University undergraduates studying in the Monica Partridge building. Friday November 5th 2021.Megan Mahoney (blue top); Jane Israel (denim jacket); Sara Bintey Kabir (yellow top) and Khaqan Khan (red jumper).

International Media and Communications Studies BA

University Park Campus, Nottingham, UK

Course overview

Communication defines us as human beings.

At Nottingham. you’ll be given the chance to think critically about the rapidly changing world of media and communication in a global context. From the legacies of European Empires, to the transformative power of new media technologies, you’ll develop a critical understanding of media and communication in a wide range of cultural contexts and political systems around the world.

Drawing on a range of approaches (such as sociology, communication theory, politics and cultural studies), you’ll explore:

  • technology - what we use and how it shapes communication 
  • content - what we say and how other people understand it
  • impact - how individuals, groups and countries engage with different forms of media and communication
  • industry – how media and communication work as an economic sector
  • history – how past knowledge and experience inform current media and culture
  • politics - how media empowers individuals and groups and helps change society
  • ethics - the informed choices we all make in our communications and daily life
  • sustainability – how the industry can help tackle global challenges such as climate change and women’s rights

 

Indicative modules

Mandatory

Year 1

Studio project 1A

Mandatory

Year 1

Studio project 1B

Mandatory

Year 1

Media and Democracy

Mandatory

Year 1

Ways of Seeing, Hearing and Reading

Mandatory

Year 1

Institutions and Practices

Mandatory

Year 1

Global Media and Cultural Flows

Optional

Year 1

Sustainability 1a

Optional

Year 1

Sustainability 1b

Mandatory

Year 2

Studio project 2A

Mandatory

Year 2

Studio project 2B

Mandatory

Year 2

Encountering Culture: Media, Art and Screen Experiences

Mandatory

Year 2

Objects and Technologies

Optional

Year 2

Journalism and News Media

Optional

Year 2

Persuasive Communications and Political Belief

Optional

Year 2

Communicating Identity

Optional

Year 2

British Empire and its Cultural Legacy

Optional

Year 2

Cultures of Collecting and Collections

Optional

Year 2

Travelling Stories - Narrative Locations

Optional

Year 2

Emotions, Affect and the Senses

Optional

Year 2

Arts Work Placement Module

Mandatory

Year 3

Studio Project - Level 3

Optional

Year 3

Irrational Media

Optional

Year 3

Media, Memory and the Disaster

Optional

Year 3

Digital Labour

Optional

Year 3

The Cultural Sector Now

Optional

Year 3

Professional Practice: Festivals

Optional

Year 3

Censoring Stories

Optional

Year 3

African and Afro-Diasporic Visual Cultures: 1900s to the present

Optional

Year 3

Playful Experiences

Optional

Year 3

Protest, Dissent and Civil Society

Optional

Year 3

The Outmoded

Optional

Year 3

Sound and Everyday Life

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About modules

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer, but is not intended to be construed or relied on as a definitive list of what might be available in any given year. This content was last updated on Friday 21 June 2024.

You will be taught via a mixture of large-group lectures and smaller, interactive seminars.

You will also be taught through tutorials and supervisions. These are
one-to-one meetings or discussions with an academic tutor.

Support

All students are assigned a personal tutor at the start of each academic year. Your personal tutor oversees your academic development and personal welfare.

 In the year one, your personal tutor will teach your weekly seminars on our 'Learning History' module. In year three, your personal tutor will teach your weekly special subject seminars. As a result, our students often develop highly supportive and collaborative relationships with their personal tutor.

Peer mentoring

All new undergraduate students are allocated a peer mentor, to help you settle into life at Nottingham. Find out more about the support on offer.

Teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Placements
  • Workshops

Your assessments will vary according to the topic studied. The majority of
assessment is by different types of essay. However, other forms of assessment
may include:

  • exams
  • individual or team presentations
  • group projects
  • student-led seminars
  • interpretation of document sources or images
  • poster presentations
  • reviews and reflections on the process of study
  • independently-researched dissertation

Assessment methods

  • Essay
  • Examinations
  • Presentation
  • Portfolio (written/digital)
  • Dissertation
  • Reflective review

 

You’ll have at least the following hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and workshops, tutorials and supervision. 

  • Year one: minimum of 12 hours
  • Year two: minimum of 9 hours
  • Final year: minimum of 7 hours

Your tutors will also be available outside these times to discuss issues and develop your understanding.  

We reduce your contact hours as you work your way through the course. As you progress, we expect you to assume greater responsibility for your studies and work more independently. 

Your tutors will all be qualified academics with PhDs. Some of our postgraduate research students may also support teaching after suitable training. You will have a personal tutor from the Department of History and a joint-honours adviser from the Department of Classics and Archaeology.  

As well as scheduled teaching, you’ll carry out extensive self-study such as:

  • reading, researching and note taking
  • analysing primary sources
  • planning and writing essays and other assessed work
  • collaborating with fellow students

As a guide, 20 credits (a typical module) is approximately 200 hours of work (combined teaching and self-study).

 

You'll be well placed to start a career in the media, communication, and cultural sector with knowledge of:

  • different types of content
  • how media contents are used and presented
  • the impact these contents have in different contexts

You'll also have a critical understanding of the creative and cultural industries (and how they operate). This will allow you to explore multiple career pathways.


The degree will also build a wide set of skills for success across different sectors, such as:

  • ability to conduct and report on in-depth research
  • think critically and communicate effectively
  • operate independently and as part of a team
  • construct reasoned arguments and be able to defend them

The skills you develop will make you:

  • resilient - as the nature of work changes you can adapt
  • flexible - you can choose across different sectors as you develop and grow and opportunities arise

Find out more about skills gained and career destinations of International Media and Communications students.

Key fact

Only 14% of employers state that specific degree subjects are a selection criterion. (Institute of Student Employers recruitment survey 2019)

 

Average starting salary and career progression

78.8% of undergraduates from the Faculty of Arts secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual starting salary for these graduates was £23,974.

HESA Graduate Outcomes (2017 to 2021 cohorts). The Graduate Outcomes % is calculated using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.


Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.


The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

 

University undergraduate student Cole Pearce studying in Nightingale Hall accommodation's library, University Park. November 5th 2021.

The department has really helped me throughout my years at university by giving me useful and constructive feedback on various different projects as well as helping to guide me through my dissertation process, which can be quite daunting at times! 

Daisy Slater

International Media and Communications Studies and Spanish BA

Open Day June 2022