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THE UK: Subject Guides

Tutor Case study: Public Relations

An insight into Public Relations course by tutor Simon Goldsworthy.

Westminster, London

Name:  Simon Goldsworthy

University: University of Westminster

Subject: Public Relations


Q. What are the main objectives of the course?

To prepare people for work in all areas of PR – from fashion and celebrity through to consumer PR and the not-for-profit sector – while at the same time giving them a broad academic education.

Q. How would you summarise the course content and your teaching styles?

We introduce people to a full range of PR skills up to and including running their own PR campaigns, online and in conventional media.  This includes interactive lectures, workshops, supervised group work and individual tutorials. We invite many guest speakers and organize events as we value close contact with the industry.  Work experience is a formal part of the course.

The more academic aspects of the course involve critical study of the PR industry and the media, and involve lectures, seminars, essay writing and supervised work on a final dissertation.

Q. What qualities do students need in order to succeed?

Strong good academic aptitude, excellent oral and written communication skills - and enthusiasm.

Q. What advice would you give to students who are applying to enroll?

We look for evidence of the qualities described above, so bear that in mind in your application.

We interview everyone we shortlist for the course, so for good candidates there will be an opportunity to talk to the course team – we want to hear about you and how you think.

 Study our website, and find out about us online – quite a lot of material is available, in many languages (it’s a very international course).

Q. What career options are open to graduates from this course?

There’s an immense range of PR jobs available, since practically every kind of organisation employs PR people (although they may not call them that). Graduates can work in-house for businesses etc, but may prefer to start in the consultancy sector. A significant minority go on to postgraduate study, and a few go on to other careers entirely.

Q. How does the course prepare students for the professional world and/or further study?

By combining up-to-date skills based study and work experience in London (the global hub of the PR industry) with sophisticated academic teaching about PR and the media. We sometimes say that the practical skills get students their first jobs, and the academic aspects of the course prepare them for their second jobs (or indeed further study).

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