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Online Postgraduate Journalism

Course Introduction:

Why?

These courses are well-known throughout the UK, and the rest of the world, for producing journalists of the highest calibre. On average around half our students come to us because of specific recommendations from newspapers, broadcasters and individuals active within the profession.

Not all our students wish to be journalists, however. This course is also taken by those for whom a knowledge and understanding of journalism is a great advantage - PR, politics and advertising are only some of the professions to send representatives on our courses.

When?

The course can be started either in February or in September.

The course consists of 4 modules, each lasting between 20 and 24 weeks.

If the modules are taken consecutively, the course can be completed within two years of enrolment. Alternatively, you can complete the course within one year if two modules are studied concurrently.

Where?

Online. The course is taught entirely without the need to attend the school.

All lectures, tutorials and group discussions take place live, online, and are text and Skype based.

You will need access to the internet, preferably broadband (but not essential), in order to attend these lectures and tutorials.

How the course works:

Enrolment for this course takes place prior to September and February each year.

The full course (four modules) is taught over two academic years and, if successful, you will receive the Postgraduate Journalism Diploma. You must complete the entire course within two years of your initial enrolment in order to qualify for the PG Diploma. Modules must be taken in the order specified at the time of your enrolment.

Lectures are given in the online format which, for the last four years, has been successfully used by the LSJ to deliver regular lectures for the benefit of existing distance learning and online postgraduate students. In the student area, you will have individual space to show your work, where both tutors and fellow students can offer comments and opinions. There is also a private 'classroom' area set aside for personal meetings with your tutor, on a one-to-one basis, where you will discuss the written work which makes up your portfolio. All student sites are secure and password protected.

Students also receive audio lectures that can be downloaded and listened to at their own pace in advance of each online lecture. At the end of each module, students sit an exam in the online exam room.

Tutorials & Assignments

All lectures and tutorials are delivered in real time either in video, audio or text format.

You will be committed to an average of one tutorial per month and one lecture per week, with approximately 5 to 8 hours (in total) of reading, research and written assignments to be completed each week.

You will have a deadline of one week in which to complete and submit your individual assignments and will be penalised for those which are received late.

You will also be expected to achieve at least an 85% 'attendance' at online lectures.

Assignments are returned to the admin team by email before being passed to the tutors for assessment.

Tutors are drawn from our existing tutor 'pool' - all of whom are working journalists with an excellent record and at least 15 years of experience in the journalism industry. Personal tutors will also be available to give email support between lectures and tutorials. Information on some of our current tutors can be found on our website.

How to Apply

Complete the online application form, and email your CV and 300/500 word piece, setting out the reasons why you wish to study journalism (see course requirements) to admin@lsjournalism.com.

Before you complete an application form make certain you have read our terms and conditions.
Enrolment Form

Allocation of Places

On receipt of your completed application, the £100 registration fee will be processed.

In the event that your application is not successful, you will be notified. Once the LSJ has accepted your application, and you have been notified that a place is available, you will have the option of paying either the first module fee, half the course fee or the full course fee.

Cancellation of your registration is subject to our standard terms and conditions

Course Requirements

You will need:
  1. to have graduated from a recognised university 
    (At our discretion, other qualifications and working experience may be acceptable.)
  2. to provide a full educational CV and details of any relevant background information and  experience
  3. to write a 300/500 word piece, setting out the reasons why you wish to study journalism
  4. to complete an application form
  5. to pay the required fees

We may ask prospective students to attend an interview, or we may offer or refuse a place based solely upon the information provided in the application.

Course syllabus

The course structure is made up of four modules, all of which must be completed to receive the Postgraduate Diploma.

Module A3 - Journalism and Newswriting with Media Law

  • Starting out in journalism
  • What is news?
  • Local government
  • Crime and the courts - 1
  • Crime and the courts - 2
  • Specialist writing
  • News Features
  • Media Law - 1
  • Government
  • Media Law - 2
  • Subediting
  • TV and Radio
  • The editor's chair

Module C3 - Freelance and Feature Writing

  • Introduction to features writing
  • Freelance opportunities
  • Features Intros
  • Reviews - 1
  • Reviews - 2
  • Legal issues
  • Lifestyle and consumer features
  • Human interest features
  • Features profiles
  • Gossip, diary and opinion columns
  • Trade Press
  • Specialist module 1*
  • Specialist module 2 *
  • Specialist module 3 *
  • Round-up
*Travel, Sports or Music and the Arts

Module B3 - Freelance and Internet Journalism

  • The freelance journalist
  • Market research and writing for publication
  • Writing for newspapers, magazines and websites
  • The Freelance Reviewer
  • Legal issues
  • Directing your writing
  • More about markets and trade press
  • Legal dilemmas and law revision
  • Successful packages
  • Writing for TV and Radio
  • Going it alone
  • Writing for the web and selling
  • Round-up

Module D3 - Subediting

  • The subeditor's role
  • The professional sub
  • Grammar, language and the Sub
  • Punctuation and the Subeditor
  • Intros
  • Headlines, bills, captions
  • Paper proofing
  • Media Law and the Sub - Introduction
  • Media Law, Media Conventions and the Sub
  • Introduction to layout and design
  • Typography and pictures
  • Planning for publication
  • Round-up

This syllabus may be changed without notice and is issued for guidance only

Course Dates

The Post Graduate Journalism course has two start dates per year:

  • Starts 23 September 2019 - first module ends February 2020
  • Starts 10 February 2020 - first module ends July 2020

Course Fees

You can choose one of the following payment methods:

Payment: Method one

Registration Fee at time of application £100
Full fee payment after receipt of offer £3450

Payment: Method two

Registration Fee at time of application £100
Deposit after offer of a place: £1725
Final payment (14 days before first module start date) £1725

Payment: Method three

Registration Fee at time of application £100
Payment at the start of each module:  
Journalism (A3) £975
Feature Writing (C3) £975
Freelance and Internet (B3) £900
Subediting (D3) £900

Diplomas, Certificates & Qualifications


Postgraduate students are entitled to receive the School's Diploma or Certificate on completion of their course.

A detailed written explanation of the School's marking and awards system is given to students at the start of term, which sets out what is expected at every stage of the course.  The following is a simplified version:

Grades are awarded by your tutors, and the cumulative total of these grades determines your final result. Your coursework accounts for 50% and the exams account for 50% of the overall grade value. You MUST gain a minimum of a B- in each individual section in order to qualify for a Diploma.

    A Outstanding
  • A- Excellent
  • B+ High-quality
  • B Good
  • B- Satisfactory
  • C+ Worthwhile attempt but not satisfactory
  • C Not adequate
  • C- No real effort or no understanding
  • D Total lack of understanding or lack of effort


Your tutor may give an additional + or - mark, or add verbal comments to indicate that you are at the top or bottom end of a particular grade, but these additions will have no effect on the mathematical averaging of your final results. Your coursework consists of two parts: the work which forms part of your portfolio and which is marked by your tutor, and those exercises relating to individual lectures or assignments. These two parts are of equal weight in calculating your coursework average.

Individual assignments are given different weightings to reflect the importance attached to each individual subject. You may be penalised for poor attendance (a minimum attendance of 85% is required to be deemed to have completed the course) and you should expect your marks to be reduced if you fail to hand in your work on time. Work which is less than seven days late receives a one-grade penalty, more than seven but less than 14, a two-grade penalty and work more than 14 days late will not be marked. When all the grades are combined together:

  • A 'Pass' grade will be B- or B average  
  • A 'Merit' will be awarded for a B+ average 
  • A 'Distinction' will be awarded if the average is mid-way between B+ and A- (or above), provided that there is a B+ average in each of the three sections (assignments, tutorials, exams) 

How old are the other students?

Some are recent graduates from university, although others may have graduated ten or twenty years earlier. The average age in 2016/2018 was around 30-40, with the youngest aged 23 and the oldest aged 62.

What happens on the course?

Teaching consists of lecture sessions, small group tutorial sessions, and personal study and research assignments - all of which take place online. Go to this page for a fully detailed syllabus.

What hours will I have to work?

Every student is different. The online course probably will take up between 6 and 10 hours of your time each week - although this an average, rather than a maximum. You may take a break between modules, so long as all four modules are completed within two years of your initial enrolment.

How do students fund their courses?

The majority of our students fund this course from their own resources - some have been working full-time, some are supported by their bank manager, and others are supported by their parents, or are working part-time while doing a part-time course.

Can you get me a job when I have finished?

We can't 'get' you a job, but we can advise you and suggest where to apply and what kind of job is likely to be suitable. Your personal tutor will work with you to build a suitable portfolio, and you will receive the benefit of years of knowledge and professional contacts. The school is constantly approached by organisations looking for newly trained job applicants - at any time, the jobs board may have a list of twenty or thirty companies looking for people like you. The track record of our students in the jobs market is very good - and very often former students are able to help with openings within the organisations where they currently work.

Do overseas students pay more than English students?

No. All students are taught exactly the same, so they are charged exactly the same, regardless of nationality.

Terms and Conditions for Online Postgraduate courses

Returning a completed application form and receiving an offer of a place constitutes a firm contract with The London School of Journalism. The payment of a deposit reserves your place on the course, but this reservation will be lost if the balance of fees due is not received by The London School of Journalism by the date stated on your application form or, if no date is specified, at least fourteen days before your course is due to start.

Course fees are refundable only as follows: Withdrawing from the courses 45 days or more prior to your first module will incur a charge of 15% of the total course fee; withdrawing less than 45 days but more than 30 days before course commencement will incur a charge of 50% of the total course fee. If less than 30 days' notice is given and the course has not started, no refunds will be made in respect of withdrawals. The LSJ may at its absolute discretion make refunds of fees in other circumstances or allow fees to be carried forward against a different course.

Once a course has commenced the full fees are due regardless of whether or not a student completes the course.

Students may defer individual modules up to 45 days before the commencement date. Deferrals made less than 45 days before the commencement date will incur an administrative charge of £250.

Courses held in the United Kingdom are provided by The London School of Journalism Ltd, in other markets some or all  of the courses are provided by Open Learning Ltd, licensed to trade outside of the United Kingdom as The London School of Journalism. Any course fee quoted covers the provision by either supplier.

In the event of unforeseen circumstances this course may be cancelled by the LSJ, in which case full refunds of all fees already paid will be made. Notice of cancellation in writing will be given a minimum of 14 days before the start date.