Media and Communication Studies A: Key Concepts in Media, Communication and Journalism

15 credits

Syllabus, Bachelor's level, 2IV161

A revised version of the syllabus is available.
Education cycle
First cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Media and Communication Studies G1N
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
Finalised by
The Department Board, 25 October 2018
Responsible department
Department of Informatics and Media

General provisions

This course is part of the Bachelor program in Media and Communication and Journalism studies.

Entry requirements

General entry requirements

Learning outcomes

After the course the student should be able to:

Knowledge and understanding

  • demonstrate basic knowledge and understanding of the main thematic areas and key concepts in the fields of Media Studies, Communication Studies and Journalism Studies respectively,
  • understand the constitutive role of communication in organisations, and the role of media and journalism in contemporary societies,
  • identify the historical perspective in the development of media, journalism and organisational communication,
  • briefly account for different theoretical perspectives in the fields of Media Studies, Communication Studies and Journalism Studies,
  • describe and reflect on the roles and working conditions within different types of professions in the areas of media, communication and journalism.

Competence and skills

  • analyse and discuss current problems and debates in the areas of Communication, Media and Journalism Studies,
  • plan, conduct and communicate - orally and in writing - minor investigations in the fields of Media, Communication and Journalism Studies, through collecting, compiling and analysing relevant information,

Judgement and approach

  • identify the main social implications of organisational communication, media and journalism,
  • reflect on ethical problems and challenges in the areas of media, communication and journalism practices.


The purpose of this course is to provide an overview of key concepts and themes in the three sub-fields of Media and Communication Studies; Media Studies, Communication Studies and Journalism Studies. It is divided into three modules, each giving a three weeks introduction to one of the particular fields. An introductory week will provide a basic overview of the field, by sketching the 'big picture' and identifying interrelations, connections and (dis)continuities in the broad field of Media, Communication and Journalism Studies, before the students get acquainted with the special features of each strand.

Module 1: Introduction to Media Studies

This module provides an introduction to the field of Media Studies. Key concepts and overarching themes in Media studies are introduced. It gives students a first exposure to the history of media, accounting for the development of local, national and global media, and the political, economical, cultural and social roles of media in different societies at different times. The module focuses both on traditional media and on digital and newer forms of media, and on what roles they play in contemporary societies and in people's everyday lives. The module includes an applied component, where the students get the possibility to critically reflect on some practices in the professional field of media.

Module 2: Introduction to Communication Studies

This module presents an overview of communication studies in general, and gives an introduction to the constitutive role of communication in organisations in particular. It sheds light on the role of communication from different perspectives. It provides an overview of the historical development of the relationship between communication, organising and organisation, and presents key concepts in the field of organisational communication. The module includes an applied component, where the students get an insight into the professional practice of organisational communication through a minor practical communications activity.

Module 3: Introduction to Journalism Studies

This module provides an introduction to the key concepts and main thematic areas in the field of Journalism Studies, by addressing a series of questions: What is news? What is journalism? Why is journalism important for societies? Where does news come from? Which is the audience of news? This module gives students a first exposure to the roles of journalism in contemporary societies, and, introducing the concepts of accountability and power, briefly discusses the ways in which media, journalism and news, address, mediate and represent social relations and institutions. This module includes also an applied component, through an ethnographic mini-project in the field of the journalistic profession.


Lectures, seminars and workshops are combined with individual and group work activities and assignments. Seminars and workshops are always compulsory.


The course is examined through active participation in compulsory activities, in individual and group-work assignments, and in (oral and/or written) examinations.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the University's disability coordinator or a decision by the department's working group for study matters.