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Publishing - MA/PGDip/PGCert

Course Description

This MA prepares you for a career in the challenging world of publishing. Taught by experts and practitioners and with masterclasses from industry leaders, the programme of study includes all the knowledge, skills and understanding you need to become a successful publisher.

Degree information

The programme equips students with both a practical insight into how this complex industry functions and a range of transferable skills. These include training in editorial, sales and marketing skills, publishing business plans and their successful delivery, contract negotiation and copyright management, production processes, digital contexts, innovation and entrepreneurship.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of five core modules (120 credits), three optional modules (30 credits), and a dissertation (60 credits). A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, full-time nine months or flexible study 2-5 years) is offered. A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, full-time 15 weeks or flexible study over a period of up to two years) is offered.

Core modules
-Author Management
-Publishing Contexts
-Publishing Entrepreneurship
-Publishing Skills
-Sales and Marketing

Optional modules
-Academic and Journals Publishing
-Illustrated Publishing
-Book Production
-Children's Publishing
-Theories of the Book
-Book Selling

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 12,000 words.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through lectures and seminars, with an emphasis on practical skills and exercises based on real-world and team working. An essential component of the programme is the five-week placement in a publishing house. Assessment is through essays, presentations, reports, one unseen examination, and the dissertation.


At the end of the programme you will be a professional publisher ready to launch your career with a qualification from a university that the industry recognises and values.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Copyright Assistant, The Orion Publishing Group
-Digital Content Editor, Bloomsbury Publishing
-Marketing Assistant, The Random House Group
-Publishing Assistant, BMJ (British Medical Journal)
-Rights Assistant, Laurence King Publishing

UCL's MA in Publishing aims to help train leaders in the industry. We employ a rigorous applications process to ensure we recruit the very best potential publishers, and professional behaviour is at the heart of everything we do. This is an intensive programme, which provides access to the publishing industry throughout its duration, and we work with each student to give them the best support for their individual professional development. As a result, our graduates are sought-after recruits. Recent job successes have been in Bloomsbury Digital, Sage, and Penguin.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Publishing MA aims to cover the entire spread of publishing disciplines, from fiction and trade to professional, academic, scholarly and educational.

Teaching staff possess a wide range of book trade experience and networks of contacts across all fields in the UK and internationally. Their research has helped shape how publishers have developed practices, and made an impact on the discipline as a field of academic study.

In addition, leading publishers, literary agents, authors, legal experts, booksellers and electronic authorities visit to give lectures and presentations. Students benefit from masterclasses from industry leaders on current and controversial issues and field visits to retailers, publishers and libraries.

Visit the Publishing - MA/PGDip/PGCert page on the University College London website for more details!

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Student Profiles

UCL Graduate Support Bursary - 20+ Awards

UCL is making 93 individual bursary awards available. Each bursary will cover the full tuition fee cost for the programme and provide £10,000 in maintenance funding per year.

Value of Scholarship(s)



The scheme is aimed at supporting traditionally under-represented groups to progress on to graduate study at UCL. All applicants will be required to demonstrate that their annual household income is currently under £42,611. This scheme is open to prospective students domiciled in the UK (that is, UK is your country of "ordinary residence”) who have "Home" tuition fee status.

Application Procedure

This initiative is funded through the HEFCE Postgraduate Support Scheme. The UCL Graduate Support Bursary scheme forms part of UCL’s wider initiative to support graduate Master’s students.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

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