For those with journalistic aspirations, relevant work experience is essential - but a degree in the field can also seriously boost your chances of success. Find out what courses are on offer

A degree isn't always a necessary for a career as a journalist; however the majority of employers seek candidates with a university qualification.

There are hundreds of programmes on offer at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, depending on your area of interest. Courses accredited by professional bodies such as the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) and the Broadcast Journalism Training Council (BJTC) are highly valued in the industry, so you'll need to do your research.

Fashion journalism

If you want to influence future trends and report on designer shows, a career as a fashion journalist may be for you. Courses aim to prepare students to work across a variety of media platforms, covering a range of fashion-related topics.

Undergraduate programmes last three years and usually include an industry placement. BA Fashion Journalism at the University of the Creative Arts (UCA) focuses on developing your journalistic 'voice' and covers modules including fashion vocabulary, introduction to fashion history and theory, fashion media and industry, fashion publishing, and theories of culture, identity and communication. In the final year you'll focus on a major fashion project and dissertation.

If you'd like to study a particular area of fashion journalism in greater depth or build upon knowledge gained during your first degree, you should consider studying for a Masters. Postgraduate study isn't essential but could help you stand out in this competitive field. At the London College of Fashion, for example, you can study for an MA in Fashion Journalism over the course of 15 months. The programme costs £8,500 and you'll need at least a 2:1 in a related discipline for entry. Search for postgraduate courses in fashion journalism.

Short and online courses in fashion journalism are also available through the London College of Fashion and Conde Nast College of Fashion and Design.

After graduation you could work as a fashion writer, reporter, blogger or critic, or move into styling and research.

International journalism

Also known as global journalism, this subject prepares students for a journalistic career anywhere in the world, dealing with foreign journalists and covering international affairs. As such, degrees in international journalism usually incorporate a period of studying abroad.

BA International Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is a flexible course, allowing students to focus on particular areas of interest. Over three years you'll study a number of core modules. You'll also get to choose from a variety of optional units, including a work placement, before completing a dissertation in your final year.

At Masters level, there are a range of courses to choose from - such as the vocational MA in International Journalism at Brunel University London. The programme covers the impact of technological change, cultural developments and political issues on different forms of global journalism. You'll cover compulsory units including international institutions, global news analysis, and news and feature writing. This 12-month course costs £8,500 when studied full time and Brunel accepts students with a 2:2 in a related field. Search for postgraduate courses in international journalism.

After studying for a degree in international journalism, you could work as a reporter for an international news agency, as a war or foreign correspondent, as an investigative journalist, or in a PR role.

Investigative journalism

As an investigative journalist, you'll work to report on issues such as corporate wrongdoing, serious crime and political corruption.

You can learn your craft by studying for the BA in Journalism Studies at the University of Lincoln, which aims to consider the history, theories and research techniques that underpin investigative journalism. You'll have the opportunity to use legislation to expose the truth and develop the skills to conduct rigorous interviews.

Postgraduate options include MA Investigative Journalism at De Montfort University (DMU), which has been developed in collaboration with Channel 4. The year-long programme includes modules on skills and theory, an introduction to practical investigative journalism, global perspectives, advanced practical investigative journalism and a final project. The course costs £6,000 and DMU ask for 2:1 in a related discipline for entry. Search for postgraduate courses in investigative journalism.

Sports journalism

These courses teach students the ropes when covering competitions and reporting on sport-related news.

BA Sports Journalism at the University of Gloucestershire enjoys strong links with local and national media such as the BBC, ITV and TalkSPORT. Throughout the three-year programme you'll work on multimedia news bulletins, prepare reports for radio, television and online, and have the opportunity to complete a work placement.

At Masters level, the Sports Journalism programme at the University of Sunderland is a good choice. You'll learn how to write previews, match reports and sports features, and cover media ethics and law, reporting, and shorthand. At the end of the 12-month programme, you'll complete a practical project or dissertation. Tuition fees cost £4,750 for the 2017/18 academic year. Search postgraduate courses in sports journalism.

Upon graduation from a sports journalism course, you could work as a print, online or radio sports reporter, a television sports presenter, a digital sports editor, or a sports PR or advertising officer.

Broadcast, print and online journalism

The above subjects aren't the only journalism courses on offer. If you'd like to keep your options open you can study for a degree with a broader focus. A range of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes cover broadcast, digital, print and magazine journalism, giving you the option to try out different strands. Search for postgraduate courses in journalism.

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