Diversity and the Media MA

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UKPASS code: 046244 | Institution code: W50 | Attendance mode: Part-time day/evening

Start: 16 September 2014
Duration: 2 years

Campus: Harrow

All prices quoted are for the academic year 2014/15 only. Alumni discount.
Price per 20 credit module:

Home/EU: £695.00
Overseas: £1,390.00

View course-specific entry requirements

You should possess, or be expecting, a good first degree (equivalent to at least an Upper Second or a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA ) of 3.00) from a recognised university and/or have relevant professional experience. Particular consideration will be given to mature applicants.

You must be able to write and speak fluent English. If English is your second language you should have a score of at least 6.5 IELTS overall with a minimum 6.5 in the writing element. The TOEFL equivalent is 600 overall in the paperbased test (PBT) and 92 in the TOEFL internet-based test (IBT ), including at least 20 in the writing element.

Applicants may additionally be asked to write 500 words on a topic assigned by the University. As far as possible, telephone interviews are conducted before offers of admission are made. In these, the interviewer looks for evidence of interest in and commitment to the study of communication, as well as analytical skills.

View standard entry requirements

This highly innovative new course (developed in collaboration with the Media Diversity Institute) will give you the opportunity to study and research the main ways in which social scientists analyse the role of the mass media in the social construction, representation and understanding of difference and social diversity and get a critical understanding of the social and media structures and journalistic practices that impact upon these processes.

The course combines a portfolio of theory modules aimed to develop your knowledge and critical understanding of the processes of managing and making sense of cultural diversity, key issues in intercultural communication and of various aspects of the sociology of news with a number of practice-oriented modules intended to give you first hand experience in the practice of inclusive journalism.

Drawing upon this unique combination of rigorous theoretical engagement and specialist practical training, this course is designed to equip you with a comprehensive conceptual/theoretical grounding and the practical skills to engage in responsible media coverage of diversity, to practice culturally informed and inclusive journalism and to develop a career (whether practical, strategic, or research-based) involving understanding and responding to the challenges of social diversity.

In addition to their programme of studies, we work hard to ensure that MA Diversity and the Media students are offered opportunities to gain valuable experience with media and NGOs whose work is relevant to their programme of studies and enhances their employability after graduation. We have established partnerships with the Media Diversity Institute, TAG International Development and The Prisma/The Multicultural Newspaper which offer paid or unpaid internships that give our students the opportunity to work in the UK or overseas or to contribute to the production of media content. In the past our students have also gained experience by participating in the Pearson Diversity Summer Internship Programme and other similar schemes. We place particular importance to such opportunities as these help our students to build upon their academic and practical work and further develop the skills that will enable them to embark on their chosen careers. 

You can choose one of two routes for the award: the Dissertation Route or a Practice Route culminating in a final project.


A major 15,000-word piece of independent original research on a topic agreed with your supervisor and related to the political, economic, cultural and/ or sociological factors which shape the practices and outcomes of mass media, including media texts and the audience reception of them.

Final Project

An independent in-depth practical project, which involves researching, compiling and presenting your own TV or radio documentary, website or print journalism work, together with a self-reflective, critical analysis (7,000 words) that will demonstrate the skills and techniques gained during the course. Please note that all the information contained herein is subject to approval.

Course content

Semester one

Core modules

Approaches to Social and Cultural Diversity

The module examines the various theoretical attempts to make sense and deal intellectually with social and cultural diversity, from assimilationism to liberal universalism, integration theories, liberal multiculturalism and the various strands of multiculturalism. It examines the concepts of pluralism, universalism, cosmopolitanism, tolerance and respect as they have developed in various theoretical contexts and assesses their implications in contemporary politics and culture.

Option modules

Introduction to Inclusive Journalism

This module examines the practice of contemporary journalism and its role in shaping a democratic and inclusive society. The module introduces students to relevant theoretical perspectives as well as provides a critical examination/discussion of journalistic techniques of information gathering and analysis, journalistic norms and values and basic principles of inclusive media formats. It employs practical journalistic exercises, personal examination, critical media analysis, and scholarly study to increase awareness and critical engagement with the issues surrounding reporting of diversity in society.

Issues in Journalism: Freedom of Speech, Ethics and Democracy

This module provides a critical examination and discussion of the impact of ethical, human rights and other issues that confront journalists around the world, in a variety of social, political and economic contexts.

Media Production Skills

The module will give you a basic understanding of the structures and practical abilities needed in news journalism. You will develop individual skills in study, research and writing and team skills in designing and writing for the web. The module aims to enable you to develop a critical understanding of how print, radio and TV operate; develop news-writing techniques for different media platforms; to learn individual and team skills across different media platforms; to acquire knowledge of ethical considerations faced by journalists; and to design and develop a website in teams.

Reporting Diversity: Migration, Race, Ethnicity

This module introduces the students to key theoretical perspectives on the cultural production and representation of race, ethnicity and migrancy and discusses the role of the media and journalistic practice in such processes. It provides a context for critical thinking and discussion about multi-racial, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural issues associated with contemporary news media. Students will study and research the stereotypes of people of colour, various ethnic groups, refugees and immigrant communities in the mainstream news media. The module will look at the influence, responsibility, and power of journalism in reporting diversity issues. The purpose of this module is to encourage student journalists to see, look at, report and reflect on the society they live in.

Semester two

Core modules

Approaches to Media and Communication Research

This module will introduce you to the main methods of communication research. We shall look at how to undertake selective quantitative and qualitative methods, understanding and exploring the different stages of the social science research process, from a definition of a research hypothesis, to data collection and analysis. We shall also look at the theoretical reasoning behind different methodological approaches to media and society, in particular the politics of social research.

Understanding and Managing Diversity in the Media

The core module for the practice route of the Diversity and the Media MA looks at the various ways in which our understanding of diversity and difference has impacted on the way in which media models, institutions and professionals engage with social and cultural diversity. It focuses on different national media policy frameworks and media cultures, it examines the meaning of the melting pot, cultural mosaic and salad bowl metaphors and their operationalisation by the media and looks at various media institutions and their responses to social diversity. This module is offered as an option in the dissertation route.

Option modules

Faith/Religious Diversity in the Media

This module presents and critically evaluates debates around social and faith/ religious diversity, awareness of the issues surrounding the reporting of faith and faith communities in their societies. Through a series of lectures and workshops/seminars, it will encourage you to reflect on the various aspects of media and journalism practice in relation to religion and faith.

Media Audiences

This module begins with an overview of media audiences, and goes on to analyse audiences and media institutions, passive/ active audiences, media influence and effects, and ethnography and media audiences. The second part of the module is devoted to discussions of media and identity, fans, diasporas and new media audiences.

Reporting Diversity: Sexuality, Age, Disability

This module will present information for critical thinking and discussion about media representation of age, gender, sexual orientation and disability. The module will discuss ways of improving journalism practice in order to bridge social and cultural divisions. You will study and research the stereotypes of youth and the elderly, men and women, gay and lesbian communities and people with disabilities. The course will look at the influence, responsibility, and power of journalism in reporting these diversity issues.

Sex, Violence and Politics

You will analyse the impact of different forms of censorship and regulation on changing patterns of social, political and cultural expression in the media. You will gain an understanding of regulation and censorship in a variety of different political and cultural circumstances, and of the social forces which shape regulation for politics, taste and decency. You will also consider the effects these have on media audiences, and assess how ideas about the nature of audiences and public opinion change and are used politically.

Sociology of News

A critical study of the news media in the context of current society; this module examines different aspects of how news is created, disseminated and consumed. Followed by a dissertation (Dissertation route) or a final project (Practice route).

The University is constantly improving its offer to students. It is intended that some changes, such as practice options under new course titles, may be approved between printing this brochure and enrolment for this course. You are therefore advised to look at the website for updated details.

Associated careers

This course is designed to attract a mix of new graduates, often with a media-related degree or work experience, and people who have already worked in journalism, but want to enhance their understanding of social diversity and their skills in the area of inclusive journalism. It is suitable for existing media practitioners, as well as students who want to pursue a career in the media, national and local government, IGOs and NGOs or who intend to embark on a relevant research/academic career. It will be a valuable asset for civil servants and local authority staff, NGO workers working on immigration, equality, social inclusion and cohesion and community regeneration whose duties involve communication and media work.

Related courses

  • Communications Policy MA
  • Global Media MA
  • International Media Business MA
  • Journalism MA
  • Journalism International MA
  • Media and Development MA
  • Media Management MA
  • Public Relations MA

Length of course

One-year, full-time or two years, part-time day



This course is designed to attract a mix of new graduates, often with a media-related degree or work experience, and people who have already worked in journalism, but want to enhance their understanding of social diversity and their skills in the area of inclusive journalism.

It is suitable for existing media practitioners, media relations, communications and advertising,professionals; students who want to pursue a career in the media, or communication/media work with national/local government; NGOs or IGOs focusing on migration, equality, social inclusion, cohesion, community relations, development and community regeneration and anyone who intends to embark on a relevant research and academic career.

Work experience

Combining theory and practice, our highly innovative course is designed to provide a rich learning experience for its students and to equip them to enter employment In various areas of the media (print, broadcast or online, or communication or media work with national/local government, NGOs focusing on immigration, equality, social inclusion, cohesion, development and community regeneration or further study towards a research degree.

In addition, students are offered opportunities to gain valuable experience with media and NGOs whose work is relevant to their programme of studies and enhances their employability. These include the Media Diversity Institute, TAG International Development, The Prisma/The Multicultural Newspaper and the Pearson Diversity Summer Internship Programme. We firmly believe that such opportunities help our students to build upon their academic and practical work and further develop the skills that will enable them to embark on their chose careers.


At Westminster, we have always believed that your University experience should be designed to enhance your professional life.We place as much emphasis on gaining skills relevant to the workplace as on learning the academic discipline that you are studying.

Obtaining a placement, part-time or vacation job while you study will provide you with extra cash and help you demonstrate that you have the skills employers are looking for.

In London, there is a plentiful supply of part-time work - most students at the University of Westminster work part-time (or full-time during vacations) to help support their studies.

Visit the employability section on our site

Career Development Centre

Our Career Development Centre can help and support you throughout your study and after graduation. You can use our comprehensive Online Vacancy Service to find part-time, placement, voluntary and graduate opportunities.

Our website provides comprehensive information covering topics such as events, job searching, CVs and applications. We organise presentations, networking events with employers, professional bodies, alumni and other organisations to help you with your career planning.

Our careers consultants are experienced personal development trainers and offer a range of self-development workshops to improve your job seeking strategies, to enhance self-confidence and provide self-marketing techniques.

We offer support for students and recent graduates to obtain volunteer placements and also for those interested in developing their enterprise skills.

We can help you to:

  • Find part-time / vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • Explore how to develop the skills that employers are looking for
  • Plan your career development
  • Identify your career options
  • Market yourself effectively in CVs, application forms and interviews.

Find out more about the Career Development Centre

Career options in your subject area

We offer targeted careers information for this course. View the range of careers options that are available to you after you graduate:

Visit the Career Development Centre's 'finding work in your subject area'

Visit the Prospects 'options with your subject'

Our team of careers consultants work closely with Faculty departments to deliver tailored employability support including subject specific workshops, employer events and careers information, advice and guidance.

This is a unique and highly innovative course combining theory and practice. Students taking the MA in Diversity and the Media are part of a bustling, multicultural academic department with access to the expertise of the Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI) (ranked as the leading media and communications research centre in the UK) and of the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) (an NGO working internationally to encourage and facilitate responsible media coverage of diversity with unparalleled expertise in training media practitioners, developing resources and promoting best practice worldwide). Our course team is diverse in terms of our expertise and specializations and comprises well known and highly experienced lecturers, journalists, trainers and other practitioners. We are determined to provide the best possible learning experience to our students and to equip them with critical as well as practical skills to use in a range of careers that require sensitivity towards, and awareness of the complex issues arising out of social and cultural diversity.

Study in the city

If you study at the University of Westminster, everything that London has to offer is on your doorstep.

Our central London campuses are ideally located for the city's fantastic learning institutions including libraries, archives and museums, as well as opportunities for shopping, eating out, enjoying London's nightlife or just simply relaxing.


After choosing your course, one of your biggest decisions will be where to live, and we aim to make that choice as easy as possible. Whether you want to apply for our Halls of Residence or live in private housing, we can help you to find the right accommodation.

Fees, funding, bursaries and scholarships

In recent years the University of Westminster's scholarship scheme has been the largest university scholarships scheme in the UK, and our Scholarships Department won the Times Higher Education inaugural Award for Outstanding Support for Overseas Students.

Personal tutoring

All students on courses of a year or more and who are registered for more than three modules will be allocated a personal tutor.

Your personal tutor will be there to support you from induction onwards, helping you to integrate into the University, academically and socially, at an early stage. They will be able to give you advice and support on academic and personal matters affecting your study, as well as developmental advice through regular individual and group tutorials.

Language support

Polylang is a University-wide programme through which you can study a language as a free choice module.

Personal advice and counselling

While most students overcome any problems with help from friends, family or a personal tutor, the University's free counselling and advice services are there if you need them.

International Westminster

With one of the UK's largest international student populations, the University of Westminster has plenty of experience in giving you the help and support you need to make the most of your time with us.

Study Abroad and Summer School programmes

Westminster's Study Abroad programme has been running for more than 15 years, and is one of the largest in the UK – each year we welcome hundreds of visiting students from universities all over the world.

If you are already studying outside the UK, the programme offers you the opportunity to study with us for one or two semesters, or for a period in the summer.

Sport and recreation

The University has extensive sport and recreation facilities, with a sports hall and gym at Harrow, a state-of-the-art gym at Regent Campus, and the University sports ground by the River Thames at Chiswick.

Students' Union

University of Westminster Students' Union (UWSU) aims to make sure you have the best university experience possible by providing a range of activities and support, from sports clubs to society groups, educational advice and social events.

Information evenings

Upcoming postgraduate information evenings

Date Title Location
11 June 2014 Postgraduate information evening - 11 June 2014 Cavendish, Marylebone, Harrow, Regent

View subject specific information evenings

About the faculty

Faculty of Media, Arts and Design

We are one of Europe's leading centres for higher education for the creative industries.

Find out more about our faculty

School of Media  Arts and Design

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