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BECOME AN EXPERT IN EUROPEAN MEDIA

The Master of Communication Studies is a one-year (60 ECTS) academic master with a focus on New Media and Society in Europe. This unique English language programme focuses on the rapidly changing field of media and communication in a European context. The programme takes an original interdisciplinary approach and allows students to concentrate on business, policy and/or user aspects of new media.

The VUB also offers a second Master option in Communication Studies with a focus on Journalism and Media in Europe.

BRUSSELS: STUDY WHERE THE ACTION IS

In Brussels you have European and international institutions right at hand. This Master will acquaint you with European institutions, important journalism and media players, lobbyists and NGO’s, and communication and media agencies. The Master includes a yearly lecture series with prestigious speakers from the European media industry, journalism and European institutions. You will also get to know the Brussels reality through organised site visits, and the possibility of a traineeship.

Discover the Brussels Humanities, Science & Engineering Campus, where all courses are organised.

AN OPEN, INTERNATIONAL AND DIVERSE UNIVERSITY

Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) is a dynamic and modern university with almost two centuries of history. VUB has 15.000 students, 21% of which are international students from more than 120 different countries. 

Being a student at VUB means learning in an international and open atmosphere of tolerance and diversity that will help you to grow into an independent and critical-thinking individual. 

VUB offers high quality English-taught programmes, supported by outstanding research. VUB is known for treating its students as individuals. Professors and teaching assistants are available and open to answer questions from students. Interactive methods ensure close interaction and contribute to students growing into independent and critical individuals.

The New Media and Society in Europe master is taught on a green campus where all facilities are close at hand: classrooms, student restaurant, library, sports facilities (swimming pool, gym, three sports courts, badminton facilities). Discover the campus here

PROGRAMME OUTLINE

The master programme consists of 5 compulsory courses and the master thesis, in total for 48 ECTS. You should complete this with electives for 12 ECTS, so you become a total of 60 ECTS. Via the link mentioned above (click on the programme title) you become the programme overview. 

Compulsory courses

  • European Media and Communication Policies
  • Theories on Media, Technology and Society
  • Brussels Talking: Europe, Media and Society (Lecture Series)
  • Users and Innovation in Digital Media
  • Critical Issues in Media Economics

Due to the course load and daytime course schedule, a combination with full time employment is not possible.

TRAINEESHIP OPTIONS

The traineeship is offered as an elective. The fundamental goal is to have practical training and acquire practical skills. The traineeship programme aims for students to operationalize and test, in a professional environment, the theoretical knowledge obtained in following the Master. This allows them to develop professional skills and competences while networking; all with their future career in mind. It also spurs our students to critically (self-) reflect on both the institutional environment and company/organization, as well as on personal development (knowledge-building, skills, strengths and weaknesses, ...) during the traineeship. 

At VUB, the Career Center bundles all traineeship options for each "branche", to keep an overview. In Brussels, these options seem endless!

AT THE HEART OF EUROPE

This Master of Communication Studies gives you the unique opportunity to study in an environment with all European institutions right at hand. The European Union plays a crucial role in media and communication policies. It has tried to foster a single European market in media and services. Through several large programmes, it has stimulated innovation and the emergence of a European Information Society. The European Commission’s current Digital Agenda for Europe sets the framework for the coming years. In this master programme, you will gain an understanding of European policy and policymaking in the fields of media, innovation and the internet.

LEARNING OUTCOMES

Learning outcomes describe the intended knowledge and understanding, skills and attitudes that you must master after completing your studies. Do you want to know more about the specific learning outcomes of this programme? Click here for more information.

ADMISSIONS CRITERIA AND PROCEDURES

Candidates with a Flemish ‘Bachelor of Science in Communicatiewetenschappen' (VUB or other) degree or with a VUB Bachelor of Social Sciences degree get direct access to the programme.

All other applications are evaluated individually by an Admission Board. Factors taking into account by the Admission Board include:
   - English language proficiency (see below for minimal criteria)
   - Academic degree(s) already acquired.
   - Grades scored in previous studies.
   - Quality of motivation letter. Including fit between your motivation and what we offer.
   - Quality of letters of recommendation.
   - Other relevant experience.

Depending on the content of your previous studies, the Board can assign an individual preparatory programme to the candidate. This preparatory programme can be combined with the Master programme and typically consists of one or two extra courses to be taken during the master year.

More information on how to submit your application file (and what documents to upload) can be found here.

LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

Good English language skills are an important prerequisite for successfully following the master. There are three ways to prove your proficiency:

Option A: send us one of the following language certificates:

  • TOEFL: minimum level: 213 for the computer-based test (CBT); 79 for the internet-based test (IBT); 550 for paper -based test
  • IELTS: minimum level academic module 6.5
  • Cambridge English: CAE grade B, CPE grade C
  • ITACE: minimum grade B2

Option B: having successfully completed secondary or higher education with English as language of instruction:

  • submit official proof of the language of instruction of your previous study;

Option C: having successfully completed secondary school in a Belgian institution:

  • submit official proof that you completed a study in Belgium

Certificates and other proof of language tests may not pre-date the first enrolment by more than two years.

DEADLINES 2019

Since the screening process takes time, prospective students are advised to apply as soon as possible, even if they have not yet obtained their degree, via the online procedure.

  • All STUDENT-VISA required students need to apply before April 1st
  • All other students need to apply before September 1st

Tuition fees

All Flemish universities in Belgium are subsidised by the government, which results in relatively low tuition fees compared to education worldwide and even within Europe. The general EEA-student tuition fee for our master programmes is €938,80/year. Some master programmes have an increased tuition fee for students with a non-EEA nationality. A detailed overview of the tuition fees can be found on this overview.

APPLY FOR NEXT ACADEMIC YEAR

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Alumni Testimonials

Our alumni from all over the world share their experiences at VUB in the Communication Studies: New Media and Society in Europe master with you.

Marzia Graniglia, Social Media Manager, Italian Fitness Club Company (class of 2015)

“As an international student, I chose to attend the Master in Communication studies at the VUB for two main reasons: first, I wanted to acquire more knowledge on the media and communication field in Europe; second, I wished to strengthen my English and experience a multicultural environment. At the VUB I found a very caring and homely environment where teachers were very helpful and supportive. I would recommend this challenging program because can help you boost your career opportunities, I am currently working as Social Media Manager for an Italian company, and will allow you to experience a different educational and social life.”

Harry Urpatyan (Class of 2014)

“As a communication and public relations specialist, with background in European public administration and journalism, my studies with the VUB gave me valuable knowledge on global developments in media policy and business models in digital markets. I have applied this to my practical skills in developing strategic communication processes, which build mutually beneficial relationships between stakeholders, organizations and their publics. I found a very caring and homely environment at the university where my teachers, while highly qualified are approachable and very helpful. The masters’ programme provides also opportunity to attend meetings with representatives from global and European institutions and get first-hand experience on how they approach communication in multilateral relations. After my graduation, I was recruited as a communication expert by an international public sector consultancy, in top 5 of Europeaid contractors, where I use my academic and professional skills to yield better awareness and outreach on sustainable energy and climate adaptation projects in the Southern Neighborhood, funded by the European Commission.”

Pauline Urger, Communication Advisor at ULB (Class of 2016)

“As a Belgian student, selecting a Master taught in English at VUB was both a challenge and a great opportunity. During this year, I enjoyed a very international environment. More than 20 nationalities were represented and it truly encouraged multicultural exchanges between students. The various standpoints on the different media systems that each person experienced was insightful as well as source of open-minded debates. Substantially, the high-level scientific knowledge of the professors and their availability to supervise students offers an excellent educational background. Scientific rigour and methods, essay redaction, oral communication… Everything I expected from a Master-level programme was met at VUB. To sum up: VUB rocks and I would totally pick the MSc in Communication Sciences again if I went back in time!”

Yazan Badran, PhD researcher at the VUB (class of 2015)

“I came to the VUB in 2013 as a computer engineer with only a superficial knowledge of the field of social science, but with a genuine interest in deepening this knowledge. The NMSE master program was instrumental in equipping me with the analytical tools to understand today’s complex media and communication environment. More importantly, the program’s ethos, emphasising a critical and reflexive approach, proved indispensable to my aim of contributing productively to the field.”

Laura Baeyens, Communications Manager for the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) 2015

"Communications as a career and field of study in the EU can be very challenging due to its broadness, but doing the VUB Master helped me identify my strengths and exposed me to different aspects of media and communication. The international spirit of the programme and a focus on critical thinking has helped shape who I am as a communications professional today. It also opened many doors for me when I was looking for my next career challenge: I was offered a traineeship at the European Parliament right after finishing the Master and eventually landed a job in communications for an international organisation."

Christoph Oepen (class of 2014), International Sales Manager

" I am currently working as International Sales Manager for one of Germany’s leading trade show companies. In this job I am responsible for sales activities to international clients for food trade shows all around the world. Our shows can be found from Beijing to Bogotá. Communication with colleagues and clients from different cultures and backgrounds is an important part of my job. The programme has provided me with many skill sets which I can still use in my daily routine - Foremost the intercultural competences and presentation skills which I have gained during my time in Brussels. I still benefit for my time at VUB – not only in a professional sense but also from the friendships which were created at that time and which last until today."

AFTER GRADUATION

A master degree opens doors in many different branches and sectors. You will be able to work in the private sector, (non-) governmental organisations, or continue your academic career as a PhD researcher. Not sure what your next step should be? The VUB helps you with your first steps on the job market.

Graduates of communication studies develop the necessary multidisciplinarity and flexibility to perfectly the current changing and demanding job market. You can opt for a variety of career paths, for instance in media companies working at the European level, European institutions or lobby organisations trying to influence Europe’s innovation and communication policies. The VUB helps you to take your first steps on the job market with workshops, networking events, job fairs, tips and tricks for interviews, and a dynamic Alumni network. All an ambitious student needs!

Careercenter


THE VUB HELPS YOU TO MAKE YOUR FIRST STEP IN THE JOB MARKET WITH WORKSHOPS, NETWORKING EVENTS, JOB FAIRS, TIPS ‘N TRICKS FOR JOB INTERVIEWS. ALL AN AMBITIOUS STUDENT NEEDS!

First step in the market

Phd?


IF YOU WANT TO CONTINUE YOUR ACADEMIC CAREER, YOU CAN APPLY FOR A PHD POSITION AT THE VRIJE UNIVERSITEIT BRUSSEL. ALL YOU NEED IS A PROMOTER, RESEARCH SUBJECT AND SUFFICIENT FUNDING. ARE YOU UP FOR THIS CHALLENGE?

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Want to know more about our alumni?

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