Journalism Law, Ethics and Regulation - JOUR8010

Looking for a different module?

Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Combined Autumn and Spring Terms 7 30 (15) David Acheson checkmark-circle


Concepts of press freedom. Defamation – components and defences. Privacy, copyright, breach of confidence. Regulation and self-regulation of media. Contempt of court. Censorship.


Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 42
Private Study Hours: 258
Total Study Hours: 300


MA Multimedia Journalism (compulsory module)

Method of assessment

Assessment is 100% coursework
Essay 1, 2,500 words – 30%
Essay 2, 4,000 words – 70%

Reassessment methods
Like for like

Indicative reading

Quinn F, Law for Journalists, 6th edn, Pearson (2018)
Rowbottom J, Media Law, Hart (2018)
Barendt E, Freedom of Speech, 2nd edn, OUP (2007)
Barendt E and others, Media Law: Text, Cases and Materials, Pearson (2014)
Hanna M and Dodds M, McNae's Essential Law for Journalists, 25th edn, OUP (2020)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the concepts, principles and rules governing the restrictions on freedom of expression in the media by the law
2. Critically evaluate the debate surrounding tensions that arise between the desire to promote free speech and the recognition that certain controls on it may be necessary
3. Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the role of a free press within society and how it developed
4. Show critical awareness of the application of English law and the European Convention on Human Rights with regard to the media
5. Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of how journalism is regulated and develop critiques of regulation in its various forms
6. Show a systematic understanding of the ethical issues that journalists confront and use original application of knowledge to interpret them

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1. Deal with complex issues systematically and creatively, make sound judgements and communicate conclusions clearly
2. Use independent learning techniques to continue their professional development
3. Demonstrate self-direction and originality in tackling and solving issues


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
Back to top

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.