BA (Hons) Journalism
Journalism at USW rated top in Wales for learning opportunities, assessment, academic support, student voice and overall satisfaction. National Student Survey 2022
Do you want to change the world? Come and engage with the hottest topics, where the truth gets too easily lost in the fog of fake news. You’ll have the chance to cover the issues that interest you, whether it’s climate change, crime, sport, music, fashion, disability, racism, sexism, LGBT issues, poverty, politics, celebrity—anything where there’s a story to be told.
If you come to USW, from day one, you’ll be a working journalist. Your lecturers will help you get your best work published by professional media organisations. The course doesn’t just tell you about the theory of journalism, like our competitors in the capital – it teaches you all you need to know to actually do it, so that when you graduate, you can hit the ground running. Many of our students get employed by organisations like ITV and the BBC even before graduating.
You’ll learn to find and report news and specialist skills to produce stories for broadcast, online, print and multimedia. We have accreditation from the Broadcast Journalism Training Council, which regularly checks that we’re giving students the training they need to equip them in a fast-changing world. You’ll be using industry standard software, cameras, recording equipment and studios.
Alongside that you’ll get a rigorous academic education giving you the best chance of success in a tough market. We have excellent links with major media organisations including the BBC, ITV and Global Radio. Four weeks of work experience form a key part of this journalism degree.
We’re a modern university and our focus is on practical journalism – the balance of the course is roughly 80% practical and 20% theory. You’ll be building your portfolio with every piece of work you do.
There’s thorough teaching on media law and ethics, including court visits. Mobile journalism, or ‘mojo’, is a key element of the course with workshops on smartphone reporting and production for platforms including TikTok, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Live news days are the perfect opportunity to use the skills you’ve learnt, as you put together news programmes for TV and radio, as well as stories for newspapers and websites and social media.
Cardiff is a capital city, and we’re within walking distance of the Welsh Parliament (the Senedd), Cardiff Council, the Principality Stadium, Cardiff City Stadium, the Millennium Centre and a number of major music venues and film studios. You’ll find yourself interviewing a range of people, from Welsh government ministers to movie directors.
Our lecturers also work in the media industry, meaning they have up-to-date knowledge and skills. We study it, analyse it, and do it: our students, graduates and lecturers are driven by a passion for using the truth to transform lives. Join them, by joining our courses, on your first step to becoming a journalist or media employee.
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You will learn how to find, write, edit and produce news and features for the print media, radio, television, and the internet. To support this, you will learn about media law and ethics, plus the machinery of government, and learn how to apply this knowledge to your own journalism.
Year One - Journalism degree
Practical Journalism Introduction – You’ll learn how to find stories, go out to conduct interviews and start building a portfolio of your journalism work
Introduction to Broadcast Journalism – This follows on from Practical Journalism Introduction. Now you know how to find stories, you’ll be reporting and producing your own pieces for radio and TV news and learning how to present bulletins.
Journalism Law, Ethics and Regulation – This module will teach you what you need to know about media law such as defamation, privacy, copyright as well as the ethical issues you need to consider. You’ll also go out to report from court.
Public Affairs – It’s not always easy to understand the roles of UK, Welsh and local government. We’ll teach you who does what, and who to approach if you’re working on a story.
Newswriting – Learn how to tell stories in an engaging but accurate way. You’ll hone your writing skills using your own news stories.
Why Journalism Matters - This module explores what journalism is for and where it comes from, by looking at its history and development from the earliest days of mass market newspapers to the era of social media and fake news. Students learn about the expectations of journalism, and the controversies at its heart.
Year Two - Journalism degree
Journalism for Mobile and Social Media – People increasingly access news from their phones or the internet. In this module, you’ll learn how to produce engaging stories for online audiences and for social media platforms and you’ll use your own phone to film, edit and publish your stories.
Broadcast Journalism – You’ll learn what makes a news story work on radio and TV and the journalistic and technical skills necessary to film, edit, and script for broadcast.
Print and Magazine Journalism – You’ll have the chance to write your stories and design your pages using specialist page design software, and you’ll get to see your work in print.
Journalism Newsdays – Everything you’ve learnt will come together as you work with third year students in a live news environment. You’ll research, report, edit, and present news stories for radio, TV, online and social media platforms. Under the guidance of your lecturers and final year students, you’ll work in roles such as a reporter, camera operator, video editor. You’ll use industry standard software and present your programmes in professional standard TV and radio studios. These days can be high-pressured as everyone rushes to get stories finished in time, but they’re never dull.
Journalism & Society – This module teaches you about, and helps you to understand, the often difficult relations between the media, the people it serves, and sources of power.
Journalism & the Workplace – Work experience forms a vital part of your degree, and we’ll help you find placements through our agreements with ITV Wales, BBC Wales, Global Radio and our strong links with local and national newspapers, news websites and communications companies.
Year Three - Journalism degree
Major Journalism Project – This is your chance to take a story or issue which fascinates you and explore it in depth. You can choose to make a documentary for radio or TV, or you can write an extended newspaper or magazine feature.
Advanced News Production – This is a chance to build on your experience of working on newsdays in your second year. This time you’ll be in charge, taking on roles such as programme or online editor, chief reporter and programme presenter.
Further Law, Ethics and Regulations for Journalists – Learning the legal and ethical framework for reporting is one thing, but putting it into practice is another. This module allows you to apply what you’ve learned to real life situations to make sure you’re a safe and employable journalist.
Journalism Dissertation – An opportunity to look in detail at the important issues behind journalism in its broadest sense, from the impact of fake news to social media to celebrity reporting. The choice is yours!
Subject to revalidation
This course is subject to revalidation, this means it is under review as part of the University’s standard quality assurance and enhancement processes. Course and module content is indicative and may change through the revalidation process. As soon as the course is revalidated, the details will be confirmed and published on the University website.
In the unlikely event the course does not go ahead as planned, or is significantly amended, we will write to inform you. If this happens, we’ll help you to find a suitable alternative course either at USW or at another provider.
Our Journalism degree will be taught through lectures, seminars, practical workshops and simulations. About 80 per cent of your work will be practical.
You will be assessed by regular coursework throughout, as well as two law exams during the three years.
This Journalism degree is accredited by the Broadcast Journalism Training Council.
We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement
At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.
If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.
The entry criteria below reflect our standard entry requirements for the course for September 2023. However, all applications received by the University are reviewed holistically and individually. Entry criteria for September 2024 is changing and will be published on ucas.com from 8th May 2023. Entry criteria for September 2024 will be updated on our website from the end of October 2023.
We may make you a lower offer based on a range of factors, including your background (where you live and the school or college that you attended for example), your experiences and individual circumstances (as a care leaver, for example). This is referred to as a contextual offer and we receive data from UCAS to support us in making these decisions. USW prides itself on its student experience and we support our students to achieve their goals and become a successful graduate. This approach helps us to support students who have the potential to succeed and who may have faced barriers that make it more difficult to access university. Here is a link to our Contextual Admissions Policy.
Other qualifications and experience
We can also consider combinations of qualifications and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable. We can sometimes consider credits achieved at other universities and your work/life experience through an assessment of prior learning. This may be for year one entry, or advanced entry to year two or three of a course where this is possible.
To find out which qualifications have tariff points, please refer to the UCAS tariff calculator.
If you need more help or information or would like to speak to our friendly admissions team, please contact us here
Applicants in the UK
Selection for this course is based on a suitable application. If you do not meet the entry criteria you may also be required to attend an interview to help us assess your suitability for the course.
Applicants outside the UK
Selection for this course is based on a suitable application and submission of a portfolio of your work which the Course Leader confirms is suitable for an offer to be made.
Typical A-Level Offer
BCC - CDD (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).
Typical Welsh BACC Offer
Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).
Typical BTEC Offer
BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).
Typical Access to HE Offer
Pass the Access to HE Diploma with a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points
GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances
International Entry Requirements
In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an IELTS grade of 7.5 or equivalent in all four elements of reading, writing, speaking and listening.
However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.
We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.
Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course
August 2024 - July 2025 Fees
Full-time UK: TBC
Full-time International: TBC
At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.
Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.
As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment) *||£45||
Memory Card (1TB storage). Year 1
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment) *||£80||
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment) *||£30||
Annual cost of Newspapers/ Magazines
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment) *||£30||
Student NUJ Membership & press card (£30 for duration of course)
Optional field trips
Optional overseas media trip, subject to arrangement
|Kit (Uniform and Equipment) *||£250||
Smartphone capable of shooting stills and video
Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs
Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).
To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.
Apply via UCAS if you are a UK residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly.
International and EU students
Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK.
Our journalism graduates have found positions in TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, online publications and public relations, locally, nationally and internationally. Other graduates also use their skills to go on to teaching or social media marketing and promotional roles, while others have set up their own media companies. Job destinations include the BBC, ITV, The Times, S4C, Made in Wales TV, Boomerang, Indus, Media Wales, South Wales Argus, Sky Sports and Sky News, alongside many other smaller newspapers and PR companies.
Our Careers and Employability Service
As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.
This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.
Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.