About your course
Housed within the Liverpool Business School, this MSc in Public Relations is designed for creative communicators, and is delivered by academics with relevant experience of working in the industry.
- Course available to study full time (1 year) and part time (2 years)
- Fully recognised by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and aligns with the professional body's criteria for employability and market relevance
- Enhanced career and promotion prospects
- Taught by expert staff with experience of working in PR and the event management industry
This course has been specially designed for 21st century Public Relations professionals and we warmly welcome applications from those who are looking to develop their knowledge to the next level of influence within media communications.
Introduction to the School
The Liverpool Business School is a forward looking, professional, business school, active globally as well as locally. We maintain close links with business and place students at the centre of all that we do.
The School provides responsive business education that prepares graduates for a wide range of business and management careers. We are proud of our approach to providing business education, which emphasises practical knowledge and its application, delivered by supportive and approachable staff.
Throughout its history, the School has served the business needs of the North West through programmes which focus on developing professional capabilities required by a contemporary, dynamic economy. The School emphasises the power of education and practical application of research to improve the employability of people entering private, public and voluntary sectors, boosting the productivity of work forces, generating innovation and growth.
Top class facilities
The School is based in the Redmonds Building, located in the heart of the bustling Mount Pleasant campus and Liverpool’s growing Knowledge Quarter. The Redmonds Building is shared by three Schools within the Faculty of Arts, Professional and Social Studies: Liverpool Business School, Liverpool Screen School and the School of Law - making for a rich blend of student learning experiences.
As well as high quality lecture theatres and seminar rooms, social spaces, and a ground floor cafe, the School has a state-of-the-art professional suite, with the capability to host conferences and seminars plus a dedicated postgraduate and research area.
The Redmonds Building is only a short walk from LJMU’s Aldham Robarts Library, which contains all the resources you will require for your studies, and is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Why study this course at LJMU?
PR professionals manage strategies, reputation and the direction of their client’s public profile. In this ever-evolving digital age, the ability to communicate, understand and shift opinion is a highly valued skill of influence that not only positions how a client or product looks, but also the behaviour of those interacting with it.
Media communication is an essential tool for both individuals and business and, as such, public relations professionals are in high demand, particularly those with much sought after digital awareness. Being a 21st century communications expert, however, only fulfils one aspect of current employment needs. The ability to communicate and identify key messages, conduct research that informs these messages and their targets, and develop long-lasting positive relationships, all provide the underlying structure of PR roles.
Studying public relations at postgraduate level will place you at the leading edge of communication in this well-established sector. You will explore how audiences can be produced, influenced and messaged using highly influential and successful strategies that, in turn, contribute to the continued success of the business or individual that they support.
Programme outline and structure
Public Relations practice is relevant in every type of organisation; from small and medium sized enterprises to multi-national organisations operating in sectors as diverse as ‘not for profit’ to finance and retail.
This integrated Masters programme focuses on how stakeholders can be persuaded to change their perceptions of a product or issue through public relations and effective event management. You will gain the skills and knowledge needed to work in the public relations and/or event management sectors, embracing corporate communications, internal communications, and the emerging discipline of online public relations which incorporates search engine optimisation and social media strategy development.
The programme will be delivered by an expert team of academics who have a broad range of practical and teaching experience in this field and are members of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) and the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA).
The programme is fully recognised by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and aligns with the professional body's criteria for employability and market relevance.
What you will study on this degree
Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
- PR Perspectives
This module provides you with an introduction to the PR world from a theoretical and practitioner perspective
- Public Relations Planning and Strategy
You will develop a systematic understanding of the strategic planning process as applicable to a public relations campaign
- Managing Business Research 1 / 2
This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills required to perform a systematic review of literature for a business management related topic at masters level
- Digital Communication Management
You will explore digital communication technologies to understand the effects of technology (including social media) on the public relations function. The module aims to give students a framework for understanding and evaluating the digital landscape in respect of organisational communication and reputation
- Digital Marketing in Context
During the course of this module you will develop a theoretical and practical understanding of current issues and trends in digital marketing
- Media Relations
You will critically analyse the 'Media Agenda' and its impact on the PR professional. You will then research, develop and apply effective professional media management methods including press kits, features and press releases
- Research Project
The option modules you will study typically include:
You will plan and prepare a research project that applies managerial concepts and research techniques to a significant public relations related organisational issue or problem
- Event Management
You will develop a deep understanding of the management of an event in the light of good professional public relations practice
- International Public Relations
The module aims to provide an international context to the practice and principles of Public Relations, through understanding theories of international relations and working in different cultures
Further guidance on modules
The information listed in the section entitled 'What you will study' is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you require further guidance or clarification.
How will I be assessed?
A variety of methods are used to assess the professional and practical skills you have developed on the degree.
Assessment methods including the satisfactory completion of practical tasks, formal reports, presentations and portfolios will all be factored into the assessment of your progress on the degree.
Staff research interests
Liverpool Business School is home to a vibrant and active research community who are committed to innovation and excellence in research.
Our research is concerned with important contemporary business and management issues, it is multidisciplinary in practice and reflects the School’s areas of special expertise. This approach is evident not only in our research, but in PhDs and in some of the taught courses we offer or have designed for clients. Our main areas of research expertise include:
- entrepreneurship and small businesses
- public management
- evaluation research
- research with practitioners
Our expertise in Entrepreneurship is based on research specifically in this area, including the specialist topics of rural entrepreneurship, sustainability and graduate start-ups.
Our Centre for Public Services Management helps us to focus our research expertise in public management, and we work with public bodies regionally and elsewhere to build our research base and put theory into practice.
Entry requirements (Home)
A good second class honours degree in a Business-related subject, Computing and Media would be useful, however a degree in any relevant discipline will be accepted.
International applicants: IELTS 6.0 (minimum score of 5.5 in each individual component). Applicants who have graduated with a UK degree or degree from a majority English speaking country within 24 months of the start of the MSc are exempt from this requirement.
Entry requirements (International)
LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.0-6.5 or equivalent. Please note: specific courses may require higher levels of English language competence. If you have applied to study a full-time taught Masters, MRes, MPhil or PhD at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate. It can take four to six weeks to receive an ATAS certificate, so please make sure you apply as early as possible. You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for guidance. Please note: international students entering on a Tier 4 visa cannot study part time. Students entering the UK on alternate types of visa may be in a position to study part time. Please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for further details before making your application. In order to obtain a visa you will also need to show evidence that the money required to cover your tuition fees and living expenses has been in your bank account for at least 28 days prior to submitting your visa application. So please make sure that your finances are in place before applying. For more details, go to our international website.
For advice on any aspect of the application process, please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team.
Application and selection
Relevant industry experience will be considered alongside relevant professional body qualifications. The requirements of a second class honours degree might be waived where past experience has made the applicant suitable for the programme.
6.0 (Min 5.5 in each component)
Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.
All full and part-time students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or pay by instalments. If you need advice about how you will pay your tuition fees, please email LJMU’s Student Funding Team as soon as possible.
Sources of funding
Postgraduate Masters loans are available for the 2017/18 academic year. The new loans, of up to £10,000, are available for students attending eligible full and part-time Masters courses, in line with the existing qualification framework for England. Administered by the Student Loan Company, the loans will be available to those under 60 at the start of their course.
Loan repayments will begin the April after course completion, with the first cohort of borrowers commencing repayments in April 2019. Repayments will be made at a rate of 6% of income above an earning threshold of £21,000. This threshold will be frozen until 2021. For details of loan terms, conditions and eligibility, go to: ljmu.ac.uk/postgraduate-funding
LJMU Alumni Award
Final year undergraduates and alumni of the University are eligible to apply for a 20% reduction in their postgraduate tuition fees if they choose to progress onto a higher degree programme at LJMU. Both Home and international LJMU students and alumni can apply for this award (subject to eligibility criteria*).
Postgraduate International Scholarships
LJMU offers scholarships for international applicants accepted onto taught masters programmes (excluding distance learning programmes) and research degrees. Current LJMU international students and alumni interested in pursuing postgraduate study and research at the University are eligible to apply for these scholarships along with new applicants.
English for Postgraduate Studies Bursary
A Bursary is also available for international students who need to improve their IELTS score prior to enrolling on their postgraduate course or research programme at the University. This course is run by LJMU’s International Study Centre.
Earn While You Learn
Working while you study means you may be able to pay for your course without taking out any further loans or at least reducing the amount you need to borrow. Working while you study also gives you the skills valued by employers, such as managing your workload and prioritising your time.
LJMU’s Vacancy website can help you find graduate vacancies, sandwich/industrial placements, internships / summer work, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and work-based learning placements. Over 1,000 local and regional employers regularly list opportunities on the website.
Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDL)
Many students fund their postgraduate studies via Professional and Career Development Loans. This is a bank loan which you will have to pay back once you’ve completed the course. However, while you are studying any interest on the loan will be paid for you by the Skills Funding Agency. PCDLs worth between £300 and £10,000 are available for eligible postgraduates to fund up to two years of study (three if the course includes work experience). The loan is split into course fees and living costs.
Some organisations and companies fund the cost of postgraduate studies for their employees as they recognise the value of having well qualified staff. Check out our courses and see if there are any on offer that could enhance your current career. Remember, employer support doesn’t always have to be financial; it can take other forms too, such as flexible working arrangements, day release and time in lieu of study.
Support for disabled students
Disabled Students’ Allowances or DSAs are designed to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, on-going health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs don’t have to be paid back and the type of support you receive will be determined by your specific needs not your household income. Please contact LJMU’s Disability team for further advice: 0151 231 3164/3165.
Council tax exemption
All full-time postgraduate students studying courses lasting one year or more are eligible for a council tax exemption certificate.
This programme enables you to gain sector relevant expertise, as well as the valuable transferable skills of research, analysis, interpretation, presentation, creativity, writing and initiative in this specialist area of communication.
Graduates of this course can expect to find work in media, new media and digital industries in a range of positions. Postgraduate study will deepen your awareness and understanding of PR practices, tactics and strategy in national and international contexts, for a range of audiences and purposes.
Typical roles include: public relations officer, new media professional, talent agent and copywriter/writer, with areas of employment including media communications, marketing, business and management, politics and social science.
International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.
Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.
Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.
Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting www.ljmu.ac.uk/international for more information and advice.
LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.
These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.
You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here: www.ljmu.ac.uk/international
Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:
- new international applicants
- current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
- LJMU international alumni
English for Postgraduate courses bursary
A bursary will be available for students who must complete the six week English for Postgraduate Studies course to improve their IELTS score by 0.5 prior to enrolling on their postgraduate taught or research degree at LJMU.
This bursary take the form of a tuition fee waiver, which will be deducted from your tuition fee when you enrol on your degree programme. You do not need to complete the online scholarship form in order to receive this bursary. Please note: If you are awarded this bursary you are not eligible to apply for an international scholarship.
The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.
Further guidance on programme changes