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Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) Public Relations Diploma

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  • Introduction
  • Key details
  • Entry requirements
  • Fees
  • Modules
  • Careers

- QMU has a long history of teaching the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Diploma and remains the only Scottish Institution to deliver it.
- QMU is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR).
- At QMU you will be taught by some of the world’s best known PR academics such as Jaquie L’Etang and Magda Pieczka as well as professionals with a depth of PR experience.
- Through our intensive workshops you will build a network of your own peers which will aid your continuing professional development.

CIPR Recognised Course logo

This course, developed by the CIPR and recognised as the benchmark for professional practice in public relations by the private and public sectors, offers practitioners a real opportunity to develop their professionalism - both by reflecting critically on their current practice and by focusing on the very hands-on teaching of strategic PR planning and its role in the achievement of broader organisational objectives.

It is ideal for people wanting to develop their professional public relations expertise at a number of different stages in their career. Typical students include:

- experienced journalists who need to develop their knowledge of organisations and strategic planning in order to facilitate a move into public relations;

- ambitious practitioners who need to take time to reflect critically on their practice in light of latest thinking and theory in order to develop their career and

- graduates who need to quickly gain an in-depth knowledge of the debates, practices and critical thinking within the profession to help them gain enough understanding to practice professionally.

This course provides PR practitioners with the knowledge and understanding of theory and practice to develop as effective and efficient professionals. You will understand the practice of public relations as a strategic management function and will develop planning expertise as well as being encouraged to analyse existing practice from a critical perspective. You will benefit from sharing experiences and developing a professional network of colleagues in similar situations.

The individual project that forms part of the course offers you the opportunity to work with a supervisor over a number of months to produce a well-researched piece of work focusing on an area of your choice. Students often choose to devote this opportunity to help develop or improve specific work projects or to develop their expertise in a particular area of public relations practice

EXIT AWARDS: CIPR Diploma. Graduates are also awarded 45 credits towards QMU's MSc Strategic Communication and Public Relations

Delivery: Block attendance at QMU supported by online learning

Single Modules: It is possible to study single modules

Duration: Part-time: 1 year

Start date: September

Application deadline: none

Teaching, learning and assessment: On campus teaching comprises a variety of approaches including lectures, workshops, case study, group work and input from senior practitioners and QMU academics. Work is set and contact maintained between teaching blocks through online discussions. Your performance will be assessed through a combination of examinations, reports and projects.

Teaching hours and attendance: Module 2.1 Public Relations Principles: 2nd, 3rd October, 13th, 14th November 2015
Module 2.2 Planning and Management: 29th, 30th January, 11th, 12th March 2016
Module 2.3 Personal Skills and Development (reflective practice): 8th January, 6 May 2016,
+ ongoing individual supervision May - July.

Links with industry/professional bodies: Students on the course are eligible for student membership of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and, on graduation, can upgrade their membership to full or associate status depending on professional experience.

- CIPR Advanced Certificate in Public Relations
- CIPR Internal Communication Certificate plus one year’s full-timeemployment in PR*
- postgraduate professional qualification in a related discipline (e.g.CIM diploma), plus one year’s full-time
employment (or equivalent part-timeemployment) in public relations*
- degree in business/marketing/ management/communication studies, plus one year’s full-time employment in PR
- any other UK degree plus two years full time employment in PR* NCTJ Diploma plus either five years’ journalism experience or three years’ full time employment in PR*
- two years’ full-time employment in public relations*, and the CAM Advanced Diploma in Marketing Communication
- LCCIEB 5 3rd Level subjects, including PR, Marketing, Advertising, Principles & Practice of Management, plus two years’ experience in PR
- four years’ full-time employment in public relations* and five GCSE passes, one of which must be in English Language.

International: Those whose first language is not English must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the language - spoken and written - to an International Language Testing System
(IELTS) band score of 6.5 or equivalent.

Home/EU - full-time: £2800

Scholarships: - More information about scholarships for international students

Funding Information for International Students:
Visit the International section of the website.

Course Fees:
Visit the Fees section of the website. -
Graduates of the University who hold a verified QMU undergraduate or postgraduate award and who are admitted to a postgraduate award of QMU will be eligible for a 10% discount on the published fees.

Sources of Funding:
Visit the Funding section of the website.

PR Theory and Practice / PR Planning and Management/ Reflective Practice

The modules listed here are correct at the time of posting (June 16), but are subject to change. In the event that modules have to change, QMU will seek to use reasonable endeavours to ensure that there is no detrimental impact to students.

The CIPR Diploma is recognised as the benchmark for professional practice in public relations by employers in the private and public sectors. It helps participants to develop or diversify their careers by fostering a strategic approach to managing public relations, as well as extending knowledge of areas such as internal communications, corporate culture and research. QMU graduates have gone on to progress their careers in a number of ways - graduates occupy a
wide range of senior positions.

Case study:
Jan Gjerdevik, Consultant, Proactima
My first employer after leaving QMU took me on principally due to my MSc PR - they especially appreciated that I had undergone a programme that, in depth, applied theoretic approaches to practical challenges in the field of PR. I was soon put in charge of developing a new communication strategy for the organisation and then promoted to lead the entire implementation process as communication director. I’ve now moved into the consultancy sector and advise top management in both public and private sector on reputation risk, crisis communication and communication strategy. Again I was taken on much because of my academic background.

Katrine Pearson, Managing Director, 3x1 Public Relations
I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the MSc PR course and combining it with full time employment was much more manageable than I had thought thanks to the scheduling of the classes and support from staff. Having that extent of theoretical knowledge to back up my practical experience helped boost my confidence and stood me in good stead for career progression.


further information:

0131 474 0000 or
Emma Wood
+44 (0)131 474 0000

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last modified 11/11/2015
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