Journalism, Communications and Politics (BA)

Entry year

2017 2018

You will analyse and reflect upon changes to both politics and policy driven by the growth of social media, the communications industry and the 24/7 news cycle.

You will analyse and reflect upon changes to both politics and policy driven by the growth of social media, the communications industry and the 24/7 news cycle. In recent years, institutional politics have become more mediatised, and political leaders are now media-driven and speak in soundbites. 

Political campaigning is no longer limited to pre-electoral periods and public relations strategists and political consultants have become more and more central to politics. These links are affecting policy too, both at the national and the international levels. 

The spread of the internet and the development of social media has also brought changes to the relations between citizens and their political representatives, and constitute a new platform for citizens’ political deliberation, and for the organisation of activists, protesters, and new social movements (often at a transnational level). This new course aims to critically examine these and many other issues.

While this course is both challenging and academic in nature, it does NOT provide vocational journalism training.

Distinctive features

  • a varied range of modules, learning activities and types of assessment
  • a flourishing Journalism Society as well as a student media centre
  • careers weeks and workshops to ensure your readiness for the ‘world of work’
  • Cardiff is home to a lively media industry and to the Welsh Government and the National Assembly for Wales, providing excellent opportunities for work experience.

Key facts

UCAS CodeJ323
Next intakeSeptember 2017
Duration3 years
ModeFull time
Typical places availableThe School typically has 125 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School typically receives 1000 applications.
Admissions tutor(s)

Entry requirements

Typical A level offerABB excluding General Studies.
Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offerA minimum of ABB to be achieved from 3 A levels or 2 A levels and the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer33 points, to include 6 in English.
Alternative qualificationsAlternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of Journalism, Media & Cultural Studies and Cardiff School of Law and Politics admissions criteria pages.
English Language requirementsIf you are an overseas applicant and your first language is not English, please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our accepted qualifications.
Other requirements

The BA in Journalism, Communications and Politics is a three-year, full time, modular course. You will take 120 credits per year split equally between your subjects.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2017/18 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2017.

Year one

You will study 60 credits in each school.

You will be introduced to ideas and approaches in lectures and carry out more applied and team-based work in seminars.

Year two

All modules in year two are optional modules. You will be expected to develop research protocols, on your own and in groups, and will begin to experiment with methods of information gathering and analysis.

By the end of year two, you will be equipped to conceive, design, research and write up your dissertation in year three.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Media and GenderMC210720 credits
Media, Power and SocietyMC211620 credits
Social Media, Politics, and SocietyMC261620 credits
Yr Ystafell Newyddion 1MC261720 credits
Yr Ystafell Newyddion 2MC261820 credits
Birth and Death and Marriage in the Media: Researching the "Personal" in Cultural Context"MC262120 credits
Film and Cultural TheoryMC262220 credits
Critical Issues in Television ProductionMC262420 credits
Celebrity CultureMC262720 credits
Fashion Futures: Technology, Innovation and SocietyMC262920 credits
Internet GovernanceMC263020 credits
Media, Globalisation and CultureMC263120 credits
Public Relations and Political CommunicationMC263220 credits
Tele-FictionsMC351720 credits
War, Politics and Propaganda IIMC354920 credits
Doing Media Research: Approaches and MethodsMC355120 credits
Reporting Science, the Environment and HealthMC359520 credits
Media Law Year 2MC360020 credits
Media and DemocracyMC360320 credits
Gender, Sex and DeathPL922020 credits
International Relations of the Cold WarPL922120 credits
Colonialism, GPE and DevelopmentPL922220 credits
Digital Technologies and Global PoliticsPL922320 credits
Global GovernancePL922420 credits
EU PoliticsPL922520 credits
Comparative Politics: Protest, Power and PopulismPL922620 credits
Global Political EconomyPL922720 credits
Technologies of WarfarePL922820 credits
From Espionage to Counter-terrorism: Intelligence in Contemporary PoliticsPL922920 credits
The Power and Politics of Research MethodsPL923020 credits
Critical War and Military Studies: An IntroductionPL923120 credits
O'r Groegiaid i GymruPL928520 credits
Credoau'r CymryPL928620 credits
British Politics since 1945PL928720 credits
International Security - Concepts and IssuesPL928820 credits
Justice and Politics: Contemporary Political TheoryPL929120 credits
Global JusticePL929220 credits
Political Thought from Marx to NietzschePL929320 credits
Political Thought from Machiavelli to RousseauPL929420 credits
International Law in a Changing WorldPL929920 credits
Modern Welsh PoliticsPL938820 credits

Year three

In year three you will choose at least two modules from each School and may opt to write a dissertation in your particular area of interest.

The range of teaching methods becomes more diverse and involves more complex and challenging assignments. You will carry out independent research and apply theoretical ideas and approaches to practical or analytical work.

Module titleModule codeCredits
DissertationMC310340 credits
Media LawMC321320 credits
Writing With Light: Histories of Visual MediaMC356620 credits
Mediating ChildhoodMC358520 credits
The Making and Shaping of NewsMC358920 credits
Spin Unspun: Public Relations and The News MediaMC359620 credits
The Creative and Cultural IndustriesMC360820 credits
21st Century British Television: Industry, Form and AudiencesMC361020 credits
Sport and the MediaMC361220 credits
Communicating CausesMC361620 credits
Understanding Media BusinessMC361920 credits
Reporting Conflict and the Civil SphereMC362420 credits
Palu am y GwirMC362520 credits
Stori Pwy? Cyfathrebu CymruMC362620 credits
Data PowerMC362720 credits
Reporting the WorldMC362820 credits
Social Movements and Digital MediaMC362920 credits
Media, Money and MarketsMC363020 credits
Devolution in Practice: Welsh Law and Politics Work PlacementPL931020 credits
Free Speech in a Multicultural SocietyPL931420 credits
International Politics in the Nuclear AgePL932020 credits
Africa in International Thought and Practice: Colonialism, Anticolonialism, PostcolonialismPL932120 credits
Global Environmental PoliticsPL932220 credits
Intelligence in Contemporary Politics: Bond, Bourne and the Business of SpyingPL932320 credits
Bombs, Bullets and Ballot-boxes: The Northern Ireland Conflict, 1969 to 1998PL932420 credits
Political Economy: Rationality in an Irrational World?PL932520 credits
International Conflict and PeacePL932720 credits
Popular Culture and World PoliticsPL932820 credits
Building an Appetite for Justice: Food, Ethics and Politics in a Changing WorldPL932920 credits
China in the WorldPL933020 credits
War and SocietyPL933120 credits
Cybersecurity: Diplomacy and Digital Rights in Global PoliticsPL933220 credits
The Politics of Violence and KillingPL933520 credits
US Government and PoliticsPL937420 credits
Cyfiawnder Byd-eangPL937720 credits
Cenedlaetholdeb, Crefydd a Chyfiawnder: Hanes Athroniaeth yr 20fed Ganrif yng NghymruPL937820 credits
Parliamentary Studies ModulePL938020 credits
International Relations DissertationPL938520 credits
Politics DissertationPL938620 credits
Modern Welsh PoliticsPL938820 credits
European Mind in the 20th CenturyPL939020 credits
Global International Organisation in World PoliticsPL939120 credits
The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

How will I be taught?

You will benefit from teaching led by experts in the fields of journalism and media studies on the one hand and political science and Government on the other. You will be taught by staff who are researchers or practitioners in the areas of journalism and communications or politics and international relations.

We offer a supportive learning environment, where you are enabled to acquire a range of skills and a wealth of specialist knowledge. Our courses foster intellectual skills, such as critical thinking, close analysis, evaluating evidence, constructing arguments, using theory and the effective deployment of language in writing and in debate. We also help you gain experience in team working, independent research and time management.

You will be taught both by lecture and seminar. Lectures provide an overview of the key concepts and frameworks for a topic, equipping you to carry out independent research for the seminars and to develop your own ideas. Seminars provide an opportunity for you to explore the ideas outlined in the lectures.

Seminars usually consist of about 15 students and the seminar leader (a member of the teaching team). Seminars may take various formats, including plenary group discussion, small-group work and student-led presentations.

How will I be supported?

As well as having regular feedback from your personal tutor in each course, you will have a reading week each semester for guided study and a chance to catch up on assessed work, reading and revision.

You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.

How will I be assessed?

A range of assessment methods are used, including essays, examinations, presentations, portfolios and creative assignments.

Essays and examinations are used not only for assessment purposes but also as a means of developing your capacities to gather, organise, evaluate and deploy relevant information and ideas from a variety of sources in reasoned arguments. Dedicated essay workshops and individual advice enable you to produce your best work, and written feedback on essays feeds forward into future work, enabling you to develop your strengths and address any weaker areas.

The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and to acquire detailed knowledge about a particular field of study, to use your initiative in the collection and presentation of material and present a clear, cogent argument and draw appropriate conclusions.

Feedback

We’ll provide you with frequent feedback on your work. This comes in a variety of formats including oral feedback during tutorials, personalised feedback on written work, feedback lectures, generic written feedback and feedback on tutorial performance

What skills will I practise and develop?

You will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both discipline specific and more generic ‘employability skills’, which will allow you to:

  • read, analyse and synthesise complex academic texts
  • analyse different media texts, including word, image and sound
  • communicate clearly, concisely and persuasively in writing and speech
  • learn from constructive criticism and incorporate its insights
  • work both independently and as part of a team, developing a collaborative approach to problem-solving
  • carry out various forms of independent research for essays, projects, creative productions or dissertations
  • work to deadlines and priorities, managing a range of tasks at the same time
  • use IT programmes and digital media, where appropriate
  • take responsibility for your own learning programme and professional development.

School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies

In 2013/14, 96% of our graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

Many graduates progress onto our postgraduate journalism, public relations and communications masters degrees and from there to various jobs in the media.

Recent examples of entry level jobs include: content author, digital media executive, social media policy adviser, research intern, editorial intern, reporter, PR executive/assistant, policy intern, campaign executive, teaching assistant and also project manager.

Having progressed from entry level jobs our alumni now hold numerous media and administration roles such as: production journalist (Telegraph Media Group), magazine editor (The Independent), senior press officer (Guardian News & Media), film producer (See Saw Films) and digital campaigns & community manager (Ruder Finn).

School of Politics and International Relations

In 2013/14 over 95% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

Politics at Cardiff is a respected recruitment pool for a variety of employers within this sector with the Public Service Ombudsman for Wales, the Department for Education, the UK Border Agency and a range of political parties all recruiting from the last graduating year.

Outside of the political sector, the degree is of interest to employers in both the public and private sectors, with graduates taking up management training opportunities within EY, Enterprise Rent A Car, Zurich Insurance and King Worldwide.

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2017/18)

Tuition feeDepositNotes
£9,000None

Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.

Financial support may be available to individuals who meet certain criteria. For more information visit our funding section. Please note that these sources of financial support are limited and therefore not everyone who meets the criteria are guaranteed to receive the support.

Students from outside the EU (2017/18)

Tuition feeDepositNotes
£15,080None

Tuition fees for international students are fixed for the majority of three year undergraduate courses. This means the price you pay in year one will be the same in years two and three. Some courses are exempt, including four and five year programmes. Visit our tuition fee pages for the latest information.

Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?

You will not need any specific equipment.

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