Are you interested in a degree of Media and Communications at USYD?
Well, today we’re going to jump into all the pros and cons of this degree!
Today, we’re going to jump into all the pros and cons of this degree! We’ve talked to Kayley, a current Media and Communications student at USYD to tell us all about her experience in the degree, from the fabulous aspects to the not so exciting parts.
Let’s get started!
Why should you study a Media and Communications degree at USYD?
Media and Communications at USYD is a double degree of a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Advanced Studies. This means you have a second major which often helps broaden your expertise and areas of studies!
Further, Media and Communications covers all areas media related, from journalism, to videography and photography, editing, producing, writing and so much more!
“Sydney Uni has such diversity, not only in the people but in the content. At other universities the courses can be a lot more strict — like pure journalism or pure digital studies,” says Kayley.
Many other universities will have more specific degrees such as journalism or media production — which is great if you know exactly what area you want to focus on. However, if you’re unsure about where in the industry you want to head, this course is perfect to give you the experience and knowledge in a number of areas!
“Having the Media and Communications course sets you up for so many opportunities, especially for someone who doesn’t know what they want to do yet and the direction they want to head into,” Kayley tells us.
Top 3 Pros of a Media and Communications degree
#1: You become an all-rounder with technology
Media and Communications is all about spreading messages and information in our digital world. So you become increasingly competent with a range of technological devices as the degree goes on!
“You learn how to use a camera, a microphone, how to edit, record… and how to use technology which is applicable now to everything which makes you a really valuable employee,” Kayley says.
You’ll be using camera equipment, audio recorders and microphones, a range of editing softwares, and many more technological skills which increase your employability.
#2: You get experience in the degree
As the media industry can be quite competitive to get into, Media and Communications at USYD prepares you with experience in a variety of project formats! You create a website that becomes a digital portfolio, you write real news stories which become great examples of your work when applying for jobs and internships and you also have an accredited internship later on in the degree.
#3: Course flexibility
Not only is Media and Communications at USYD flexible in the multiple areas it covers, but it also allows you to explore areas of personal interest. As this course must be taken in a double degree with a Bachelor of Arts, you are given the opportunity to choose a second major of your choice and also take electives of an incredibly wide pool of subjects.
This flexibility allows you to gain specific knowledge and experience in another area of study that is, more often than not, compatible with the media industry. For instance, a second major in Marketing is popular amongst Media and Communications students at USYD as this allows you to apply the skills you’ve learnt across both degrees into both industries.
Top 3 Cons of a Media and Communications degree
#1: A lot of reading!
Being an Arts and Humanities degree, Media and Communications often has a fair bit of reading. At times you can have 20 to 30 page readings and be assigned 1 to 3 readings a week.
Nonetheless, you become very efficient at finding the important information quickly!
#2: You might end up doing subjects you don’t love
As Media and Communications is such a flexible degree, you have to take on a whole range of core subjects, particularly throughout the first and second year. This means that you can end up doing a subject you don’t love.
For instance, if you don’t want to be a writer, or you don’t want to do journalism, you’ll still have to undertake a media writing subject for 12 weeks.
#3: You may feel the need to compare yourself to others
Similar to the above point, you might be a lot less experienced with different media formats compared to other students in the degree.
You might be doing a media production unit where you’ll be introduced to a variety of new editing and filming skills. However, there will be students in the degree who have a lot more experience in this area of study as they have taken prior interest in it.
Kayley says, “It can be a struggle because you’re comparing yourself to others, even though you try not to.”
What do you wish you had known before starting the degree?
Firstly, be prepared to do a lot of readings! As we’ve mentioned earlier, Media and Communications at USYD has a lot of reading involved, so it’s important to stay on top of them so you don’t fall behind.
Kayley also says, “I wish I knew I only had to do 24 credit points a Semester. No one told me that we only had to do 4 subjects, and I ended up doing 30 credit points in the first week!”
You might have heard on the off occasion that lecturers are unfriendly and don’t care about their students. However, something you should know is that there is only one lecturer for a subject with anywhere from one to five hundred students enrolled, so of course they won’t remember everyone’s name!
“I wish I knew that lecturers were actually friendly people — even though they don’t know me or my name, they’re still great lecturers!” Kayley says.
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
Kayley says, “It is just such a diverse course in terms of the content. I know other universities offer specific courses like pure Journalism, but in Media and Communications we spent one subject on Journalism and I realised that’s not at all what I want to do!”
The Media and Communications program at USYD is designed to give you experience in all areas of the media industry, from journalism, video editing and media production to radio, podcasting and writing.
“I was able to try out different roles and opportunities in the media industry without having to change degrees,” Kayley explains.
What inspired you to choose this degree?
“I knew I wanted to do so many things in the media industry, I just didn’t know which one to pick! Basically, this degree gave me a basis to start with,” Kayley says.
“I also love that the diversity keeps my options open. Because I don’t know what I want to do yet, this degree keeps my options open so I can try out different focuses without changing degrees,” she adds.
What are the possible career paths?
There is a whole range of career paths that come from studying Media and Communications at USYD, particularly because you gain experience in all areas media related.
“The skills that you learn [in Media and Communications] are transferable across so many careers… it’s just so applicable to everything!” Kayley says.
Some of these career paths include:
- Digital journalism
- Media advertising
- Content editor
- Digital producer
- Multimedia producer
- Social media editor
- Marketing executive
These job opportunities can also vary depending on your second major chosen as part of your Arts degree, giving you more career prospects to follow!
Nandini Dhir is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts (majoring in Marketing) and a Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Media and Communications), as a Dalyell Scholar, at Sydney University. She enjoys covering local issues in her area and writing about current events in the media. Nandini has had one of her pieces published in an article with the Sydney Morning Herald. In her free time, Nandini loves doing calligraphy, ballet, and sewing, or is otherwise found coddling her cats.