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  1. International Communications and Development
  2. 2018

MA International Communications and Development

Entry Year:
Explore the impact of media and communications on international policy and within a sociological context with this world-class MA.

Key Information

Start date

September 2018


Full-time: one year
Part-time: two years


Full-time: £9,500

Part-time: £4,750 per year


Full-time: £14,000

Part-time: £7,000 per year

Who is it for?

This course is for students looking to explore international development through a communications lens and the role media play in development and policy making.

At a time when ideas about freedom of expression, democracy, human rights and access to natural and material resources guide development projects across the world, the question about the role of media and communications for social change becomes ever more pertinent. As a result, this MA will particularly appeal to you if you have an interest in communication studies and cross-disciplinary interests in development studies, sociology and politics.


The International Communications and Development MA provides will help you to:

  • Gain an overview of the main issues in the field on International Communications and Development.
  • Develop a broad interdisciplinary overview of developments in broadcasting, telecommunications, the press and information technology.
  • Conduct detailed analysis of sectors or issues of your own choice, drawing on economics, political science, international relations, development theory, sociology and law.
  • Analyse the main directions of media and communication issues in Britain, the USA, the EU, and countries of your own interest.
  • Develop the ability to participate in policy making and evaluation in the context of changing national and global economic and political relations.
  • Gain the relevant skills for employment in government information departments, communications regulatory agencies, mass media organisations, public relations, advertising, academic and professional research.

Requirements and how to apply

Entry requirements

You should have a first or second-class honours degree in any subject. However, applications are also welcome from those with experience in the media, information or communication sectors. An equivalent qualification from an overseas university will be considered.

No formal training in economics is required.

INTO City, University of London

If you do not meet the entry requirements?  INTO City, University of London offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare you for study at City, University of London. You'll learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre.

These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry. To prepare for this degree course, learn more about the Graduate Diploma in Social Sciences and the Arts.

Kaplan International College London

City works in partnership with Kaplan International College (KIC) London to provide preparatory courses for international students. Pre Masters courses at KIC London offer comprehensive support to students wishing to complete their postgraduate study at City. Progression to this degree is guaranteed if you complete the KIC London Pre-Masters course at the required level.

International Equivalences

If you are applying with an overseas degree, the following is an indication of international equivalents of an upper second class degree from a UK institution. Please note these figures are intended as a guide only and individual applications will be assessed on a case by case basis.

  • China: Bachelor degree (Xueshi) in a suitable subject with an overall grade of 75 – 85% (depending on the standing of the awarding institution)
  • USA: Bachelor degree in a suitable subject with CGPA 3.2
  • India: Bachelor degree in a suitable subject with CGPA 6.5 / overall 65% / 1st Division classification
  • Turkey: Lisans Diplomasi or a Műhendis Diplomasi with a minimum CGPA 3.0 or 65%
  • Italy: Diploma di Laurea in a suitable subject with a minimum score of 104.

English requirements

If your first language is not English, the following qualifications will meet the English language requirement for entry to a postgraduate course of study:

  • A first degree from a UK university or from the CNAA.
  • A first degree from an overseas institution recognised by City as providing adequate evidence of proficiency in the English language, for example, from institutions in Australia or the USA.
  • GCE O-level/GCSE English language or English literature, grade C minimum.
  • Cambridge ESOL CPE (Certificate of Proficiency in English) at grade C or above.
  • An English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 7 in writing and a minimum of 6.5 for each of the other subtests.
  • Satisfactory standard in the verbal section of the Princeton Test (GMAT).
  • US SAT with 500 in verbal performance.
  • Other evidence of proficiency in the English language which satisfies the board of studies concerned.

Please note that due to changes in the UKVI’s list of SELTs we are no longer able to accept TOEFL as evidence of English language for students who require a CAS as of April 2014.

English language programmes

If you do not meet the English language requirements,  INTO City, University of London offers English language programmes to help prepare you for study at university. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to degree courses.

Visa requirements

If you are not from the European Economic Area / Switzerland and you are coming to study in the UK, you may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study.

The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course. There are different rules for:

  • Students on courses of more than six months
  • Students on courses of less than six months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English language course.

For more information see our main Visa page.

How to apply

Applications are now open:

Apply for International Communications and Development (full-time)

Apply for International Communications and Development (part-time)

If you have any enquiries please contact:

Department of Sociology
School of Social Sciences
Tatiana Dias
Postgraduate Programme Administrator
City, University of London
Northampton Square

We are ranked 1st in London for Communication and Media Studies in the Complete University Guide 2018
of graduates responding to the 14/15 DLHE survey were in employment 6 months after graduation.
The Sociology Department is the 2nd strongest in London for research.

More about fees

Fees in each subsequent year of study (where applicable) will be subject to an annual increase of 2%. We will confirm any change to the annual tuition fee to you in writing prior to you commencing each subsequent year of study (where applicable).


Explore up-to-date information about funding options, available financial support and typical living costs.

Future Finance Loans

Future Finance offers students loans of between £2,500 and £40,000 to help cover tuition fees and living expenses. All students and courses are considered. All loans are subject to credit checks and approval for further details please visit the City Finance website.


British Council: Chevening awards. Usually for non-UK/EU students. See the Chevening website for further information and guidance.

Student views

Vidhi is coming to the end of her studies on the MA International Communications and Development at City, University of London. She talks about how she has been inspired by her lecturers and used the careers service to get a real idea of what she wants to do as a career.

Learn a language for free

We offer a free language course for City, University of London students.

Find out how to apply

Student support

We offer an extensive support network during your time here at City, University of London – from Learning Support (including disability support) and counselling to financial and career advice – leaving you free to enjoy every opportunity campus life has to offer.

Find out more about the different types of student support available.

Teaching and learning

You will learn through a combination of lectures, interactive sessions, practical workshops and small-group classes supported by a personal tutorial system. You are encouraged to undertake extensive reading in order to understand the topics covered in lectures and classes and to broaden and deepen your knowledge of the subject. In the course of self-directed hours, you are expected to read from the set module bibliography, prepare your class participation, collect and organise source material for your coursework, and plan and write your coursework.

The Department also runs a personal tutorial system, which provides support for teaching and learning and any problems can be identified and dealt with early.

During the second term the Department offers a Dissertation Workshop to guide you on your dissertation outline.

Assessment and Assessment Criteria

You will submit a 2,500-word essay for each 15-credit module and 3,000-word essay for each 30-credit module. You will also submit a dissertation.

Assessment Criteria are descriptions, based on the intended learning outcomes, of the skills, knowledge or attitudes that you need to demonstrate in order to complete an assessment successfully. This provides a mechanism by which the quality of an assessment can be measured.

Grade-related criteria are descriptions of the level of skills, knowledge or attributes that you need to demonstrate in order achieve a certain grade or mark in an assessment. This provides a mechanism by which the quality of an assessment can be measured and placed within the overall set of marks.

Assessment Criteria and Grade-Related Criteria will be made available to you to help you complete assessments. These may be provided in programme handbooks, module specifications, on the virtual learning environment or attached to a specific assessment task.

Feedback on assessment

Feedback will be provided in line with our Assessment and Feedback Policy. In particular, you will normally be provided with feedback within three weeks of the submission deadline or assessment date. This would normally include a provisional grade or mark.

For end-of-module examinations or an equivalent significant task (e.g. an end-of-module project), feedback will normally be provided within four weeks.  The timescale for feedback on final year projects or dissertations may be longer. Take a look at the full policy for more information.

Assessment Regulations

In order to pass your programme, you should complete successfully or be exempted from the relevant modules and assessments and will therefore acquire the required number of credits.

The pass mark for each module is 50%.


The course focuses on the relationship between communication, development and democracy. Over the course of the year you will develop your knowledge of media and communication studies within the context of globalisation, Political communication and the work of international organisations and non-governmental organisations in development communication.

Your will also cover more specific areas, such as media representation (national and trans-national) and audiences and the communications policies that affect them.

You will take three 30-credit core modules and either two 15-credit modules or one 30-credit module elective modules.

The Department of Sociology at City offers you an extensive range of module options. This enables you to specialise in your particular areas of interest, developing your critical skills and advancing your knowledge, culminating with you undertaking an extended piece of original research.

Core modules

Democratisation & Networked Communication SGM311 (30 credits)

This module introduces you to the relationship between information and communication trends and the processes of democratisation. While there will be due attention paid to advanced technologies (notably the internet and social media), the emphasis is on broad information and communication issues and their relationship to democratisation.

Research Workshop SGM302 (30 dredits)

The module will introduce you to the main research methods used in the social sciences, and will provide you with the skills to formulate, design and carry out a small piece of research for your dissertation.

Communication, Culture and Development SGM312 (30 credits)

This module provides a focus on development issues and communication studies. It provides a solid theoretical framework on the role of communication for and in development. It also introduces you to specific themes and case studies to assess development programmes in different countries.

Dissertation (60 credits)

You must also complete a 60-credit dissertation in order to be awarded the Master's qualification. You are normally required to pass all taught modules before progressing to the dissertation.

Elective modules

  • Research Design, Methods and Methodology
  • Rationale and Philosophical Foundations of Social Research
  • Introduction to Qualitative Inference
  • Human Rights and the Transformation of World Politics (30 credits)
  • Global Political Economy - Contemporary Approaches (30 credits)
  • Analysing Crime (30 credits)
  • Criminal Justice Policy and Practice (30 credits)
  • Developments in Communication Policy (15 credits)
  • Transnational Media and Communication (15 credits)
  • Celebrity (15 credits)
  • Development and World Politics (15 credits)
  • Religion in Global Politics (15 credits)
  • Evaluation Politics and Advocacy (15 credits)
  • Victims: Policy and Politics (15 credits)
  • Criminal Minds (15 credits)
  • Qualitative Research Methods (15 credits)
  • Applied Qualitative Data Analysis (15 credits)
  • Survey Research Methods (15 credits)
  • Multivariate Data Analysis (15 credits)
  • Statistical Modelling (15 credits)
  • Mediating Gender and Sexuality (15 credits)
  • Digital Cultures

NB. Elective modules choices are subject to availability.

Still have questions? Read our FAQs for this course.

  • Student
    I really enjoyed my masters; from being able to gain an interdisciplinary perspective on development, as a whole, to having the opportunity to explore the areas of communication studies that I'm specifically interested in.
  • Student
    I enjoy studying within a truly international environment and receiving exhaustive feedback on my coursework.
  • Academic expert
    Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Media working in the School of Arts and Social Sciences.

Career prospects

Graduates of this MA have entered a wide variety of careers, including:

  • The civil service
  • Broadcasting
  • Press and telecoms networks
  • NGOs
  • The development sector and consultancies
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Politics
  • Journalism
  • PR
  • Media management
  • Regulatory agencies

Recent graduate positions include:

  • Fundraising and Communications Officer at Alone in London
  • Communications Specialist at Government Division of Health and Social Services
  • Civil Servant at Seoul Metropolitan Government.

According to the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey, previous graduates in employment six months after completing the course earn an average salary of £30,000.

Jessica Perrin who recently graduated with an MA in International Communications and Development is now Head of NGOs at Thomson Reuters Foundation.

You will have access to the expert services of our Careers, Student Development and Outreach Office. They regularly receive information about internship and job opportunities and are invited to participate in media fairs and panel discussions with alumni.

Find out more about the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2014/15 results

100% of graduates in employment or further study six months after completing the course

Applications are now open:

Apply for International Communications and Development (full-time)

Apply for International Communications and Development (part-time)

If you have any enquiries please contact:

Department of Sociology
School of Social Sciences
Tatiana Dias
Postgraduate Programme Administrator
City, University of London
Northampton Square

Contact details

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