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Public Relations (Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations) - MA

Study a course professionally accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations. Prepare yourself to move seamlessly into a job with a PR agency or in-house communications department.


This course is a Masters with a focus on practical skills in Public Relations. It involves a mix of journalism, business and marketing, social networking and communication theory, giving you a competitive edge in this fast-moving industry. As part of the course, you will develop a major PR project and undertake related research and contextual studies.

Why us?

Sunderland hosts the Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies (CRMCS).

'World-leading' research in Media, according to the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF).

Accredited by the CIPR the industry’s leading body and a single discipline PR course teaching a wide range of PR specialisms including: campaign creation, crisis management, social media management and Internal communications.

The course is led by a member of staff who has won numerous PR industry awards.

Excellent industry links with guest speakers and annual employability event giving students an opportunity to network with a range of PR practitioners working in agencies, public bodies, charities and the corporate sector to gain vital placements, work experience, internships and jobs.

You can choose to produce a six month PR campaign as your final practical project, as an alternative to a dissertation to help ensure you with a tangible example of your work demonstrating your full range of skills, to present to a potential employer.

Course Structure

Compared to an undergraduate course, you will find that this Masters requires a higher level of independent working. The course aims to stretch your creativity and maximise your sense of personal fulfilment.

Part-time students can expect around six hours of contact time a week.

We use a wide variety of teaching and learning methods which include lectures, seminars, critiques, workshops and practical demonstrations. These are supported by a range of guest speakers from diverse academic and industry backgrounds. You will also have high levels of contact with tutors who give regular feedback and support. Assessment methods include essays, projects, presentations, and a major project/dissertation.

Public Relations 1 (60 credits):

  • Public Relations: Theory and Practice 1 (30 credits)
  • PR and Society: Ethics and Critical Concepts (15 credits)
  • PR and Marketing Communications (15 credits)

Public Relations 2 (60 credits):

  • Public Relations: Theory and Practice 2 (30 credits)
  • Social Media and PR (15 credits)
  • Media Research (15 credits)

Public Relations 3 (60 credits):

  • You will complete a supervised dissertation or a practical project on a PR topic of your choice.


Postgraduates are highly employable and, on average, earn more than individuals whose highest qualification is an undergraduate degree. On completing this course you will be equipped for roles throughout the PR and communications industries.

Career opportunities

Recent Sunderland graduates have set up their own agencies or are now working in PR consultancies, as well as in the PR departments of organisations such as Giorgio Armani, the Environment Agency, Durham Cricket Board, Tyne and Wear Sports and AA Press Office.

During the course we encourage you to gain industry experience which will enhance your skills, build up a valuable network of contacts and boost your employability.

A Masters degree will also enhance career opportunities within Higher Education and prepare you for further postgraduate studies.

Visit the Public Relations (Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations) - MA page on the University of Sunderland website for more details!






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