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Journalism: News/Broadcast/Sport


School - School of Arts & Media

Subject area - Journalism

Start Date(s): September


MA (one year full-time)
PgDip (nine months full-time)

Fees 2018-19:

2019-20 fees will be displayed shortly.

UK - £7,560

International - £13,860

Full-time PgDip - £5,040

In Brief:

  • Study at our state-of-the-art MediaCityUK campus adjacent to the BBC and ITV
  • Learn from lecturers with strong journalism backgrounds and undertake placements in the industry
  • Receive a diploma from the National Council for Training of Journalists
  • Based at MediaCityUK
  • Work/industrial placement opportunity
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

This course has been designed to help you find challenging and rewarding work in journalism.

During your time with us, you will learn the skills that you will need to become an incisive, thoughtful and successful journalist.

As well as a general professional grounding in journalism, you will also be able to specialise in your second semester in print and online journalism, broadcast journalism or sports journalism, depending on which pathway you choose in your second semester.

Upon graduation, you will be awarded a PgDip or MA degree and will have had the opportunity to achieve the NCTJ Diploma - all are important qualifications to help launch your career in the UK media industry.

I chose to study at Salford because not only is the MA course one of the top NCTJ accredited courses in the country, but it also offers such good hands-on work experience placements.

Both the teaching I received at Salford and my work placements set me in good stead to work as a journalist, and I started a job as a news reporter just days after finishing my course.

Hannah Al-Othma - School of Arts & Media Postgraduate Student of the Year 2014 - Now working as a news reporter for the Lancashire Telegraph

Awards and Accreditation

Course Details

This is a highly intensive course and only for you if you are fully committed to becoming a working journalist, particularly in the UK. You will study modules closely aligned with the NCTJ syllabus so that you are also able to pass seven components of the NCTJ Diploma, such as Media Law and Reporting. 

During trimester 1, you will study the basic skills of writing news in print, broadcast and online formats. These key skills are supported by study of media law and also ethical practice to encourage you to become a highly aware journalist. Intrinsic to this course are daily sessions of shorthand, a traditional skill still valued by the modern news industry, including broadcast organisations.

Course Structure

You will be able to sit NCTJ examinations at the end of trimester 1 and also complete the NCTJ Portfolio during trimester 2, when you will be encouraged to sit the NCTJ's shorthand exam and pass at 100 words per minute.

At the beginning of trimester 2, you will be able to take one of the three pathways in news, broadcast or sports journalism. However, you will be able to gain the NCTJ qualification, irrespective of the pathway you choose.

Once you pass the Postgraduate Diploma, you are eligible to study the optional MA Major Project in trimester 3 (summer) to be submitted in mid-September.

Work placements are arranged during trimester 1 and trimester 2.

Entry Requirements

A good honours degree or graduate diploma.

Personal statement

You need to show a passion for journalism, but you must also provide evidence to demonstrate you have taken steps to turn this enthusiasm into reality. Tell us why you want to be a journalist and what your ambitions are within the industry. Which journalists do you admire and why? What relevant experience have you already had? Which organisations, publishers and/or broadcasters have you worked with? What other relevant experience have you had? What is the best piece of journalism you have produced so far? (provide a link)

You should be prepared to demonstrate that you have a broad working knowledge of current affairs. Where do you get your news? What are the key issues affecting journalism right now? How will the media industry change in the years ahead and what role do you hope to play?

You should also set out why you want to study at the University of Salford. Explain what aspects of our course appeal to you and how you are suited to our programme.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English Language Requirements

IELTS of 7.0 with a written element of 8.0 (with no less than 6.0 in any band).

Suitable For

This course is highly intensive and you will need to attend up to four days per week. It is designed to make students employable, particularly in the UK news industry.

Applicant profile

The continuing high reputation of the course depends on the quality of teaching and learning and the calibre of graduate. We interview all suitable applicants, who also sit an aptitude test. Only those most committed and determined to become journalists will thrive on this course.

Fees 2019-20

Fees for entry in 2019 will be displayed shortly.

Fees 2018-19

Type of StudyFee
Full-time International£13,860
Full-time PgDip£5,040

Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarships and Bursaries

For more information please see our funding section


The majority of the course is delivered largely through workshops and students are assessed mainly by coursework and projects, with some formal examinations.


80% Workshops and 20% Lectures.

Postgraduate Staff Profile

All tutors, full and part-time, are highly regarded journalists with print, broadcast or online backgrounds.

Course leader Martin Hamer has worked for BBC News, BBC Sport, the Press Association and national, regional and local newspapers during a 33-year career in journalism. He is an online expert, published author and a former Programme Leader in Digital Journalism at the University of Sheffield.

Ian Wood joined the University in 2014 after more than 20 years working in newspapers, pioneering advances in digital newsrooms. He is a former Deputy Editor of the Manchester Evening News and Ex-Editor of The Plymouth Herald.

Caroline Cheetham has print and broadcast experience in local and regional newspapers, plus national BBC radio. She still works regularly for BBC national radio, is a health feature writer for the Daily Mail and a news freelance for The Sun.

Andrew Lindsay is an experienced news and sports journalist and broadcaster who has worked for ITV and the BBC. He began his career in local newspapers before becoming a respected reporter and presenter.

Specialising in breaking major stories from the field and investigative journalism, Andrew Fletcher is a very experienced news reporter, as well as being a presenter for both BBC and ITV.

Paul Broster, the Director of Journalism here at Salford, is a highly experienced national and regional news and features journalist. He still freelances for national dailies, including The Sun and Daily Express.


Careers range from newspapers to radio and TV, websites and the public relations sector.

Career Prospects

Thanks to our strong links with the BBC, many of our graduates are now employed by the British public service broadcaster, working for news and sports output across radio, TV and online. Several of our students have secured the very competitive BBC news traineeships in recent years. Others have gone on to get positions with regional newspapers and news agencies, while some have entered public relations, where companies value the core journalistic qualification offered by the course.

Alumni Profile

Kal Mohammed

BBC Sport

"As a mature student, having been out of education and in work for several years, I was slightly apprehensive about returning to full-time education. As soon as I first visited the University of Salford’s MediaCityUK campus, those worries were gone. The state-of-the-art facilities, the quality  of teaching (with tutors who are still working and highly respected in the industry) and the links with media organisations are second to none.

I was on the broadcast pathway but the first semester, in which we covered modules such as news-writing, media law and public affairs, really did prepare me for a life as a journalist. With the broadcast module, the real-life news days and practical experience of making TV packages and producing radio  features not only provided me with new skills but gave me a huge portfolio of work which I could showcase to employers.

Through university links, I was given the chance to freelance at BBC Sport Online. After a few months of freelancing shifts, I was offered a four-month contract with the BBC, working on Euro 2016, Wimbledon and the Olympics.

I returned to university to follow my dream of being a journalist. I never imagined that I would be working for the BBC on a full-time contract just days after finishing the second semester. I owe a great deal to the university and the staff for all their help and guidance."

Ben Reese

Media Executive at NSPCC

"As a career changer, I was determined to find a postgraduate journalism course with a strong emphasis on getting back out into the workplace.

"Salford's MA Journalism offered a wide range of compulsory placements, and, the high standing of the university within media circles ensured a consistent flow of extra print, online and broadcast work experience.

"The university's location in the heart of MediaCityUK was a massive draw. Many students found industry opportunities abound at the adjacent BBC and ITV buildings and there was an undeniable buzz about the campus.

"For an aspiring sport journalist, the course partnership work with the MEN sport desk and Manchester United ticked a lot of boxes.

"The tutors' range of industry experience also proved to be invaluable. From knocking you (gently) into a shape as an apprentice news writer to offering insider placement and job hunting tips, you could always count on their advice.

"After working freelance shifts at the BBC after the course finished, I secured a sport and news reporting job with a newspaper group in North Wales. The interview skills and news sense I honed at Salford helped me settle quickly in the post.

"Now working for the NSPCC's press office, where I am in regular communication with a range of regional TV, radio and print outlets, I am grateful for the all-round multimedia approach of Salford's MA modules."

Jon Mitchell

Trainee Reporter at Newsquest

"Having grown up wanting to be a journalist, I chose Salford knowing that when I graduated I would not only have the qualifications, but the experience I needed to make it as a reporter.

Not only is MediaCityUK right on your doorstep and with it numerous opportunities for work placements, but the facilities and teaching at Salford are second to none.

There are TV and radio studios to help budding broadcasters and lecturers with years of experience in print to help aspiring writers on their way. I did everything to get the best out of my time there.

Since leaving Salford I’ve started working as a trainee reporter for a local title in London. So far, I’ve been lucky enough to cover breaking news, court cases, the London mayoral election, the EU Referendum and interview senior politicians.

You learn the key elements of being a journalist – building contacts, chasing leads, scouring through documents – on the job, but if it was not for the platform Salford provided me, I would be nowhere near prepared for the high-intensity environment of a newsroom.

It’s a special profession and no two days are the same. Salford helped fuel my passion for journalism through the outstanding enthusiasm of the tutors and the skills they taught me in my writing and newsgathering."

Links with Industry

Students get the opportunity during the course to do industry placements in their chosen specialism area. This gives them valuable experience of working in newsrooms, having content published or broadcast, and the chance to establish useful links with professionals. Our placement partners include the BBC, ITV (Granada Reports), the Manchester Evening News, Bolton News, Key 103 and local news agencies.

Further Study


You will be based at a unique digital learning, teaching and research space at MediaCityUK. We are located at the heart of national BBC departments and hundreds of creative, digital and media organisations, as well as being in the same building as an ITV newsroom. Specialist facilities include high spec radio and television studios and a multi-platform newsroom.

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