This course is designed to produce the future leaders of the Public Relations Industry. You will not only learn the practical skills required to embark on a career in PR but also the research and analysis skills that will help you get ahead. You will create campaigns, pitch to clients, stage a press conference and create videos and blogs, as well as write research reports, essays and a dissertation. You will also explore issues affecting the industry, such as professional ethics and the impact of digital media.
The course has close links to the London-based PR industry, and is one of a select few chosen by the professional body PRCA for its University partnership initiative. These connections with leading PR practitioners help you gain the practical knowledge and understanding you need to work in PR.
You will take five core and two optional modules. All teaching takes place in the first and second semesters - September to April. In the third semester you will complete your dissertation.
PUBLIC RELATIONS AND THE MEDIA
The module equips students with the professional practice skills to conduct media relations including writing press releases, conducting media interviews and preparing media events. It also looks at the increasing role of digital media including Twitter feeds, blogs and online newsrooms.
PLANNING A PUBLIC RELATIONS CAMPAIGN
This module gives you an opportunity to develop and enhance your campaign management skills. You will plan, design and present a creative public relations campaign and explore the relationship between PR agencies and their clients.
UNDERSTANDING PUBLIC RELATIONS
This module provides a critical evaluation of the public relations industry and the context in which it operates. You will look at the role of the practitioner and explore whether perceptions of the industry are valid. You will also consider the professional aspirations of PR, ethics and how the industry is changing in the context of digital media.
CONTEMPORARY THEORY AND ISSUES IN PR
This module explores a range of perspectives on PR. We look at the social, cultural and management approaches to PR, and examine the tension between these theoretical models and their practical application.
DISSERTATION RESEARCH SKILLS
This module provides guidance on how to plan and conduct a piece of independent research into the PR industry. You will learn how to apply the theories, research methods and scholarly practice learned in your other modules to produce an original 15,000 word dissertation.
The optional modules are taught by leading practitioners and allow you to develop your interest in specialist sectors within the PR industry. Students choose two optional modules from a range that currently includes consumer public relations; corporate public relations; fashion public relations; digital media public relations; NGO campaigns.
This course is particularly relevant if you want to start, or to progress, a career in public relations or one that involves communications with either internal or external stakeholders.
At Westminster, we have always believed that your University experience should be designed to enhance your professional life. Today’s organisations need graduates with both good degrees and employability skills, and we are committed to enhancing your graduate employability by ensuring that career development skills are embedded in all courses.
Opportunities for part-time work, placements and work-related learning activities are widely available, and can provide you with extra cash and help you to demonstrate that you have the skills employers are looking for. In London there is a plentiful supply of part-time work – most students at the University of Westminster
work part time (or full time during vacations) to help support their studies.
We continue to widen and strengthen our links with employers, involving them in curriculum design and encouraging their participation in other aspects of career education and guidance. Staff take into account the latest data on labour market trends and employers’ requirements to continually improve the service delivered to students.
You should normally have a good first degree qualification (Upper Second Class Honours) or equivalent, although professional qualifications or substantial appropriate work experience may be acceptable instead. The course relies heavily on you being able to write and present effectively in English, and if English is not your first language, you need to have a minimum IELTS score of 7.0, plus sufficient academic or professional background.