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Education Bachelor's degree programmes Media Studies
Header image Media Studies

Media Studies

Media are at the heart of contemporary life. From social media to print, from websites to television, from search engines to apps: our understanding of the world is shaped by media.

Important information for prospective students starting a BA or MA programme in September 2020.

Media have a major impact not only on how we communicate with one another, but also on how societies are organised: culturally, politically and economically. This academic programme therefore studies the informative and social function of media and conceives 'culture' in its anthropological definition: as the ideas, customs and social behaviour of particular (groups in) societies.

You will acquire knowledge and a variety of theoretical perspectives on the way different media platforms are structured, how they operate and how they relate to each other; how media systems are underpinned politically and economically; and how patterns of media use, production and content develop and change. You will learn to apply and critically reflect on different types of academic research methods on a variety of topics. In addition, you will also get acquainted to the professional fields related to media, develop your professional skills to help you perform in media-related internships and jobs.

Interested? Visit our Open Day!

The programme's distinctive features are:

  • an international, comparative and interdisciplinary curriculum
  • a focus on the informative and social function of media
  • emphasis on the theoretical perspectives, methodological skills to understand and research practices of media use and production
  • attention for professional skills
Facts & Figures
Degree
BA in Media Studies
Course type
Bachelor
Duration
36 months (180 ECTS)
Croho code
50906
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Arts
Studie in Cijfers
Why study this programme in Groningen?

The programme has a specific focus on the informative and social function of media, providing a comparative perspective by studying media in their cultural, international, historical, economic and political contexts, using methods and theories from social sciences. It has attention for the practices of media use and production, as well as for professional skills. The perspective of other programmes is more often grounded in popular culture, arts, language and/or film and television studies.

Programme

Students get familiar with different relevant media platforms and industries and with Media Studies as an academic discipline, as well as acquiring the necessary academic skills.

Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >1234
Media, Culture and Society (5 EC)
Media Platforms and Industries I (5 EC)
Studying Media in Everyday Life (5 EC)
Academic Skills (5 EC)
Media History (5 EC)
Media Platforms and Industries II (5 EC)
Imagining the Digital (5 EC)
Introduction to Media Studies I (5 EC)
Professional Writing (5 EC)
Introduction to Media Studies II (5 EC)
Media Spaces and Practices (5 EC)
Social Lab (5 EC)

The focus shifts to a thorough theoretical and methodological training. Besides mandatory courses, students follow a profile of their choosing: Audiovisual Culture, Cultural Industries, Digital Cultures, Journalism Studies or Politics and Global Citizenship.

Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >1234
Analysing Media Texts (5 EC)
Audiovisual Culture (5 EC)
Profiles (elective courses, with choice from Audiovisual Culture, Cultural Industries, Digital Cultures, Journalism Studies, Politics and Global Citizenship) (5 EC)
Analysing Media Production and Use (5 EC)
Profiles (continuation of chosen profile) (5 EC)
Profiles (continuation of chosen profile) (5 EC)
Media Theory I: Mediatisation and Effect (5 EC)
Profiles (continuation of chosen profile) (5 EC)
Profiles (continuation of chosen profile) (5 EC)
Media Theory II: Form and Technology (5 EC)
Profiles (continuation of chosen profile) (5 EC)
Transmedia Production (5 EC)

Students do (semi-)independent research as well as make a choice as to which minor (university minor; faculty minor; career minor, including a placement; minor abroad) they would like to follow.

Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >1234
Minor (elective) (15 EC)
Minor (elective) (15 EC)
Research Seminar Media Studies (10 EC)
Thinkers and Theories (5 EC)
Specialization course Media Studies (5 EC)
Thesis (10 EC)

Curriculum

Throughout the curriculum there are three distinctive learning pathways: a theoretical, methodological and a professional learning pathway. These aim to provide students with the combination of a solid knowledge base, substantial understanding of a diversity of theoretical perspectives, sound methodological training, and a thorough preparation for the labour market. Students earn 150 ECTS credits in their major, 30 ECTS can be filled with a minor during the third year.

Programme options
Honours Programme (honours program)

The Bachelor's Honours Programme is a complementary programme of 45 ECTS that you can follow next to your regular Bachelor's degree programme. There is no extra tuition fee.

The Programme has a duration of two and a half year, in which deepening and broadening of knowledge and understanding are central themes. On that account the interdisciplinary approach will be very important, next to intensifying the knowledge of your own degree programme. Together with other students from all faculties you will look into scientific and social issues from different disciplinary angles.

More information about this option

Minors (minor)

The fifth semester of your studies is dedicated to your Minor: a coherent set of future-oriented course units. It prepares you for a follow-on Master's degree program or for entering the labour market. You can opt for a Career Minor, a Minor abroad, a University Minor or a Faculty Minor.

More information about this option

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
  • For an average of 20 weeks
  • Maximum of 30 EC

To further encourage the international profile of the students, the programme structure allows students to spend one semester at a partner university abroad in the third year of their studies. The Department offers exchange programmes within the framework of the Lifelong Learning Erasmus and Marco Polo.

Entry requirements

Admissible Dutch diploma profiles

  • Natuur & Techniek
  • Natuur & Gezondheid
  • Economie & Maatschappij
  • Cultuur & Maatschappij
  • HBO propedeuse

    Additional requirements English: Minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 90 (with a minimum of 21 on all items), or IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6 on all items). Language Centre English Test (LCET) level C1 (B2 for no more than two components). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 180.

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Additional requirements English: Minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 90 (with a minimum of 21 on all items), or IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6 on all items). Language Centre English Test (LCET) level C1 (B2 for no more than two components). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 180. For more information on the LCET, refer to site of the language center (https://www.rug.nl/language-centre/testing-unit/english-lcet/)

previous education

Dutch VWO diploma, a German Abitur, an International Baccalaureate diploma, a European Baccalaureate or another diploma that is sufficient for acceptance to a Dutch university. Students with a Dutch 'hbo propedeuse' diploma also need to meet the language requirements mentioned above.

Choice of degree programme check

The degree programme will organize a matching procedure. Attendance is optional. The advice is not binding.

Explanatory notes

If you intend to start with a bachelor degree programme at the University of Groningen in September, make sure to apply before June 1 in Studielink. The degree programme will give you the option to participate in a matching activity to see if you and the degree programme are a match. Which matchings activity they provide depends on the faculty and programme.

Any questions about matching? Check www.rug.nl/matching

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202101 September 2021
EU/EEA students01 May 202101 September 2021
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202101 September 2021

Choice of degree programme check

If you intend to start with a bachelor degree programme at the University of Groningen in September, make sure to apply before June 1 in Studielink. The degree programme will give you the option to participate in a matching activity to see if you and the degree programme are a match. Which matchings activity they provide depends on the faculty and programme.

Any questions about matching? Check www.rug.nl/matching

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Minimum requirement of TOEFL iBT 90 (with a minimum of 21 on all items), or IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6 on all items). Language Centre English Test (LCET) level C1 (B2 for no more than two components). Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a minimum score of 180. For more information on the LCET, refer to site of the language center (https://www.rug.nl/language-centre/testing-unit/english-lcet/)

previous education

Dutch VWO diploma, a German Abitur, an International Baccalaureate diploma, a European Baccalaureate or another diploma that is sufficient for acceptance to a Dutch university. Students with a Dutch 'hbo propedeuse' diploma also need to meet the language requirements mentioned above.

Registration procedure

For all admission-related questions, feel free to contact our admission officer via arts.ba.admission rug.nl.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202101 September 2021
EU/EEA students01 May 202101 September 2021
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202101 September 2021
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2020-2021€ 2143full-time
non-EU/EEA2020-2021€ 9500full-time

The Dutch government intends to halve the statutory tuition fees for specific groups of first year bachelor's students starting from the 2018/19 academic year.

https://www.rug.nl/education/tuition-fees-halved

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

As a graduate of Media Studies you have acquired the skills you need for the job market of the 21st century: creativity, critical thinking, communication, collaboration and commitment. Employers, whether in profit or non-profit organisations, are looking for people that are able to combine practical, conceptual and strategic thinking - exactly what we aim for with this degree.

Job examples

  • Advisor/consultant

    Advise on the e-consulting strategy for a major health institution.

  • Content and campaign manager

    Develop the website and the social media campaigns for a commercial broadcasting organisation

  • Digital product manager

    Develop and optimize the digital product range for a medium sized youth and education publisher.

  • Social media strategy advisor

    Develop and implement the social media strategy for a non-profit crowd sourcing organisation.

  • Copy writer

    Produce audiovisual content for a digital television channel.

Research

Research in Media Studies

Our Media Studies staff implements diverse research projects in the field of Media Studies, sometimes collaborating with other international universities based in cities such as Sheffield and Cardiff. During the bachelor's programme you will learn about the staff's research projects with themes such as social media and politics; media literacy; startup culture; datafication and the music industry and more. Such knowledge feeds into the research seminars and the specialisation courses...

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Contact

  • 
						Testimonial of  Anna Bowden

    Media studies provided the foundation of knowledge across industries...

    – Anna Bowden
    Read more
    I believe the BA Media Studies degree from the Univeristy of Groningen has prepared me well for my career in public relations. I work at J Public Relations in NY where we are responsible for creating and maintaining mutually beneficial relationships between our clients and media and other stakeholders. Public relations grows brand recognition and reputation without paying for coverage. We do this by telling compelling stories to media. We are often faced with the question of how to get our clients' brand message across in larger stories that are worthy of coverage. In order to tell these stories we work with clients to craft media and brand strategies that will translate across (various) platforms. Media studies provided the foundation of knowledge across industries, which I use at work to help advise clients in the ever changing media and global current events landscape. In the course Social Lab in year 1 of my degree, we worked with local businesses to address their specific media concerns. This course and project mirrored what we do in new business pitches and how we begin working with new clients. The BA Media Studies degree also taught me the strategy behind social media platforms and how to use them for business purposes, which is vital to the social side of PR. I highly recommend public relations for media studies students who are natural storytellers, globally-minded, social media savvy, and enjoy working in a dynamic, fast-paced workplace!
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  • 
						Testimonial of Jaron Elbers BA

    It is the insights acquired throughout my studies that I take with me every single day, and that help me stand out in the field that I am working in...

    – Jaron Elbers BA
    Read more

    Before I started Media Studies, I thought I had a pretty good idea about what 'media' was. But from the first day on, I got to know about media and everything around them in ways that I had never considered before. It showed me the relevance of studying media in every aspect possible, as it taught me about all the ways media are not only interconnected with our lives, but frequently are an inherent part of our lives and our existence on their own. And I can confirm that now..

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  • 
						Testimonial of  Lucy Frowijn

    I experienced the BA Media Studies as a great balance between theoretical courses that provided me with fundamental knowledge...

    – Lucy Frowijn
    Read more

    The BA Media Studies allows you to explore a broad variety of topics whereafter you can specialize in a topic of your choosing. I experienced the BA Media Studies as a great balance between theoretical courses that provided me with fundamental knowledge, and the methodology classes that provided me with the practical tools to work with all the theory knowledge acquired. Each course sets the boundaries within which you work, but the assignments and essays leave enough room for you to explore your own interests. I took, and still take, great interest in media representation, identity formation and women’s studies. The BA Media Studies program allowed me to explore each of these interests from a media studies perspective. I am currently in the Research Master program and the broad baseline that the BA Media Studies has provided me with continues to keep me on my toes with regard to my own interests. I am always forcing myself to see different perspectives and ask critical questions: “How do researchers in my field of interest approach this problem?” and, “How does this approach differ from what other researchers in other fields are doing?”. At the same time, the freedom to (further) develop my own interests within the BA Media Studies has enabled me to create my own profile as a researcher.

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  • 
						Testimonial of  Patricia Zayan

    I'm interested to see how much media influences our society and us as individuals

    – Patricia Zayan
    Read more

    About Patricia

    Hi! My name is Patricia Zayan and I am half French and half Dutch. I grew up in many different countries across the world such as China, Cuba, Indonesia and Kenya amongst others. As I was exposed to many different cultures and people from an early age on, my interests mainly include the learning of languages, discovering new cultures and traditions and first and foremost food! I love cooking and eating and especially trying out new dishes and exploring new flavours.

    Why Media Studies?

    I chose to do Media Studies for a variety of reasons. As most of us know, media is now-a-days everywhere; wherever you look and whatever you interact with, there will be a link with media. The interesting part about that is to see how much media influences our society and influences us as individuals. I am also really interested in the more business side of media; that is how media can increase the popularity of a business and increase revenues and sales profits.


    Why Groningen?

    I chose Groningen because both my parents lived here when they were university students and they really enjoyed their time here. They remembered Groningen as a lively student city with a lot of activities to do and buzzing with young and vibrant people, and they were not wrong. Furthermore, the testimonies of alumni of the university only increased my desire to go, with RUG ranking in the top 100 universities in the world when I decided to come here, it only seemed like the most fitting option for me.


    Career perspective

    As most people at my age, I am not quite sure what I want to be when I’m ‘older’, however I do know that I would like to get a master’s degree in International Business after my bachelor. I hope to find a job where I can travel the world as much as possible and, in my own way, contribute to society.


    Good advice

    The best advice I can give to all prospective students is to approach one of us if you have any doubts or questions. The reason I say this is because when I was applying I lived all the way in China so attending open days was definitely not an option. On top of that I was too scared to actually email anyone for advice or help and I can tell you it would have made my move a lot easier had I actually done that. Finally, if you start feeling nervous and stressed out, don’t forget that there are thousands of students going through the same process as you and that it will all be ok in the end.



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  • 
						Testimonial of  Oisin Sheerin

    The degree program offers students the freedom to express themselves through their research and project work.

    – Oisin Sheerin
    Read more

    I chose the BA in Media Studies at the University of Groningen as I’ve always been interested in working within creative media industries. The degree program offers students the freedom to express themselves through their research and project work. Experimentation is encouraged by the lecturers throughout the program, in this way you get to discover your likes and dislikes, and choose elective classes based on your vision of your future. At the beginning of the course, I thought that a degree in Media Studies only qualified you to become a journalist, but I could not have been more wrong! As the degree is a blend of theoretical, methodological and skills classes, you are given a broad set of tools with which you can become a media professional or scholar. At the moment I’m interested in doing either an MA in Journalism, or a ReMA in Arts, Culture, Media here at the University of Groningen. In the Audiovisual Culture profile, students engage with all forms of audiovisual texts such as film, television, and music videos. I am particularly interested in the intersection of media, art and performance studies. Research in this area focusses on how the involvement of media technologies changes our experience of art and the performance arts.

    What I love the most about the media department is how youthful and vibrant it is. The lecturers are enthusiastic and willing to help you develop and pursue your interests. I chose to study specifically in Groningen because of its cosmopolitan atmosphere— I knew that the university would bring me into contact with more international cultures than if I were to have studied back home in Ireland. The BA Media Studies is an internationally-oriented degree, for an international industry. I hope to become a researcher in the future, or to work as a writer in a publication house. Within this study, the possibilities are endless!

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  • 
						Testimonial of Puck Swarte

    Very diverse and exciting

    – Puck Swarte
    Read more

    I had a hard time finding the right study. Luckily for me, that year Media Studies was introduced in Groningen. What I really like about this study is that it is multidisciplinary. This means that you use different disciplines when studying media phenomena. Sometimes you use a cultural approach, sometimes more of a sociological approach, an economic approach etc. All these different angles and perspectives make the study very diverse and exciting.

    Within this study, you are quite free to write essays and papers about subjects of your own interest. For instance, I was fascinated by the satirical news shows in the United States (like the Daily Show) which are able to inform and motivate (young) people to participate in politics and current news events. Due to their motivating abilities, these shows are able to influence the public agenda. In the Netherlands, the Dutch satirical news show Zondag met Lubach (ZML) is starting to become quite popular. Therefore, I investigated whether ZML has agenda setting abilities as well and really enjoyed doing research about this topic.

    In short, media is becoming such a huge part of our daily lives and therefore it is relevant but also interesting to study these phenomena!

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Anne Pronk

    I chose the study Media Studies since I wanted to study the media landscape on a theoretical level

    – Anne Pronk
    Read more

    About Anne

    Hello, I am Anne! I am 20 years old and currently in my second year of the Bachelor Media Studies. In my spare time I work as a freelance filmmaker and music producer. I also volunteer in organizations such as GroenLinks Groningen, USVA, Sandaya and GoodPM. I sing and play guitar and produce my own songs for Spotify and iTunes. I enjoy traveling a lot and have lived abroad on five different occasions. Finally, I love learning languages and I speak Dutch, English, Swedish, and French fluently.

    Why Media Studies?

    I chose the Bachelor Media Studies since I wanted to study the media landscape on a theoretical level. I had already done a lot within the practical field, but I was even more interested in the underlying lines of thought behind those processes.

    The study is incredibly broad in the first year, so you can find out what field and direction interests you most. You are going to take philosophical courses that really make you reflect about the role of the media, theoretical courses (which will teach you a lot), creative courses that teach you how to write and create, and practical courses, during which you work with regional companies. You then choose a profile in your second year, allowing you to delve even more into your favourite subjects.

    Read more about Anne Pronk and why she chose to study Media Studies in Groningen!

    Questions? Send Anne an e-mail!

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Registration in Studielink

NB. On the Dutch language website of Studielink choose "BA Media en Cultuur" when registering. On the English and German Studielink site select: "BA Media Studies".

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Web Class

Are you at secondary school and want to know what studying at university is like? The Media Studies programme is offering a web class! This online course from the University of Groningen is specially designed for secondary school students.

If you are interested in an Media Studies web class, register here.

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Study associations

MESA

MESA is the study association of the bachelor and master programs of Media Studies. The association aims to help the cultural and academic growth of its members as well as improve contact between them. Additionally, the association plays a vital role in promoting and introducing the bachelor to both new and prospective students.
MESA is comprised of various committees, each with their own objectives to help us achieve our goals. Numerous events are organized all year round such as the first years introduction camp, parties, trips, excursions and debates amongst other things and offers services such as high-quality summaries.
https://mesagroningen.nl/
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(Binding) study advice
  • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months (binding)

To proceed to the second year students need to acquire a minimum of 45 ECTS our of 60 ECTS (credits 1 ECTS = 28 hours of work) in the first 12 months (binding).

You will be offered study advice after first year of study. You will get a positive result if you have earned more than 45 ECTS (out of a total of 60 ECTS). If you have earned less than 45 ECTS, resulting in a negative study advice, you will not be allowed to continue with your degree programme. You will receive preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you stand. Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system. In the first year a tutor system is in place to get students acquainted to the study program and its demands and strategies for success.

Study support

If you have any questions or doubts about your studies, you can always contact the study advisor. He or she knows all the ins and outs of the programme, the profiles offered, studying abroad and personal planning. Study advisors are impartial and everything that is discussed is treated confidentially. They can also help you find the right institutions and student desks for any problems you might encounter.

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