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Bachelor of Arts (Public Relations)

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  • Objectives
    Deakin’s Bachelor of Arts (Public Relations) will provide you with a solid grounding in the principles and practice of public relations and communications theory, together with a broader general education in the social sciences and liberal arts. You will be exposed to a range of models, skills and techniques necessary for the management of public relations in a wide variety of private and public organisations. You will study the social and behavioural sciences providing an understanding of human and societal behaviour. The course also examines communication research techniques, organisational planning, problem analysis, strategy development for effective communication within and between organisations and their associates, the counselling of management on trends in issues affecting communication policy, and the production of messages, their transmission and the evaluation of their effectiveness. You will have the opportunity to establish links with professionals in the industry through the Public Relations Institute of Australia Young Practitioners' program.
  • Entry requirements
    Applicants should have successfully completed VCE, or equivalent, including a study score of at least 30 in Units 3 and 4 English (ESL) or 25 in Units 3 and 4 of any other English. Those aged 21 or over on 1 January and who do not hold VCE or equivalent should apply under Alternative Admission. This category is open to those who do not satisfy normal entrance requirements, but can demonstrate relevant work or life experience.
  • Academic Title
    Bachelor of Arts (Public Relations)
  • Course description
    Professional recognition
    The Bachelor of Arts (Public Relations) is accredited by the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA).

    Fees and charges
    Equivalent Full Time Student Load (EFTSL)
    EFTSL is the standard annual full time load. Eight credit points is the standard full time load for one year of study.

    Commonwealth supported place (CSP)
    A Commonwealth supported place is one for which the university receives some government funding. As such, students enrolled in these places are required to contribute only part of the cost of their course. To be eligible for a Commonwealth supported place you must be an Australian citizen, or a New Zealand citizen or holder of a permanent visa who will be residing in Australia for the duration of your unit/s of study. All Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens and holders of a permanent visa will receive a Student Learning Entitlement (SLE). The SLE entitles a student to the equivalent of 7 years of full time study in a Commonwealth supported place.

    * The "indicative annual course fee" cited has been provided as a guide only. It has been calculated on the basis of a typical enrolment of a student undertaking the course in 2009, and reflects the cost involved in undertaking a full-time quota of units within the specified discipline.
    The actual fees charged by Deakin University will depend upon the discipline from which each individual unit is chosen, and may vary from the indicative course fee cited, particularly if units are chosen from a number of disciplines. The cost of each unit offered in 2009 can be viewed at http://www.deakin.edu.au/current-students/handbooks2009/search.php.
    Please note that the fees per unit/credit point may increase annually due to rises in the cost of course delivery and service.
    Deakin assumes no responsibility for persons relying on "indicative course fees" to calculate the total future cost of their course.

    Career opportunities
    There are promising career opportunities for public relations professionals in commerce, government, community and education institutions, hospitals, health and welfare organisations, special interest groups, cultural organisations, consumer affairs and public relations consultancies. Other terms are often used in place of public relations or to describe a specialised aspect of public relations. They include public affairs, corporate affairs, community relations, customer relations, investor relations, employee relations, publicity, government relations, media relations, crisis management and issues management, all of which provide other employment opportunities.

    Course rules

    To qualify for the award of Bachelor of Arts (Public Relations), a student must complete 24 credit points including:

        * 16 credit points of compulsory core units;
        * 8 credit points of electives;
        * no more than 10 credit points at level 1;
        * at least 14 credit points at level 2 or above; and
        * successful completion of at least one wholly online unit

    Course structure

    Year 1
    Trimester 1

    ALC101 Contemporary Communication: Making Sense of Text, Image and Meaning  

    ALJ111 Contemporary Journalism  

    ALR103 Principles and Practice of Public Relations  

    1 Elective

    Trimester 2

    ALC102 Contemporary Communication: Making Sense of New Media  

    ALJ112 Comparative Journalism Studies  

    1 Elective


    Trimester 1 or trimester 2

    ALW117 Writing for Professional Practice  

    Year 2
    Trimester 1

    ALR207 Media Relations  

    ALR276 Ethical Communication and Citizenship  

    2 Electives

    Trimester 2

    ALR206 Electronic and Internet Public Relations  

    ALR279 Public Relations Management and Practice  ( 2 credit points)

    1 Elective


    Year 3
    Trimester 1

    ALR383 Government Relations and Issues Management  *

    ALR382 Internship  

    2 Electives

    Trimester 2

    ALR300 Public Relations Campaigns and Practice  ( 2 credit points)

    ALR310 Marketing Communication  

    1 Elective

    *This unit is offered in the wholly online teaching mode only- there will be no face-to face teaching.

    Transition to University study
    The faculty offers two units ASC160 Introduction to University Study and ALW117 Writing for Professional Practice which are specifically designed to ease the transition into university study. New students are encouraged to enrol in one or both of these units in their first year.

    Wholly online units

    To ensure that all Deakin students have the skills to meet the demands of the modern workforce, undergraduate students are required to complete at least one unit of their study wholly online.

    The wholly online units offered by the Faculty of Arts and Education in 2009 are:


    Trimester 1 or trimester 2

    ACN108 History of Interactive Entertainment  


    Trimester 1

    AIH265/AIH365 Great Debates: Unfinished Business of the Past  

    AIR236/AIR336 Global Capitalism and its Discontent  

    AIX391 Work Transition in the 21st Century  

    ALL379 Representing Australia  

    ALR383 Government Relations and Issues Management  


    Trimester 2

    AIP238/AIP338 The Politics of Fear  

    ALC314 Advertising: Designing Desires  

    ALC320 Approaches to Media: Audiences and Effects  

    ASC320 Sex, Crime and Justice in An Electronic Age  

    Admission requirements - general
    Deakin University offers admission to undergraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.
    In all categories of admission, selection is based primarily on academic merit as indicated by an applicant's previous academic record.
    For more information on the Deakin Admissions Policy visit The Guide.

    Admission requirements - specific

    Applicants should have successfully completed VCE, or equivalent, including a study score of at least 30 in Units 3 and 4 English (ESL) or 25 in Units 3 and 4 of any other English.

    Those aged 21 or over on 1 January and who do not hold VCE or equivalent should apply under Alternative Admission.  This category is open to those who do not satisfy normal entrance requirements, but can demonstrate relevant work or life experience.

    Advanced standing - general
    The University aims to provide students with as much credit as possible for approved prior study or informal learning which exceeds the normal entrance requirements for the course and is within the constraints of the course regulations. Students are required to complete a minimum of one-third of the course at Deakin University, or four credit points, whichever is the greater. In the case of certificates, including graduate certificates, a minimum of two credit points within the course must be completed at Deakin.

    You can also refer to the Advanced Standing System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree.

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