Coventry is the only institution to offer an entire MA course which focusses on Automotive Journalism. Coventry alumni (like the 2007 graduates above) have gone on to work for Autocar, Autocar China, What Car?, Auto Express, Motorsport News, Auto Trader, cardesignnews.com and other automotive media. Others have gone into automotive PR.
The idea for the course came from Autocar editor in chief Steve Cropley, who thought there ought to be a way of training to become a motoring journalist rather than falling into the job by accident – as many motoring journalists seem to do. Steve remains closely involved with the course as a visiting professor.
The course also has strong links with the Guild of Motoring Writers, the Midland Group of Motoring Writers and local car producers such as Peugeot and Jaguar Land Rover.
Automotive journalism students share some lectures with students on Coventry University's renowned automotive design courses. The journalism and design departments both regularly invite guest speakers from the media and the automotive industry to talk to students, recent guests including:
- motorsport broadcasting legend Murray Walker
- CAR columnist Gavin Green
- Adam Hatton and Mark Phillips (lead interior and exterior designers on the new Jaguar XJ, and both Coventry graduates)
- car photographer Mike Valente
- Prodrive and Aston Martin chairman David Richards
- Newspress editorial director Chris Thorp
The Automotive Journalism courses can be studied full-time (one year) or part-time (two years), and can lead to three levels of award:
- Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert)
- Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip)
- Master of Arts (MA)
The Automotive Journalism MA course combines essential journalism theory, practical skills such as page design and study of motoring and the automotive industry. Students create their own car magazine, Automotive, from scratch and the magazine is printed and distributed around Coventry.
The course programme is constantly under revision to keep abreast of developments in journalism and publishing, but students can expect to study:
- journalism basics – interviewing, news writing, feature writing
- law for journalists
- print magazine planning and production management
- page layout in Adobe InDesign
- audio and video recording and editing for broadcast and web
- automotive history, technical developments, economics and the social impact of the car
- academic research and peer review
For more information on the course see the postgraduate pages of the Coventry University website or contact me.