BA (Hons)

Media Studies

Blending creative and technical ability in media production

P300UCAS code 3yrsfull time 1yrplacement option

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

Our Media Studies course is versatile, dynamic and responsive. It focuses on the things that help form our everyday understanding of the world, covering a wide range of media with emphasis on patterns of media ownership, digital convergence and social uses of media. Topics include mobile phone culture, media fandom, globalisation, gendered magazines, video games, political persuasion, advertising and racial stereotyping.

You are encouraged to put your ideas into practice via courses in media writing, video production and script writing. You can also study abroad or earn credits for Professional Experience in the second year.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Learn about the present, past and possible futures of Media around the world.
  • Be taught by specialist staff with wide-ranging research interests.
  • Learn by doing – access media production in various forms including video production and media writing
  • Create your own film script or write a TV drama.

What opportunities might it lead to?

We teach people who want to work in and with the Media. The transferable and creative skills you’ll develop during your time with us will be highly regarded in the jobs market.

Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:

  • media research
  • public relations and marketing
  • journalism
  • publishing
  • new media development

I would like a career in social media or PR and the skills I have learned on this course will help me with that. I've really enjoyed the PR module, its great experience for my chosen career path.

Elle Carrick, Year Three BA (Hons) Media Studies student 2016

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Key Facts

UCAS Course Code:
3 years full time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
The UCAS tariff for 2017 entry has changed. See how this affects your tariff score A LEVELS
104-120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels or equivalent. See full entry requirements

We accept UCAS points from other qualifications. See full details and English Language qualifications

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2016/17 entry: full time: £9,000 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £9,250 p/a*

International students
2016/17 entry: full time: £12,000 p/a**
2017/18 entry: full time: £12,600 p/a**

*Tuition fee may be subject to annual increase.
**Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 5566
School of Media and Performing Arts
Programme specification


Film, Media and Performing Arts

Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:

  • The creative atmosphere that encourages students to explore their own interests and ideas
  • The excellent facilities which you will have access to
  • The lively mix of creative practice and critical understanding, ensuring that knowledge and learning is stimulating, cutting-edge and relevant to the wider world

Browse all courses in Film, Media and Performing Arts

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

Year one

The first year covers several central topics and begins your training in the skills and techniques you’ll be using throughout your course. You will be taught by specialist staff with strong research interests across a range of media.

Core units in this year include:

  • Advanced Media Research
  • Understanding Film Production
  • Contemporary Media Events
  • Introduction to Media Studies
  • Media Study Skills
  • Media Writing: Critical Reviews and Features

Year two

This year allows you to start to specialise in the areas that interest you most. Choose to focus on specific media forms, practise your production skills and spotlight on certain topics.

Core units in this year include:

  • Print Media
  • Screen Media

Options to choose from in this year include:

  • Approaches to Popular Culture
  • Marketing Movies
  • Media Networks: Exploring Digital Culture
  • Media Writing for Public Relations
  • Media Writing for the Press
  • Media Writing for the Screen and Radio
  • Media, Culture and National Identity
  • Production Introduction - Script and Shooting
  • Professional Experience
  • Researching Genre
  • Social Issues in the Media
  • Student Enterprise
  • Transmedia Narratives and Strategies

Year three*

In the final year you will have the freedom to tailor your studies to your particular areas of interest. You will choose from a selection of optional topics ranging from comedy to British drama and you’ll have the choice between a dissertation or production/writing project to round off the course.

Options to choose from in this year include:

  • British TV Drama and Society
  • Comedy Culture and Form
  • Cultures of Consumption
  • Media Fan Cultures
  • News, War and Peace
  • Practical Video Project
  • Representing Science in the Media
  • Researching Animation
  • TV Talk Shows
  • The Entertainment Industries
  • Documentary Screens

*This course is also available as a 4-year sandwich (work placement)

Placement year

Between the second and third years of study you will have the option to undertake a work placement year. There are two exciting options for the placement year:

  • Professional/industrial placements – work for a company or organisation on a professional placement year

We offer a range of salaried professional placements as part of your degree.  You can gain invaluable work experience to help you prepare for your graduate employment.  The University can provide you with advice on how to secure a work placement that matches both the needs of your degree and your future career plans, as well as giving you useful links and contacts.

  • Self-employed placement year – set up and run a business on your own or as a group

Interested in running your own business instead? We also offer students the chance to start-up and run their own company for a year as an alternative to the traditional work-based placement. Students who choose this option often start-up their companies with fellow, like-minded students, working together, as a bona fide operation, in an attempt to build a successful venture. The Faculty and University provide mentoring and support throughout the year.

To find out more visit our Employability and Enterprise page.

Teaching and Assessment

The greatest feature of our course is that it allows for your intellectual freedom and choice. By attending workshops, seminars, lectures, practical performance sessions and simulations, you’ll approach the exciting discipline of media studies in innovative ways using a range of texts and current media artefacts.

How are you assessed?

Assessment takes many forms enabling you to demonstrate the variety of your skills and talents, including through:

  • essays
  • presentations
  • scripts
  • video productions
  • programme proposal/pitch
  • reports/magazine features
  • examinations
  • dissertation/project

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Monitor Facilities & Features

The Study Centre

A suite of rooms with a comfy seating area, desks where you can work, a printer, Mac workstations and access to the wireless network so you can log in using your own laptop. There are also several study rooms where you can rehearse or work on group projects.

Specialist Software and Equipment

You’ll have access to a range of current creative industry-standard software to put the skills you’ll be learning into practice. We have our own TV channel and radio station both with production studios kitted out with the latest equipment including Wacom drawing touch screens, a large 3D screen, video recording gear and a Virtual Reality (VR) room.

The Newsroom

Experience the excitement and pressure of an actual newsroom. Designed to industry-standard, we have Macs and specialist software, including QuarkXPress, InDesign and pre-press quality scanners. This facility provides first-hand journalism experience, as well as being a lively and engaging teaching environment.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Heemali Patel, BA (Hons) Media Studies student

There are plenty of media resources available and the staff are always on hand to help.

Heemali Patel, BA (Hons) Media Studies student

Budgeting for your studies

There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Recommended texts:
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.

General costs:
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.

Other costs to consider

There may be costs for items such as DVDs and MiniDV tapes for use on practical units of approximately £20 - £30. Material costs for individual project work may cost between £50 - £100.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Where next?
Where next?

This course is a great springboard to an array of creative and professional industries. On graduating you’ll possess sharp communication and research skills, as well as excellent writing and critical thinking abilities, alongside a good understanding of the contemporary media landscape.

Opportunities exist in organisations ranging from small, independent production companies to major studios. Some of our alumni have gone on to work for big names such as the BBC, Warner Bros and Universal Pictures International. Some also go on to do postgraduate research or short skills-based courses in various aspects of media production. Whatever your career plans, this course will ensure you have the versatility and employability to take on a range of job opportunities.

Roles our graduates have taken on include:

  • production manager
  • sound and vision engineer
  • film/video producer
  • advertising journalist
  • assistant publicist
  • PR and communications officer

Work experience

Employment-boosting opportunities
Employment-boosting opportunities

Here at the CCI’s Creative Careers Centre we are committed to improving your employability. Whether it’s placements, self-employed placements, internships, short-term work experiences, freelancing opportunities and volunteering, we will help you find valuable and relevant work experience to complement your degree. The experienced team is always on hand to offer advice on everything from producing high-quality applications through to preparation for a company assessment day.

Career planning

Career planning
Career planning
6.04 minutes

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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Our Open Campus Events are every Wednesday from 30 November 2016 - 25 January 2017

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