Ballyfermot College of Further Education BCFE

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Journalism – Journalism Diploma (HND) Level 6 Higher

Course Code MJH

NFQ Level 6*

Duration 2 Years

Award Pearson BTEC Level 5 Higher National Diploma in Creative Media Production (Journalism)

* The Higher National Diploma is recognised by the QQI as being comparable to the Higher Certificate at NFQ Level 6

On successful completion of Year 1 of a two-year Higher National Diploma (HND) an Higher National Certificate (HNC) will be claimed for each 1st Year HND student. It will be included as part of the overall HND award on successful completion of Year 2.

A 2-year HND course in print, broadcast & online journalism and social media in our digital newsroom, radio and tv studios, with work placement.

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This is a practical journalism course that prepares you to work across all platforms: social, mobile, broadcast, online and print journalism.

The aim of the course is to prepare you as a digital content creator who can demonstrate essential skills and use of new technologies for the fast-moving 21st century media workplace.

The course has a practical emphasis with work placements in both years.

Course Content

Year 1

  • Journalism Practice
  • Journalism and Society
  • Creative Media Industries
  • Professional Practice
  • Photography
  • Interview and Presentation Skills
  • Digital Page Design
  • Individual Investigative Project

Year 2

  • Advanced Mobile Journalism
  • Social Media Practice
  • Podcasting
  • Documentary (Photography, Audio or Smartphone)
  • Marketing and Promotion
  • Professional Development
  • Group Project (digital content creation)
  • Work Experience

Entry Requirements

  • Leaving Certificate/LCVP with a minimum of two O1/H5 and three O6/H7 grades, or a relevant QQI level 5 award with a merit profile or a relevant BTEC National Diploma with a merit profile. Suitable BCFE Level 5 courses include:
  • The academic entry requirements may be waived for mature applicants (21+).


  • Graduates who achieve a merit/distinction profile may apply for the BA (Hons) Degree in Media Production Management at BCFE, a one-year top up degree that is validated by DCU.
  • Graduates of this course may also apply through the CAO and/or the Higher Education Links Scheme for entry to higher and advanced certificate and degree programmes at national Institutes of Technology, Technological Universities and Universities such as Journalism at DCU or apply for advanced entry to TU Dublin, (applicants should confirm linked awards and eligibility requirements with the relevant Higher Education Institution).
  • Graduates may gain exemptions from one or two years of degree courses in the UK.

Career Opportunities

  • Graduates from this course work have progressed as digital content creators, sports journalists, reporters, radio presenters, podcasters, TV producers, editors of newspapers and magazines, copywriters and more recently in content and digital marketing positions that require a grounding in multimedia journalism with advanced social media skills.

Students' Work

Print, broadcast journalism, online journalism, mobile journalism and social media in our digital newsroom, radio and tv studios & work placement abroad.


BCFE’s journalism course gave me the confidence, courage and knowledge to pursue a career in journalism. I landed an internship at a women’s digital media publication in 2017 and was promoted to Deputy Editor of three websites, including in 2019. I’ve been able to interview all kinds of people thanks to the skills I developed during my two years at BCFE. The course is hands-on, practical and gives you a strong understanding of the industry and will strengthen your love of writing and storytelling.
Kat O’Connor, Deputy Editor,
Higher National Diploma in Journalism (MJH 2015-2017)

Ballyfermot College of Further Education helped to shape my understanding of the Irish media landscape and its different news values. During the two-year Diploma in Journalism we created a student newspaper, the Student Chronicle. While working on the paper I discovered I really enjoyed working in a news environment, the thrill of trying to find stories, getting interviews and seeing the finished product. Without BCFE I wouldn’t be where I am today. I can’t recommend the college enough for anyone who is looking to work in journalism.
Oisín Ó Cuilleanáin, Multimedia Journalist RTE
Higher National Diploma in Journalism, (MJH 2015 – 2017)
BA in Media Production Management, (MPM 2018)

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