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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.