This pioneering BA degree in Japanese and journalism allows you to combine study of the Japanese language and its associated culture with the practice-oriented study of journalism, and to do so with a fairly even emphasis on the 2 halves of this programme of study.
You will learn, on the one side, how to develop journalistic skills, with an emphasis on written and online practice, relevant to a wide range of professional contexts. You will be taught by industry professionals with experience not only in how to write for different media and audiences, but also in how the industry works. The journalism modules offered in this course also emphasise the importance of awareness of the cultural, political and industrial contexts in which journalism is situated.
On the Japanese side, you will study Japanese language from beginner or near-beginner level to a high-intermediate/advanced level of proficiency. Furthermore, the course provides you with a solid grounding in modern Japanese society and culture and, through option modules, specialist knowledge of the media industries in Japan and their practices.
This programme is also available for full-time evening study over 3 years.
How to apply
Application deadlines and interviews
We recommend you apply as early as possible. Later applications may also be considered, subject to availability of places.
Interviews by arrangement, April to August; September if there are vacancies.
Your application must include a clear supporting statement in which you explain why you wish to apply for this programme, alongside any relevant academic, professional or other experiences related to journalism or media as well as Japanese language or culture.
Japanese and/with Journalism (BA): 4-year, part-time (Part-time)
You take 12 modules (360 credits) in total: 6 modules from a range of Japanese studies (4 of which will usually be language modules) and 6 modules from a range of journalism and media studies.
In your final year, you will be required to submit a dissertation of between 6000 and 8000 words on a topic of your choice, or an in-depth journalistic investigation accompanied by a critical evaluation of the journalistic choices made and the process of communicating them. Guidance about selecting an appropriate topic and supervisor will be given in the summer term of your third year.
Year 1 compulsory modules
Year 1 language modules
Year 2 compulsory module
Year 2 language modules
Year 3 language modules
Year 4 language modules
Final year project
Japanese option modules
Journalism option modules
We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.
You can join this programme with Japanese at any level, from complete beginner. Admission is based on a written test, a language entry test (except for complete beginners) and an interview.
Alternative entry routes
Access to Higher Education Diploma with a minimum of 15 credits achieved at Merit or Distinction in media, social science or humanities subject units.
International entry requirements
If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.
If you don’t meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.
Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.
Part-time home/EU students: £
paPart-time overseas students: £
Payment and Fees Discounts
Funding and Financial Support
Careers and employability
Teaching and assessment
Teaching is in small groups. A wide range of teaching methods are employed, including lectures, seminars, language classes and guest speakers.
Assessment varies and includes essays, journalistic writing, recordings, unseen examinations, oral language tests and critical evaluation.