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Media studies courses

Do you see yourself reporting breaking news, presenting a radio programme, using state-of-the–art equipment to edit a film or studying the impact of advertising or social media? If so, you could consider the wide range of media degree courses. Some courses focus on media and culture in society while others include practical elements, such as TV, film and radio production, scriptwriting or journalism. Research courses carefully - find the right mix of theory and practical skills for you.

Studying media studies at university

Example course modules

  • Screen media
  • Critical approaches to media
  • British TV drama and society
  • Cultures of consumption
  • Elements of visual media
  • Media audiences
  • Media ethics, compliance and sustainability
  • Media, society and power
  • Understanding media cultures
  • Power and resistance

Teaching hours / week

Average for this subject


Average for all subjects

The time you'll spend in lectures and seminars each week will vary from university to university, so use this as a guide.

More on studying and contact hours at uni

Who studies this subject

  • Female : 53%
    Male : 47%
  • Mature : 15%
    School leaver : 85%
  • Full-time : 98%
    Part-time : 2%

What students say about media studies

What you need to get on a course

Subjects you need

A-levels (or equivalent) usually required

  • English literature and language
  • Media studies

Useful to have

  • Psychology
  • Sociology

Application checklist

Here's a guide to what to expect from the application process - also check individual university entry requirements, as these may differ.

  • January application
  • October application
  • Personal statement
  • Portfolio
  • Interview
  • Entry test
  • Work experience
  • Audition

Personal statement advice

Your personal statement is a core part of your university application, and getting it just right takes time. Before you start work on yours, take a look at our five quick tips on writing a personal statement. We'll help you past that writer's block!

Career prospects

Sources: HECSU & KIS
The UK has a world-class media industry in film, print and broadcast media, worth billions to the economy, so it's hardly surprising that ambitious and talented graduates want to work in it. But be realistic – some parts of the industry have struggled during the recession and jobs are amongst the most competitive around. If you want to be a star in front of the camera or in print, you might want to look at other options. Media studies graduates are the most likely graduates to get into the media industry (in 2012, one in seven grads entering the media had a media studies degree) but they’re more likely to be directing, or operating sound or video equipment, or researching.
Professional and accrediting bodies:

Six months after graduating

Typical graduate job areas
  • Artistic, literary and media occupations

Longer term career paths

Jobs where this degree is useful

  • Video editor
  • Special effects technician
  • Sound recordist

Other real-life job examples

  • Public relations officer
  • Broadcasting production assistant
  • Multimedia designer

What employers like about this subject

A media studies degree will give you the opportunity to learn a range of subject-specific skills. They may include an understanding of the business models of media organisations; how media and culture influence one another and a practical grounding in different forms of media production, from print to audio-visual production. Transferable skills you can gain from media studies degrees include research skills, communication skills, team-working, time management, critical thinking, project management and self-motivation, and these skills are sought after by employers from industries such as film, publishing, television, public relations, radio, design and computing.