Digital Media and Society (MA)
- Duration: 1 year
- Mode: Full time
Why study this course
This course explores the role of new digital media in shaping and transforming society. It investigates how media audiences become producers, how citizen journalism and digital culture change established norms and practices, how social media and peer production affect politics and business and how technology is related to power and social change.
Explore the digital society
You will investigate online politics and internet regulation, digital culture and the digital economy, datafication and digital rights.
You will develop your own research project with renowned researchers from our Digital Media and Society Group and our Data Justice Lab.
The emergence of new digital communication platforms has had significant impacts. Audiences are transforming into media producers; new business models are emerging; social media campaigns create new forms of politics; digital culture highlights practices of sharing and participation; and data collection and analytics affect an increasing part of our lives.
This offers new possibilities for digital citizens, but it also raises new questions regarding classic notions of privacy and freedom of expression, and it renders information and digital infrastructure a key resource.
MA Digital Media and Society addresses current challenges of online communication and internet studies. It enables you to develop specialist knowledge in areas such as social media, big data, citizen journalism, digital culture, the creative industries, internet governance, and digital rights. It also provides a theoretical and methodological grounding in media and communication studies.
This course provides you with a thorough understanding of the current transformations and with the analytical skills to investigate digital media in the context of social, political and economic change. We ask how online communication is shaped by users, states and businesses, and how our society is, in turn, affected by digital media.
This course draws on the strength and diversity of Cardiff University’s staff, giving you a unique opportunity to work with academics whose research explores issues such as citizen journalism, online activism, big data, internet surveillance, internet governance and digital rights.
You can get involved in our Research Group Digital Media and Society and thus become part of a dynamic research environment.
Please note this course focuses on academic research and does not provide extensive practical training.
Typically you will need to have either:
- a 2:2 honours degree in any subject
- a university-recognised equivalent academic qualification
- or relevant professional experience evidenced by references and/or professional qualifications.
English language requirements
IELTS with an overall score of 7.0 with 6.0 in all subskills, or an accepted equivalent.
Other essential requirements
You will also need to provide:
- one academic reference
- a personal statement which does not exceed 300 words and covers the following:
- Why do you want to study digital media and society?
- Why do you want to study at Cardiff?
- What are your career aspirations?
We allocate places on a first-come, first-served basis, so we recommend you apply as early as possible.
We will review your application and if you meet the entry requirements, we will make you an offer.
Find out more about English language requirements.
Applicants who require a Student visa to study in the UK must present an acceptable English language qualification in order to meet UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) requirements.
You are not required to complete a DBS (Disclosure Barring Service) check or provide a Certificate of Good Conduct to study this course.
If you are currently subject to any licence condition or monitoring restriction that could affect your ability to successfully complete your studies, you will be required to disclose your criminal record. Conditions include, but are not limited to:
- access to computers or devices that can store images
- use of internet and communication tools/devices
- freedom of movement
- contact with people related to Cardiff University.
This is a one-year full-time course, combining core and optional modules. Over the course duration you will study modules totalling 180 credits.
The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2021/22 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2021.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Putting Research into Practice 1||MCT533||20 credits|
|Putting Research into Practice 2||MCT534||20 credits|
|Understanding Digital Media||MCT544||20 credits|
|Debates and Concepts in Media and Communications||MCT565||20 credits|
|Datafied Society||MCT593||20 credits|
|Project Based Dissertation||MCT444||60 credits|
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Media Law||MCT467||10 credits|
|Global Crisis Reporting||MCT494||10 credits|
|Reporting Health and Science||MCT498||10 credits|
|Electoral Behaviour, Public Opinion and the Media||MCT535||10 credits|
|Social Media and Politics||MCT540||10 credits|
|Media and Political Understanding||MCT566||10 credits|
|Public Relations, Offline and Online||MCT567||10 credits|
|Digital Economy, Digital Labour||MCT568||10 credits|
|In the Editor's Chair||MCT588||20 credits|
|Reporting Business, Finance and Economics||MCT589||20 credits|
|Citizen Media: Digital Storytelling||MCT590||20 credits|
|Communicating Causes||MCT591||20 credits|
|EMERGING JOURNALISM||MCT592||20 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.
Learning and assessment
How will I be taught?
You will be taught through a mixture of lectures and seminars, which complement the academic nature of the course.
How will I be assessed?
You will be assessed through a range of formative and summative assessments throughout the course. The main method of assessment on this programme is course work.
How will I be supported?
You will be allocated a Personal Tutor, for help and support with academic and pastoral needs, who is available when needed to discuss progress, provide advice and guidance.
You will be supported by the Student Support services in the school and through wider university resources.
You will have regular tutorials with programme directors/personal tutors as well as the opportunity to meet with module co-ordinators on request.
Feedback is provided at each assessment point for summative assessments. Formative feedback is provided in practical sessions and throughout teaching.
What skills will I practise and develop?
In addition to a thorough understanding of media and communication studies, and specifically the current trends of online and digital media, you will acquire research skills that are applicable for academic study and other professions.
- skills in content and discourse analysis
- social network analysis
- interviews and focus groups
- relevant digital analytical tools.
You will develop competence in undertaking rigorous analytical work, producing well researched essays to deadline, and engaging with key contemporary debates.
Students from the UK
Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland
EU, EEA and Swiss nationals starting in 2020/21 will pay the same tuition fee as UK students for the duration of their course.
If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss national, unless you qualify for UK fee status, tuition fees for 2021/22 will be in line with the fees charged for international students. UKCISA have provided information about Brexit and tuition fees.
Students from the rest of the world (international)
More information about tuition fees and deposits, including for part-time and continuing students.
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.
We’re based in one of the UK’s most affordable cities. Find out more about living costs in Cardiff.
Graduates of MA Digital Media and Society are employed in a range of occupations, including the non-profit sector, digital business, online journalism, and regulatory institutions. They take on leading roles in social media campaigns, internet policy, human rights organisations, journalism, and creative industries.
As an academic course focusing on critical analysis, this programme also provides a perfect starting-point for PhD research and prepares you for careers in research institutions, both at university and other public or private institutions.