So, you know what to expect from studying a Bachelor of Communication at WSU, but you want to get an insight into what it’s really like?
We spoke to Stephen, a recent Bachelor of Communication (Media Arts Production) graduate at WSU, to share his experience studying the course.
Let’s dive in!
Why should you study a Bachelor of Communication at WSU?
Studying a Bachelor of Communications at WSU exposes you to the different areas of media and lets you specialise in the area that interests you, including:
- Media Arts Production
- Public Relations
You will also be taught by passionate academics and industry professionals and hone your skills through hands-on classes.
Stephen says, “You get a lot of flavours of what the other majors are like, giving you a taste of the different fields of communication.”
Top 3 Pros of a Communications degree
#1: The people
The structured nature of the degree and emphasis on group work means that it’s easy to make friends. The emphasis on group work also means that you’ll learn how to compromise with others and work with them to get things done!
Stephen says, “You really get to know someone through group work.”
#2: You learn how to write and think critically
A lot of the units you study will teach you how to write and think critically. This means that you will learn how to write for different audiences or purposes.
“Why should people bother with your [work]? How you can engage with them and how you can critique people to [help] them improve. … You [learn] how things work in media [and] how things are written to make it engaging,” Stephen explains.
#3: Preparing for the industry
On top of learning how to work with people, write well, and solve problems, a Bachelor of Communication at WSU gives you the opportunity to see what the working in the industry is really like through internships and excursions.
These are also great opportunities to network (and practise your networking skills) while you study!
Learn more about the Internship unit offered here!
Top 3 Cons of a Communications degree
#1: Competitive industry
The media industry is a competitive one, so networking and gaining experience while you study can help you stand out from the crowd and find work once you finish your degree!
Stephen says, “For me, I realised that I didn’t really have that competitiveness.”
#2: Lots of group work
While working with people can be a great experience, it can be harder to work with people with different ideas, expectations, and levels of commitment. It can also be stressful when things go wrong and you need to think on your feet.
When it comes to group work, Stephen says, “It’s good [when] you have the same creative energy, but you might have some disagreements that might get pretty bad.”
#3: Compulsory units
In first and second year you’ll be completing core subjects from all four of the potential majors, which you might find less interesting than the subjects that relate to your area of interest.
Stephen says, “[The core subjects] are a lot of work yet quite boring. But you have to do them because they’re quite important.”
As we’ve mentioned, the Communications industry is a competitive one and Stephen regrets not networking or practising his skills outside of his classes.
To break into the industry right after graduating, you need to set up those foundations throughout your studies by having initiative. Making those connections early on and building your portfolio outside of just class assessments will give you that competitive edge!
What do you wish you had known before starting a Bachelor of Communication at WSU?
#1: Failing doesn’t have to hold you back
Stephen says, “If I failed a unit, I could do summer school. I didn’t know that.”
Summer school runs in between semesters and is a great opportunity to redo failed subjects or accelerate your studies so that you can graduate on-time or even earlier!
A select range of subjects are offered during summer school, which you find more about here!
#2: How to network
When it comes to networking, Stephen says, “You have to be more out there, you have to present yourself [and] really talk [to people].”
Networking with your peers, lecturers, tutors, and others who already work in your industry can help you land a job or develop your career, especially in competitive industries such as Communication and Media. Although it can be a hard skill to learn, attending events or networking during internships can be a great place to practise!
Making friends and introducing yourself to your classmates in new units every semester are also a simpler way to exercise your networking skills.
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
Stephen says, “It’s mainly the people, [and] mainly the tutors that you might get.”
“If you go to Western Sydney, there’s a lot of people of a lot of [different] backgrounds … [and] they’ll have different life experiences. So in terms of storytelling, there’s a lot you can get out of it.”
What inspired you to choose a Bachelor of Communication at WSU?
When Stephen finished Year 12, he planned on studying at WSU in first year, before transferring to UTS.
“I ended up not doing that because I ended up loving it at Western Sydney,” Stephen explains. “I think the reason why is that you have a shared experience with humble backgrounds.”
On top of that, WSU’s Parramatta campus was a quick drive away, making it really convenient to get to uni!
When it came to pursuing Communication, Stephen says, “We used to make videos [in high school] and we really liked doing that.”
What are the possible career paths?
Graduating with a Bachelor of Communications from WSU will open up a broad array of career paths. These will also depend on which major you choose and include:
Rachel Fieldhouse is a Content Writer at Art of Smart Education and has just completed a double degree in Science and Arts at The University of Sydney, majoring in Chemistry, English, and Linguistics. Rachel’s writing has been published in Concrete Playground, Inside Enterprise, Planting Seeds, and SURG FM, and she currently writes blog posts for Remi AI, a Sydney-based Artificial Intelligence firm. When she’s not writing, you can find Rachel playing her saxophone or flute, or relaxing with some sudoku.