Social Media, Culture and Society MA offers a flexible, interdisciplinary exploration of key contemporary developments in the networked digital media environment. It will benefit those seeking to develop their understanding of contemporary communication and its societal, political, regulatory, industrial and cultural contexts.
Social Media, Culture and Society MA provides students with the opportunity to focus at postgraduate level on:
This Master's is organised in the environment of the Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI) and its Centre for Social Media Research. CAMRI is a world-leading research centre that studies the role of media and communication in society. It has become known as the Westminster school of critical media and communication research. The analysis of social media, culture and society is one of its research specialisms. In the most recent UK government research audit, the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), 42.2% of CAMRI’s research was classified as world-leading and 37.5% as internationally excellent, which makes it one of Britain’s four leading media and communication research institutions.
The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course.
In semester one, students must select two elective modules from the two thematic groups below (any combination of modules is applicable):
In semester two, students must select two elective modules from two thematic groups below (any combination of modules is applicable):
More information on modules and groups to which they belong to can be found below.
Core modules (semester one)
Option modules (Semester One)
Core modules (Semester Two)
Optional modules (Semester Two)
The Social Media, Culture and Society MA will benefit those seeking to develop their understanding of contemporary communication and its social, political and cultural contexts. This degree will be of particular interest to those who plan to work in the creative industries, as well as those already working in this field. Social Media, Culture and Society MA will also be of interest to students working in non-profit sectors, including NGOs and advocacy groups. The degree will help those seeking a competitive edge in a careers market that values high-level skills in communication, research and critical thinking.
The course also provides an excellent preparation for those wishing to continue their studies to PhD level. Around 10% of graduates of the course are now undertaking PhDs. Others work in the social media start-up scene in London, or work as journalists and in a range of industries and non-profit sectors.
This course is ideal if you wish to pursue media, communications and cultural inquiry in order to develop a media-based career.
On this course you will cover all aspects of media, communications and cultural studies, from exploring cultural theories and concepts such as Marxism, post-Marxism, feminism, psychoanalysis, post-colonialism and globalisation, to the developments and debates around media and cultural industries such as TV, film, print media and the internet. You will analyse the politics of identity in the context of media and cultural representations, especially in the changing media and web landscape.
You’ll be taught by staff who have strong research profiles with publications in the area of cultural studies theory, culture and politics, tabloid culture, reality television, psychoanalysis, television history and industry, the globalisation of media and culture, contemporary trends in the television industry, as well as travel writing.
You will become a member of the Centre for Research in Film and Audiovisual Cultures (CRFAC), giving you access to a diverse programme of research seminars, symposia and special events organised in collaboration with institutions such as the British Film Institute. Your studies are complemented by visiting lectures given by media and cultural industry professionals such as film makers and scholars from other institutions.
Roehampton's location in London is ideal for media and culture students as you can take advantage of your location by immersing yourself in the wealth of creative cultural institutions and media companies that the capital has to offer, unrivalled by any other city in the UK.
On the course, you will gain an in depth understanding of the role of the media in everyday life, and of its relation to culture and formations of identity and subjectivity.
You will be introduced to, and evaluate, a number of influential and important communication theories and concepts associated with the public sphere, globalisation, promotional culture, media organisations and new media, as well as discourse analysis.
You will engage with the politics of identity in the context of media and cultural representations and explore debates around social difference through a consideration of various defining conditions including gender, class, ethnicity, history, nationality, sexuality, taste and consumer choices.
You will also explore the representation of social reality and the social self in both mass and new media. By focusing on a range of non-fiction formats including reality television, ‘unscripted’ video, user-generated content and the development of the social web, you will address established and newer scholarly debates concerning ‘truth telling’, confession, surveillance and the production of knowledge about the self and its place in the world.
You’ll end the year by undertaking a dissertation or research project which will give you the opportunity to deepen your research skills and knowledge about a topic of particular interest to you.
Some of the modules we currently offer include:
Compulsory and Required modules
Compulsory and/or required modules may change when we review and update programmes. Above is a list of modules offered this academic year.
Optional modules, when offered as part of a programme, may vary from year to year and are subject to viability.
The MA helps students prepare for successful careers in communications and the cultural industries including film, journalism and publishing. Students may opt to do media research or further academic study.
The field of media is constantly shifting and in the last decade the changes have been rapid, and a new media landscape has emerged. Digital media of today are characterised by participation and cooperation; media are wholly collaborative, in terms of both production and consumption.
The master’s programme in Media and Communication studies gives you advanced knowledge of digital media through practical approaches in the field. You will work creatively and in an explorative manner with different types of media, while learning to evaluate them from a critical perspective.
The field of media is constantly shifting. In the last decade the changes have been rapid, and a new media landscape has emerged – forever reshaping not only the consumers but also the creators and distributors of media. Digital media of today are characterised by participation and cooperation; media are wholly collaborative, in terms of both production and consumption – and this is what is meant by the term ‘collaborative media.’
The one-year master’s programme in Media and Communication Studies – Culture, Collaborative Media, and Cultural Industries – will equip you with advanced knowledge of digital media. The programme is oriented towards practical approaches to the field. You will work creatively and in an explorative fashion with different types of media while you learn to approach them from a critical perspective.
During the programme you will develop three primary skill sets: the ability to analyse and strategically approach media and its impact on society; the capability to work with media and communication both methodologically and systematically; the knowledge required to produce media texts, both individually and collaboratively. Compared to bachelor-level degrees, this advanced programme has a clear focus on the development of strategic expertise, a skill crucial for those intending to pursue a professional career in media and communication. During the year, you will furthermore obtain an in-depth knowledge of the workings of the creative industries.
The programme is developed alongside and conducted in collaboration with Media Evolution, a media cluster with over 350 member companies based in Malmö. This facilitates a crossover between the academic and professional worlds and allows you as a student to develop skills in both areas throughout your studies. Throughout the duration of the programme you will get the chance to meet a number of international guest lecturers from universities all across the world, further adding to the global relevance of the programme.
The first semester focuses on examining key themes in communication studies and on how the creative industries of today are operated. During the second semester you will learn more about the possibilities with collaborative media. The year ends with a (one-year, 15 credits) master's thesis.
Malmö University also offers the two-year master's programme Media and Communication Studies: Culture, Collaborative Media and Creative Industries, 120 credits. Read more
The programme, which is web-based and full-time, makes education available to students globally and offers a unique blend of distance and campus based learning. The seminars are compulsory, and you can either attend in Malmö or online. This approach makes it possible for international students to enrol in the programme without having to relocate, leading to a diverse and intercultural student body that increases the opportunities for students to form transnational networks and to benefit from international lecturers.
The programme is hosted on an online platform through which communication between students and lecturers takes place and where student projects are uploaded. As the main theme of the programme is collaborative media, this pedagogical approach leaves room for experimentation, and students are encouraged to use collaborative media during this process.
After graduating, you will have the qualifications necessary to work in media and communication. The skill set and knowledge you develop during your studies are valuable to the fast-growing creative indutries. Companies, government, and organisations are other possible employers as they become increasingly dependent on communication and media in their business. This programme is for those of you who want to take an active role in the development of the media field. It also provides a foundation for further post-graduate studies.
After completing the programme students should be able to:
Knowledge and understanding
1) demonstrate knowledge and understanding of media and communication studies, including both an overview of the field and deeper knowledge of specific parts of the field as well as insight into current research and development work
2) demonstrate specialised methodological knowledge in media and communication studies
Competence and skills
3) demonstrate the ability to integrate knowledge and to analyse, assess and deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations even with limited information
4) demonstrate the ability to independently identify and formulate issues and to plan and, using appropriate methods, undertake advanced tasks within predetermined time frames
5) demonstrate the ability verbally and in writing to report clearly and discuss his or her conclusions and the knowledge and arguments on which they are based in dialogue with different audiences
6) demonstrate the skills required for participation in research and development work or employment in some other qualified capacity
Judgement and approach
7) demonstrate the ability in media and communication studies to make assessments in relation to relevant disciplinary, social and ethical issues and also to demonstrate awareness of ethical aspects of research and development work
8) demonstrate insight into the possibilities and limitations of research, its role in society and the responsibility of the individual for how it is used
9) demonstrate the ability to identify the personal need for further knowledge and take responsibility for his or her on going learning
Master's Degree (60 credits).
Degree of Master of Arts (60 credits) in Media and Communication Studies
This interdisciplinary programme will allow you to benefit from the expertise of both the School of Sociology and Social Policy and the School of Media and Communication, enabling you to gain an in-depth understanding of key issues, debates and theoretical perspectives, and to critically analyse the relationship between culture, media and society.
Taught by leading researchers in the field, this programme covers key issues and concepts such as: media and social media; consumerism; audiences; representation; globalisation; migration and place; tourism; creative work and material culture. Through its grounding in sociological approaches to the study of culture and media, a concern with questions of power, inequality and identity will be threaded through the course, enabling you to think critically about the relationship between gender, class, race and ethnicity, and the cultural realm.
In addition to developing a specialist knowledge in the field, you will also acquire key transferable skills in research, communication, analytical skills, self-management and group working, which will open up a range of career pathways within the media and creative industries and beyond.
Compulsory modules on Researching Society and Culture, Understanding Society and Culture, and Sociology of Media and Culture, will provide a solid grounding in key sociological theories for the study of society, culture and media, and methodological debates and approaches.
In addition to the core compulsory modules, you will have the opportunity to choose from a range of optional modules delivered by the School of Media and Communication, enabling you to tailor the programme to pursue your specialist interests.
The final dissertation project will allow you to design, develop and implement your own critical research enquiry into an aspect of culture and media.
Throughout the course you will be exposed to a variety of teaching methods including guest lectures, seminars, presentations, group work, blended learning and independent critical enquiry.
Assessment will include a series of short quizzes, a group project, an essay and dissertation.
The combined nature of the programme will equip you with key transferable skills and the specialist knowledge required to pursue a career in sociology or media and culture. The national and international growth of the media and creative industries has sparked greater demand for graduates who possess advanced skills and knowledge in the field, opening opportunities in communications and media policy, PR, social and digital media, media markets and audience research or other cultural and creative industries.
Additionally, the sociology element of the programme will allow you to apply your knowledge and skills in fields such as education, statutory and voluntary agencies, NGOs (non-governmental organisations), INGOs (international non-governmental agencies) and charities. The programme also provides a basis for progression onto a PhD in sociology and media studies, and a strong grounding for an interdisciplinary PhD.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
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:
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 Google, The 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.
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:
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.
The programme consists of:
Seen take-home paper; essays; dissertation or practice/theory project and other production work for image-making.
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.
Our programme provides a theory and practice pathway and prepares students for work in the following areas:
The Digital Media, Culture and Society MA is an innovative programme that stays responsive to key developments in contemporary digital media, culture and society.
It engages with some of the most exciting and pressing cultural and social issues of our time, such as activism, big data, the cultural and creative economy, everyday life, future cities, social wellbeing and identity.
It covers key theoretical debates in media and cultural studies and draws from local, national and global contexts to help you develop the critical and methodological skills that are necessary for researching the role of digital technologies in culture and society.
You will be taught by leading academics in visual communication, social media, smart technologies and media production for social change. Our knowledge-exchange activities engage us with diverse businesses, communities and policy actors including media, publishers, digital companies, community groups and NGOs, which will allow you to make professional contacts during your studies.
The course offers flexible modes of study through online distance or campus learning – full-time or part-time – with entry points in September and February. There are also opportunities to complete shorter programmes at both certificate and diploma level.
What is the difference between this course and the Digital Media Arts MA?
The Digital Media, Culture and Society MA has a broader syllabus and is particularly suitable for mid-career professionals who would benefit from flexible modes of study. The Digital Media Arts MA has more of a focus on media technology, with many graduates now working in digital development and design.
The Digital Media, Culture and Society MA is structured as follows:
It is possible to complete shorter programmes in Digital Media, Culture and Society at postgraduate certificate and postgraduate diploma level.
Making sure that what you learn with us is relevant, up to date and what employers are looking for is our priority, so courses are reviewed and enhanced on an ongoing basis. When you have applied to us, you’ll be told about any new developments through our applicant portal.
During your studies, you'll be granted flexibility in content, form and delivery. This flexibility is increased through the availability of online distance education modules. Not only is it possible to switch modes from on-campus to Distance Learning, you may also choose to complete the entire degree through Distance Learning.
Students can complete the Digital Media, Culture and Society MA in online distance mode, either through part-time of full-time study. Distance learners follow the same weekly syllabus as on-campus students and engage online on a continuous basis with the teaching staff and their peers.
Each module has a guide that contains detailed information about the module content, readings and assessments, as well as clear instructions on how to engage with it. The University of Brighton’s student intranet system, studentcentral, is used to teach and deliver the modules.
If you are a distance learner, each module sees you: reading the module guide and collected readings to grasp the shape, content and pathway through the teaching material; participating in asynchronous online discussion boards to engage with the weekly topics; and conducting independent research and background reading to support all parts of your module study in preparation for the assessment.
Module tutors facilitate discussion and offer guidance throughout.
Creative media is both a description of what we do and an instruction for future practice. We take the best elements of media education, creative industries, communication/media studies and literacy theory and offer students a suite of modules that can be customised to fit career goals, family and working patterns, and personal interests.
Graduates of the MA will be able to:
Previous students include PhD candidates at Salford and Brighton, a lecturer at the University of Sussex, a journalist and presenter at the Chongqing Broadcasting Group, an employee in the public diplomacy division at NATO, the founder of Australia's Swarn Conference, a project manager at Agile Impact Group, and a creative producer at the International Symposium of Electronic Art.
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:
This exciting new multidisciplinary Master's programme is fully designed to reflect the needs of contemporary interactive media industries, bringing together creative technologies, interactivity and design practices within digital cultures with the user in mind.
Interactive Media Practice combines a wide range of digital creative technologies primarily combining digital literacies design, technology and interaction, through user-centred design for commercial outputs to an industry standard.
Interactive Media Practice places the user at the centre of the experience and focuses on design and content creation in areas such as mobile app development, wearables, games, rich media websites, interactive guides and installations, immersive VR, next generation advertising and virtual and augmented reality systems, through to social media powerful eMarketing and entrepreneurship through innovation protocol.
According to the late CEO of Apple, Steve Jobs, the app industry "is worth several billion pounds annually and employs around 40,000 people, representing approximately 10% of the total audio-visual workforce. Sectors such as sound-driven games and apps show an even wider growth where providers such as Apple have paid a total of two billion dollars to apps within the US alone".
Adobe Systems (UK) fully support the programme with high recommendation, based on the development and key principles the course offers, which is rare and unique. We embrace excellent contacts within the interactive media and games industries, including regular visits and master classes from industry professionals at the top of their game.
Adobe Systems (UK), said: “This Interactive Media degree offers an ideal grounding for those wishing to work in the digital media industries, which increasingly require people who work with technology from a creative perspective. This is the course that will create the next generation of interactive media stars! ”
The course embraces a hackathon culture with specialist hack labs boasting newly designed flexible learning spaces for students to work more collaboratively on innovation protocols fostering cross-pollination of new ideas creatively. Many students will be working on live industry briefs as well as their own projects independently within and outside our course clusters. This collaborative approach to learning and research often leads to successful projects, which are commercially viable and quickly gain industry recognition through our end-of-year show.
“It’s a really multi-faceted MA, bringing together creativity, technology skills and digital media, with an entrepreneurial thread.” – 2015 graduate.
Our students learn to examine the communication of ideas in a networked world through our entrepreneurship incubator programme and consider the many impacts of digital media in everyday life, for commercial trajectories through practice-based projects.
As one of the top 100 international universities in the world, the University of Westminster's School of Media, Arts and Design currently boasts a series of professional recording studios, a new teaching recording studio, professional technology labs and access to an array of post-production, and multimedia facilities built and equipped to the highest standards.
Using the leading industry software, you will be involved in designing and making interactive digital media content for delivery over the Internet, on tablets and mobile devices and for installations to designing compelling user interfaces creating a great user experience, this also extends to the development towards creating content for the ‘internet of things’.
The MA in Interactive Media Practice course will prepare you for this sector, by leveraging and integrating the fine blend between creativity and technical capacities. You will also benefit from having access to a range of highly regarded industry practitioners who will offer you exceptional insight and working knowledge within the field, both challenging and encouraging your technical and creative fair. On this master's degree you will develop commercial-level interactive media and digital content production skills.
This multidisciplinary course prepares you to work in a wide range of industry combining theory, practice, and bringing together technical, creative perspective on new media systems, interactive technologies and digital culture as well as exploring new emerging creative technologies, producing an industry professional who can produce as well as explore future creative technologies.
Students are encouraged to work with technology experimentally in a creative way, collaboratively, and to apply emerging and existing technology in new and innovative ways, research and the experimental application. You will also have hands-on experience creating content for mobile, tablet wearables, VR, AR and content-rich media websites, advanced web production, and UX design, all of this with the user in mind.
The course will provide skills in the relevant multimedia software, media-rich web production, Unity, UdK, website design and development to mobile app development. You will be taught creative coding, where the course encourages the use of a wide range of programming languages delivered by industry practitioners. We also have accreditation and training opportunities for those students wanting to develop their skills more prolifically within selected software via triple A initiative, outside of the Master's.
These include mobile apps, mainstream games, interactive installation, and eMarketing, with an emphasis on core creative skills. The course also prepares and enhances your ability in producing interactive media, methodologies and production workflows, supported by a robust understanding of the technologies and theories involved.
The Interactive Media Practice degree offers an ideal underpinning for those seeking employment in the digital media industries, which increasingly require people who work with technology from a creative perspective. This is the course that will create the next generation of interactive media talent who are both enterprising and creative.
Our approach on the course is implemented through hackathon culture as seen in technology start-up sectors, where cross collaboration through interdisciplinary approach is very welcomed. Students are encouraged to apply from design, non-programming or non-technical backgrounds as well as technical backgrounds.
The following modules are indicative of what you study on this course.
New media produced by vast and rapidly expanding creative and commercial industries have become an important part of many everyday activities. Would you like to explore how they are changing our daily practices and cultures?
During the one-year Master’s programme in New Media & Digital Culture, you will delve into the many aspects of what it means to live in an age of new media. Guided by an international team of experienced scholars, you will assist with current research projects and learn to reflect critically on how present-day cultures are shaped by social media, data, games, internet activism, apps, data visualisations, mobile devices, algorithms, and participatory platforms.
The programme pivots around three major contemporary features of new media technologies and its relationship to culture and society, namely: the mobile/urbanaspect, the ludic/games aspect, and the software/data aspect. While the programme highlights the overlaps and synergies between these three aspects we also offer students the opportunity to specialise in a MA profile which relates to these three aspects. Engaging with such a profile means following a set trajectory of courses and a profile-related internship and thesis. An example of such a profile is Media, Data and Society (more information here), a co-partnership with the Utrecht Data School.
Both our general programme and its more specific profile trajectories cater to a job market and an industry interested in graduates who are capable of critical engagement with the cultural implications of the complex media culture we live in. To facilitate both in-depth knowledge about new media and digital culture with more practical hands-on experience, you will also complete a research internship towards starting a promising career.
Moderately sized groups of students, individual tutoring, and the chance to participate in international research projects provide you with multiple ways to develop your skills, explore your interests, and achieve valuable academic and personal results. Our dynamic and active community of students, alumni, and scholars provides a wide array of extracurricular activities and access to a large network of practitioners, media artists, policy makers, entrepreneurs, and activists from the most diverse strands of digital culture.
As a graduate of NMDC you are well equipped to fill a position in educational and cultural institutions, governmental institutions or in Media & ICT industries.Read more about possible career prospects.
From Al Jazeera to Hollywood, News Corporation to China Central TV, the media increasingly operate in a global context. This course offers a comprehensive interdisciplinary approach to global media, and is designed for those who work in, or want to work in, the media industries.
You will examine key developments in the media and communications industries associated with the logic of globalisation, and explore the complex nature of the globalisation process in the media. You will gain a relevant, well-grounded, high-quality education and skill base, enabling you to develop a clear and comprehensive understanding of communication and the mass media.
Based on continuous assessment, the course is taught in lectures and seminars by the team from Westminster's top-rated Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI ). You will be part of a bustling multicultural academic department which boasts a strong research culture, and you will be able to attend the regular talks by outside speakers (academics and practitioners) on a variety of communication and mass media issues.
The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course.
Core modules, semester one
Core module, semester two
Students are encouraged to seek work experience in the industry and relevant opportunities are regularly shared by staff. This often leads to full-time employment once graduating from the course.
In addition, the MA course takes advantage of the vibrancy of the media environment in London and students often benefit from events taking place locally, eg at Frontline Club.
Equally, there are a number of activities run within the Department that provide students with opportunities for networking and increasing their employability. CAMRI and associated research centres run regular seminars, workshops and conferences which our students can attend for free. These workshops and conferences bring together academic researchers, industry representatives as well as regulators and policy-makers.
The Global Media MA course is well established and has a strong international reputation. Our students are very successful in gaining employment, in many cases straight from graduating the course. Graduates have found jobs in middle- and upper-management in media industries, as well as the broader private (eg consulting and advertising firms) and public sector (eg government ministries, regulatory authorities), international organisations and NGOs. Some graduates also continue to do PhD research. Success in their Masters degree has allowed many who have been in media jobs before joining the course to move into more senior roles within their companies or organisations and to transfer to new sectors of the media.
Graduates from the Global Media MA have found roles in a wide variety of media and communications organisations including Al Jazeera, CCTV, and many other organisations around the world.
From analysing the theories of intellectual heavyweights such as Foucault and Bourdieu, to unpicking a global campaign, explore the hinterland between the big three promotional professions and the media and society on this innovative MA.
Right now the roles within public relations, advertising and marketing are converging. So this MA isn’t about studying ads – it’s about becoming a professional who can understand the dynamics of power that exist between these professions, and critically intervene in today’s media landscape.
At its core this masters looks at how we can better serve society by improving communications across these disciplines, and how we can develop as professionals who can adapt within a challenging media world. You’ll learn how to reflect on the intellectual theories of the past and apply them to the present, so you plan the first decade of your career.
We want you to understand the power struggles that exist between these three professions so we look at public relations, advertising and marketing as inter-related disciplines, drawing on theoretical and professional debates around issues such as globalisation and homogenised consumption. We also discuss current industry expectations looking at the crossovers that exist between creativity, management and strategy.
We’ll tackle some of the big things that are changing when it comes to the way the world works - aspects such as globalisation, the control of knowledge, digital technologies, and the way content is created. You’ll also get an introduction to media and cultural theory, which lies at the intersection between the promotional professions, media and society.
This is a theory-based programme, but it also offers vocational elements, so you can take practice-based options in subjects ranging from online journalism and social media campaigning, to design methods and media law and ethics. You'll also get the latest insights from industry professionals across a range of sectors through our visiting speaker series in the Spring.
We take fields such as sociology, anthropology media and cultural studies to understand how public relations, advertising and marketing get together, where they overlap and where the tensions lie. This means we might take an anthropological perspective on how the promotional professions work together to develop a product – not just in terms of its messaging – but in terms of how it was conceived and came to market in the first place.
It’s important to mention that this isn’t a business studies-style MA; it’s a rigorous, academic programme investigating promotional workers and their use of media in today’s campaigns and debates.
Throughout the core components of the degree, you'll examine the very wide range of ways in which public relations, advertising and marketing is represented in society, together with the skills and techniques enacted by practitioners in their day-to-day roles. You will be encouraged to develop your critical and analytical skills, but also to think creatively and become more confident in your aesthetic judgment.
Goldsmiths prides itself on its innovative and critical approach, and you will be encouraged to immerse yourself in its wider intellectual environment in order to deepen your understanding of the cultural infrastructure surrounding branding and promotional media.
We offer a wide range of option modules each year. Below are some examples of modules that are currently running. For a full list, please contact the Department of Media and Communications.
The MA is assessed primarily through coursework essays and written projects. Practical modules may require audiovisual elements to be submitted. It will also include a dissertation of approximately 12,000 words.
From account executives to digital copywriters and from product managers to media planners and sponsorship coordinators, our graduates enhance their careers by working across disciplines, across countries, and across everything from social media and content generation, from sponsorship and events marketing, to corporate communications or government communications.
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
We welcome proposals for research in any area connected with media, communications, digital media, cultural theory and practice.
We give priority to those with proposals for research within the areas of interest of our staff.
Research degrees in this department have two elements:
Supervisors and their students form loose research teams, sometimes on a joint basis with another group. When you apply, please indicate your intended research area and any preference for a particular supervisor.
You'll be assessed by a thesis and viva voce.
Find out more about research degrees at Goldsmiths.
Having celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2013, Goldsmiths’ Department of Media and Communications is one of the oldest and largest media departments in the UK. It is also unique in its diversity of approaches to, and articulations of, the disciplinary conjunctures around media and culture.
The department has equal research strengths in media and communications and in cultural studies research, in humanities and in social sciences approaches, and in theory- and practice-driven work. Its work spans a wide range of topics and modes of enquiry – from philosophical studies of technology and human life to sociological investigations of media production and use; from issues of identity, embodiment and becoming to post-feminism, queer theory and critical race studies; from global screen studies and transnational investigations of media and culture to news’ role in contemporary democracy.
The Department’s research falls into five main strands which make up our research groupings:
(1) Media and Democracy: building on the work of the Leverhulme programme on the media’s contribution to democracy, including the changing nature of journalism and political communication; studying globalisation in relation to issues of diaspora and nationhood
(2) Economy, Culture and Communication: investigating communication and discourse in finance and financial media; everyday representations and understandings of the economy and economic life; creative labour, neoliberalism and organisational practices in the arts and cultural industries; the impact of the promotional professions (branding, PR, marketing) on the economy, culture and society
(3) Media Futures: bringing together humanities and social sciences approaches to understanding the changing role of media technologies and global media flows in society, economy and science
(4) Gender, Feminism and Contemporary Cultures: connecting the long tradition of work within the Department on culture, representation, embodiment and affect to its specific strengths in gender, race, sexuality and labour in national and international contexts
(5) Screen Cultures and Media Arts: consolidating the long-standing focus on screen cultures within the Department, as concentrated within the Leverhulme programme, combined with an exploration of media arts such as photography, video, digital imagining, sound and performance.
Many of the projects undertaken within the Department are collaborative in nature - such as the work conducted under the umbrella of Goldsmiths Leverhulme Media Research Centre, funded with a 2006 Leverhulme grant to study the design and significance of various contemporary media spaces. Members of the Department have also received funding from AHRC, British Academy, British Council, Carnegie Trust UK, Council for British Research in the Levant, ESRC, EPSRC, Guggenheim Foundation, Higher Education Academy, Hong Kong Research Grants Council, JISC, London Centre for Arts and Cultural Exchange, Media Trust and Open Society Foundation.
As well as working on collaborative projects, members of the Department have published many books with high-impact international presses, on a diverse range of topics: affect and emotion, artificial intelligence, bioethics, the body and experience, branding, broadcasting, democracy, film history, the future of journalism, media geographies, the mediation of power, post-feminism, postcolonial politics, sound and video cultures.
Members of the Department edit leading academic journals, including Body and Society, Culture Machine and its sister project, Photomediations Machine), Global Media and Communication, International Journal of Cultural Studies, Subjectivity and photographies.
Find out more about research in the Department of Media and Communications.
We aim to develop students who are able to express themselves creatively and self-critically in theoretical and/or practice work. You'll develop research skills, presentation skills, an understanding of the workings of the media and their broad cultural and social impacts and an understanding of the pleasures of media consumption.
This MA gives practitioners and theorists the opportunity to research and develop the new boundaries of image-making made possible by technological change within the context of post-industrial culture.
This programme joins theory and practice, equipping you to develop and achieve highly effectively in the new image media culture. Practice uses both digital and analogue technology, still and durational as well as the study and production of interactivity.
The programme allows for specialisation in photography and/or electronic arts – which, in addition to still photography, can include interactive, durational and internet work – but encompasses a broader interpretation of practice.
You'll look at the meaning, production and distribution of images, and the relationship between theory and practice in the context of debates about post-modernism and beyond.
You also participate in enabling sessions in photography:
and/or in electronic arts:
There is an MRes which follows the MA into a second year, in order to develop your work/voice. This will count as the first year of a PhD. Find out more about the MRes.
This programme uniquely joins theory and practice in a way that will equip you with the tools and the vision to develop and achieve highly effectively in the new image media culture. Practice uses both digital and analogue technology, still and durational as well as the study and production of interactivity.
You will study
The programme draws on a broad range of cultural references and technical practices. It offers the opportunity to take stock of evolving practices and developments in image media culture, and is structured to develop the intellectual imagination within each individual student. This is achieved through a combined study of practice and theory, with extensive instruction through ‘enabling sessions’ which engage technical familiarity; core tutorials; secondary tutorials; Issues in Media and Culture and additional theory course options.
Recognising the rapidly changing definitions and context of these practice areas,and the value/positioning of traditional practices, these categories may also be understood through a variety of practices which involve image construction and presentation both still and durational, including: film/video, animation, interactivity, installations, motion graphics, and hyperspace constructs, as well as evolving new exploratory categories.
The programme provides an opportunity to develop and/or research aspects of visual style, and draw on a broad range of cultural references as well as aesthetic and technical approaches engaged through ‘Practice Theory Sessions’, visiting lectures and the Issues in Media and Culture course. Fundamental to the programme is the space that it creates to make it possible for you to explore, question, change and consolidate your work and your ideas.
Original portfolio submission; coursework and essays.
This course is interested in the development of the individual voice. To this end, there are two types of tutorial:
You'll develop specific practice skills to a high level, and the articulation/understanding of the pleasures of media consumption.
Graduates from the programme are extremely successful, with finalists working commercially, developing as artists or continuing to enlarge their academic knowledge. During the course particular attention is given to the development of the individual voice. This, plus students' exposure to a range of technologies, means that our graduates can step into the arena of their choice, or sometimes of their making.
Here are just some examples of the sorts of careers graduates have gone onto:
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
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).
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).
Recommended optional modules include:
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
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.
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.
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.
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.