Postgraduate Taught

MSc Strategic Communication and Public Relations

This well-established course has a proven track-record in supporting students to achieve their aims. It offers flexibility, enabling you to tailor your learning to your own career aspirations, and the opportunity to learn from tutors with many years of experience in communication and public relations roles and who are widely published and continue to work in professional practice and undertake research.

In today’s complex, crowded, digitally interconnected and global world, those in communication and public relations (PR) roles need not only highly developed technical abilities but also strategic knowledge and competence. This course provides that balance. Students can tailor their learning to their career aspirations and can choose to undertake an industry placement.

 

Check out the bottom of the page for case studies and staff profiles.

 

Why QMU?

  • QMU offers an unparalleled balance in UK postgraduate courses of teaching in internal and external communication, as well as strategic communication, for the private, public and not-for-profit sectors.
  • We are recognised by the UK’s professional bodies - the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA).
  • Our teaching focusses on developing your skills as well as critical knowledge enabling you to feel confident that you are well prepared for a successful career.
  • You have flexibility to tailor your learning to your career aspirations selecting optional modules in areas of interest and choosing the focus for your final Dissertation/Project
  • You can gain practical experience through engaging with real life projects and choosing an industry placement.
  • Students with no practical experience learn alongside communication and public relations practitioner students in many modules. This enhances professional network building and develops a deep understanding of the application and relevance of theory to practice
  • We’ll support you in producing a portfolio to support your job searching
  • You can study part time as well as full time
  • Many of our teaching staff also work in industry and bring their experience to bear in their teaching
  • Many staff are also actively involved in ground-breaking research projects, present papers at international conferences, author key texts and regularly publish in academic journals.
  • We regularly involve guest speakers from industry in our teaching.
  • QMU delivers a suite of undergraduate, postgraduate and professional communication and public relations courses. This provides strength and depth to your learning experience with us and bring you into a wide community of learners.

About the course

In today’s complex, crowded, digitally interconnected and global world, those in communication and public relations (PR) roles need not only highly developed technical abilities but also strategic knowledge and competence. This course provides that balance.

Students can tailor their learning to their career aspirations and can choose to undertake an industry placement.

While students develop the specialist skills needed to communicate effectively across a range of media and digital platforms, they do this within a framework that emphasises strategic thinking and a critical stance, enabling them to make an effective, ethical and responsible contribution to their organisation.

The course is suitable for those who:

• want to start a career in communication and PR – you can do an industry placement (optional) and we’ll support you in developing industry relevant knowledge and skills, help you to produce a professional portfolio, and provide you with opportunities to meet, work alongside and network with current practitioners; or

• already work in a communication or PR role and want professional development - you can study part-time and tailor your learning to your own development needs; or

• aim to progress to a research career in communication or PR - members of QMU’s teaching team author key texts and regularly present at conferences all over the world.

Structure

To obtain a specific postgraduate award at QMU you must complete a number of credit bearing modules. You can opt to study for the full MSc, a PgDip, or a PgCert. Individual modules on this course can be taken on a standalone CPD basis and credits subsequently applied to a higher award.

 

 

Teaching, learning and assessment

Students learn from an academic team which includes internationally published researchers and practitioners with years of professional experience. In many modules students learn alongside and network with practitioners working in communication and public relations roles.

Teaching involves face-to-face and directed learning (normally delivered online) as well as your own self-directed activity.

Face-to-face teaching is delivered on campus. You can chose to undertake an industry placement. We are proud of our strong links with organisations that agree to be placement hosts. Core module assessments may include case studies, essays, projects, blogs, proposals, campaign materials and briefing documents of between 1000 and 5000 words. There is also a Dissertation (12000 words) or a Digital Communication Project (project plus 5000 words). Many of these can contribute to a portfolio to support your search for employment.

 

 

Teaching hours and attendance

Students take six 20 credit modules as well as the Dissertation/Project (60 credits).

Full-time students attend classes for two semesters and then submit their Dissertation/Project in August (September full-time starts) or April (January full-time starts). Part-time students normally attend classes for four semesters and then complete their Dissertation/Project. Our carefully designed delivery pattern provides continuous and frequent face-to-face teaching for full-time students. Part-time students benefit from a delivery pattern that requires attendance at intensive day blocks and which you can fit alongside other commitments. Your own timetable will depend on what you choose and whether you study full or part-time. The two semesters run from September to December and mid January to mid April. Assessments are mostly due at the end of each semester.

 

 

 

 

Links with industry/ professional bodies

QMU is recognised by the UK’s two professional associations - the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA).

 

Modules

PgCert - You must gain 60 credits from the following modules: Media Theory and Campaigning (20 credits)/ Strategic Internal Communication in a Digitized World (20 credits)/ Strategic Communication and Digital Practice (20 credits)/ Public Affairs (20 credits)

PgDip - you must complete all four modules listed above plus two 20 credit options. These may include a Communication Placement as well as a choice from a range of other modules.

 

MSc - In addition to the above, you will also complete a Dissertation (60 credits) or a Master’s Communication Project (60 credits).

NB students taking the Dissertation will normally be required to take a research module in one of the optional slots.

Specified module exemptions are awarded to applicants who already hold some CIPR diploma level awards and those who join the course from an established pathway.

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (May 2018) but are subject to change. In the event that modules do need to change, QMU will seek to use reasonable endeavours to ensure that there is no detrimental impact to the students. Please check the website for any updates.

 

Single module study

Register as an associate student to study single modules in areas of interest. Contact Sally Chalmers for more information.

Placements

There is the option to do a 20 day placement. If relevant, you can arrange to do this with your current employer. It is the student’s responsibility to secure the placement, but QMU provides support.

 

 

Careers

This course has a proven track-record in supporting students to achieve their career aspirations. Graduates have gone on to gain employment in communication and public relations in a wide range of organisations across the globe. The course has also provided professional development for those already working in consultancy and in-house roles and is a pathway to an academic career in the subject area.

 

 

Class sizes

Class sizes will depend on the modules chosen but will normally be between 15 and 30 students.

 

Entry requirements

Standard: Students will normally possess an honours degree or equivalent from a relevant subject area (eg Arts, Humanities or Social Sciences). Students without a traditional honours degree may be admitted (subject to interview) to the programme if they have other relevant qualification and appropriate work experience.

International: Where your honours degree has not been studied in English, you will be required to provide evidence of English language competence at no less than IELTS 6.5 and no individual component score below 6.0.

Accreditation of prior learning: Students who already hold some Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) diploma awards or who join the course from an established pathway from another institution may be exempted from specified modules

Interview: An admission interview (face-to-face or mediated) may take place to judge qualifications and/or experience, motivation and ability to learn independently. University regulations apply.

Key details

Exit awards: MSc (180 credits)/ PgDip (120 credits)/ PgCert (60 credits)

Delivery: On campus in short intensive blocks with some teaching delivered online

Application deadline: None

Application: Visit the course entry on our website and follow the ‘apply now’ link.

More information and contacts

Admissions or Sally Chalmers on tel: +44(0)131 474 0000.

Please Note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2018/19 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Postgraduate).

 

 

 

 

 

Course Overview

Delivery
On campus in short intensive blocks with some teaching delivered online
Duration
Full-time: 1 year; Part-time: 2-7 years
Start Date
September 2018
January 2019
Study Abroad
No
School
School of Arts, Social Sciences and Management
Division
Subject Area
Fees & Funding

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