Journalism BA(Hons)

UCAS Code
P500
Location
Penryn Campus
Length
3 years full-time
Direct line
01326 213730
Admissions
admissions@falmouth.ac.uk
Status
Subject to validation during this academic year

BA(Hons) Journalism at Falmouth, ranked in the top ten such courses in the Guardian league table, has been freshly redesigned for the next generation of journalists - multimedia storytellers skilled in producing impactful text, audio, video and photography on every digital platform to pressing deadlines.

The cutting-edge curriculum is accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) and the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) plus we are in discussions with the Broadcast Journalism Training Council (BJTC). This triple kitemark will give you a real competitive edge when hunting for your first journalism, PR and communication jobs. On an equal par with employability is enterprise, aimed at empowering you to become an entrepreneurial, as well as effective and reflective, practitioner.

How is the course taught

A distinguishing feature of this degree is the abundance of practical workshops, alongside news days, lectures, seminars, group and 1:1 tutorials. You'll be on campus for a minimum of 12 hours a week during term time, supplemented with at least 24 hours of self-directed study and journalistic assignments each week.

What you'll do

Year 1

The first year is foundational. You will be eased into what is recognised as a challenging transition to trainee journalist. A distinguishing feature of this degree is that it isn't only lectures and seminars: There is also an abundance of practical workshops. You learn by doing, and critically reflecting, on what you do.

All the fundamentals of journalism are addressed from the outset, from the language of news and opinion writing to politics and media law. You'll acquire a multimedia toolkit and learn shorthand, a skill that remains relevant and useful in the digital age. You'll also visit a working newsroom here in Cornwall.

  • News Reporting 1
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Multimedia Methods
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Journalism & Communications in Context
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Blogging & The Personal Voice
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Politics & Law for Journalists
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Journalism & Communications Ethics
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)

Year 2

The second year is transformative, and testing. This is when the NCTJ puts you through your paces by setting tests in which you must skilfully and speedily apply the skills and knowledge you have acquired in the areas it deems most important in a deadline-driven industry: Reporting, law, public affairs and shorthand (a traditional note-taking skill that is not taught within any of the degree modules but in separate classes running parallel to the programme so as not to impede the progression of some students who may not be able to master it).

  • News Reporting 2
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Magazine Content & Creation
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Features & Long Form
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Applied Media Law & Public Affairs
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Advanced Multimedia Methods
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Journalism & Communications Research
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)

Year 3

We finish with a flourish at Falmouth, enabling you to experience what it is like to work in a real multimedia enterprise, both on campus and with leading media corporations around the world.

You undertake industry placements and must pitch for freelance commissions to both in-house and external commissioning editors. Also, you get a chance to specialise in everything from crime to culture, fashion to foreign news. You also produce a dissertation, which is not just the culmination of your academic learning but another excellent chance to network with potential employers in the news media and related communications fields.

  • Multimedia Enterprise
    (40 credits or 20 ECTS)
  • Dissertation
    (40 credits or 20 ECTS)
  • Multimedia Storytelling
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Literature & Journalism
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)
  • Specialist Correspondent (Students pick two specialisms from: Culture; Crime & Courts; Foreign; Fashion; Science & Technology; Environment; Heath & Social care)
    (20 credits or 10 ECTS)

Facilities

Our facilities include a well-equipped digital newsroom with news feeds and 25 workstations with professional scriptwriting and editing software. These are supplemented by TV and radio studios and a comprehensive range of DV cameras and audio recording devices. Students are encouraged to make the most of all these over the three years by working not only on course assignments but also on extra-curricular and externally sourced projects.

Staff

Head of Journalism is Rob Brown, a former media editor of the Independent and TV reporter, who is proud of having studied or taught journalism in all five nations on these islands - including the newly re-recognised nation of Cornwall.

William Barclay draws on over a decade's experience with leading international news agencies including Reuters to teach news reporting and sub-editing plus sports journalism and international news.

Tom Ingate, a freelance photographer and experienced educator, teaches visual literacy and multimedia on both the journalism and press & editorial photography courses.

Julia Kennedy lectures in media ethics and regulation, alternative journalism and zines and is completing a doctorate on medical communications in the digital age.

Anna Kiernan, a freelance cultural commentator and previously editor with two leading London publishing houses, teaches both journalism and creative writing.

Dr Hayes Mabweazara is an internationally recognised researcher, specialising in digital media and journalism practice in the developing world and is on the editorial boards of three academic journals.

Sue Norcross is a highly experienced shorthand tutor who has long experience of teaching this crucial note-taking skill to the standards required by the National Council for the Training of Journalists.

Anne Taylor has been a reporter, feature writer and editor for a range of national newspapers and magazines such as the Guardian, the Independent, Daily Mail, Top Sante and BBC Good Health.

Professor Jason Whittaker is a distinguished academic scholar and industry practitioner who has published widely on magazine production and web 2.0 journalism.

Experience you'll get

  • You'll gain a range of essential and specialist journalism skills through a careful blend of vocational training and academic study.
  • We place an emphasis on visual awareness as well as word weaving, offering modules in multimedia, print and broadcast journalism.
  • Work placements and course trips provide an opportunity to contextualise your learning and offer valuable hands-on experience.

Assessment

  • Continuous assessment via practical journalistic assignments, portfolios plus academic essays and presentations
  • Deadline-driven, in-class tests set by the NCTJ and concentrated in stage 2 of your studies
  • Final year freelance portfolio, as well as an extended critical dissertation.

Careers

Whether you aspire to become an intrepid news reporter or an acerbic cultural commentator, this cutting edge course will equip you with the core skills and the critical intellect needed to break into the media business and rise rapidly up the editorial executive ranks, or flourish in closely related sectors, such as media relations and online communications.

Potential careers include:

  • Journalism/ Photojournalism
  • PR/Communications for public and private sector
  • General news and features
  • Social media strategy
  • Magazine production
  • Web content manager

Careers of previous students include:

  • Producer: Nickelodeon Television
  • Editor: FHM magazine
  • Staff Writer: Front magazine
  • Senior reporter: Restaurant magazine
  • PA: Universal Music

Work placements

This year, our students have undertaken work placements with the following:

  • Rocksound Magazine
  • Frank Public Relations
  • BBC Radio Cornwall
  • You Magazine (Mail on Sunday)
  • Food Magazine
  • MPAD Communications Truro
  • PitPilot Magazine
  • Amateur Photographer
  • Ford UK
  • Wyvern FM
  • Motorcycle News
  • Plymouth Herald
  • Western Morning News
  • Mojo Magazine
  • Top Gear Magazine (India)
  • Friflyt Magazine (Norway)
  • Henry's House Public Relations
  • CNBC European Business
  • FourFourTwo
  • Talk Back Thames TV
  • Conde Nast Traveler Magazine
  • Borkowski Public Relations
  • Tate St Ives Press Office
  • Falmouth Packet
  • Red Shoe Communications (Singapore)
  • Eden Project Press Office
  • Giorgio Armani Press Office

Interview and selection process

Interview dates will be published soon.

Student mentor scheme

Falmouth's student mentor scheme matches new starters with a second year student, to help you settle in and find your feet. Our student mentors are now on Facebook. To chat to a mentor about the course, living in Cornwall or what to expect at Falmouth, check out the Journalism group. You'll need to join the group before you can post.

If you don't have access to Facebook please email your name and proposed course to: studentmentors@falmouth.ac.uk

For more information about the application process, portfolios, interviews and selection days, please contact our admissions team: admissions@falmouth.ac.uk