BA Media and International Development with a Year Abroad


Does Media Matter for International Development?

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Key facts

Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017


Does Social Media have the Power to Change the World?

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Amara Bangura, BBC radio journalist: "People like me were needed to tell stories of the war because we saw it all"

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“Understanding how media can be conceptualised, learning about development, and gaining practical skills over three years will produce highly skilled and knowledgeable graduates with the potential to work in a variety of sectors.”

In their words

Kimberley Dix, International Development Graduate

Key facts

QS World Rankings 2016-17


UEA Media and Development Student Blog: Created by people passionate about development, and passionate about a different way of thinking

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Times Higher Education World Rankings 2016-17 - join one of the world’s top university networks

Key facts

National Student Survey 2016 - make the most of your student experience


Our Development Work Experience module is a distinctive feature of our programme.

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This unique degree programme will allow you to immerse yourself in the world of media, communication and international development and study the complex relationship between them. How do charities and other development organisations communicate about famine, poverty, and developing countries, and what effects does this have on public attitudes? Why do only some humanitarian crises make it onto our TV screens and what effect does this have on government policy? How important is press freedom and freedom of speech in promoting democracy and economic growth? What is the impact of social media in developing countries - do Facebook and Twitter facilitate citizens' engagement with politics or do they actually undermine genuine political participation? These are just some of the key questions and problems that you will explore.


This innovative degree will allow you to study both media and international development and the relationship between them, making this degree programme unique within the UK.

It is designed to meet the growing demand for those who wish to pursue a career in the media to have an international outlook and for those who wish to pursue a career in international development to understand how the media works. Students will be particularly well prepared for careers in NGO communications, development journalism, humanitarian communication and media development.

The media are important to all aspects of international development, from promoting mass mobilisation and political participation to facilitating the flow of information locally, nationally and internationally. The media is also central to encouraging charitable donations, promoting democracy and human rights, and in delivering public health messages during emergencies.

You will benefit from the combined teaching expertise of the School of International Development alongside Film, Television and Media Studies and Political, Social and International Studies. This interdisciplinary teaching also allows for a unique range of choice and specialisation, enabling you to choose from a variety of modules linked to both international development and the media, such as Development in Practice; Development Work Experience; Gender and the Media; Political Communication, Media, Globalisation and Culture; Politics and International Development; Wars and Humanitarian Crises; and Women, Islam and the Media.

Students will have the opportunity to engage with cutting-edge academic material and to critically reflect on key issues in a variety of settings: lectures, workshops, and film screenings.

Enhance your employability

With a strong focus on project design and management skills, as well a media production and analysis, this course will allow you to develop key skills which enhance your employability.

The compulsory third year module - Media Production for Development - includes technical skills in photography, audio and video production as well as editorial approaches to storytelling. This two week intensive practical based module is co-delivered by Duck Rabbit, a specialised digital production and training company with clients including Oxfam, The Guardian, BBC World Service and Medecins Sans Frontieres.

The optional third year module - Development in Practice - provides practical training and learning opportunities to support students to develop capabilities and skills to be effective development practitioners in the field and workplace.

If you choose the 'with overseas experience' course variant, you will have the opportunity to take part in an overseas development work placement, gaining invaluable experience and applying the theory you have learnt in a professional environment. In recent years, students have gone on media-related placements with Inter Press Service in New York and Video Volunteers in Goa, for example.

We regularly invite external speakers to come and talk to students about the everyday complexities of reporting on poverty and/or humanitarian crises. We have recently had talks from leading practitioners at Save the Children, BBC Media Action, The Public Media Alliance and the Department of International Development (DFID), as well as from freelance journalists and film-makers.

Students on this course also have the option of signing up to additional professional skills courses organised by the department. Recent media-related sessions have included Participatory Photography, run by PhotoVoice and Filmmaking for Development, run by Postcode Films.

Course structure

Year 1

In the first year you will be begin to critically engage with contemporary debates and issues in both media and international development. Core modules will help establish essential knowledge in subjects including Analysing Film and Television; Introduction to Development Studies; and Media, Society and Power.

The final core module - Humanitarian Communication - will critically review how journalists and international development actors communicate about poverty and humanitarian crises through the media. Drawing on case studies ranging from the Ethiopian famine in the 1980s to Kony 2012 and #BlackLivesMatter, we will explore changing trends in humanitarian communication. Key topics will include media representations of Africa, 'pornography of poverty' in charity appeals, the role of celebrities in international development, and the impact of social media on global activism. This module also contains a number of workshops focused on relevant practical skills such as blogging, writing a press release, and the basics of photography.

You will also have the opportunity to tailor your studies according to your own interests by choosing from a range of optional modules including introductions to Political Communication; Media Representations; Human Geography, Environment, Anthropology; and the Economics or Politics of Development.

Year 2

In the second year you will have the opportunity to develop further skills in research methods and choose modules about specific regions of the world, such as Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and Latin America. In addition to further international development modules about Economics, Politics, Geography, Environment and Anthropology, you can also choose to take modules specifically concerned with Gender and Education. Popular optional modules relating to media include Media, Globalisation and Culture; Politics and Media; Gender and the Media; and New Media and Society. Finally, you can also study a range of foreign languages at this stage, including Arabic, Chinese, French, German and Spanish.

The one compulsory module in this year - Communication for Development - seeks to explain the role of media and communications within development. How can media - both 'old' and 'new' - help mobilise citizens, change policy, modify behaviours and promote democracy, good governance and economic growth? Key topics will include behaviour change communication, participatory communication, community media, press freedom, media literacy, entertainment education and access to new communication technologies.

Year 3

All final year students will write a dissertation on a subject of their choosing - related to media and international development - which is supervised by a relevant member of staff. The optional modules students can choose from include Wars and Humanitarian Crises; Development in Practice; Women, Islam and the Media, and a foreign language.

The first core module - Media Production for Development - delivered as a two week intensive module at the end of the second year, gives students the opportunity to learn practical production techniques required for storytelling. The second core module - International Media and Communication - explores issues such as global news production, political propaganda, public diplomacy and the role of media in international situations of conflict and war.

As part of your third year you will have the opportunity take part in a work placement in the UK or overseas. If you decide to stay at the University, alongside your dissertation you will also have the opportunity to study modules such as ‘Wars, Humanitarian Crises and Aid’ or study a foreign language.


A combination of coursework and written examinations is used to support your learning. Coursework typically consists of two of the following in any one module: an essay, an assessed presentation, an analysis or review, a practical or experimental assignment or a blog. The final year dissertation is highly weighted and is the most significant opportunity for you to develop and demonstrate your skills in interdisciplinary analysis in a self-motivated study.

What next?

A degree in Media and International Development opens doors to a diverse range of career options. There is a vast array of organisations that value knowledge and skills related to international development - from government agencies and the United Nations, to private sector companies and consultancy firms, to the many hundreds of large and small non-government organisations that focus on development and humanitarian work. Our Life after DEV brochure explains the opportunities for employment in the development sector, where many of our students now work. 

Equally, though, many of our alumni have also gone to work in the media. Recent graduates of our undergraduate degrees have become freelance film-makers, photographers and travel writers and even set up their own production companies. The director of Bend It Like Beckham (2002) and Bride and Prejudice (2004), the CEO of the Public Media Alliance, the Founding Director of the Rockhopper TV and the Senior Strategic Partner Manager for Sub-Saharan Africa at Google, are all alumni.

There are also numerous career paths which combine both media and international development such as NGO communications, development journalism, humanitarian communication and media development. Recent graduates of our Master's degree in Media and International Development, for example, have gone on to work in media/communications roles in BBC Media Action, the British Council, Care International, Farm Radio International, Greenpeace, Hope International, Inter Press Service, Oxfam, Raleigh International, The Institute of Development Studies, The Open Society Foundation, The Wellcome Trust, the United Nations, UNICEF, Wateraid and the Women's Refugee Commission.

Finally, other graduates have used the academic and transferable skills gained from our degrees for careers in business, the voluntary and public sector, education, and academia.

Course convenors

The convenors of this degree are Dr Ludek Stavinoha and Dr Martin Scott. We are both passionate about teaching and learning more about the role that communication plays in promoting positive social change. Please check out our respective people pages to find out more about our research interests and get in touch if you have further questions.

Study Abroad

For Home/EU students opting for a Year Abroad the tuition fee is currently £1,350. The Year Abroad tuition fee will be subject to an annual increase. International Students are required to pay 25% of their annual tuition fee to UEA during their Year Abroad and this will be calculated based on the current tuition fee for that year.
Visit our Study Abroad website

Course Modules


Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • A Level ABB
  • International Baccalaureate 32 points
  • Scottish Advanced Highers ABB
  • Irish Leaving Certificate AABBBB or 2 subjects at H1 and 4 at H2
  • Access Course An ARTS/Humanities/Social Science pathway preferred. Pass with Distinction in 30 credits at Level 3 and Merit in 15 credits at Level 3
  • European Baccalaureate 75%

Entry Requirement

You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including writing, speaking, listening and reading):

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 6.0 in all components)

We also accept a number of other English language tests. Please click here to see our full list.

INTO University of East Anglia

If you do not meet the academic and or English requirements for direct entry our partner, INTO University of East Anglia offers guaranteed progression on to this undergraduate degree upon successful completion of a preparation programme. Depending on your interests, and your qualifications you can take a variety of routes to this degree:

International Foundation in Business, Economics, Society and Culture

International Foundation in Humanities and Law

International Foundation in General Science


The majority of candidates will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Track. However, for some students an interview will be requested. You may be called for an interview to help the School of Study, and you, understand if the course is the right choice for you.  The interview will cover topics such as your current studies, reasons for choosing the course and your personal interests and extra-curricular activities.  Where an interview is required the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a convenient time.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year.  We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry and to contact directly to discuss this further.


The School's annual intake is in September of each year.

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support: Home and EU Students

Tuition Fees

Please see our webpage for further information on the current amount of tuition fees payable for Home and EU students and for details of the support available.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

Home/EU - The University of East Anglia offers a range of Bursaries and Scholarships.  To check if you are eligible please visit the website.

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support: International Students

Tuition Fees

Please see our webpage for further information on the current amount of tuition fees payable for International Students.


We offer a range of Scholarships for International Students – please see our website for further information.

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Office prior to applying please do contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Office (Development)
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515

Please click here to register your details via our Online Enquiry Form.

International candidates are also actively encouraged to access the University's International section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515