Not sure what it’s like studying Media and Communications at USYD?
We’re looking into all the questions you might have about this degree, from what units you’ll take, the majors available, university staff, culture and more!
Let’s jump into it!
What is a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Media and Communications) at USYD?
A Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Media and Communications) at USYD is a double degree that prepares you for the skills needed to enter the media industry, whether that be video production, journalism and more.
Can the course be taken as a standalone degree?
Media and Communications at USYD requires you to take the course as a double degree with a Bachelor of Arts. The great thing about doing a double is that your second major gives you more skills and areas of speciality that can often be helpful for a job in media, such as a major in Marketing, Psychology or Digital Cultures.
The Media and Communications program at USYD requires you to take two core subjects a semester, with the flexibility to also choose electives and Open Learning Environment (OLE) subjects. With a Bachelor of Arts, this degree is super flexible and lets you pick a second major of your own interest!
Honours is also available for this degree as an additional year, and requires a mark of 70 or above to qualify.
There are a variety of career options you can choose from if you study Media and Communications at USYD. Some of these career paths include, but are not limited to:
- Digital journalism
- Media advertising
- Content editor
- Digital producer
- Multimedia producer
- Social media editor
- Marketing executive
Core Units and Majors
Media and Communications at USYD is incredibly diverse and broad in terms of its core units. You are required to complete about two core units a semester, and these range from journalism and media writing (MECO1003), media production (MECO1004), communication theory (MECO1001), and, radio and podcasting (MECO2601).
MECO1003 is Principles of Media Writing, where you gain the skills to write news articles, research certain issues, conduct interviews, and understand the nature of journalism. MECO1004 is all about Media Production, where you learn to use camera, audio, and film equipment to develop your skills in a range of editing and post-production software.
On the other hand, MECO1001, Introduction to Media Studies, is all about the theoretical aspect of media, where you dive into the history of communication and apply research to current media examples. As you can see from just three subjects you’ll be studying in first year, you get to dip your toes in a little bit of everything media related!
What are the Majors?
As Media and Communications at USYD is alongside an Arts degree, you get to choose from a wide selection of majors, such as:
- Ancient History
- Visual Arts
- Japanese Studies
- Digital Cultures
- Environmental Studies
- Data Science
As you can see the list goes on, so there’s definitely something to suit your interests. You can find out more here!
Essentially, Media and Communications is your first major, and your second major (which is part of the Arts degree) is completely up to you!
Are there any built-in internships?
There are also internships and work placement available if you study Media and Communications at USYD. Independent internships can be completed throughout your degree at your own will, however, in your fourth year you will be able to complete placement which is arranged through the university.
“In the fourth year, the uni will advise internships and will be used as part of your degree which is really good to get that first hand experience.” — Kayley Melham
Internships that you take independently in the first couple of years of the course are not accredited to your degree, whereas the internship organised in the fourth year is included in your degree credits.
How to Get into Media and Communications at USYD
The ATAR requirement for a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Media and Communications at USYD) is a 95.00. However, you can find alternative pathways such as the E12, Broadway and Future Leaders Scheme here!
Are there any prerequisites or assumed knowledge?
For Media and Communications at USYD, there are no prerequisites, however it is recommended that you have studied English Advanced. It is also important to note that depending on the major you choose, for your Bachelor of Arts, there may be a prerequisite.
What scholarships are available?
Dalyell Scholars is a scholarship program (run university-wide) that is awarded to students who achieve an ATAR of 98 or above. Exceptions are also made for Gadigal Program, E12, Broadway, and Future Leader scheme entrants.
Dalyell scholars are entitled to a $2000 global mobility fund that can be used to study abroad. You are also able to complete additional or accelerated subjects through the Dalyell stream.
What’s the Teaching Format?
USYD follows a structure of two semesters a year which are 13 weeks each. For Media and Communications at USYD, you have three contact hours per subject, across one lecture and one tutorial, a week.
These classes involve 1-2 hour long presentations given by your unit coordinator, a guest lecturer who works in the media industry, or an academic who has studied the area you are focusing on. The number of students that usually attend these lectures can range from 100 to 400 or more students!
“The lectures are super interactive, and not as formal as you think they would be! The lecturers are really friendly, they love to have a good conversation with you, and a lot of them are quite funny — so it’s a really friendly environment.” — Kayley Melham
Tutes are basically 1-2 hour classes that apply the concepts addressed in the lectures. For more theory based subjects, tutorials often involve group discussions and writing tasks.
Though, for more practical subjects, you tend to do more hands-on learning, like taking photos, recording audio and using editing software. Your tutes will be much smaller in size, in comparison to lectures, with typically only 15 to 25 students.
“I have about 20 people in my tutorials and there are people from so many different backgrounds in terms of where they’re from and what they’re studying. So you have such diverse opinions and people in your classes.” — Kayley Melham
How much time do you spend on campus?
Each subject is 6 credit points and you normally take 24 credit points a semester as a full-time student. This could be a two hour lecture and one hour tutorial or vice versa, totalling to about 12 contact hours a week — so you could make your timetable into a 3 day week if you really wanted to!
What are the assessments like?
Assessments for Media and Communications at USYD vary depending on the subject. More theory based subjects tend to have essays, whilst more practical subjects have bigger assignments and projects. A great thing about studying this specific course is that you don’t get too many exams!
Skills You Refine and Learn
As for the different skills you would develop studying Media and Communications at USYD, you learn a wide range of abilities. From writing essays to video editing and using photoshop, you become familiar with everything media related!
“You become more confident in using technology, and develop more skills using a camera, audio recorder, and your laptop. You also develop writing skills in how to write succinctly and concisely.” — Kayley Melham
What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?
Within the Department of Media and Communications at USYD, most of the support you’ll receive will come from staff part of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. These staff members can assist you with questions concerning travelling abroad, changing degrees and academic advice!
“It feels very family based… being in MECO just feels like you’re in this big family. Everyone is really supportive, everyone is super friendly and people are pretty creative. It just feels like you belong to this big group of people who understand you. The societies definitely amplify this feeling too. Everyone is really encouraging and wants to help one another out.” — Kayley Melham
Clubs and Societies
There are numerous clubs and societies that you can join at USYD. Specific to Arts at USYD is SASS, which is the Sydney Arts Student Society, where there is an end of year dinner to look forward to, and you can meet other students who are also studying Arts, but are not necessarily in the Media and Communications program.
There is also MecoSoc, which is short for the Media and Communications Society at USYD. MecoSoc provides its members with networking events and opportunities to help you gain connections in the media industry.
There is also a mentoring program available for first year students where you can register to be part of a mentor group. Throughout Welcome Week you become acquainted with your mentor, who is usually in second or third year, and studying the same degree as you. This is a great opportunity to make friends and get advice in your first week of uni!
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.