Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

School of Media and Communication


MA Programmes: Frequently Asked Questions

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Below are some of the Frequently Asked Questions that we receive from applicants.  Scroll through to find some answers – and if you can’t find an answer to your question, please email us at mediapg@leeds.ac.uk, and we’ll try to help.

The Application Process

How do I apply?

Details of how to apply can be found here. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis and decisions conveyed to candidates as promptly as possible following receipt of an application in the department.

Which additional documents do I need to submit with my application?

We will need a degree certificate if you have already graduated or a studying certificate if you are still studying.  We also need to see a transcript of your marks on your degree.  Please include an approved translation if these documents are not in English.  You will also need to submit your CV, two references (at least one academic) and your proof of English Language if your first language is not English.

If your undergraduate degree is not relevant to the MA programme you applied for we might ask you to submit a personal statement.

I don’t have a degree in a relevant subject or a communications discipline – does this matter?

Our entry criteria for each programme, including the degree subject we usually look for, can be found on each of our programme web pages.

We assess each application individually and your degree will be considered alongside other factors, for example any substantial work experience you have undertaken, as well as a creative work portfolio (for the MA in Film, Photography and Media).  If you wish to provide additional information such as work experience or career aspirations, please include this on your CV or personal statement.

When is the deadline for applying?

The deadline to apply for our MA programmes is 31st of August for non UK/EEU applicants and 10th of September for UK/EEA applicants.

When will I know whether I have a place?

We aim to process your application as soon as possible, so you should hear if you have been accepted by the School of Media and Communication soon after applying, provided we have received all the required documents. However, during our busier periods it might take upto 4 weeks until we will able to process your application.

What do I do once I have received an offer from the department?

Once you have received your official offer, you will need to check if there are any conditions.  These will be outlined in the offer letter.  They may be academic (for example, a certain result in your degree if you are still studying) or we may need to see some additional documentation.  Once you have met your conditions, please send us the proof of this.  You can upload your transcripts and certificates to Applicant Portal. We will send you more information about starting your programme closer to the start date.

When is the deadline for accepting my offer?

If you are an international student, you will need to accept your offer before a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for Study  – see below) reference number can be issued by our central admissions team, so the earlier you accept your offer, the better. If you are a Home/EU student there is no official deadline for you to accept your offer, but this will need to be done before the start of the course.

International Applicants

What is my CAS number?

A CAS number is a “confirmation of acceptance for studies” number, which we issue to international students who have accepted their unconditional offer from us.  This number will enable to you to apply for a visa to enter the UK through the UK Border Agency.  You can find more information on how this works once you have received it, and what action you need to take at the UK Border Agency website.

If you have specific questions about getting a visa, please email our International Student Office: internationalstudents@leeds.ac.uk

When will I get my CAS number?

You should receive your CAS number in May.  This will be emailed to you by our Central Admissions team.

Where can I find information on visas and immigration?

There is a university web site giving both general information on living and working in UK as well as more specific advice on visas and immigration: http://students.leeds.ac.uk/#International-students

What do I do if my visa got refused?

Any student who has had their visa application refused may contact the International Office for assistance using the following email address: internationalwelcome@leeds.ac.uk

Studying Information

What happens if I arrive after the start of term?

Please let us know if you are unable to join us at the start of term by emailing mediapg@leeds.ac.uk or submitting an enquiry via Applicant Portal. We will be able to offer you individual advice on what to do next.

Can I do the programme part time?

If you are a Home/EU student, you have the option to study part-time on our courses.

How is the teaching organised?

This depends on the programme you have applied for and the optional modules you choose.  For MA Film, Photography and Media, for example, modules include lectures, seminars and creative workshops.  For MA Communication and Media, there will be lectures, small group seminars, student-led discussions and presentations.  You can find more about the teaching for each programme by following the links to the programme pages here.

There is also an emphasis on independent learning and class participation in all the programmes.

Are there any courses I can take as a student, which may help me with my studies?

Our Library offers free and useful courses related to your studies (for example, writing skills, time management and presentation skills).  You can view full list of courses here.

The Language Centre also runs language support classes through the year. You can find out more about their in-sessional provision here.

English Language Requirements

What are your English Language requirements?

If you are not from, or are not studying your degree in an English speaking country, then you will also need to provide proof of your English proficiency. Our minimum English Language requirements are as follows:

IELTS: 6.5 overall, with no component less than 6.0

TOEFL: 92 overall (with 21 in listening and reading, 22 in writing and 23 in speaking).

What happens if I don’t meet the IELTS requirement for my programme?

If you do not meet the IELTS requirement for the programme when you apply, or haven’t taken the test yet, you may still be able to receive an offer from us.  Your offer will be conditional on you meeting the requirement before the start of the programme.

There are pre-sessional courses available at our English Language Centre, which may help you to meet the requirement. Our pre-sessional courses are designed with progression route to the relevant MA programme and will help you better understand the academic language and literacy practices in your subject area. For applicants who have taken the IELTS test, the minimum entry requirements are as follows:

The 10 week Language for Social Science and Arts: Communication and Society course is suitable if you scored 6.0 with two components below 6.0 and none below 5.5.

The 6 week Language for Communication and Society course is suitable if you scored 6.0 with one or no components below 6.0 and none below 5.5.

For those who have taken the TOEFL test, the 10 week course is suitable if you have scored 83-87 (with a minimum of 18 in listening and reading, 20 in writing and 21 in speaking).

The 6 week course is suitable if you have scored 88-91 (with a minimum of 20 in listening and reading, 21 in writing and 22 in speaking).

I want to do the pre-sessional course, how do I apply?

Please have a look on the Language Centre website for information on how to apply for the pre-sessional programme.

For more information on combined offer process please visit: https://www.leeds.ac.uk/info/123100/admissions/266/combined_offers_for_masters_programmes

If I have paid my fees for the pre-sessional course and then can’t attend, will I get a refund?

You can get a refund if you cancel your course 21 days before the start of the course.  You will need to put this request in writing to the Language Centre – you can email them at langc@leeds.ac.uk

Fees Questions

What are the fees for 2018/19?

The fees for 2018/19 academic year are as follows:

Home/EU students: £7,500 full time (12 months)

International students: £18,500 full time (12 months).

How do I pay my fees?

You can find out information about how to pay your fees on the Fees Office webpage.

When do I have to pay my fees?

You will be required to pay half of your fees when you register on arrival at the university.  The second half will be required in February 2018.

If I have paid my fees and have to withdraw, will I get a refund?

You will usually be expected to pay fees for the months that you have attended your course.  You can find out more information about tuition fees at their webpages here.


What scholarships does the School offer for international students?

The School of Media and Communication offers three part-fee scholarships, each worth half the tuition fee, to international students with an excellent academic record.  To be eligible you must be liable to pay academic fees at the full cost rate for international students.

You can find out more information about these scholarships at our webpage.  The application forms can be downloaded there too.

There are also University-wide scholarships available (including Commonwealth and Tetley and Lupton scholarships).  You can find out which ones you are eligible for on the scholarships site.

What scholarships does the School offer for home / EU students?

We offer five part-fee scholarships, each worth half the tuition fee, to home/EU students with an excellent academic record. You can find out more information at our webpage.  The application form can be downloaded there too.

There are also University-wide scholarships available which you may be eligible for.  You can find out more information here.

Student Interaction

Can I get in touch with other students who will be coming to the School, before we arrive?

We have a Facebook group that you can join once you have received an official offer.  You are very welcome to communicate with other applicants who have joined the group.

Are there opportunities to meet other students at the university?

Our Student Union is very active and organises many different events for you to participate in and meet other students.   There are also lots of clubs and societies you can join to meet students with similar interests; you can see a full list here.

Leeds University Union has also been voted best university union in the country for international students.  A number of programmes and events are run in collaboration with international students, which you are very welcome to get involved with.

International Students

Is my accommodation guaranteed as an international student?

The Accommodation Office guarantees accommodation to first-year postgraduate international students, as long as you apply before the deadline of 1st July.  It is a good idea to speak to the Accommodation Office to discuss your individual requirements with them.  They will be able to advise you on the most suitable accommodation for you.  You can email them at accom@leeds.ac.uk

What support is offered to me as an international student?

We have a very helpful International Student Office on campus, who will send you useful information (for example about visas, setting in, and how to register with a doctor in the UK) before you arrive. You are always welcome to visit the International Student Office during your time in Leeds and they will do their best to help you. You can find out more about the services they offer here.

Our Student Union also offer help and advice to all students during their time in Leeds.

Careers advice, employment and networking

Can I work while I am studying?

It may be possible to work while you are studying, depending on your visa conditions, but this will need to fit around your studies – not the other way around!

What jobs do students go into after taking the course?

Here is some information about the kinds of jobs our students go into after their course:

MA Communications Studies:  Our students have gone on to work in a large variety of professions internationally. Some of our students have chosen to go into careers such as film, political communications or the cultural industries.

MA Cinema and Photography:  Our students are expected to find work in a large variety of cinematic/ digital lens-based / media professions in the UK and internationally, both as ‘creatives’ (across a diverse range of roles within photography, cinema & TV production), as well as project managers, researchers, in the creative industries, and as future academics .

MA International Communications:  Graduates from this course have worked in a variety of national and international, public and private sector organisations.  For example, one of our alumni now works in international public affairs and another  is a Programme Specialist for the United Nations Development Programme.

MA Media Industries:  Some of our students have gone on to have careers in media management or production.  Others may choose to work in public relations, communications or media policy.

MA International Journalism:  Some of our alumni now work in national and international journalism or as public relations practitioners in government.   Others work for international and not-for-profit organisations.

MA Political Communication:  Our alumni have pursued careers including political journalism, communications advising for political parties, government communication roles, working in international organisations and pressure groups, and as communications analysts.

All of our courses also provide an excellent basis for further academic study.

Are there any work placement opportunities on the course?

Work placements are not currently offered as a formal part of the programmes. Our Careers Service organises events for students to discover more about work experience opportunities that they may want to pursue independently.  You can take a look at their website to see the kind of activities they offer.

What kind of careers advice can I receive at Leeds?

Our University Careers Service is very proactive in organising different events and workshops to help you think about your future career.  Events this year include the Yorkshire Graduate Recruitment Fair and the Graduate Jobs and Internship Fair.  Workshops on how to use social media to find jobs and tips for interview success are also delivered.  Our careers advisor also provides weekly bookable sessions in the department, for all students to use.

The School of Media and Communication also organise Careers Days for its students, where industry experts and past students come to talk about their careers and experiences.  These are very good opportunities for networking.  Our Careers Service Advisor also comes to talk to our MA students and offer advice about getting a job after graduation.

Can I be connected with alumni from my area?

When you are a student you will have access to the Leeds Network, which allows you to connect with alumni and ask them questions about their careers.  We are also looking into facilitating alumni groups around the globe, so there may be one for your country in the future.

The Alumni Office also runs international reunion events for when you graduate.  You can find out more about the Alumni Office’s services here.

I may be interested in further study after my MA – where can I find information?

You can find information about our PhD programme here. Each year, a talk is also organised for MA students about PhD study.  This includes an opportunity to meet with current PhD students to find out about their experiences of further study.

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