Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years
All core modules

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1) Practical - Professionally budget and plan a production schedule for a programme proposal supplied by the tutor. Clearly indicate which budget schedules are relevant to the production and explain why. Analyse the expected cost in each schedule and reach a total within the given price guide. Submit the budget, explanations and analysis on the pro forma supplied by the tutor. Submit the production schedule on the pro forma supplied by the tutor with explanatory notes regarding the detailed steps taken and changes made during the assembly of the schedule. (a word count is not relevant to this exercise)  40%
Semester Assessment 2) Essay - Working specifically with documents available through Ofcom, present a critique of a current legal/ethical debate triggered from a radio programme or serial while placing it into an historical context. (building specifically on lectures 5 and 6.) 5000 words  30%
Semester Assessment 3) Report - Record and critically analyse three separate outputs of radio writing from Classical Music, Daily and Weekly strands. The critical analysis should specify strengths and weaknesses of the pieces chosen and identify underlying format/ techniques employed that specifically address the target audience. (3000 words)  30%
Supplementary Assessment Resits of assignments, when necessary, will follow the same structure but be on a different topic/creative structure. 

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:

1. Articulate and critique the operations of the UK radio industry through an exploration of both the practice
of factual radio production and by addressing contemporary critical debates and through the analysis of
modern media texts.
2. Critically engage and professionally execute the production coordination aspects of radio production
3. Develop understanding of the industry`s expectations of new entrants in the workplace.
4. Critique the voice and language used by specific radio brands/ genres from R4 to Five Live to Real Radio.


To provide students with a foundation in radio which may serve as a common basis for the exploration of radio related issues under discussion throughout the rest of the course.
To develop understanding of the creative, practical and regulatory concepts (media law, editorial policy and
Media Ethics) and procedures involved in radio production.

Brief description

An introduction and exploration into editorial skills including contracting, editorial policy, diversity, branding, budgeting and scheduling.


Indicative Session Content

Lecture 1 : Studying Radio
Radio is a constantly changing medium. Throughout the last century, it has adapted to cultural and technological change to remain a popular and distinctive medium despite the growth of television, cinema, cable and satellite services, the ubiquity of recorded music and the internet. Radio's distinctiveness as a mass medium is that it addresses the individual. It creates a unique intimacy with its listeners who can interact with it through their imagination. It is an available, responsive and immediate medium. These are some of the issues explored in this introductory lecture.

Lecture 2 : An overview of the Production Cycle
The production cycle overview explores the production route the students will have to understand and undergo from the initial concept to realising the radio production and its delivery.

Lecture 3 : Editorial Guidelines Part 1
All radio programmes broadcast in the UK are subject to rules and regulations. In the case of the BBC, the corporation has a set of editorial guidelines which must be followed by all producers - both in-house and independent. These guidelines are kept under continual review by the BBC's Editorial Policy department, and adherence to the guidelines forms an integral part of a producer's contract. In this session, students will be taken through the main areas covered by the BBC's editorial guidelines and will learn how to ensure compliance in all stages of programme production.

Lecture 4 : Editorial Guidelines Part 2
Students will examine the other regulations which producers have to be across and which must be adhered to as part of the programme making process. The role of the regulatory body Ofcom will be examined, in relation both to the BBC and non-BBC broadcasters. Ethical questions and moral dilemmas will be explored here. Other areas covered during this session will be health and safety, and programme delivery requirements.

Lecture 5 : Media Law
From copyright to contempt and privacy to public interest, content producers need to be aware of the laws relating to programme making. This lecture will be led by an expert in the field of media law.

Lecture 6 : Editorial Decisions and Scheduling
Radio output is not just a random selection of programmes or segments but a carefully considered blend of audio designed with a particular audience in mind, in a way that will meet the audience's basic requirement for information and entertainment without switching off. Radio editors and controllers try to complement the real-life activities of the listeners with content that suits their needs and moods at a particular time of day, while at the same time providing a schedule that appears new every day and at the same time has a routine that is natural. These issues will be examined here.

Lecture 7 : Branding and Identity
Every radio station strives to achieve an identifiable style. The most obvious way a station declares its identity is through its choice of music, or lack of it, the style of its presenters and its programmes or programming. The identity of a station is also detectable in the station's jingles, its logo, the kind of competitions it runs and all its promotional material. In other words the radio station is more than just its output. It is a set of attitudes and values that constitute its brand. Radio is not just a form of information and entertainment; it is a product to be consumed by the audience. These issues will be explored during this session.

Lecture 8 : Costs and Budgeting
An introduction into the different ways in which the BBC and commercial radio stations receive their money to fulfil their editorial commitments. An insight into the disparity between sums allocated for BBC radio network stations and budgets for programmes produced in the nations and regions. An exploration of what makes some radio genres more expensive than others.

Guest Lecture - Industry Expectations

More than 20,000 people are

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Communication Communication underpins all activities on this course and will be developed and assessed throughout this module.
Improving own Learning and Performance Students will be encouraged to listen and analyse radio programmes to improve learning and performance.
Information Technology IT will be utilised for some research work during this module.
Personal Development and Career planning Personal development will inevitably happen during this module. Industry's Expectations.
Research skills Assignments will address this issue in relation to literature/sound archive searches. Essay question will involve application of literature search skills.
Subject Specific Skills Itemised in mapped Skills document attached
Team work Students will learn the basics of working as an individual and as a member of a team during this module. It will be developed further in later modules

Reading List

Recommended Text
Davies, J. (1994) Broadcasting and the BBC in Wales University of Wales Press Primo search
Recommended Background
Briggs, Asa (1995) The History of Broadcasting in the United Kingdom Vol 2 The Golden Age of Wireless 1939-1845, Vol Sound and Vision 1945-1955 Primo search Broadcasting Research Unit (BRU) (1995) The Public Service in Broadcasting: Main Principals BRU Primo search Crowe, J. (1995) Law and the Media: An Everyday Guide for Professionals Focal Press Primo search Evans,R.A. (1995) Sglein 1995: Casgliad o 40 sgyrsiau radio Gwesg Gee Primo search Firth, S. (1988) Music for Pleasure Polity Primo search Hale, J. (1975) Radio Power Elek Primo search Hannan, P. (1988) Wales on the Wireless: A Broadcasting Anthology Gomer/BBC Wales Primo search Lutzker. A.P, (1997) Copyright and Trademarks for Media Professionals Focal Press Primo search Musburger, R.B. (1997) Introduction to Media Production: From Analogue to Digital Focal Press Primo search Paulu, B. (1981) TV and Radio in the UK Macmillan Primo search Reville, N. (1997) Broadcasting, Law and Practice Butterworths Primo search Broadcast Primo search Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television Primo search The Radio Jounral: International Studies in Broadcast and Audio Media Intellect, Bristol Primo search Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 7