly knowledgeable of historical legacy and social-political context. You'll not only learn how to develop, write, produce, shoot, record, direct and edit well, but why, philosophically and creatively, your ideas are worth being made.

Visit the website https://www.falmouth.ac.uk/film-television-ma

How the course is taught

Our passion is reflected both in the teaching and research track record of our academics, our industry connections and visiting speakers, and the quality of our film and television professionals. Crossing disciplinary areas such as cultural studies, sociology, journalism, English, philosophy and, of course, film and television studies, our MA offers academically-minded students comprehensive supervision and guidance for moving onto PhD research.

Industry and academic links

We have a strong visiting lecturer programme with recent guests including critics Dr Mark Kermode, Professor Linda Ruth Williams and Dr Will Brooker. Our practice tutors are active writers, producers, directors, editors, sound designers and cinematographers who create substantive work across all screen media. We have a wide range of contacts and industry specialists who contribute to the course, including Tony Grisoni (writer of Southcliffe, Red Riding, and How I Live Now), Mary Burke (producer of For Those in Peril, Berberian Sound Studio and The Midnight Beast), and James Henry (writer for Campus and Green Wing).

Falmouth University also recently hosted the Channel 4 Talent Day and we are active in developing work placements and internships for our students. We have sent many of students to Warp Films and TwoFour since 2009, and regularly update our webpages with work experience opportunities and jobs. Our graduates have proceeded to further study and jobs across the film and television industry, for HBO, Sky, ITV, Disney and have worked on major feature films, most recently including About Time (Richard Curtis, 2013) The World's End (Edgar Wright, 2013), The Double (Richard Ayoade, 2014) and Disney's forthcoming Cinderella (Kenneth Branagh, 2015). Falmouth University's MA in Film & Television is for students who to place themselves at the cutting edge of screen culture.

Course outline

The course is divided into three semesters of 15 weeks. Each semester offers the fundamentals vital to every academic and practitioner, and elective choices so you can shape your own learning.

What you'll do

- Study block 1
Foundation
The first semester consists of three core units, offering a diverse entry point to all aspects of the study of film and television, and the interrelationship of theory and practice:

Theorising Contemporary Film & Television Culture (Theory)

In this module you will explore the theoretical conceptualisations of film and television in the context of contemporary academic thought and popular discourse around the concept of digital culture. We will start from a point of questioning the multi-layered and contested effects of digital culture on film and television as discrete forms. You will consider the interrelationship and fusion between media in terms of production, distribution and exhibition examining the advent of new forms of representation and interaction. But we will also look at how traditional notion of film and television are being preserved and even being popular as a reaction to the effects of the digital. The module will also assess and interrogate the economic and technological developments of a more integrated and interactive media environment in terms of the cross-pollination of form and content, and socio-cultural effects on contemporary audiences.

Film & Television Industry Case Study (Theory/Practice)

In this module you will explore the industrial parameters of contemporary film and television based around the experience and expertise of current professionals. The module will utilise the School of Film & Television's many industry links to bring in guest speakers from the BBC, Channel 4, Sky, TwoFour Broadcast, Warp Films, Sheffield Doc Fest, Cornwall Film Festival, Doc Heads, BFI, Pinewood Studios, Dogbite and EngineHouse VFX. You will then have an opportunity to question these professionals about their respective sectors as a basis for a case study. Alternatively, you can investigate the sector/practitioner of your own choosing, with tutor support. The module will also contain workshops on the fundamentals of creative industry research and methodology. The module is designed so that you learn both the challenges and values of networking, and researching specific job roles and industry backgrounds in order to effectively plot your own career trajectory.

Creative Practices (Practice)

This module will engage you in the production workflow, focusing on how creative, professional and technical roles shape a final film or television project. Your weekly seminars and workshops will guide you through pre-production, production and post-production processes, enabling you to devise, develop and produce a short filmed project as part of a small crew of four to six students. You will, therefore, develop your technical skills and production practices in order to devise and deploy modes of creative practice which may include, but are not limited to, research and development, screenwriting, production management, producing, directing, cinematography, lighting, editing and the recording and design of sound.

- Study block 2
Specialisms
The second semester gives you the opportunity to specialise, choosing from a ranging of theory, practice or combination modules. Assessment of combination modules is either through an academic essay or a practice project. Potential optional modules include:

- Cultural Studies to Digital Sociology (Theory/Practice)
- Screen Futures (Theory/Practice)
- Globalisation in Film & Television (Theory/Practice)
- Factual Film & Television (Theory/Practice)
- Screenwriting for Film & Television (Theory/Practice)
- Work Placement (Theory/Practice)

- Study block 3
Expertise
Depending on your chosen specialism, in the third semester you'll produce either:

- Dissertation (Theory)
- Film & Production Portfolio (Theory/Practice)
- Conceptual Project (Theory/Practice)

Facilities

The purpose-built film school facilities include:

- 116-seat cinema, with Christie M Series HD projection (as used in Vue cinemas) and 7.2 surround sound

- Equipment store with a range of Blackmagic, Red, Panasonic, JVC, GoPro, Canon DSLR and C100 cameras and lenses, jibs, tracks and dollies

- Digital production suites equipped with Final Draft (screenwriting), Movie Magic (production management) and a range of edit software, including Adobe Creative Cloud/Suite, Final Cut and AVID

- Avid Unity MediaNetwork Edit server

- Recording and sound edit studios equipped with Pro Tools audio editing and Foley traps

- 14x8m TV studio with three studio cameras, full gallery facility, Chromatte grey screen, blue/green screen and full lighting rig

- Centroid 3D (Pinewood-networked) Motion Capture studio/research lab

- Virtual Studio using the latest technology

- 23,500-title TV and film library

Experience you'll get

- Highly flexible, student-focused curriculum

- Mentoring with industry professionals

- Opportunities for placement and work experience

- Creative environment for collaboration

- Using industry-standard software

- A vibrant visiting speaker programme

- Student experience-centred ethos

Assessment

- Continuous assessment with no formal examinations
- Core theory based on written assignments
- Core practice assessed on visual project and accompanying portfolios
- Elective modules all with theory/practice options
- Dissertation and/or major project in final semester

Careers

- Research, teaching or postgraduate study in art/humanities subject areas

- All technical/creative roles linked with direction, production, cinematography, editing, sound, lighting; writing for the screen; film and television criticism; research for film and TV

- Film and TV marketing, distribution and sales – digital and social media content/distribution

- Film festival and arts curatorship – media-based project management

Find out how to apply here - https://www.falmouth.ac.uk/apply

Visiting Us

We hold open days throughout the year so you can meet current students and staff, view our campuses and facilities, and find out more about studying at Falmouth.

Find out more - https://www.falmouth.ac.uk/open-days

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The MPhil in Sociology of Media and Culture pathway provides students with the opportunity to study the nature and transformation of media and cultural forms at an advanced level. Read more
The MPhil in Sociology of Media and Culture pathway provides students with the opportunity to study the nature and transformation of media and cultural forms at an advanced level. The programme gives students a firm grounding in the theoretical and empirical analysis of media and culture and enables them to study particular media and cultural forms in depth, examining their transformations over time and their impact on other aspects of social and political life. The programme consists of 4 components:

1. Theories of Culture and Media: all students taking this programme will be expected to follow this course of lectures that will cover some of the major theoretical contributions to the study of media and culture, ranging from Adorno and Habermas to Bourdieu and Becker and from medium theory to Castells and more recent theoretical work on new media and the internet. Students are also strongly encouraged to follow the course of lectures on social theory.

2. Substantive modules: there will be at least three core substantive modules taught by Prof John Thompson, Prof Patrick Baert and Dr Ella McPherson. The modules will be research-led and will reflect the research being undertaken by members of the Department. The content of specific modules may vary from year to year but topics covered will typically include the nature of the digital revolution and its impact on the media and creative industries; the changing nature of news and journalism in the digital age; the role of new media in the development of social movements and new forms of political mobilization and protest; the uses of social media and the internet and their impact on everyday life and culture; the role of ideas, intellectuals and media forms in processes of social and political change. Students in this programme will be expected to take at least three of these modules; they may also take the fourth module in this programme, or they may substitute one of these modules with a module taken from another MPhil programme offered by the Department (Modern Society and Global Transformations, Political and Economic Sociology, Sociology of Reproduction).

3. Research Methods: all students will take a course on research methods which includes sessions on philosophical issues in the social sciences; research design; data collection and analysis in relation to quantitative and qualitative methods; reflection on research ethics and practice; library and computer skills.

4. Dissertation: all students will write a dissertation on a topic of their choice that allows for theoretically informed empirical analysis of some aspect of media or culture in contemporary societies. The choice of dissertation topic is made in consultation with your supervisor, who can advise you on the suitability and feasibility of your proposed research and on research design. A dissertation workshop provides the opportunity to present aspects of your dissertation work and to receive constructive feedback from course teachers and fellow students.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/hssompsmc

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the programme students should have:

- an advanced understanding of current sociological research in selected topics;
- skills necessary to conduct independent social research and experience in their use;
- an ability to apply and develop modern social theory with respect to empirical topics;
- a deeper understanding of their chosen specialist area, including command of the literature and current research;
- the ability to situate their own research within current developments in the field.

Format

The course offers teaching on Social Theory, Substantive modules and Research Methods. Students work towards a written dissertation supported by supervisions and a dissertation workshop.

Students receive written feedback on each essay and the dissertation. Feedback is also given during the dissertation workshop on the direction and progress of the dissertation research.

Assessment

Students write a dissertation of not less than 15,000 and not more than 20,000 words on a subject approved by the Degree Committee.

Students write one methods essay of not less than 2,500 and not more than 3,000 words [or prescribed course work] and two substantive essays of not less than 4,000 and not more than 5,000 words.

Continuing

Students are encouraged to proceed to the Faculty's PhD programme, provided they reach a high level of achievement in all parts of the course. MPhil students who would like to continue to the PhD would normally need to have a final mark of at least 70% overall and 70% on the dissertation.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

The Department of Sociology holds ESRC funding awards. Sociology is a recognised Doctoral Training Centre pathway toward a PhD. Therefore candidates for the MPhil in Sociology (Media and Culture) can apply for 1+3 ESRC funding.

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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Increasingly, big data are used to track and trace social trends and behaviours. In turn, governments, business and industries worldwide are rapidly recruiting graduates who can understand and analyse big data. Read more
Increasingly, big data are used to track and trace social trends and behaviours. In turn, governments, business and industries worldwide are rapidly recruiting graduates who can understand and analyse big data. This course addresses how big data challenge traditional research processes, and impact on security, privacy, ethics, and governance and policy. You will learn practical and theoretical data skills, both in quantitative methods and the wider theoretical implications about how big data are transforming disciplinary boundaries.

You will take three core modules and a dissertation. Three option modules (see below) allow further specialisation. Lab work, report writing, data skills training and guest lectures by industry experts will form an integral part of your learning experience. You will be invited to attend short certified ‘Masterclasses’ to further extend your methodological repertoire. An annual Spring Camp on a key theme (e.g. health; networks; food) is also provided, allowing you to gain expertise in a wide range of cutting-edge quantitative methods.

You don’t need a computer science, mathematics or statistics background to apply. The focus is on conducting and understanding applied quantitative social science, so a willingness to engage with real world social science issues is essential.

Course Overview

Core Modules
-Big Data Research: Hype or Revolution?
-Principles in Quantitative Research
-Advanced Quantitative Research
-Dissertation

Masters Optional Modules
-Visualisation
-Social Informatics
-Big Data Research
-Hype or Revolution?
-Complexity in the Social Sciences
-Media and Social Theory
-Digital Sociology
-Post Digital Books
-User Interface Cultures
-Design, Method and Critique
-Playful Media
-Ludification in the Digital Age

Assessment
A combination of essays, reports, design projects, technical report writing, practice assessments, group work and presentations and an individual research project.

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The Digital Media, Culture and Education MA explores the theory and practice of media in society, with a particular focus on education and emergent new literacies in the digital age. Read more

The Digital Media, Culture and Education MA explores the theory and practice of media in society, with a particular focus on education and emergent new literacies in the digital age. The programme combines theory with practical opportunities for media production. Students will critically examine new developments within digital media and work with partners including the British Film Institute (BFI).

About this degree

This programme provides the opportunity to explore different media forms, media education, media literacy and related fields. It combines theory with practical opportunities in moving image production, Internet cultures and game design. Students will critically examine developments in the fields of new media, including the impact of new technologies on education, and debates about the place and purpose of media in society.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (60 credits), two optional modules (60 credits), a dissertation (60 credits) or a report (30 credits) and an additional optional module (30 credits).

Core modules

  • Digital Media, Cultural Theory and Education
  • Internet Cultures: Theory & Practice

Recommended optional modules include:

  • Moving Image Production
  • Digital Games, Play and Creativity
  • Bodies and Digital Media

Dissertation/report

All students undertake an independent research project, which culminates in a dissertation of 20,000 words or a report of 10,000 words. Either the dissertation or the report can be part-production based, in which case the production element replaces 50% of the wordcount.

Teaching and learning

Teaching is delivered by face-to-face lectures and seminars, practical workshops combined with online-learning. Students are assessed by coursework assignments of up to 5,000 words, plus practical work for some modules, and a 20,000-word dissertation or 10,000-word report.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Digital Media, Culture and Education MA

Careers

Graduates of this programme are currently working across a broad range of areas. Some are working as teachers in primary, secondary schools and further and higher education, while others have jobs as within areas related to digital media. Graduates can also be found working as museum and gallery education officers and in other informal learning spaces.

Employability

The course provides students with skills relevant to media work in a wide variety of employment contexts, including education, museums and galleries, social media, cultural organisations. It provides experience of digital media production relevant to these contexts, but not professional production traiinng for the media industries.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This programme will equip students with skills, knowledge and experience related to the rapidly-changing worlds of digital media, culture and education. It will therefore support career development in a variety of media contexts, including educational settings, broadly-defined.

Students are able to work with the BFI, our partner for part of the course, as well as leading researchers from the DARE Collaborative, a research partnership focussed on the digital arts in education led by UCL Institute of Education (IOE) and the BFI.

The course is based at the UCL Knowledge Lab, which conducts research, design and development across a broad range of media, systems and environments and brings together researchers from the areas of education, sociology, culture and media, semiotics, computational intelligence, information management, personalisation, semantic web and ubiquitous technologies.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Culture, Communication & Media

78% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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Course description. This course offers you a unique opportunity to develop a broad understanding of the interweaving of digital media and society from a sociological perspective. Read more

Course description

This course offers you a unique opportunity to develop a broad understanding of the interweaving of digital media and society from a sociological perspective.

Where your masters can take you

Our graduates are academics, researchers and health and social care professionals. Others become managers or administrators in the public and private sectors.

How we teach

Our teaching is rigorous and research-led. We encourage you to think critically, to learn research techniques and develop transferable skills. We also help you to develop the personal attributes that will make you highly employable. The department is a friendly place, where staff and postgraduates work together as colleagues.

Our interdisciplinary approach brings together sociologists, social policy analysts, social workers and social anthropologists. Our empirical research is internationally recognised. We make significant contributions to policy debates.

Course content

Drawing upon staff expertise in digital media and digital society, this programme will give you a grounding in four aspects of digital media, allowing you to specialise in a specific area, or develop your understanding of all of the following:

  • researching digital society
  • digital practices
  • digital methods.

As a student within the Faculty of Social Sciences, you will also benefit from the research and training activities of both the University’s Sheffield Methods Institute and the faculty-wide Digital Society Network, the latter of which brings together interdisciplinary researchers engaged in research at the cutting-edge of society– technology interactions.

Core modules

These include:

  • Researching Digital Society
  • Digital Practices
  • Digital Methods
  • Qualitative OR Statistical Methods.

Examples of optional modules

These can include:

  • Social Media, Data and Society
  • Researching Social Media
  • Information, Governance and Ethics
  • Media, State and Society in China
  • The Sociology of Surveillance

Teaching and assessment

Assessment varies across modules and will include a combination of coursework (essays, portfolio and practical work).

Formal examination may be required for some optional modules. Students are also expected to complete a dissertation-length project equivalent to 15,000 words in length.



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The Digital Cultures and Industries Track within the MA in Global Communications offers an innovative and interdisciplinary focus on the central importance of digital technologies in today’s world. Read more

The Digital Cultures and Industries Track within the MA in Global Communications offers an innovative and interdisciplinary focus on the central importance of digital technologies in today’s world. The Digital Cultures and Industries track helps students to meet the challenge of a world in flux with a suite of up-to-the-minute critical and practical courses that can be tailored to different career pathways.

Students graduate with a stellar profile: theoretical sophistication, skills-based mastery in key domains, and practical experience in global communications.

Skills for a Data Driven World

As a student of the Digital Cultures and Industries Track, you will acquire in-depth knowledge of theories, contexts and practices of digital media as well as their relationship to global cultures and communications industries. Building on a solid base of critical thought around the rise of digital media and current global debates, you can take on specialized topics such as mobile media, the new app economy, data and algorithmic cultures and digital advocacy.

To put ideas into action, choose from hands-on courses teaching skills such as data analysis and visualization, social media strategy, digital writing, multimedia storytelling, visual design and coding. Learning from digital media scholars and industry professionals alike, you are primed with the critical and practical skills and emerging literacies required to thrive and adapt in a transforming digital world.  

Ideal candidates—and career outcomes

Students pursuing this track may come from various backgrounds of work and study – advertising and PR, design and film, sociology, anthropology and psychology, writing and journalism – or be interested in pursuing careers in those fields. Whichever their individual talents, the Digital Cultures and Industries track prepares students for professional careers at the changing face of communications or further graduate study in emerging fields. 

As a student, you will benefit from hands-on fieldwork and research development as you gain professional skills throughout the duration of your studies. This, together with the rigorous academic training, can lead to jobs in companies across the world. You will be well-prepared to pursue a career in a range of sectors and organization types, including corporations, non-governmental organizations, start-ups, nonprofits and family businesses. View career results for graduates of the MA in Global Communications program.

An international approach to learning

The MA in Global Communications encourages students to take their education beyond the classroom. Your learning experience is deepened by the opportunity of immersive practica and study trips where you will come into contact with experts in the field. Whether networking with communications professionals in New York or London, developing sustainable initiatives in India, or experiencing nation branding in Iceland or cultural heritage in Morocco, or we are committed to putting theory into practice.



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Join one of the top sociology departments in the UK and further your understanding of the tensions, interactions and networks that dictate how societies are organised. Read more
Join one of the top sociology departments in the UK and further your understanding of the tensions, interactions and networks that dictate how societies are organised. You contribute to the thinking that guides organisations such as the Home Office, Amnesty International and the United Nations.

You explore some of the most important and significant debates in contemporary social theory, learning to think analytically about theoretical questions. You discover the importance of social theory in developing a politically engaged understanding of concepts such as post-structuralism, feminism and actor-network theory, focusing on topics such as:
-The history of digital piracy
-Sociology of human rights
-Media and criminology
-Gender and sexuality
-Citizenship

You also develop the skills needed to make your own contribution to the field, gaining a critical and coherent perspective on empirical research and examining the key assumptions and ideological underpinnings of qualitative and quantitative research.

Our Department of Sociology was rated top 10 in the UK for research quality (REF 2014), and we consistently receive strong student satisfaction scores, including 96% overall student satisfaction in 2015.

Our expert staff

We are a large and friendly department, offering a diverse range of research interests and with staff members who are committed to teaching, research and publication that covers a broad geographical spectrum.

Many have worked at the local level with local authorities, justice councils, community partnerships and charities. Others have worked at a national and international level with bodies like the United Nations, the European Commission’s Expert Group on Public Understanding of Science, Amnesty International, The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, the Home Office and national non-governmental organisations.

Specialist facilities

-Dedicated postgraduate support facilities
-Our renowned off-campus Graduate Conference takes place every February
-A unique Student Resource Centre where you can get help with your studies, access examples of previous students’ work, and attend workshops on research skills
-The Sociology common room is open all day Monday-Friday, is stocked with daily newspapers, magazines and journals, and has free drinks available
-Links with the Institute of Social and Economic Research, which conducts large-scale survey projects and has its own library, and the UK Data Archive, which stores national research data like the British Crime Survey
-Our students’ Sociology Society, a forum for the exchange of ideas, arranging talks by visiting speakers, introducing you to various career pathways, and organising debates

Your future

A good sociology course, especially one from a recognised centre of excellence like Essex, opens many doors.

This course provides excellent preparation for further academic study, and many of our postgraduates go on to successful academic careers, both in the UK and overseas.

Others have established careers in non-governmental organisations, local authorities, specialist think tanks, government departments, charities, media production, and market intelligence.

We work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

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Businesses require an understanding of people - both of individuals, and of a potentially large customer-base. As the occupation of management grows and changes, it demands a more specialised understanding of the modern organisation and the world it operates in. Read more
Businesses require an understanding of people - both of individuals, and of a potentially large customer-base. As the occupation of management grows and changes, it demands a more specialised understanding of the modern organisation and the world it operates in. Potential managers need an up-to-date and in-depth understanding of their occupation and its context.

Our innovative MA Sociology and Management brings together expertise from our top-rated Department of Sociology and Essex Business School, providing you with a unique opportunity to gain a critical appreciation of the social dynamics of work in the twenty-first century.

Combining theoretical perspectives from the disciplines of sociology and management, you explore the importance of debates surrounding power, culture, class, gender, sexuality and new forms of labour as a means of understanding the complexities of today's contemporary workplace.

You explore topics including:
-Management and organisational processes
-Theory and practice of social research
-Management across cultures
-Creativity management
-The work-life balance

Essex Business School takes you beyond the basics of a business education. Our strong emphasis on ethics and sustainable business practice in the global economy, and our expertise in international management, accounting and finance, will provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary for your future career in an increasingly complex business world.

Our Department of Sociology was rated top 10 in the UK for research quality (REF 2014), and we consistently receive strong student satisfaction scores, including 96% overall student satisfaction in 2015.

Our expert staff

We are a large and friendly department, offering a diverse range of research interests and with staff members who are committed to teaching, research and publication that covers a broad geographical spectrum.

Many have worked at the local level with local authorities, justice councils, community partnerships and charities. Others have worked at a national and international level with bodies like the United Nations, the European Commission’s Expert Group on Public Understanding of Science, Amnesty International, The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, The Home Office and national non-governmental organisations.

Within Essex Business School, our staff specialise in areas including SMEs, business-to-business relationship marketing, branding, marketing management, new product development and social entrepreneurship.

While maintaining core engagement with contemporary marketing practice, our staff enrich our courses with novel marketing ideas drawn from both the contemporary business world and cutting-edge academic research.

Specialist facilities

-Dedicated postgraduate support facilities
-Our renowned off-campus Graduate Conference takes place every February
-A unique Student Resource Centre where you can get help with your studies, access examples of previous students’ work, and attend workshops on research skills
-The Sociology common room is open all day Monday-Friday, is stocked with daily newspapers, magazines and journals, and has free drinks available
-Links with the Institute of Social and Economic Research, which conducts large-scale survey projects and has its own library, and the UK Data Archive, which stores national research data like the British Crime Survey
-Our students’ Sociology Society, a forum for the exchange of ideas, arranging talks by visiting speakers, introducing you to various career pathways, and organising debates
-Our landmark new Essex Business School building on our Colchester Campus is the first zero carbon business school in the UK. Set around a lush winter garden, the Eden-style dome gives the building its own micro-climate.

Our new building provides you with a stunning new work environment, offering:
-A virtual trading floor with Bloomberg Terminals offering direct use of Bloomberg data, information and analytics
-A light and spacious lecture theatre, with seating for 250 students
-Study pods and innovation booths for group working
-Dedicated office space for student entrepreneurs
-Networking opportunities with visiting businesses
-A café with an adjacent sun terrace

Your future

This course provides excellent preparation for further academic study, and many of our postgraduates go on to successful academic careers, both in the UK and overseas.

Others have established careers in non-governmental organisations, local authorities, specialist think tanks, government departments, charities, media production, and market intelligence.

We work with the university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Example structure

-Dynamics of Home and Work (optional)
-Sociological Research Design
-Dissertation
-Management and Organisational Behaviour
-Interviewing and Qualitative Data Analysis (optional)
-Managing for Ethics and Sustainability (optional)
-Digital Economy (optional)

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Would you like to learn from leading innovators in research methods?. Do you want to benefit from an outstanding team of educators and well-resourced teaching support materials?. Read more
  • Would you like to learn from leading innovators in research methods?
  • Do you want to benefit from an outstanding team of educators and well-resourced teaching support materials?
  • Would you like the opportunity to study with internationally respected scholars?

Sociology at Manchester is one of the UK's largest and most prestigious centres for the subject, with over 30 academic staff and 60 postgraduate students forming a diverse and rigorous academic community.

The MA programme aims to provide students who have an interest in sociology, the opportunity to extend and deepen their knowledge of the discipline. Our teaching includes all areas of contemporary sociology but we have particular expertise in the fields of socio-cultural change, gender and sexuality, and consumption and sustainability.

We are consistently highly ranked for research, coming first in the UK for the percentage of our research outputs that are judged as `world-leading', and second nationally based on our research power in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF). Our research feeds into all of our postgraduate teaching.

The Sociology MA is the perfect course to develop your analytical and investigative skills, training you in methods of social investigation in order to equip you with the ability for independent thinking, research and analysis, setting you up perfectly for the world of employment.

Contact:

Course Director: Dr Nick Thoburn

Email: 

Tel: +44 (0)161 275 2496

Teaching and learning

Part-time study

Part-time students complete the full-time programme over two years.  There are NO evening or weekend course units available on the part-time programme.  

You must first check the schedule of the compulsory modules and then select your optional modules to suit your requirements.  

Updated timetable information will be available from mid-August and you will have the opportunity to discuss your module choices during induction week with your Course Director

Coursework and assessment

Assessment is normally by a 3,000 word assessed essay for each unit and, for the MA students, a dissertation of between 12,000 and 15,000 words.

Course unit details

You take four core compulsory course units: Social Theory and Cultural Identity; Culture, Modernity and Media; Research Design I and II, together with four options chosen from a wide range of specialist units. Examples of optional course units include: Politics and Culture; Protest and Progress: Understanding Movements for Social and Political Change; Cultures of Digital Play; New Developments in Theories of Gender and Sexuality; Qualitative Research Methods; Introduction to Quantitative Methods; Methodological Issues in Social Research. Students may also negotiate an Independent Studies course unit, linked to their particular research interests, subject to a suitable academic supervisor being available. Students registered for the MA (or who upgrade from the PG Diploma) complete a 12,000 word dissertation, on a research topic of their choice, in addition to the eight taught course units.

Career opportunities

Many MA students go on to take research degrees (PhD), but the skills gained on this programme can be put to use in a variety of career paths. Careers which are most closely related include education, social and community work (related to a range of areas such as welfare advice, working with families or dealing with issues such as homelessness and mental health problems), human resources and working in the media.



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Are you fascinated by digital media, especially social media? Would you like to investigate the new media landscape and understand its effects on society? Do you have your sights set on a career in the media world, with an emphasis on digital media and contemporary media practices? If so, Media Culture may be the right choice for you. Read more

Are you fascinated by digital media, especially social media? Would you like to investigate the new media landscape and understand its effects on society? Do you have your sights set on a career in the media world, with an emphasis on digital media and contemporary media practices? If so, Media Culture may be the right choice for you. The programme combines theoretical reflection, research on user practices and basic media skills training. Using an interdisciplinary approach, media studies is integrated with political philosophy, philosophical aesthetics, history and sociology of technology. This ensures that you develop the theoretical, analytical and practical skills that are essential to understanding and adapting to the ever-changing media world, whether you are working in a cultural organisation, a broadcasting company, a commercial business or a governmental organization

Why this programme?

New digital technologies have transformed the ways we share and distribute information, interact with each other and spend our leisure time. Digital media have had a major impact on our engagement with politics and with culture. At the same time, older media such as printed books, radio, television and film are still present and are evolving in complex interrelationships with digital media.

The master's programme in Media Culture combines theoretical reflection on these developments, research on user practices and training in basic media skills. You will be trained to become both a media researcher and an active player in today’s media world. You will also develop media expertise by investigating questions such as:

  • How do new technologies affect the media landscape and society at large?
  • What effect does the architecture of the web have on user practices?
  • Where do we draw the line between reality and the virtual world?
  • How do new media affect democracy?


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