This programme explores communication as a social psychological process central to the conduct of everyday life, in public as well as in private. Communication is both the foundation of social life as well as a professional activity to influence and persuade, to gain advantage, to build and sustain a community of trust, and to reach a common understanding on a controversial issue. You will be provided with an overview of theories of communication that enable you to analyse communication events and the practical dilemmas faced by those working in different domains of public communication. Central themes will include: The psychological and societal process involved in public communication Conceptual frameworks for analysis, evaluation and design of public communication Developments in the analysis, evaluation and design of public communication in politics, business, development, health and science and technology New communication and media technologies are not central to this analysis, but will be analysed by their emerging (dys)function
The programme is not simply a training programme in social marketing offering you a box of tools and rhetorical tricks for efficient and effective persuasion. It is an academic, research based programme that will enable you, through a range of core and topical courses to engage critically with existing tools of analysis, evaluation and design of communication endeavours. We offer a comparative approach, with a focus on clear language across a range of domains where public communication is pivotal. This includes an awareness of international attempts to establish professional competence in public communication. The programme is exclusively recognised by the professional certification of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations in the UK.
To be considered for a place you should normally have an upper second class honours degree in one of the social sciences and have relevant professional experience.
The programme involves completing four course units, including a dissertation of 10,000 words.
(* half unit)
Social Psychology of Communication examines core theories towards a social psychology of communication. Methods for Social Psychological Research provides students with an overview of methodological issues for social psychological research. Dissertation allows students to 'show and tell' their learning effort with a small research project that is well documented and presented. Students will be expected to choose courses to the value of one unit from a range of options including research methods. Please note that not every course is available each year and that some courses may only be available with the permission of the course convenor and/or may be subject to space.
Our graduates find excellent employment and career opportunities in a range of sectors of the communications industry including consultancy, journalism, publishing, advertising, public relations, education and outreach, and in international organisations. Several former graduates have created their own business.