School of Art and Media

BA (Hons) Media Arts

Are you passionate about video or photography? Do you wish to explore the worlds of sound and animation? Our BA (Hons) Media Arts course gives you the power to create your own unique pathway – focus on one area or work across media. We prepare you for the ever-changing media and arts industries by empowering you with the skills and confidence to find your own creative voice and push boundaries. Embrace the challenges and opportunities of the future by learning with us today.

You will advance your technical skills using our outstanding equipment and facilities including a fully equipped cinema, moving image studio with green screen, photographic and sound studios, computer labs, animation rostrums and much more. You’ll also benefit from our strong links with the industry such as the BBC, ITV and Royal Television Society along with regional arts and community groups, giving you the opportunity to develop and realise creative collaborations beyond the University.

Careers with this subject

Advice from graduate Danny Cooke:

"To be a freelance film-maker, you need to be dedicated and patient. When you start off, it is unlikely that you would be making a sufficient amount of income. When studying, use your spare time to build up a portfolio, this is one of the most important things to help you get clients."

Read more from Danny in his case study.

Key features

  • Freedom to experiment – you can choose to focus on one medium, develop several or integrate across the range to find your own creative voice. You’ll have the opportunity to develop projects to suit your own creative and career ambitions.
  • Open doors to your future career by showcasing your work to the public in exhibitions, and developing a portfolio of work. You can enhance your professional profile further by engaging with our live briefs.
  • Advance your technical skills using our outstanding equipment and facilities including a fully equipped cinema, moving image studio with green screen, photographic and sound studios, computer labs, animation rostrums and much more.
  • Learn from award-winning tutors from industry, arts practice and academic research. 
  • Tailor your degree to match your interests and career goals with an option to specialise in television in your final year.
  • Benefit from strong links with the industry such as the BBC, ITV and Royal Television Society along with regional arts and community groups, giving you the opportunity to develop and realise creative collaborations beyond the University.
  • This course is assessed by coursework only – there are no exams.
  • This course has great KIS results – 87 per cent of students agreed staff were good at explaining things and 80 per cent of students were in work/study six months after finishing (Unistats).
  • Exchange programmes in Europe and the USA.

Course details

  • Year 1
  • In your first year, practical modules will focus on video, photography and sound. In your second term, you’ll select a medium to develop further in the form of a documentary, beginning to engage in work beyond the University setting. Your practical modules are accompanied by a critical module and a professional practice module.
    Core modules
    • MEDI405 Documentary

      The module introduces forms through which we (as subjects) construct (and are constructed by) representations of truth and reality. Students produce a substantial piece of practical documentary work. The choice of subject matter is open but the realisation should exist as an original document through gathering and analysis of primary (and sometimes source) material.

    • MEDI401 Media Arts Practice

      This module will provide students with a set of challenges to promote understanding of contemporary Media Arts practices and the context in which these practices sit. It will explore how theory and practice interlink as well as giving the students a grounding in relevant methodology.

    • MEDI402 Film School

      This module is a concise introduction to the aesthetics of moving Image production. Students will also be introduced to various approaches for the generation and development of ideas through experimentation.

    • MEDI403 Photographic Narratives

      This module will introduce to students the creative possibilities of working photographically with ideas of narrative. This is a practice lead module which integrates appropriate references to photographic theory.

    • MEDI406 Situating Practice

      In this module students will be required to critically evaluate the skills and experience gained in previous modules and develop strategies for the future. They will be introduced to key critical approaches to presenting work to the public and engage in practice which explores the dialogue between their work and wider contexts.

    Optional modules
    • MEDI404PP Sound

      Students will be introduced to the material of sound and the way in which it moves and changes within spaces and is transformed using technology. Ideas and practices will be introduced involved in the recording and editing of sound in various contexts, including field/vocal recording, sound editing and the editing of sound with moving images.

  • Year 2
  • In your second year, you will explore animation and digital media alongside advanced options for video, photography and sound. Creativity, experimentation and developing your own creative voice will be at the heart of this part of the course. You’ll undertake projects in collaboration with people outside of the course and a module exploring media theory will enhance your academic skills. You’ll also develop a professional profile and online portfolio.
    Core modules
    • MEDI502 Independent Practice

      This module provides a framework in which to research and develop one or more large-scale projects built on thematic interests (i.e. a sense of personal `practice¿), by means of practical experiments, underpinned by contextual research and ongoing reflection.

    • MEDI501 Critical Dialogues

      Critical Dialogues 2 mixes contemporary debates and media histories in a lively lecture/seminar programme. The module provides exposure to seminal media arts theory / practice and facilitates students to engage critically with their own work, situated in the context of established practitioners.

    Optional modules
    • MEDI505 International Project

    • MEDI503 Professional Engagement

      This module will support students in working in professional contexts. It will strengthen understanding of promotion and audience address. It will require students to review their practice and develop appropriate plans for career progression.

    • MEDI504 Media Arts: Collaborative Practice

      This module offers an opportunity for students to work collaboratively on projects that will develop and enhance their professional and creative skills in working towards a collective outcome. It places creativity at the core of collaboration alongside the facilitation of new ideas and practices.

  • Final year
  • In your final year, you’ll complete two major self-directed projects in independent practice and collaborative practice. You’ll write a dissertation and prepare for your future career in the professional practice module. You’ll showcase your achievements in a substantial public exhibition and produce work within a professional context. Alternatively, you can specialise in online television for your final year, in a route delivered in association with leading television company Twofour. All of our students undertake a written dissertation on a subject of their choice.
    Core modules
    • MEDI602 Media Dissertation

      Students will research a subject area within Media Arts in considerable depth, developing their own methodologies in researching, collating and synthesising data and concepts in order to present arguments clearly and persuasively. The outcome will be a piece of written work with illustrations, bibliography, notes and appendices as appropriate.

    • MEDI603 Major Project-Independent Practice

      Drawing on a growing sense of practice, underpinned by tutorial support, students will develop a large scale project through an application of practical and critical skills.

    Optional modules
    • MEDI601 Major Project: Collaborative Practice

      In this module you will undertake a collaborative project, emphasis will be placed on working processes and methodologies, group interaction, the planning and completion of the project within a defined context. This module provides an important critical context arising from issues relating to collaborative practice, working from a research and development stage through to realisation in order to contribute new objects or forms of cultural production.

    • MEDI606 The Channel

      Students will work individually and collectively to develop the policy, content and scheduling of a working IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) channel. This will encompass gaining an understanding of the technologies involved, research into the field and application of networking and marketing skills as well as provision of the content.

    • MEDI604 Professional Futures

      This module will support students in their aspirations beyond graduation. Students will identify career /postgraduate aims and further develop their portfolios and professional profiles to effectively promote themselves and their practice in appropriate contexts.

    • MEDI605 Interactive Television

      This module invites students to consider some of the issues raised by the challenge offered by interactive television environments. Students will engage with critical theory relating to these environments and engage in related integrated practical experiments that test some of the salient points. A substantive evaluation will be also be required.

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BA Hons Media Arts 0662

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff
A level/AS level: 280 points from a minimum of two A levels. 

International Baccalaureate
25 points. 

18 Unit BTEC National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma
DDM.

All access courses
Pass a named Access to Higher Education Diploma (preferably art and design or combined), with at least 33 credits at merit and/or distinction.

GCSE
Mathematics and English Language grade C.

Other
Equivalent qualifications may be considered.

Fees, costs and funding

New students 2016-17

Full time Home/EU* International**   Islands***
Undergraduate (Classroom based) £9000 £12,250 £9000
Undergraduate (Laboratory based) £9000 £12,500 £9000
Science and Engineering - Year Zero £9000 £12,500 £9000
Management, Government and Law  - Year Zero £7500 £10,300 £9,000
2 year fast-track (Business only) £9,000 £12,250 £9,000
Integrated Masters (Classroom based) £9000 £12,250 £9000
Integrated Masters (Laboratory based) £9000 £12,500 £9000
Master of Architecture (MArch) £9000 £12,250 £9000
PGCE £9000 £12,250 £9000
Management Practice (Online) (First year - part time) tbc £3,996 tbc

Part time (per 10 credits) Home/EU* International**   Islands***
Undergraduate (Classroom based) £750 £1,025 £750
Undergraduate (Laboratory based) £750 £1,045 £750
Science and Engineering - Year Zero £750 £1,045 £750
Management, Government and Law  - Year Zero £625 £860 £625
Integrated Masters (Classroom based) £750 £1,025 £750
Integrated Masters (Laboratory based) £750 £1,045 £750
PGCE £750 £1,025 £750


*The tuition fee for students transferring to Plymouth University from a partner institution is £9,000.
**Please refer to the policy for capping of international student tuition fees.

***‘Islands’ refers to fees for both the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

Continuing students

Please note some fees for continuing students may differ slightly.

For a full listing please visit our fees for continuing students 2016-17 page.

Further information

Download our fees brochure

Read our Student Fee Policy for the Ordinary Degree route


How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 

UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 

To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email international-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.



Media Arts offers you the opportunity to study a range of media practices, including: video, photography, sound, animation and digital media.  

Studying with us will give you the freedom to experiment.  You can choose to focus on one medium, develop several or integrate across the range to find your own creative voice. 

You’ll have the opportunity to develop projects to suit your own creative and career ambitions. You can open doors to your future career by showcasing your work to the public and developing a portfolio of work. You can enhance your professional profile further by engaging with our live briefs. 

Advance your technical skills using our outstanding equipment and facilities including a fully equipped cinema, moving image studio with green screen, photographic and sound studios, computer labs, animation rostrums and much more. 

Learn from award-winning tutors from industry, arts practice and academic research. Benefit from strong links with the industry such as the BBC, ITV and Royal Television Society along with regional arts and community groups, giving you the opportunity to develop and realise creative collaborations beyond the University.

Experience real life projects beyond the classroom

Our strong industry links with organisations such as the BBC, ITV and Royal Television Society, as well as regional arts and community groups, give you the opportunity to work on real life creative collaborations
Find out more about our industry partners

Media Arts international

International trip

Each year Media Arts takes its Year 2 students on an international trip as part of their studies. These trips are often set to coincide with important festivals, such as Transmediale in Berlin, and act as a valuable primary research opportunity.  Students celebrate their research and experiences in a pop up exhibition when they return. The video documents the post-Berlin pop up exhibition in 2016.

International exchange

Media Arts is part of both Erasmus and ISEP international exchange programmes with five bespoke exchange agreements across Europe, and two in the USA.

Student gallery

We ensure Media Arts students understand the career opportunities that are open to them, support development of their professional profiles and make sure all have the best portfolio they are capable of.

Phaedra Stancer, Programme Leader for BA (Hons) Media Arts

Take a look at our gallery

What do Media Arts graduates do?

Media Arts graduates work in television, radio, advertising and production houses; they are directors, producers, camera crew and sound designers.  They set up their own successful businesses in a range of areas including photography, moving image and digital design. 

They become fashion photographers, wedding photographers, book illustrators, web designers and curators.  A number choose to become educators or independent artists, others embrace post-graduate study and become academics.  Our graduates have worked for the BBC, Disney and Radio One.  Their work can be seen in the National Portrait Gallery and on the cover of Vogue magazine. 

As a Media Arts graduate you will have the skills required to take up a range of media and arts roles.  By the time you graduate you will have experience of working in a number of professional contexts and high level technical skills in one or more of the areas we offer.  

Most importantly you will have the confidence to express yourself creatively and to respond to the ever changing opportunities offered by a career in the art and media sectors.  

Download our graduate brochure to get a flavour of what our student do next

Media Innovation Awards 2015

Alex Nicol, who graduated with a first class honours degree in Media Arts this year has won yet another award. 

Alex was awarded Student of the Year, at the 2015 Media Innovations Awards ceremony on 26th November. Media Arts Associate Head of School Phil Ellis, received the award on Alex Nicol’s behalf as Alex was busy on a shoot for his new employers Silverstream TV.

This is after picking up the Royal Television Society, Student Award for the News category earlier in the month.

Read more about this year's Media Innovation Awards.

Photo credit: Dom Moore

BA (Hons) Media Arts student

The range of modules that are available from photography to filming, lighting and editing makes it easier to learn step by step a variety of different skills that are needed in the media industry.

Discover more about Rima's course choice

People