MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice

Please Note

Applications for 2016/17 entry are now closed and will re-open in Autumn 2016 for 2017/18 entry.

Explore contemporary media and communications alongside the creative and professional practices central to the cultural industries. With work-based learning an integral part of the MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice course, you will develop your knowledge and professional experience in major London institutions such as Tate Modern, the British Council, Film London and the BBC.

We will update this webpage from time to time with new information as it becomes available. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact a member of the course team.

Additional costs: In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. We strongly suggest you read the information on our Additional Costs page. 

Link to interview with Dr. Rebecca Bramall, Course Leader of LCC’s recently updated MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice on the LCC Blog.
MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice students on a summer tour.

Funding opportunities

Find out about the range of funding options available for postgraduate study.

Use UAL's fees and funding calculator to estimate how much your studies may cost you in your first year, and what funding may be available to you.

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,000 are now available for eligible UK and EU students. A full list of eligibility criteria and information on applying can be found on the postgraduate loans webpage.


Course Leader

Dr Rebecca Bramall

Course Location

London College of Communication 
Elephant and Castle
Find Us

Study LevelPostgraduate
Study ModeFull time or Part time
Course Length1 year 3 months full time (45 weeks across a four-term model), 2 years part time (90 weeks across a seven-term model)
Home/EU Fee

2017/18: £8,500 (Full-time) / £4,250 per year (Part-time)

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount
Course fees may be paid in instalments

A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL. 

International Fee

2017/18: £17,920 (Full-time) / £8,960 per year (Part-time)

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount
Course fees may be paid in instalments

A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL.

Start Date25 September 2017
Application Route

Applications for 2016/17 entry are now closed. Applications for 2017/18 entry will open in Autumn 2016.

Content and Structure


This unique Masters programme explores contemporary media and communications alongside the creative and professional practices that are central to the cultural industries. MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice blends academic rigour with the opportunity to gain professional experience and to develop and enhance creative practice-based skills.

The course has been designed for postgraduate students considering a career in media, creative industry or the cultural sector, as well as those who want to work in research and education. It will enable you to develop the intellectual abilities and gain the practical experience you need for employment within the rapidly changing media and creative industries.

MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice will provide you with a systematic understanding of major theories of media and communications. You will explore contemporary approaches to the media and creative industries and their social and economic contexts. You will investigate how global and international perspectives, issues of diversity, equality and identity, and emergent environmental and ethical challenges relate to contemporary media production, circulation and consumption.

During the course you will visit galleries, exhibitions and cultural events, taking advantage of the College’s central London location. You will also benefit from an Industry Speakers Series, with opportunities for networking with industry professionals and creative.

Work-based learning is a central element of this course, with previous students gaining internships at London institutions such as the Tate Modern, Arts Catalyst, the British Council, Film London and the BBC. Alumni have gone on to work for BBC factual programming, the British Council, television production companies, branding consultancies, and to PhD study.

This course is taught within the Media School.


Each course is divided into units, which are credit-rated. The minimum unit size is 20 credits. The MA course structure involves six units, totalling 180 credits.

This course is taught in both Full Time and Part Time modes.

Full Time Mode

Autumn, Term 1

Units Summary:

  • Media, Culture and Economy (20 credits)
  • Analysing Contemporary Media (20 credits)

In the first week, there will be an induction programme, in which you will:

  • Become familiar with the course structure and be introduced to effective strategies for studying at postgraduate level.
  • Meet the teaching team and fellow students.
  • Meet representatives from student and academic bodies including representatives of the Student Union, Student Services and Learning Resources.
  • Become familiar with the geography and structure of the College with tours of the library and facilities.

You will then begin two theory-focused units of study, which together provide a framework for subsequent activities and help you to initiate the independent learning crucial to Masters level study. Alongside these units you will participate in a series of media practice workshops taught by specialist staff.

Spring, Term 2

Units Summary:

  • Visual Culture: Spaces, Places and Practices (40 credits)
  • Collaborative Unit (20 credits)
  • Professional Industry Practice (20 credits)

In the Spring Term you will commence Visual Culture: Spaces, Places and Practices, which explores visual culture and its theorisation through a particular focus on space and place. This two-term unit culminates in the creation of a creative practice-based project.

You will also engage in the student-driven Collaborative Unit, working with students from either another UAL Masters course or with an external partner. Alongside these units you’ll benefit from a series of talks by industry practitioners such as creative producers, journalists, business advisors and curators.

Summer, Term 3

Units Summary:

  • Visual Culture: Spaces, Places and Practices (continued)
  • Professional Industry Practice (continued)
  • Major Project (60 credits)

In the Summer Term, the focus in Visual Culture turns to dedicated practitioner-led sessions. Professional Industry Practice provides an opportunity for critical reflection on employment in the creative industries.

We will support you in finding a placement or internship, and you will write a critical, reflective report based on this experience. Alternatively, you can choose to develop a research project with work-based applications. Research Methods workshops will enable you to begin working on your Major Project.

Autumn, Term 4

Units Summary:

  • Major Project (continued)

Building on the work you completed during the Research Methods Workshops, you will continue to develop your Major Project. In this project you will consolidate the knowledge and skills you have acquired, applying them to a topic of your choice, either through theoretical or practice-based research.

Part Time Mode

The content of the units in Part Time mode is the same as those described above in the full time version of the course.

Year 1

Autumn, Term 1

Units Summary:

  • Media, Culture and Economy (20 credits)

Spring, Term 2

Units Summary:

  • Collaborative Unit (20 credits)
  • Professional Industry Practice (20 credits)

Summer, Term 3

Units Summary:

  • Professional Industry Practice (continued)

Year 2

Autumn, Term 1

Units Summary:

  • Analysing Contemporary Media (20 credits)

Spring, Term 2

Units Summary:

  • Visual Culture: Spaces, Places and Practices (40 credits)

Summer, Term 3

Units Summary:

  • Visual Culture: Spaces, Places and Practices (continued)
  • Major Project (60 credits)

Autumn, Term 4

Units Summary:

  • Major Project (continued)

If you are unable to continue or decide to exit the course, there are two possible exit awards. A Postgraduate Certificate will be awarded on successful completion of the first 60 credits and a Postgraduate Diploma will be awarded on successful completion of the first 120 credits.

Course Structure

The information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course.

Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year.

In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.


The course is led by Dr Rebecca Bramall and delivered by a team of highly qualified and experienced educators drawn from a range of academic and professional backgrounds.

Course team members are active researchers in areas as diverse as cultural economy, film, photography, journalism and digital media. They also maintain links with organisations and networks across the cultural sector.

Students also benefit from interaction with industry practitioners, both in formal teaching sessions and during the Industry Speaker Series, the Collaborative Unit, and other elements of the course.


Graduates will be well suited to a range of careers in the media, communications or creative industries, as well as to research roles in the cultural and public sectors. Each year a number of our students progress to advanced postgraduate study.

Student Jobs and Careers at UAL

We know what it takes to be successful in your chosen field. Your tutors are professionals in their own right and understand what you need to help you establish your career. 

Careers and Employability is dedicated to helping students build up work-relevant skills, knowledge, experience and networks throughout your time here. 

Creative Opportunities is the UAL job and work placement website for students and graduates, advertising hundreds of creative opportunities each month. This includes ArtsTemps in-house recruitment agency, placing students and graduates in paid temping roles within the University.

UAL houses a number of organisations which promote aspects of career development in the arts and media, and which hold regular workshops and careers fairs. These include:

  • Own-It (intellectual property issues)
  • ArtQuest (career development resource for artists and designers)

Entry Requirements

Selection criteria

Students on the course come from a variety of backgrounds, they may be graduates of humanities, social science or art courses who feel they need to develop their interests in a specific area of cultural production or practice. 

Alternatively, a number of students may wish to develop their theoretical and critical knowledge of the area, change direction professionally or extend their experience through theoretical interrogations of the field. 

The course will also be relevant to those working in any of the following:

  • Creative industries 
  • Cultural sector 
  • Education (especially teachers of media studies and sociology at secondary level) 
  • Individual creative practice

Students on the course may already have considerable experience within the above fields and wish to consolidate existing skills and knowledge, develop new abilities to support practice, or pursue a particular project or objective in the field of culture and communications.

In addition, some students come with the active backing of employers seeking to support staff development and bring a higher level of skill and theoretical knowledge into their workplace, or on their own initiative to develop the expertise necessary to enter their chosen field of work.

Language requirements (International/EU)

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language you will be asked to provide evidence of your English language ability when you enrol.

  • IELTS 7.0 (or equivalent) is required for this course, with a minimum of 6.5 in each skill.
  • You can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page.

For further information about visas and application advice please view the Study at UAL International pages.

Selection Criteria

All applications will be considered by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  1. Firstly they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results)
  2. Then they will scrutinise your personal statement and any previous work experience

Academic or professional reference are not required for this course.

Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:

  • Practical experience of creating or producing media, or a demonstrable interest in developing creative practice-based skills
  • Experience of working in the media, cultural or creative industries, or a clear sense of the relevance of the course to career plans
  • Evidence of collaborative skills and an awareness of the opportunities and challenges of collaborative work

Personal Statement 

In the application form you will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on the MA Media Communications and Critical Practice. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for media communications and critical practice, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

Interview advice

Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will take place at LCC, or via Skype/telephone.


Home / EU and International students

Funding opportunities available for this course:

International students

HKADC Scholarship

Any questions? Please email or visit Postgraduate Funding page.

Enquire about this course

If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.

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