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MA Digital Media and Society

Digitalization is changing the world around us. Datafication – the growing number of data that can be aggregated and processed in automated ways – increasingly becomes characteristic for our societies. As part of these processes, the role of media and communication devices and what we mean by media and communication studies is changing as well. The M.A. Digital Media and Society is situated at the leading edge of these developments. Its aim is to qualify students for media planning and decision-making positions in a datafied society. 

The media still function as businesses and institutions which provide us with information, education and entertainment. But in addition, they have also developed into tools of data collection which interconnect previously independent areas of life. For example, it is now possible to predict the shared characteristics of media users by their online practices. What do we mean by digitalization and datafication? On an individual level, we can see these technological changes in the way we now receive recommendations on books to read and films to watch. Owing to the information that the platforms we use gather about us and the people close to us, we are encouraged to follow or get in touch with certain people on social networks. Similarly, we can track our own activities with the help of gadgets and receive feedback and statistics on our behavioral patterns. But digitalization and datafication go way beyond the personal. On a societal level, these processes have a great impact too. Think about decision-making processes in institutions like schools and universities, the financial industry, governmental organization and agricultural businesses. These are just a few examples of areas in which processes of digitalization and datafication have had a great impact on how information is gathered, stored and analyzed. 

Digitalization and datafication require that we critically rethink the role that media and communication devices play in our everyday lives. The in-depth analysis of these developments in different segments of society is a central theme running through the modules of the M.A Digital Media and Society. In addition to the enhancement of critical and analytical thinking, a second core theme is to provide students with the required skills and knowledge to work in businesses, organizations and institutions dealing with aspects of digitalization and datafication. The master’s program adopts an integrative approach, as we understand digitalization and datafication in their broadest sense and in their interrelations to society as a whole.

With such an overarching perspective the M.A. in Digital Media and Society encompasses a core area of advanced theory and methods training in communication and media research with a focus on digital media. Moreover, the program includes cross-disciplinary electives with study components from the field of computer sciences and other disciplines as well as hands-on experience within the regional (media) industry. This program structure offers students a wide range of electives to choose from as well as scope to develop individual specialties and profile building.

With its focus on an emerging field of study within communication and media studies as well as neighboring fields such as sociology, science and technology studies and human computer interaction, the M.A. in Digital Media and Society is unique in the German-speaking academic context.

    Go to the Course Catalog

    The specific programconcept of the M.A. Digital Media and Society is marked by an interdisciplinary focus, advanced methods training, comprehensive internationalization, and finally a clear link to media-related research and professional practice:

    Disciplinary and interdisciplinary focus: 
    The M.A. Digital and Society is taught by an interdisciplinary team of scholars drawn from the fields of media and communication, cultural studies, computer science, education, film studies, history and religious studies. It provides an integrative view of digitalization and datafication processes and their diverse impacts on social life. 

    Integrative methods training: 
    Students of the master’s program Digital Media and Society receive in-depth training in various established methods of empirical research, consistently reaching beyond the limits of theory development and theorytesting or qualitative and quantitative methods. Modules focusing on a variety of digital methods are a key component of the overall training.

    International orientation: 
    The master’s program Digital Media and Society has a clear international profile. The program is taught in English. University of Bremen’s Centre for Media, Communication and Information Research (ZeMKI) provides a highly international context for studies. Furthermore, there are various opportunities for international exchange (Erasmus contracts) that enable both foreign students to undertake a stay in Bremen and students of the master’s program Digital Media and Society to spend a semester abroad.

    Mentored practical experience: 
    Students of the master’s program Digital Media and Society can either integrate an internship phase into their course of studies, or participate in teaching projects with partner media businesses and institutions in Bremen and beyond. It is particularly desirable for students to take advantage of the latter opportunity as this can be used to relate the contents of the study program to professional practice and is not limited to the level of individual engagement, for example within the context of finding a suitable internship. There are excellent contacts to regional and national media businesses and institutions, which are secured over the long term not least by the advisory board of the different media study programs.
     

    The program concept is reflected in the following study objectives:

    • In-depth scientific and application-oriented development of theories concerning digital media, digital society and digital literacy;
    • Better understanding the interplay between processes of digitalization and datafication and its impact on the everyday lives, chances and options of people in different segments of society;
    • Better understanding the interplay between processes of digitalization and datafication and its impact on businesses, institutions (schools, universities), and organizations;
    • Gathering practical media experience of at least two different media with a focus on processes of media conception (as electives);
    • Knowledge and practical experience of empirical methods, focusing on digital media and the analysis of different forms of data, especially with regard to the conception and realization of independent empirical research projects on different phenomena;
    • Basic communication research and media analysis, in particular with a focus on digital media;
    • Key qualifications, in particular in the area of concept planning, project management, presentation techniques, media literacy, moderation and chairing debates, as well as teamwork and leadership tasks.

     

    In short, the MA Digital Media and Society is an English-language postgraduate program that is unique in its focus on digital media and datafication while being rooted in media and communication studies. Its interdisciplinary approach allows for multi-perspective insights on and understandings of the complex interplay between technology and society, while offering students relevant theoretical content, cutting-edge research training and relevant hands-on experience.

    Curriculum and Contents of Program

    The M.A. in Digital Media and Society is designed as a full major program over 2 years or 4 semesters, whereby students are encouraged to integrate a study semester or an internship (abroad) into their studies.

    The first semester serves to deepen knowledge in the field of digital media and datafied society in particular. It also offers initial orientation in the area of digital media practice, which can be further developed in the following semesters. The goal for the students is to develop a uniform conceptual apparatus.

    The focus of the second semester is on (digital) methods. Not only is the methods-training module localized in this semester, but also the beginning of the two-semester research seminar with development of the empirical student project. Parallel to this, the second semester serves to explore other areas of digital societies in depth, with particular emphasis on questions arising from processes of deep mediatization and datafication.

    The central focus of the third semester is on research practice. Firstly, the data collection and evaluation is realized in the research seminars; secondly, the students work on their independent study modules. At the same time, there is an in-depth study of digital literacy. In addition, the media practical elements take place in this semester and, if applicable, the voluntary media-practice internship can be undertaken in this semester. The fact that this is recommended in the third semester is not only based on didactic considerations (knowledge of the key consolidation areas and methods), but also on practical career-related considerations: During this semester, students should be enabled to build up/deepen their contacts with companies and institutions that qualify as potential employers. The goal is to facilitate swift entry into professional life after graduation.

    The fourth semester has a targeted focus on completing the program, i.e. on writing the master’s thesis and preparing for its defense.

    1st semester

    Module

    Courses

    SWS

    A

    CP

    A.1. Digital Media (C)

     
    • Approaches to digital media (S)
    • Digital life (S)
     

    2

    2

    CB

    12

    B.1. Media
    Informatics (E)

     
    • Course offerings of Media Informatics (S)
     

    2

    2

    CB

    9

    B.2. Further Optional Module (E)

     
    • Course offerings of other master programs
     

    2

    2

     

    9

    C.2. Media Practice (E)

     
    • Practical Seminar 1 (S)
     

    2

    CB

    3

     

    2nd semester

    Module

    Courses / Examinations

    SWS

    A

    CP

    A.2.Digital Society (C)

     
    • Mediatization (S)
    • Datafied Society (S)
     

    2

    2

    CB

    12

    B.2. Freely Elective Module (E)

     
    • Course offerings of other master programs
      (alternative to 1st and 3rd semester)
     

     

     

    9

    C.2. Media Practice (E)

     
    • Practical Seminar 2 (S)
     

    2

    CB

       3

    D.1. Methods (CE)

     
    • Methods of Digital Media Research (S)
    • Methods Practical (T)
     

    2

    2

    ME

    12

    D.2. Researching Digital Media and Society (CE)

     
    • Research Seminar Part 1 (S)
     

    2

    CB

    6

     

    3rd semester

    Module

    Courses / Examinations

    SWS

    A

    CP

    A.3. Digital Literacy (C)

     
    • Communication and Media Ethics (S)
    • Media and Education (S)
     

    2

    2

    CB

    12

    B.1. Media
    Informatics (E)

     
    • Course offerings of Media Informatics (S)
     

    2

    2

    CB

    9

    A.4. Independent Study Module (CE)

     
    • Independent Study
     

     

    ME

    6

    B.2. Freely Elective module (E)

     
    • Course offerings of other master programs
      (alternative to1st or 2ndsemester)
     

     

     

    9

    C.2. Media Practice (E)

     
    • Practical Seminar 3 (S)
     

    2

    CB

    3

    D.2. Researching Digital Media and Society (CE)

     
    • Research Seminar Part 2 (S)
     

    2

    CB

    6

    C.1. Media Internship (E)

     
    • A voluntary 8-week internship
     

     

    SP

    9

     

    4th semester

    Module

    Courses / Examinations

    SWS

    LN

    CP

    D.3: Master’s Thesis & Colloquium (C)

    • Mentoring Colloquium for M.A. candidates

    • Master’s Thesis and defence

    2

    M.A Thesis

    27

    S = Seminar           T = Tutorial            L = Lecture
    C = Compulsory Module      E = Freely Elective
    CE = Compulsory Elective   ME = Module Examination   CB = Combination examinations
    SP = Successful Participation            
    WS = Weekilyhours per semester
    A = Assessment    CP = Credit Points

    Altogether, the study program comprises 13 modules. Of these, 4 modules are allocated to the core area of communication and media studies (A.1 Digital Media, A.2 Digital Society, A.3 Digital Literacy, A.4 Independent Study Module); 4 modules to the area of interdisciplinary electives (B.1 Media Informatics, B.2 Free elective module); 2 modules to a likewise customizable practical area (C.1 Media Internship, C.2 Media Practice), and 3 modules dedicated to the integration of cross-thematic communication and media studies (D.1 Methods, D.2 Researching Digital Media and Society, D.3 Module Master Thesis including colloquium).

    Students must fulfill the following prerequisites for admission to the M.A. in Digital Media and Society:

    • A bachelor’s degree or a university degree in a subject belonging to the field of communication and media studies, digital media or cultural studies, or an equivalent course of studies carrying at least 180 credit points (CP based on the European Credit Transfer System).
    • A minimum grade of 2.3 (German university grading system) as the overall grade of the previous degree or the average grade achieved at the time of application (min. 150 CP).
    • Sound knowledge in the field of communication and media studies methods in the field of communicator / journalism / content research, or research on media use / appropriation / reception.
    • English language skills corresponding to at least level C1 of the European Framework of Reference for Languages. Applicants who received their university entrance qualification or a degree at an English-speaking institution are not required to produce evidence of proficiency at C1 level. An overview on the language certificates that are accepted by the University of Bremen can be found here: www.fremdsprachenzentrum-bremen.de/1072.0.html
    • A letter of motivation (max. 2 pages) stating reasons why you wish to be admitted to the master’s program Digital Media and Society.

    The master’s program is subject to restricted admission and a selection procedure: The procedure and selection criteria are specified in the admission regulations. The information on restricted admission refers to the winter semester 2019/20. There is no warranty for the correctness of the study requirements at time of application. They are an excerpt from the admission regulations of November 15, 2017. Applicants should note that admission restrictions and the admission regulations may change from time to time. Current information can be found on the website www.uni-bremen.de/master.

    Download Admission Regulations

     

    Closing dates for applications
    Winter semester: June 15 (for first-semester and higher semesters) 
    Summer semester: January 15 (only for higher semesters)
    Applications for the first semester are only possible for the winter semester. Advanced students can apply both for the winter as well as for summer semester.

    If your previous bachelor’s degree course has not been completed by the application deadline of June 15, it is possible to apply provided you have earned at least 150 CP by that date. The prerequisite is that your application fulfills all other admission requirements: If your application is successful, you will have to provide evidence of having obtained your bachelor’s degree two weeks after the beginning of the master’s program at the latest.

    Applications are to be submitted online under:
    www.uni-bremen.de/master

    Applications are to be submitted online via the Master Portal of the Office for Student Affairs under www.uni-bremen.de/master. For special applications (for example, admission to a higher semester or special hardship), use only the forms provided online by the University of Bremen.

    Registration Office for International Students
    Admission and enrolment for master programs

    Street address: Bibliothekstraße 1, Verwaltungsgebäude,Ground floor, Reception area
    Postal address: Universität Bremen, SfS-International,Postfach 33 04 40    
    28334 Bremen
    Phone/Fax: 0421 218-61002/0421 218-61125
    masteruni-bremen.de
    www.uni-bremen.de/master

    Consultation times: Mondays, Tuesdays & Thursdays 9.00–12.00, Wednesdays 14.00–16.00 (no need for appointment)

    The MA program offers permanent and systematic support to students. For this purpose, the course guidance in the Master's program Digital Media and Society is divided into different consulting roles in order to ensure a highly individual orientation for the students. In detail, the counselling is offered by discipline consultants, mentors and internship supervisors as well as the secretariat.

    Consultant: One of the lecturers of the program acts as a general consultant. The tasks are the general counselling of interested future students, the counselling on corresponding information events of the study program as well as the counselling of students at the beginning of their studies. In addition, it is the task of the student consultant to advise on questions of examination law and formalities throughout the course of studies. Contact: Dr. Stephan Görland

    Mentors: Some of the lecturers in the program mentor a small group of students. In addition to a general function as a contact person for study problems, the function of the mentor is to advise students on the development of their study and degree profile and to help them achieving the necessary credit points. Contact: Dr. Stephan Görland

    Internship supervisor: The task of internship supervisors is to advise students with regard to the choice of an internship, the course of the internship and the internship report. The internship supervisors are supported by the Office for Internship Placement & Career Counseling, which provides information on possible internship contacts and legal issues. Contact: Dipl.-Soz. Marco Höhn

    Administration/Office
    For information and information materials on the study program:
    Centre for Media, Communication and Information Research (ZeMKI)
    Janina Fadil-Kerstein
    Room 40.300, 
    Consultation times: Monday 09:00 –12:00

    Study Center
    For general questions surrounding studies:
    Juliane Schoppe
    Building GW 2, room B 3885
     

     

     

    Due to the international orientation of the BA Communication and Media Studies, experiences abroad and the expansion of linguistic proficiency are strongly recommended. International orientation is not only present in the thematic focus on media cultures in their inter- and transcultural contexts, but also visible on an organisational level. International cooperation, particularly withpartner universities in European countries, aim at the mutual recognition of modules and at connecting programmes of studies (including exchanges on the teaching level). For more information on ERASMUS etc. see our fact sheets for ZeMKI-Incomings and -Outgoings as well as the International Office at the University of Bremen.

    Documents, e.g. for admission to the Master's thesis, can be downloaded from the ZPA website.
    The materials of the MA Digital Media and Society can be downloaded via the learning platform StudIP.
    The current timetables and the complete course catalogue can be found on the general information page of the University of Bremen: Course Catalog

    Regulations of the MA Digital Media & Society

    Admission Regulation (Nov. 15, 2017)

    Examination Regulations (May 30, 2018)

     

    Comparison of accepted international certificates 

    Fremdsprachenzentrum: Comparison table

    Lectures / Modules / Seminars

    University of Bremen: Course catalog

    Aktualisiert von: ZeMKI