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Sports Journalism - MA/PGDip/PGCert


Course Description

Sports journalism and sports public relations are popular career destinations for qualified graduates.

A passion for sport, news and digital communications are essential ingredients to succeed. Employers in the media today look for highly skilled graduates with key skills and qualifications. Under the guidance of our expert team of journalists, a full year of multimedia training with work experience will prepare you for that all important first paid job.

Why St Mary's?

Sports journalism is an intensely competitive profession and difficult to break into. For determined graduates willing to work hard we offer one of the best routes into journalism and the sports media industries.

We have an unrivalled employability record in sports journalism, just ask our graduates who are now working in the industry. They will tell you why the MA in Sports Journalism at St Mary's University has quickly become one of the most highly respected journalism courses in the UK.

This is echoed by editors and industry professionals, who visit us regularly to deliver guest lectures and impart invaluable career advice. They can see the quality of our trainee journalists and the high standards we set.

This was the first MA in Sports Journalism in the UK to be professionally accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists. Our course is recommended by the editor of Sky Sports News and other leading professionals in the industry. We train you in collaboration with our partners, News Associates and Sportsbeat, a national sports news agency based in London.

Student Story

Emma Paton, Graduated in 2012

Emma is currently a sub-editor and digital reporter at Sky Sports News HQ. Emma recently presented ‘behind the scenes’ coverage on one of SSN’s busiest dates - Transfer Deadline Day. Her role as a sub-editor sees her help produce Good Morning Sports Fans - the 6-10am slot on SSN.

During her MA she did various work placements including an internship on the news desk at the British Olympic Association during London 2012 – which St Mary’s put her forward for.

On finishing her Masters, Emma's first and only interview was at Sky Sports News – where she started as an online journalist for skysports.com and later moved to production.

“I thoroughly enjoyed my time at St Mary’s and it’s safe to say I wouldn’t be in my dream job without the course.”

Course Content

We select between 15 and 20 students each year who will embark on a demanding training course taught by professional journalists, broadcasters and academics. In addition to developing essential journalism skills such as fast, accurate and engaging writing, research and interviewing, we also offer training in how to use digital media.

Our curriculum also reflects the high expectations of the profession. You will therefore sit exams set by the National Council for Training Journalists in Reporting, Media Law, Public Affairs, Shorthand, Court Reporting and Sports Journalism. We pay for all you NCTJ exams (excluding resits).

We will also develop your knowledge and understanding of key ethical concerns such as impartiality, truth and accuracy as well as debate critical issues such as the regulation of the press, privacy, freedom of information and the impact of social media.

In addition to your work placements and regular contributions to our online sports magazine, the MA programme includes the following taught modules:
› Sports Journalism
› News Writing
› Shorthand
› Multimedia Journalism
› Media Law
› Public Affairs
› Masterclasses
› Sports Journalism Project

Work Placements

Between September and May, the course is normally taught over four consecutive days, usually Tuesday to Friday, leaving three days a week and evenings for work experience and placements. In the summer, the students devote even more time to work experience.

This is an essential part of our training programme. We work with each students to find them their most suitable work placements as well as encouraging them to freelance for various publications. We do this as soon as a student accepts a place on the course.

Our students take full advantage of our extensive contacts in the industry. We already have a very good working relationship with a number of news organisations, broadcasters and publishers including Sky Sports News, Haymarket (who publish FourFourTwo), IMG media, and goal.com.

Sportsbeat, our training partners, will offer our trainees opportunities to write stories, produce match reports and carry out interviews for all their major publications, which usually includes the RBS Six Nations website, The League Paper, the Non-League Paper, The Rugby Paper, and The Cricket Paper.

In the last two years our students have secured work experience on The Daily Mail, The Independent, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and The Times, The Richmond and Twickenham Times and other Newsquest titles, the Press Association, The Birmingham Mail and other Trinity Mirror titles, Sky Sports, the BBC, and RTE in Ireland.

Our students have also worked on the following magazines, Four Four Two, Shoot, TennisHead, FHM, and Sportsister.

Career Prospects

Sport has never been more popular. It is a global industry driven by high levels of consumer demand and the revolution in digital communications. These developments are creating new career opportunities for sports writers and a wide range of related professions where trained journalists are in high demand (especially in online communications, public relations, sports advertising, corporate sponsorship, events management, sports charities and the betting industry).

With valuable work experience under your belt combined with a Master's in Sports Journalism, we expect all of our graduates to secure employment. So far all of them have. Indeed, our students who pass all their NCTJ Exams are in high demand in the media. It is the 'gold standard' qualification for journalism and the one that most editors recognise.

Visit the Sports Journalism - MA/PGDip/PGCert page on the St Mary’s University, Twickenham website for more details!

Videos
(Student Profile)

Chris Moore

The Masters was a great course which gave me all the tools I needed to gain employment, as I now work at IMG Media helping to produce ESPN's football coverage. The best things about the course are the breadth of skills you learn, all taught by knowledgeable tutors. I would definitely recommend the course if you love sport, have a passion for journalism and want to learn the skills needed to get into the sports media industry


Scholarships

Entry Requirements

We usually require a good degree (2.1 and above) in any discipline. In exceptional circumstances we may accept a student without such a qualification if they demonstrate an aptitude and commitment to journalism. All candidates selected for interview sit a short entrance test.

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