Journalism Innovation & Leadership

2 years
January 2025
Online learning

This flexible, part-time Postgraduate Certificate and MA programme is tailored to news innovators eager to lead, and leaders eager to innovate, by growing their competence, their confidence, their networks as well as their career options.

Why study with us

  • The Guardian University Guide 2022 shows we remain amongst the best. We are ranked No 1 in the North West and No 2 in the UK for Journalism, Publishing and Public Relations.
  • Tap into a senior industry mentor focused on helping you achieve your potential. Whether you choose to complete the 30-week PGCert over one year or the 70-week MA over two years.
  • To support the next generation of diverse news leaders we offer tuition-fee scholarships funded by the Google News Initiative (GNI) and International Media Support (IMS), the Denmark-based media development agency.

What you'll do

  • We use an innovative Flipped Learning Approach that combines readings and weekly online discussions with Intensive Learning Blocks (on campus or online) which are packed with industry case studies and interactive workshops.
  • Applied Learning Projects enable you to apply insights generated in the course directly to your own business contexts – creating tangible and real-world impact that is directly connected to your learning
  • You will join a diverse international cohort and be mentored by a leading industry professional draw from our links with organisations such as the UK Society of Editors, the Digital Editors Network, and the World Association News Publishers (WAN-IFRA).

Programme structure

You'll be able to enrol for the postgraduate certificate after which you'll have the opportunity to take the additional modules required to earn the MA award.

In year one you'll complete two modules JN4530 and JN4531 for the Postgraduate Certificate.

Once these modules have been completed you'll have the option to continue on to a second year. In which you'll complete two more modules JN4526 and JN4527 to gain an MA.


Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information. However, our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may cause alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses. Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies or revisions to subject benchmarks statements. As well as to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

Looking to start your postgraduate journey?

Our range of subjects and study modes can support your goals. Take your next step with a postgraduate degree.

How to apply
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Academic expertise

Clare Cook
Senior Lecturer
School of Arts and Media

Clare Cook is a research practitioner, and co-founder of the Media Innovation Studio at the University of Central Lancashire. Her specialist interest is moving independent media through viable, sustainable and resilient models with a focus on revenue models and innovation.

Dr François Nel
Reader in Media Innovation & Entrepreneurship
School of Arts and Media

François is a media innovation specialist with wide international experience who teaches across a range of practical and theoretical journalism courses, as well as supervising PhD studies on topics related to innovation and sustainability. A National Teaching Fellow of the Higher…

MA/PGCert Journalism Innovation and Leadership Scholarship

To support the next generation of diverse news leaders we offer tuition-fee scholarships funded by the Google News Initiative (GNI).

Explore this scholarship

Industry links

Journalism has been taught at Preston since 1962, making it the oldest such university programme in England. Our research was rated as World Leading in the last Research Excellence Framework assessment and our researchers continue to provide insights for practitioners and policy makers, as well as for students and scholars.

"It’s critical that those seeking a sustainable way forward for journalism take time out of the newsroom to think and learn from others when assessing new opportunities and ways of working. This programme ensures they have time to think critically about the implications for journalism - and the communities their newsrooms serve."

Cherilyn Ireton - Executive Director of the World Editors Forum of WAN-IFRA, the World Association of News Publishers. Member, Board of Industry Advisors and Mentors

Industry Links

  • The programme is supported by the Google News Initiative (GNI) which enables 15 scholarships for postgraduate certificate participants, facilitation of the industry mentoring scheme, and access to cutting-edge insights from other GNI grantees worldwide.
  • The programme is supported by International Media Support (IMS), an international, Denmark-based organisation that works with the media in countries affected by armed conflict, human insecurity and political transition. IMS provides two MA scholarships which support media partners to experiment and learn. Enabling them to lead the way in developing innovative strategies for resilient public interest media reaching relevant audiences who are able to share, discuss and act on trusted, ethical, inclusive content.

Future careers

The Journalism Innovation and Leadership programme aims to foster the next generation of diverse leaders and innovators our industry needs to thrive.

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This is the most intense and rewarding course I’ve ever taken. It tackles problem-solving in journalism from every angle, be it strategy, technology, revenue or newsroom leadership. I feel like it has sped up my professional growth and provided me with guidance and mentoring I would otherwise not be able to access.
Marcela Kunova
Marcela Kunova

Fees and funding

Distance Part-time£1,000 per 20 credits
Distance Part-time£1,000 per 20 credits

Scholarships and bursaries

We have a wide range of bursaries, scholarships and funds available to help support you whilst studying with us.

Select your country to see eligibility information and how to apply by selecting more info on the cards below.


This course is based in the School of Arts and Media

For information on possible changes to course information, see our essential and important course information

You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at the University of Central Lancashire on our student contract page