International Journalism - MA

Full Time, Part Time
September 2015
£6,195 per year for UK/EU Full Time (view all fees)

The MA in International Journalism course offers an intensive and advanced programme of study that aims to provide you with an understanding of the current theoretical knowledge and practical skills that are essential for a career in journalism practice with a global orientation or focus.

Journalism practice and professions have undergone a significant transformation over the past decade or more, and many of the forces of change are still taking place and are re-shaping the nature of the industry.

Changes in technologies of production and distribution, and in the economics of production and consumption, are shifting the boundaries between previous notions of the producers and the consumers of journalism.

Various forms and formats of journalism are also emerging, and have emerged, that challenge long-established practices. As well as these changes, however, there are also patterns of continuity in the profession.

What's covered in the course?

This course will locate the study of journalism practice within this wider context of patterns of changes and continuities, with a particular emphasis on the intercultural and global dimensions of these processes.

It will prepare you for utilising traditional as well as new media platforms for journalism practice aimed at a local or global public. Practical work is underpinned by a critical engagement with topical issues that bear on contemporary journalism practice in an international context.

On this course, you will explore and develop a critical understanding of the theoretical ideas and concepts that relate to global journalism and learn how to apply these to real-world contemporary social issues and problems. Practice skills will be drawn mainly from online journalism and other new media platforms.

You will work in a very practical way, operating in groups, trying out ideas, and putting your new knowledge and skill into practice straightaway. The course aims to encourage a purposeful application of media production skills to a wide range of contemporary issues in both local and global arenas.

Visit our open day

Postgraduate Open Event

Our next Postgraduate Open Event is Wednesday 25 November 2015.

Registration will open in the Autumn but in the meantime, why not sign up to receive email updates about the University?

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This course is open to International students

Birmingham School of Media

Discover the Birmingham School of Media

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Südwestrundfunk

And in jobs such as:

  • News Editor

Entry Requirements

UK students

You should possess a prior degree (or equivalent) at 2:1, or above, or have considerable experience in a related field and be able to demonstrate outstanding ability and potential.

Good spoken and written English are vital. IELTS level 6.5 is a minimum

Applicants should have sound academic skills (research, writing, presentation), an interest in ideas and their application and some basic competence in IT skills (word-processing, Internet activities etc).

Above all, applicants need to have an inquiring mind, an aptitude for finding things out, sharing and communicating ideas, and a desire to develop as an independent and self-motivated thinker.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MA Sep 2015 FT 1 year £6,195 per year
PT 2 years £3,100 per year
PT 3 years £2,065 per year

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MA Sep 2015 FT 1 year £11,500
PT 2 years £5,750 per year

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Additional costs

Our courses include activities such as performance, exhibitions, field trips and production of works or artefacts which may require you to purchase specific equipment, instruments, books, materials, hire of venues and accommodation, or other items. Many of these activities are essential and compulsory parts of your learning experience.

The link below gives you an estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is available part-time

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our pdf application form instead.

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible postgraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.


Modules explained:
Globalisation and Communication
30 credits

This theory module explores core topics and issues that will set the context for understanding the dynamics of contemporary media and creative industries.

Online Journalism
30 credits

This production module explores a range of online and mobile journalism skills, as well as emerging legal and ethical issues. You will be running a live journalism operation, building contacts in your field and learning from those at the cutting edge of their industry, as well as each other.

In addition, an ‘experimental’ element of the module forces you to research and experiment with an area of online journalism that has particular potential for you professionally, developing your public profile in the field on the way.

New Journalism in Context
30 credits

This module will allow you to explore and understand the wider social, political, economic, professional, technological and global contexts in which contemporary journalism is situated and how these impact the practice of journalism today.

Production Lab/Research Methods
30 credits

You will choose one of these modules depending on whether you wish to do your MA stage via a practice or theoretical route. They are both research focused and prepare you to undertake your final MA work, which involves a substantial independent research leading to the production of either a production project or a dissertation.

These modules draw upon other taught modules which either mapped out the current state of academic knowledge in the field, or established professional conventions and explored current industry challenges.

MA by Practice or MA by Dissertation
60 credits

This will entail the production of either a production project or dissertation through a process of substantial independent research and media practice. You will choose your own subject in consultation with an appropriate course tutor, and you will be supported by a process of supervision.

You will develop and consolidate your mastery of key skills, and knowledge of and engagement with current opportunities in the field of production or industry. This module encourages and tests skills of initiative and independent practice and takes place largely outside the classroom with support from a tutor.

The content and approach of the curriculum focuses strongly on contemporary journalism skills in digital, online, and social media production, which will equip you to operate in the convergent media environment of today.

You will engage with new media platforms for journalism production and examine the impact these have on the nature of contemporary international journalism.

The taught postgraduate phase of the course will comprise four modules, in which you will be able to do a combination of theoretical and production work. The Master's component of the course entails a substantial independent production project. There will certainly be lots of interesting topics and issues to explore about the state of contemporary international journalism and we expect you to be actively involved in examining these issues in relation to a relevant social, local, national or international context. Most importantly, though, we want you to start to develop your own international journalism project ideas and to put them into practice.

You will meet with your tutors in small classes and in individual tutorials, and you will work in small groups with other students on practical tasks. We invite relevant speakers from industry, who will share their knowledge and expertise with you, and we want you to get involved in the interesting research undertaken by members of the school's Centre for Media and Cultural Research.

We encourage you to experiment, to try out innovative ideas, and to produce truly original work. Although we often draw upon insights from the past, we are always looking to the future, and we want you to develop projects or dissertations which really make a difference.

Assessment methods

Assessments usually emphasise scholarly or professional practice through which the key learning objectives are tested. Three weeks are set aside for assessment work.

Further Study

For anyone interested in taking their research interests forward into an MPhil or PhD speak to the course director about your particular area of expertise.

Student stories

Yemisi Akinbobola

Former student and Editor-in-Chief at IQ4News, Yemisi Akinbobola talks about her time on the course.

Enhancing your employability skills

Upon successfully completing the MA in International Journalism, you will have developed a broad knowledge and understanding of contemporary issues in international journalism and specific practices of production which can be utlilised either in employment in a typical news organisation or as an independent/ freelance journalist.

Successful students will be self-motivated independent learners and thinkers who will have advanced and transferable skills in production practices, research, investigation and presentation and who will be able to apply these to a variety of scenarios in the rapidly changing world of journalism.

You will have made a number of contacts and joined a number of networks whilst on the course and be ready to take your skills into the workplace. You will be able to develop a role you perhaps already have in the media industries, or embark on a new career in related sectors. Those students who aim for future academic careers will be well placed to pursue further research and collaborations.


Industry placement is not a formal part of this programme however, there will be a high degree of engagement with industries and professional practice as part of the course. There are opportunities for full-time students to explore placement opportunities in the second semester of the curriculum but this will be driven largely by the student's own initiative.


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.


BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Popular home countries

Our students come from around the world but our international journalism course is most popular with international students from:  

Parkside - City Centre Campus
Parkside - Milo Studio
Parkside - Photography Studio

Birmingham School of Media is recognised as a key centre of excellence in interactive media training, television production and education by Creative SkillSet, the UK Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industries.

State-of-the-art facilities

You will learn in our state-of-the-art facilities - including the £62m fully-digital Media Centre - located on the City Centre Campus. You will enjoy access to extensive studio and workshop space including four TV studios, six radio studios and broadcast-standard edit suites, as well as cutting-edge equipment and software.

Facilities include the largest TV floor of any university in the UK, a ‘green screen’ and the MILO motion control camera - we are one of just two universities in Europe to offer MILO technology.

Edit Suites

Our four broadcast-standard edit suites are based on the industry-standard Avid editing system, used in almost all films and the majority of UK television. Two of the suites are specialised for Audio Finishing and Colour Grading. Our six digital radio studios are all linked an equipped with the best news and production software.

Dubbing Suites

You will have access to our full broadcast-standard dubbing suites, which are based on a multi-layered ProTools desk and can dub both film and TV with up to 120 simultaneous sound sources. We also have an ADR (Additional Dialogue Recording) booth and the ability to record Foley (additional live sound).

Meet our staff

The Birmingham School of Media postgraduate programme staff offer a breadth and depth of experience that will be essential to your study experience. The teaching team include Ayo Oyeleye, Paul Bradshaw, Pete Wilby, Sue Heseltine, and Dave Harte. Many of the course activities involve other members of the school's research teams, and you will work on case studies drawn from our research and industry projects.

Dr Ayo Oyeleye

Senior Lecturer in Media Studies; Programme Director, Postgraduate Media Programmes

Ayo is a senior lecturer in Media Studies and Programme Director of the Media Postgraduate Programme Matrix. He is an active Academic Researcher and has broad experience of teaching undergraduate and postgraduate studies. Prior to joining the university in 1991 he obtained his PhD at the Centre for Mass Communication Research, University of Leicester in 1990. Ayo’s current teaching and research interests are in the areas of international communication, Diaspora studies, global journalism, and communication for social change.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295