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BAJournalism, Media & Communications & Economics

Why this course?

Our BA degrees in Humanities & Social Sciences are initially broad-based. In Year 1 you'll study three subjects, including your chosen subject(s).

Journalism, Media & Communications

Today’s media industry expands beyond traditional print and broadcast journalism. It includes professional bloggers and vloggers, freelance writers and editors, podcasters, people working in entertainment TV, radio, or film, creators of video games and interactive apps, promoters of ideas and products, and many others.

The media industry now is as diverse and exciting as it has ever been, and offers tremendous opportunities for fun, successful and diverse careers.  

The most successful professionals in today’s media are not only highly skilled in reporting, writing, editing and pitching their material, but they are also excellent communicators online and offline, and problem-solvers. They are innovative and entrepreneurial, bold and curious, open-minded and collaborative. These are also some of Strathclyde’s core values, which guide our own teaching, research, and public engagement.

Pursuing the BA in Journalism, Media & Communication will engage you in useful learning in a broad professional context, which includes a critical understanding of the media industry, while acquiring technical and professional skills in journalism, communication, information design and management, and using them in the dynamic media market of Glasgow and beyond. It will also allow you to take a second subject, which will enhance your expertise and university experience even further. 

Degree Structure

The full-time BA joint Honours degree is four years. All students are admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a BA degree at the end of Year 3 if they have achieved the required standard.

Course structure

Distinct practical and conceptual strands run through the whole programme, which is based on media industry expectations and enhanced by the research expertise of our staff.

Year 1  

All students take one core required class per semester in year 1, which introduces them to the larger field of journalism, media, and communication (semester 1) and to essential skills of journalism reporting and writing (semester 2).

Year 2

In the second year of the course, students must take two required classes and one option, which will enhance students’ conceptual understanding of the field and strengthen their practical skills, plus will introduce them to digital media.

  • News Reporting  and Writing (required)
  • Journalism, Media & Communication: Theories & Methods (required)
  • Digital Media: Histories, Theories, Practices (option) * students can take this class or another interdisciplinary option within the HASS faculty  
Year 3

In third year, students can choose from various option classes, which build on their practical skills and introduce more advanced conceptual topics, which are based on our staff’s research specialisms.

Option classes will vary from year to year, but may include the following: 

  • Feature Writing
  • Law for Journalists
  • Journalism and Popular Culture
  • Communicating  Politics: Truth, Legitimacy, Participation
Year 4 (Honours)       

In the Honours year, students again can choose from a variety of specialised practical and conceptual option classes. You can also choose between an academic dissertation in journalism, media or communication, or a practice-based final project. The final year is designed to help students enhance their professional profile for whatever they plan to do after graduation: whether pursuing employment in the media and communication field, entering the graduate job market in the private/public sector, or staying on for further study at post-graduate level.  

Option classes will vary from year to year, but may include the following: 

  • Dissertation (academic or advanced practical project)
  • Media and Health
  • Gender Issues in the Media
  • Journalism and Popular Culture
  • Digital Communication and Society
  • Working for and with the Scottish media
  • Ethical Issues for Journalists: Controversy, Responsibility, Care
  • Digital Tools & Skills in Journalism

Course awards

We're ranked number one in the UK for Communication and Media Studies in the Complete University Guide 2019.

Student Competitions

Every year students from our programme win nominations for their work at the Scottish Student Journalism Awards. Many also win prestigious nation-wide scholarships and grants to conduct research on various topics, and industry placements in various media organisations in Glasgow and beyond.

Guest lectures

Our strong relations with the media industry, third sector and government organisations in Glasgow and Scotland allow us to host many external speakers as guest lecturers in various classes or as extracurricular talks and events on campus. We also organise field trips to newsrooms in Glasgow, such as BBC, STV, The Herald, Radio Clyde, etc. and work continuously with students on ideas for future professional events.

Student activities

Our students apply their skills in various ways beyond the classroom through student societies, volunteering for events on campus, and working at university offices. They staff and often run the campus newspaper Strathclyde Telegraph, run the industry-focused Byline Club, the podcast society, the photo club, etc.  

Postgraduate study

We offer these taught masters degrees:

Masters degrees can be a first step to a PhD or help with career and personal development. We welcome overseas students, including visiting students.

We also offer various research degrees, including an innovative MRes in Creative Writing.

Economics

Economics aims to understand the activities of the different agents in the economy – consumers, producers and the government – and how they all fit together.

Our degree will give you the ability to explain complex data in simple terms to different audiences. You’ll also develop excellent mathematical, statistical and problem-solving skills.

What you'll study

Year 1

The first year of study looks at consumers and industries, with markets, market failure and the role of government, unemployment and inflation. No previous knowledge of economics is assumed but the class is also suitable if you have studied the subject before.

Year 2

You'll take core classes in Microeconomics & Macroeconomics and choose from a number of optional classes.

Year 3

As a third-year student, you will study a combination of core and optional classes to develop the foundations laid in Years 1 and 2 with a view to Honours study.

Year 4

Optional classes complement the areas of microeconomics and macroeconomics. You'll also write a dissertation.

Course content

Year 1

Journalism, Media & Communications

Compulsory

Introduction to Journalism, Media & Communication

An introductory conceptual class on these topics, it will provide a wide overview of the media, journalism and the communication fields. Key contemporary issues in journalism, media and communication will be introduced and discussed. 

Introduction to News & Features

A practical introductory class on journalism reporting and writing. Students will learn the basic rules of reporting, interviewing, writing news and features, and editing them. The specifics of each format of writing will be emphasised. Assessments include writing real-life stories on topics chosen by students.

Economics

Introduction to Economics
The purpose of this class is to provide you with a balanced introduction to economics which will be at once self-contained and lay the foundation for further study in economics and more generally. The work of the class will be based on a programme of systematic directed reading, supplemented by tutorials, using group projects and in-class short answer tests as cumulative assessment.

Year 2

Journalism, Media & Communications

Compulsory

News Reporting and Writing

A practical intermediate class focusing on journalism skills related to news writing. Students explore news reporting and writing in more depth, including how to work with numbers, how to interview and write about vulnerable people and how to conduct research online. Assessments are real-life news stories written on topics assigned by the instructor or chosen by the student.

Journalism, Media & Communication: Theories & Methods

A theoretical class, which takes an in-depth look at major theories of the field and related methods. The class will prepare students for research by exploring the main methods of studying the media. It will connect these methods to the major theories in journalism, media and communication, which aims to bring a deeper conceptual understanding of the field.  

Elective

Digital Media: Histories, Theories, Practices

This class mixes conceptual and practical elements with a focus on digital media. It explores the history of digital media and asks students to think conceptually about it, but also to gain relevant practical skills related to digital journalism & effective communication in the digital age.

Economics

Microeconomics 2
This is the core microeconomics class in second year. It aims to develop your understanding of: the concepts of consumer choice; the motives of the firm and profit maximisation; the market and its role in achieving equilibrium prices and quantities; and the implications of market power. It will introduce you to mathematical techniques commonplace in economics, giving you the ability to apply these in a wider economic context.  
Macroeconomics 2
The class builds upon the macroeconomic foundations established in the first year Economics class and both extends and deepens analysis. In particular this class will develop your ability to use key macroeconomic models and will also provide an introduction to the analysis of economic data.

Year 3

Journalism, Media & Communications

Elective

Feature Writing

A practical intermediate class focusing on journalism skills related to feature writing. Students learn about different types of features (e.g. profile, review, news backgrounder, column, travel or sport), in-depth reporting and writing.

Assessments are real-life features on topics chosen by students.  

Journalism and Popular Culture

A theoretical class exploring in depth concepts around popular culture, as related to journalism. The class analyses the construction of the popular, along with those historical, economic and cultural forces involved in deploying the popular to establish hierarchies of judgment and legitimacy.

Law for Journalists

A conceptual class covering Scots law for journalists. The class explores specific cases of media law in Scotland and how students need to conduct their reporting and writing in a way that respects those boundaries.

Communicating Politics: Truth, Legitimacy, Participation

A theoretical class on concepts and theories from political communication. The class will explore recent developments in politics, political communication and the media, and will discuss their implications for democracy.

Economics

Microeconomics 3
Adam Smith's hidden hand - markets result in efficient outcomes - doesn't always work. We seek to understand why through the study of market power, externalities and public goods, and then go on to apply these ideas to issues of education, healthcare provision and crime and punishment.
Macroeconomics 3
This class builds on the Macroeconomics you studied in second year by covering four topics in detail: (i) models of economic growth; (ii) the effects of macroeconomic policy in an open economy; (iii) the interrelationships between money growth, output, unemployment and inflation; and (iv) the implications of high government debt.

Year 4

Journalism, Media & Communications

Elective

Dissertation/Special Project (Semester 1 or 2)

Students can choose to do an individual project on a topic related to journalism, media or communication, which involves original academic or journalistic research under one-on-one supervision with staff. An academic dissertation involves individual scholarly research on a chosen topic. The special project is an extension of feature writing skills and will take those to a new level by requiring students to produce a much longer and more sophisticated portfolio of work.

Media and Health

The class mixes conceptual and practical elements for an in-depth look at the media’s role in society’s health and wellbeing. The class covers topics such as media coverage of disease and disability, chronic versus acute conditions, how the media shape the image of doctors, people with various conditions.

Gender Issues in the Media

A theoretical class, underpinned by feminist media studies, which explores gender issues in relation to media production, representation and consumption practices – both in relation to mainstream media and ‘alternative’ content and distribution strategies. This class explores how gender intersects with other structural inequalities such as race, class, sexuality, dis/ability and age.

Digital Communication and Society

This class explores the implications and futures of digital technology in communication. It incorporates the range of digital communication, from mediated conversation, through social media, to blogging and the production and distribution of video content. The importance of the digital environment for politics and the labour market is also explored.

Working for and with the Scottish media

A seminar class, which capitalises on staff’s relationships with media organisations, NGOs and government bodies in Scotland and brings professionals into the classroom for guest talks and discussions of professional nature. The class will help students with establishing professional connections in the media field and with getting an overview of the media landscape in Scotland.

Ethical Issues for Journalists: Controversy, Responsibility, Care

A conceptual class that builds on journalism practice and explores it from a theoretical perspective. The class explores the accountability systems used by journalists, both external such as IPSO and internal such as methods of self-censorship. Students examine a series of ethical dilemmas emanating from the concepts of truth and trust, taste and offence, privacy and intrusion and respecting people.

Digital Tools & Skills in Journalism

A practical class on current software and online tools that enhance digital storytelling for journalists. It explores the changing nature of journalism in the face of rapidly advancing technological environment and asks a range of questions: how does the rise of information-driven society change journalistic practices? How do technological affordances help develop novel forms of storytelling? Which tools can develop and maintain professional presence on online platforms?  

Economics

Compulsory classes
Dissertation
The dissertation is an important part of the fourth year programme. Single Honours Economics BA students are required to submit a dissertation in Economics while Joint Honours BA students may submit a dissertation in Economics or in their other Honours subject.
Elective classes

Choose from this list

Microeconomics 4
Game Theory and Information Economics, the topics of this class, consider market failure resulting from two different sources: individuals pursuing their own self-interest at the expense of others; and information asymmetry which alters the way agents behave. Methods to alleviate these market failures will also be considered.
Macroeconomics 4
This class aims to provide you with the required tools to understand current macroeconomic issues, such as the interactions between the banking sector and monetary policy or the policy responses to the global financial crisis.  Throughout the class, the analytical usefulness of the theoretical models taught is illustrated with real-world examples.
Introduction to Econometrics
This class builds upon the empirical content of Macroeconomics 2 and further develops your ability to analyse economic data. In addition, this class lays the foundations for further study of econometrics at Honours level.
Economics of Firms & Industries
This class introduces you to different industry structures and studies the behaviour of firms within those structures.  The material builds on the study of the theory of the firm presented in Microeconomics 2 and provides a foundation for the study of industrial organisation at Honours level.
Industrial Economics
This course investigates the actions that firms in an industry might take to preserve their profit in that industry, and the implications that this has for competition policy and regulation. We take an analytical approach to the issues which will be supported by examining case studies and current events.
Applied Econometrics

In the third year econometrics class you’ll have learned about regression in both a cross-sectional data and time series data context. This class extends that knowledge in three ways.

First, for cross-sectional data, the class deals with regression techniques where the dependent variable may be restricted or limited in some way. In such cases, the regression model as taught in the third year class is not appropriate; this class develops models which are similar in spirit to the standard regression model, but can handle all of these cases.

A second purpose of Applied Econometrics is to develop regression methods which can be used when you have panel data - consisting of both cross-sectional and time-series dimensions.

Third, the class will build on the introduction to the econometrics of time series data developed in this class by developing two classes of models.

Financial Development & Economic Growth

This class gives a balanced view of the role of finance in promoting long-run economic growth, but also booms and busts. The nature and role of financial intermediaries will be introduced, and, afterwards, formally addressed in a simple aggregate growth model. Empirical evidence will be examined, before turning to the specifics of micro-finance. The importance of financial globalisation will also be investigated. Finally, the rest of the class will be devoted to deciphering the causes and consequences of the current financial crisis.

Behavioural Economics

Behavioural Economics offers alternative theories that merge psychological insights with economic theory and are based on experimental and other evidence, that attempt to provide a better explanation of real-world behaviour.

This class is concerned with exploring these new behavioural theories with the aim of providing you with an expanded toolkit with which to approach ‘real-world Economics’ that is based on the burgeoning Behavioural Economics literature that has emerged over the past two or three decades.

After studying this, you should be able to extend much of your previously-learned knowledge in Microeconomics in various directions that take into account more realistic ways of modelling how individuals behave.

Natural Resource, Environmental & Energy Economics

The class provides you with an introduction to natural resource, environmental and energy economics and policy. It focuses on the contributions of economics to understanding environmental, energy and resource problems, their causes, and the design of effective public policies to counteract them.

Assessment

Journalism, Media & Communications

Assessment methods include:

  • essays
  • portfolios
  • presentations
  • group work
  • reports
  • exams
  • reflective diaries

Economics

The majority of classes are assessed by a final exam. This mark is supplemented by one or more forms of individual and/or group coursework. In some cases, students can earn an exemption from the exam by achieving a specified coursework mark. Exams are normally held at the end of the semester in which the class is taught.

Students normally have one opportunity to be re-assessed for a failed class.

Learning & teaching

Journalism, Media & Communications

As a student, our learning and teaching aims to help you:

  • develop knowledge and understanding of the professional practices, skills and social contexts of the journalism, creative writing and communication industries
  • help you think and work critically and constructively
  • become a confident and responsible graduate, equipped to develop your potential throughout your career
Guest lectures

A programme of visiting speakers from the world of broadcasting, publishing and newspapers, including Gaynor McFarlane (BBC) and Alan Ramsay (Connect Communications) runs alongside the Literary Lunch, run by our Keith Wright Literary Fellow. This series showcases the best in Scottish writing, and features poets and novelists such as Liz Lochhead, James Robertson and Andrew Greig.

Economics

Teaching is given over two semesters in blocks of 12 weeks each. Methods include lectures, tutorials and seminars. As a student you will take part in team-based projects and make use of online teaching materials. Our industrial partners regularly assist in teaching and the assessment of student presentations.

Entry requirements

Minimum grades

Required subjects are indicated following minimum accepted grades.

Highers

1st sitting: AAAA (Higher English plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)
2nd sitting: AAAABB (Higher English plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)

Higher subjects

  • Classical Studies
  • Drama
  • Economics
  • French
  • Gaelic
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Italian
  • Modern Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious Moral & Philosophical Studies
  • Sociology
  • Spanish

We recognise a wide range of Highers, however, your profile must reflect a good grounding in essay-based subjects.

A Levels

Year 1 entry

Typical entry requirement: ABB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: BBB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)

Year 2 entry

Not offered

International Baccalaureate

36 (Maths SL5)

HNC/HND

Year 1 entry

HNC Social Sciences: A in Graded Unit; Maths National 5 B or equivalent
HNC Creative Industries: Media and Communication A in Graded Unit; Professional Writing A in Graded Unit
HNC Practical Journalism: A in Graded Unit

Irish Leaving Certificate

Subjects and grades as for Highers

Additional information

Personal statement

It is important to take care over your personal statement. We look for information about your academic and career interests, and your range of skills, abilities, and relevant experience. Your personal statement should show evidence you have a strong awareness and interest in the subject you are applying to.

Deferred entry

Deferred entry normally not accepted.

Applicants with Highers

Due to the high level of competition for the number of available places, it is unlikely that Conditional Offers will be made to anyone attaining less than AAB at the first sitting of Highers.

Admission to Honours

All students will be admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a Bachelor of Arts degree at the end of Year 3 of the programme if they have accumulated at least 360 credits and satisfied the appropriate specialisation requirements. For admission to the final year of the Honours course, a student must have achieved an approved standard of performance.

Widening access

We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

International students

Find out entry requirements for your country.

Degree preparation course for international students

We offer international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the entry requirements for an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

Fees & funding

How much will my course cost?

2019/20

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU
  • tbc
Rest of UK
  • £9,250

Assuming no change in Rest of UK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2017/18, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and Integrated Masters courses); MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on Integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.

International
  • £14,650

University preparation programme fees

International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Additional fees

Students taking the BA degree in Economics incur no additional charges.

Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my studies?

Students from Scotland and the EU

If you're a Scottish or EU student, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.

For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.

Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland

We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales

You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility. Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.

International Students (Non UK, EEA)

We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.

Available scholarships

We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.

Contact us

Apply

How to apply – 10 things you need to know

  1. All undergraduate applications are made through UCAS
    Go to the UCAS website to apply – you can apply for up to five courses.
  2. It costs £12 to apply for a course
    The cost is £23 for two to five courses.
  3. The deadline is 15 January each year
    This is the application deadline for most courses. However, please check the details for your particular course. View a full list of UCAS key dates.
  4. You might be asked to attend an interview
    Most of our courses make offers based on the UCAS application. However some might ask you to attend an interview or for a portfolio of work. If this is the case, this will be stated in the prospectus entry requirements.
  5. It’s possible to apply directly to Year 2
    Depending on your qualifications, you might be able to apply directly to Year 2 - or even Year 3 - of a course. Speak to the named contact for your course if you want to discuss this.
  6. There’s three types of decision
    • unconditional – you’ve already met our entry requirements
    • conditional – we’ll offer you a place if you meet certain conditions, usually based on your exams
    • unsuccessful – we’ve decided not to offer you a place
  7. You need to contact UCAS to accept your offer
    Once you’ve decided which course you’d like to accept, you must let UCAS know. You don’t need to decide until you’ve received all offers. UCAS will give you a deadline you must respond by.

    You’ll choose one as your firm choice. If the offer is unconditional or if you meet the conditions, this is the course you’ll study.

    You’ll also have an insurance choice. This is a back-up option if you don’t meet the conditions of your first choice.
  8. You don’t need to send us your exam results (Scotland, England & Wales)
    If you’re studying in Scotland, England or Wales, we receive a copy of your Higher/Advanced Higher/A Level results directly from the awarding body. However, if you are studying a different qualification, then please contact us to arrange to send your results directly.
  9. We welcome applications from international students

    Find out further information about our entry and English language requirements.

    International students who don’t meet the entry requirements, can apply for our pre-undergraduate programmes.

    There’s also an online application form.

    For further information:
  10. Here’s a really useful video to help you apply

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