Bachelor of Communication
The Bachelor of Communication (BC) is an applied communication degree, developing a broad skillset in media content production, planning, and research in international and national contexts.
Communication has experienced rapid growth in the digital environment. Graduates with skills across communication platforms, who can use data and who are creative and critical thinkers, are in demand in professional communication. More widely, Aotearoa New Zealand employers are seeking graduates with skills as public communicators and who can engage with wider communities.
Students will have the opportunity to use a variety of communication technologies, including digital, audio and visual, and social media. They will be able to apply critical thinking skills to a range of forms of journalism, creative projects, and communications scenarios, including to different audiences, and to meet the strategic goals of corporates and drivers of social change.
The BC also offers a particular focus on media in Aotearoa New Zealand to develop students’ bicultural knowledge. Students can engage in Māori communication practice in further depth through the specialised major, Tauwhitinga Māori: Māori Communication Strategy and Practice.
This degree combines expertise in communication with courses in Digital Humanities, Marketing, Management, Media and Communication, and Māori and Indigenous Studies, as well as the College of Arts internship programme.
- UC is renowned for its Journalism programme and experts in Media and Communication. Staff in the Department of Media and Communication have active research and participation in areas such as health communication practice, crisis communications, activist and social change communication, social media ethical practice, radio and television journalism, Pacific and alternative media, and critical analysis of media in Aotearoa New Zealand.
- The only degree in Aotearoa New Zealand that offers a major specialisation in Māori communication strategy.
- Opportunities for students to add a practical component to their degree through UC’s extensive contacts, such as internships, industry projects, or community campaigns within local businesses.
- Flexible degree that allows you to take electives in other subjects, for example in languages, political science, cultural studies, business, and more.
- UC maintains a close relationship with the professions and links to international partners in journalism and media studies, with visiting professors offering seminars and guest lectures each semester. Some examples include fellows from Cardiff University, University of Florida, George Washington University, University of Helsinki, University of Bradford, and the Danish School of Media and Journalism.
Admission to UC with University Entrance, or equivalent, is required to enrol for a bachelor's degree. Domestic applicants over 20 who do not hold University Entrance, or equivalent, may gain admission by providing evidence of their ability to complete tertiary study successfully. For information on gaining admission to UC please see how to apply for undergraduate qualifications.
You are also required to meet UC's English language requirements.
The Bachelor of Communication is open to all students with entry to the University and without previous study in the area. A good standard of oral and written English is important.
Entry to the Journalism major is limited to 25 places, and entry to the second year of the major requires a special application. Contact the Department of Media and Communication for more information.
Typical degree structure for Bachelor of Communication
Courses from the Bachelor of Arts Schedule B
Courses from Arts or other degrees
Each small block represents a 15-point course. However, some courses may be 30 points (or more).
Students must complete at least 225 points at 200-level or above.
This diagram is an example only – other combinations are possible.
For full course requirements see the Regulations for the Bachelor of Communication.
The Bachelor of Communication is made up of 360 points, with at least 225 points at 200-level or above:
- 165 points of compulsory core courses
- 90 points of major courses
- 30 points from the Bachelor of Arts Schedule B
- up to 75 points of optional courses from any bachelor’s degree at UC.
Courses in the BC focus on introductory communication, as well as practical courses in media production and communicating with data analytics, and advanced applied courses in a major subject area. Students may also take on an internship or project-based course in the industry as part of their degree.
If you are considering a double degree you should get advice from a College of Arts | Te Rāngai Toi Tangata Student Advisor or the Liaison Office.
Find out more information about Double degrees.
The BC includes 165 points of compulsory core courses for all students in each year of the degree:
- COMS 101 Media and Society
- COMS 102 Introduction to News and Journalism
- COMS 104 Introduction to Strategic Communication
- MGMT 100 Fundamentals of Management
- WRIT 101 Writing for Academic Success
- COMS 201 Media Audiences
- COMS 207 Social Media and Public Life
- COMS 231 Digital Media Production Skills
- DIGI 204 Communicating with Data and Digital Media
- COMS 330 Communication in Context
Plus 30 points (two standard courses) selected from any year level in the Bachelor of Arts Schedule B.
Another 90 points of courses are selected based on your major:
- Communication Strategy and Practice
- Political Communication
- Tauwhitinga Māori: Māori Communication Strategy and Practice
The other 75 points are made up of optional courses from any bachelor’s degree at UC. Students must have at least 225 points in courses at 200-level or above.
See the Regulations for the Bachelor of Communication for the full list of course requirements.
Students may choose to go onto the Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Media and Communication. UC also offers the Master of Strategic Communication, the Master of Writing, or the Master of Arts in Media and Communication. Students may also go onto the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Media and Communication, or Journalism.
Graduates of the Bachelor of Communication meet a growing need for communicators in media, creative industries, government, and iwi organisations. Many employers are seeking graduates that have applied knowledge in new and emerging media, collection and usage of data, media ethical practice, critical thinking, and analysis skills. Employers are increasingly telling us they want graduates who are competent in bicultural contexts.
Job titles will include public relations, marketing, media management, journalism, stakeholder relations, social media management, crisis communications, publications, events and project management, non-profits, and government.
Graduates will also be suited to roles in business management and strategy, especially in the Aotearoa New Zealand context, with their extensive experience in biculturalism, project management, and communicating corporate goals to the public.
Find out more about what you can do with a degree from UC.
For assistance with planning your programme of study contact the Liaison Office (new students), or a College of Arts | Te Rāngai Toi Tangata Student Advisor (advancing students).