Meeting an emerging need for specialist research and teaching on the media industries, the full-time Media Management course focuses on the UK in a European and global context. It was the first course of its kind in the UK, running successfully since 1993.
Applications are particularly welcome from those employed in the media industries.
Internationally-oriented and comparative in approach, the course provides:
- a theoretical and case-study based foundation in media economics, finance and business strategy
- appropriate management skills and an analytical perspective on the media industries
- an understanding of the evolution of the regulatory and policy environment in which media operate
- advanced study in contemporary media and cultural theories training in appropriate research methodologies
A minimum of a second class honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent in a relevant subject. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.
English language requirements
If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence of your proficiency such as a minimum IELTS score of 6.0 (5.5 in all bands).
If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard.
Our range of pre-sessional courses.
Modes of study
Full-time: one year
Course start date
Structure and content
The MSc in Media Management has been developed to prepare media managers to meet the challenges posed by unprecedented change and increased competition in the media environment. This full-time academic course is designed to provide media practitioners with a wider analytical perspective on the main issues affecting their work and offers graduates a rigorous foundation for a career in the media industry.
The course builds on Communications, Media & Culture's extensive links with the media industry and draws on a range of related disciplines including media studies, economics, marketing and business studies.
The MSc consists of two components: a taught course followed by a Dissertation. Based primarily in the Communications, Media & Culture department, the taught component also involves postgraduate modules offered by, or in collaboration with, the School of Management. The taught course takes place within the University's two 15-week semesters and involves lectures, seminars, tutorials and case-study work. Students will take two core modules and two elective modules concurrently in the Autumn Semester, plus two core modules and one elective module concurrently in Spring Semester making a total of seven taught modules across the year.
Delivery and assessment
The course is taught with a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Formal teaching is augmented by occasional guest speakers, usually experienced practitioners from the media industry who are able to provide a strategic or practical insight into current management issues.
MMAP12: Mass Media Research Methods
This course is organised around the discussion of issues and problems rather than articles or books, but the following reading list is an important first source for the development of your own ideas about research methods. You are expected to incorporate reference to appropriate reading (fully referenced in accordance with the Harvard system of referencing) in your assignments.
Guides to Research Methods
- Berger, A. A. (1998) Media Research Techniques (2nd edn). London: Sage.
- Bertrand, I. and P. Hughes (2004) Media Research Methods. London: Palgrave MacMillan.
- Bryman, A. (2004) Social Research Methods (2nd edn). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Deacon, D., Pickering, M., Golding, P. and Murdock, G. (2007) Researching Communications: A Practical Guide to Methods in Media and Cultural Analysis. London: Arnold. Second Edition.
- Gill, J., and P. Johnson (2010) Research Methods for Managers. London: Sage. Fourth Edition.
- Hansen, A., Cottle, S., Negrine, R. and Newbold, C. (1998) Mass Communication Research Methods. London: Macmillan.
- Jensen, K. B. and Jankowski, N. W. (eds) (1991) A Handbook of Qualitative Methodologies for Mass Communications Research. London: Routledge (available as e-book through Athens).
- Messenger-Davies, M. and N. Mosdell (2006) Practical Research Methods for Media & Cultural Studies: Making People Count. Edinburgh: EUP.
- Oliver, P. (2004) The Student’s Guide to Research Ethics. Maidenhead: Open University Press.
- Rubin, R. B., Rubin, A. M. and Piele, L. J. (1992) Communication Research Strategies and Sources (3rd edn). Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth.
- Saunders, M., A. Thornhill and P. Lewis (2009) Research Methods for Business Students. London: Prentice Hall. Fifth Edition.
- Seale, C. (2004) Researching Society and Culture (2nd edn). London: Sage.
- Wimmer, R. D. and Dominick, J. R. (2006) Mass Media Research: an Introduction (8th edn). Belmont CA: Thomson Wadsworth.
MMAP11: Media Economics
Highly Recommended books
- Albarran, Alan B. (2010) The Media Economy, London: Routledge.
- Alexander, Alison, Owers, James, Carveth, Rod, Hollifield, Ann and Greco, Albert (eds.), (2004), Media Economics: Theory and Practice (3rd ed), Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
- Doyle, Gillian (2002) Understanding Media Economics, London: Sage Publications.
These books are similar in their content structure, divided into chapters on the economics of specific media industries/sectors. Albarran is a new and potentially very useful introductory text with a global focus. Alexander et al (2004) provides knowledge and insights into the US media industries while Doyle (2004) is more European-centred. Together, they are useful in gaining a thorough understanding of the economic operations of the media in the western world.
- Hoskins, Colin, McFadyen, Stuart and Finn, Adam (2004) Media Economics: Applying Economics to New and Traditional Media, Thousand Oaks, Calif: Sage Publications.
- Picard, Robert (2002) The Economics and Financing of Media Companies. New York: Fordham University Press.
Instead of being divided into chapters on different media industries as in Alexander et al (2004) and Doyle (2002), these two texts approach media economics according to key concepts and issues and are important supplementary readings for those who wish to obtain a clear and in-depth understanding of whey they learn from lectures and the other readings.
- Strunk, William and White, E.B. (1999/2008) The Elements of Style, New York: Pearson.
This is a helpful guide on writing clearly and correctly. You can also access writing and language skills help – contact your Programme Director (Dr Richard Haynes) for advice.
MMAP14: Media Regulation and Policy
There is no course text as such. However, students are strongly encouraged to purchase
- Carey P et.al, Media Law, Sweet& Maxwell; 5th edition: London, 2010
BSMP31: Strategic Management
The core text for the module is:
- Johnson, G, Scholes, K, Whittington, R (2012), Fundamentals of Strategy, 2nd Edition, Prentice Hall, ISBN: 978-0-273-75725-2.
The first edition of the core text is available as an e-book for £23.99 and can be purchased from the following website.
- Global Creative Industries (MMAP10)
- Mass Media Research Methods (MMAP12)
and two options of:
- Media Environment (MMAP13)
- Accounting and Finance (ACCP30)
- Managing International Organisations (BSMP24)
- Media Regulation and Policy (MMAP14)
- Strategic Management (BSMP31)
and two options of:
- Marketing Communications (MKTP30)
- Media Rights (MMAP15)
- Advertising (PCMCX3)
- Europe and the Emerging Economies (BSMP26)
Why study Media Management at Stirling?
Dr Richard Haynes
- Top in Scotland and UK top ten for media and communications (Guardian University Guide, 2011)
- Top in Scotland for communication and media (Complete University Guide, 2011)
- Rated UK top ten for student satisfaction in both Journalism and Media Studies in the last National Student Survey
- Top in Scotland in communication, cultural and media studies as rated by the most recent UK Research Assessment Exercise (70% of our research in highest categories ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’)
Stirling's media research has been awarded a rating of Grade 5 three times in succession in the Higher Education Funding Councils' research assessment exercise and had 70% of it's research considered to be 'World Leading' or 'International excellence' in the most recent RAE. The Stirling Media Research Institute (SMRI) enjoys an international reputation for the quality of its work, regularly attracting many foreign visitors. The Institute has a purpose-built research facility for the use of its members.
Current research in the Institute is focused on:
- Cultural Creativity
- Film and Television
- Media and Communications Policy
- Public Relations
- Sport Media
- Digital Media
- Media Archives and Cultural Memory
All research active members of the Division are members of the SMRI. The Institute is a long established centre for research in both humanities and social science approaches to film, broadcasting, journalism and digital media. Members of the Institute work to understand the role of the media in culture and society, taking interdisciplinary approaches to our knowledge on creative and cultural industries, media policy and regulation, public relations and communications management, heritage and media archives, digital transformations of news and journalism, and a range of media-centred studies on sport, health, the environment, terrorism, gender and identity. Much of this work is aimed at improving our knowledge of media and communications theory and practice. Projects have focused on the media in contexts involving, for example, sports broadcasting, public relations practice, environmental NGO's, film and media archives, and policy review settings. Our research outputs and public engagement have connections to changes to public policy on broadcasting, the press and digital media or improved education and training of media and communications managers. Our research has helped shape a national policy on broadcasting in Scotland, curricula relating to the training of public relations professionals, the public communication of environmental and conservation initiatives and public activities focused on media archives held by both the University and other external organisations.
Communications, Media and Culture actively supports and encourages its staff to engage with a wider non-HEI audience for its research evidenced through contributions to policy fora, funded research for government agencies, collaborative work with NGO’s, engagement with the trade associations, unions and institutes of communications, media and culture professionals, active dialogue and contributions to media organisations across the spectrum of broadcasting, the press, film and the internet, professional contributions to charities and pressure groups in relation to public media issues and policies, and a range of cultural heritage activities at national and international film festivals and exhibitions.
Active involvement in various media agencies and organisations can be seen in Professor Blain’s role as a member of Skillset’s National Board for Scotland, Professor Hibberd’s Chairing of the Voice of the Listener and Viewing in Scotland, and Dr Haynes’s (2011-12) role on the Advisory Network of Mind Waves, a mental health media project run by the Mental Health Partnership of Glasgow and Clyde NHS.
I chose the Media Management programme because it afforded me the opportunity to examine my dual passions: Economics and the Creative Industries. The programme allowed me to explore at greater length my personal theories and intuitions of the realities of modern media industries. It also provided a broad context for the ways in which the different artistic mediums are monetized and distributed.
Since graduating I’ve been a New Media Director on a Federal campaign in the States, as well as a Campus Organiser for a public interest group. I’m currently looking for work in the California Bay Area in the music industry.
My time at Stirling allowed me to meet and get to know individuals from all over the world – the campus can be a very international place if you seek it out. I also travelled frequently. The campus itself is an intensely beautiful place and the facilities are modern and well kept.
The teaching staff was knowledgeable and the research that takes place is impressive. The town is of a manageable size and easily frequented by foot. If you come to Stirling, make sure you take advantage of the surrounding countryside and cities – there’s a lot to see.
Nick Ashby (USA): New Media Director on a Federal campaign Stateside. Now heading for the California Bay music industry. – MSc in Media Management 2010
Having completed an undergraduate degree at Stirling, I realised I needed something to distinguish me from the thousands of other undergraduates searching for employment. With over 40% of school leavers going on to higher education, finding an enjoyable, well-paid job in a very crowded job market is a difficult task.
Being an Olympic athlete too, juggling 30-35 hours a week in the pool and gym, presented significant problems. So the Media Management postgraduate qualification, with its multi-disciplinary approach and, more importantly, the online teaching programme, provided the perfect solution.
With a learning programme which consists largely of online resources, I was able to pursue an academic career whilst doing something which I was insanely passionate about. I wrote essays when at home in Scotland, completed weekly tasks while at swim training camps on Australia’s Gold Coast and even took exams whilst competing in Arizona. It really is one of the most flexible programmes available.
The classes – including media economics, media finance and media rights – were varied and provided a great springboard for me to move into the working world. The beauty of the Media Management course is that it’s vocational enough to provide you with a great understanding of the media environment, but sufficiently wide-ranging to open numerous doors.
I’m not restricted in what I do in the working world; I’ve been a journalist, an event officer, and a project manager. Before my current job, I worked for the BBC, as well as for Commonwealth Games Scotland. The course also opens up options in the world of academia – something which I’d love to return to at Stirling in the future.
Stirling has been my adopted home for the last twelve years and I’ve fallen victim to Stirling syndrome. It happens to lots of people who come to Stirling – usually to study, but in my case to swim – and end up staying. Central Scotland is a great place to live, study, train and work. Stirling University treads that delicate balance that all universities strive for – it’s picturesque, quiet and remote enough to allow you to get away, but it also has a bustling, lively, feel to it.
Todd Cooper (UK): Marketing and Communications Executive at EventScotland, Scotland’s National Events Agency – MSc in Media Management (online) 2009
I undertook the MSc to extend my existing qualifications and formalise my experience gained in working in New Media and IT management roles. I worked at the University of Stirling for three years before taking undertaking the MSc, so the university was a very familiar place.
I chose modules I was interested in; thoroughly enjoying and gaining vast knowledge from those in Media Rights, Media Economics and Media Environment. Completing the compulsory management modules was a core part of the programme, providing an excellent basis in management and organisational approaches. All of which have given me a solid foundation and professional approach to my studies and working environment.
The MSc proved to be the perfect foundation for my current role, as so much of the course gave me the confidence and knowledge to take my career in the direction I wanted it to go. Building on my technical knowledge, I studied media formats, the legislation, authorities, copyright and methods used to protect digital media. I have always been interested in working for arts, cultural and educational organisations, so having the opportunity to work on Digital Projects in an Arts organisation is fantastic.
I had a great year studying at the University. I improved my knowledge and skills in media related subjects, yet still had time to enjoy reading daily newspapers, online materials and the substantial reading lists provided on the course.
The programme lecturers and staff were all incredibly knowledgeable, providing excellent support for students; particularly Richard Hayes, the programme director, who offered support at all times and gave me encouragement and excellent direction.
Bridgeen Duffy (UK): Digital Project Manager, National Galleries of Scotland – MSc in Media Management 2010
When I joined Stirling, I was already an experienced professional and had served for more than a decade in the audio-visual medium. Yet I wanted to pursue a degree that could relate to the challenges of changing times and match international standards and, after an extensive search, Stirling was an obvious choice.
The course, the environment and the opportunity to learn new skills in the field was just what I was looking for. The courses were rigorous and hard work was assumed and imperative. However the microscopic scrutiny of the assignments is what made my approach more methodical and which today helps me to bring my output nearer to perfection.
The beautiful University campus was a great opportunity to interact with some diverse and interesting groups. Simple conversations, informal chats and open discussions with peers, proved to be memorable learning experiences. My association with some has not just continued, but grown over the years.
Today I am responsible for the broadcast of Hindi feature films, co-ordination with producers of serial makers, in-charge of a business program and involved in an international project on education that helps encourage the scientific temperament of engineering students of the Asia-Pacific region.
Besides this, I am also engaged in the yearly National Games and recently was a member of the coverage, production and transmission teams for the Commonwealth Games, Delhi and the Asian Games, Guangzhou, China.
I pursued a degree in the middle of my career and I am glad I chose Stirling. It has proved to be a profoundly enriching experience!
Sandeep Sood (India): Senior Program Executive at Doordarshan (India’s National Television Network), Bombay – MSc in Media Management 2004
Skills you can develop through this course
As you progress through your Media Management degree, you will have the opportunity to develop the following practical skills and attributes that are much sought after by prospective employers:
- Media industry awareness – through case study analysis, guest lectures and site visits to media organisations, you will develop an understanding of what is going on in the media sector and rapid developments in other digitally related industries.
- Written and oral communication – media management involves communication both internally and externally with various stakeholders. The course develops your abilities to communicate through various essays, reports, presentations and online activities.
- Teamworking – groupwork is an essential part of your Media Management degree, both during management and communications modules simulate real-life scenarios in business and marketing communications.
- Research and analysis – critical learning is a key aspect of any Master's course in media and communications and you will be given the opportunity to develop your own research skills to carry out both small-scale and larger research projects including the Master's dissertation.
- Time management – you will learn how to manage your time more effectively through your active involvement in group projects, as well as by successfully juggling your weekly workload in order to meet your (sometimes conflicting) deadlines for coursework
- Self-confidence – the media industry needs confident, self-starters and your active participation in the degree programme and the wider postgraduate community will build your personal confidence and professional prospects.
Where are our graduates now?
Our graduates are spread throughout the world. At present we are in contact with graduates in 30 countries around the world.
Media Management graduates are currently contributing to the performance of the following organisations:
- BBC Worldwide
- Channel 4
- China Radio HIT FM
- Vodafone Greece
- Radio One India (A Midday/BBC Joint Venture)
- ERT S.A.
- Southerna Africa Development Community
- Wyeside Arts Centre
- MTV Networks UK
- Summerhouse Publishing
- Jetlag Advertising
- Motorpress Hellas SA
- Google India Pvt Ltd
- Mobistar - Orange Group
- Vodafone Greece
- Ministry of Education & European Commission
- Asia Reach Media
- Tele2 Norway
- Indian Music Industry
- McCann Universal Media
- Cooperative Bank of Chania, Crete
- Adcosp - Simeka TWS Communications
- Corporate Communications, Avon
- Giacometti: Branding e Arquitetura de Negócios
- Bòrd na Gàidhlig
To provide you with an indication as to what you can do with your Media Management degree, graduates entering into employment in the past two years are currently working with:
- Reputation Executive
- Social Media Researcher
- Communications Executive
- Internship in Online Marketing
Building on that foundation, alumni of Stirling’s Media Management degree who graduated between five and ten years ago have since advanced into some of the following positions:
- Director, International Marketing
- Business Analyst
- Chief Executive
- General Manager
- Associate Account Director
- Vice President
- Head, Magna Home Video and Magna Films
Some of our more established alumni are currently leading and shaping Media Management strategy across many different sectors – here is an example of how a few former Stirling Media Management students have advanced in their careers:
- Marketing Manager
- Vice President of Programming, Creative & Content
- Content & Produce Development
- PR Executive
- Project Manager
- Communications Consultant
- Account Executive
- Communication Manager in Public Relations Department
- Creative Partner
- Financial Control/Analysis Manager
- Account Associate
- Managing Director
- Head of Regulatory Affairs
- Head of Customer Base Management
- Project Manager
- Business Development & Operations Director
- Business Development Director
- Director, Global Digital Marketing
- Press Officer
- Marketing Director
- Accounts Director
- Head of Corporate Relations
Graduating with a degree in Media Management does not necessarily mean that you have to progress into a career in that field. A Media Management degree is a solid foundation upon which to base a career in a variety of different fields, as is shown by some of the potentially less obvious roles that our Media Management graduates are currently working as:
- Area Manager
- Regional Sales Director
- In-house Lawyer
- Head of Finance
You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.
Information on possible sources of funding
The University of Stirling is offering any UK or European Union student with a First Class Honours degree (or equivalent) a £2,000 scholarship to study full-time on any taught Masters course or £1,000 for part-time study. Further information on the scholarships is available here.