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BA (Hons) Advertising

Course summary

The world is filled with advertising. From street billboards to TV catchphrases, from the back of newspapers to the front of football shirts, from internet pop-ups to… well, anywhere with an empty space to fill. It’s a huge, rich part of our everyday life and cultural experience – and it’s changing fast.

At the University of East London, we offer you a unique insight into this exciting, swift-moving world. You’ll learn all about the advertising industry: what it does, how it works and how it’s changing in relation to the world that it shapes and that helps shape it.

You’ll learn about branding, market research techniques and digital media production, and take a detailed look at how today’s consumer society works.

Guided by industry experts, you’ll have the best chance not just to study but also to learn while at work in this ever-expanding industry.

You’ll be involved in work placements and consumer research projects. We’ll give you the chance to study everything from promotional media practices to photography and cultural theory while you also learn the best media and digital production skills.

If you don’t meet the entry requirements for a BA, you can study this course as an ‘extended’, four-year programme. In your first year, you’ll take a foundation year which prepares you for a successful transition to the BA course.

Clearing Scholarships

Limited Clearing scholarships available for this course, apply now


Overall satisfaction

In the 2018 National Student Survey, 85% of our students said they were overall satisfied with the quality of our courses.


Top place in London

We have been rated by our graduates as the most modern university in London (NSS, 2018)

Industry experts

You’ll be taught by industry professionals, from planners and strategists to photographers and creatives, and enjoy the opportunity of a work placement or project within the cultural and creative industries.


of graduates in work

An average of 91% of our graduates are in work or further education within 6 months of graduation (DLHE, 2016/17)

EnquireVisit UEL

Rory O’Neill

 Advertising, BA (Hons)


I wouldn't have been able to get where I am today without the amazing guidance and support from my lecturers on the Advertising degree.

What you'll learn

This fascinating and challenging course combines creative, theory-based learning with industry practice. It will give you a thorough grounding in advertising as a business as well as a deep understanding of consumer culture.

The course centres on four major areas: how the industry works, digital media production, social and market research techniques and theoretical examinations of culture and consumer society.

You'll explore the advertising business and topics surrounding it, such as branding, promotional communication, cultural theory, media planning, new media, social media and advertising creativity.

Industry experience is at the course’s heart. You’ll take modules designed specifically to bridge advertising theory and practice, giving you the chance to hear from top industry professionals. Recent speakers have represented major international agencies such as Ogilvy and BrandVoice.

Our teaching team includes Abigail Summerfield, who was previously an account director at Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising.



What you'll study and when

Academic Development (core)

Independent Project (core)

Visual Communication (core)

London and Literature (option)

Reporting London (option)

London and History (option)

Media, Culture and Society (option)

Creative Digital Practice (option)

Advertising; past, present and future (core)
Branding in Theory and Practice (core)

Digital Media Development 1 (optional)

Advertising, Representation and Culture (core)
Pitching for Business (core)
Media Planning in the City (core)
Researching Audiences, Texts and Media industries (core)
Working in the Media and Communications Industries (core)
Promotional Culture and the Consumer (core)
Campaign Design and Execution (core)
Advertising Dissertation (optional*)
Media Production Dissertation Project (optional*)
(*you will take either the Advertising Dissertation or the Media Production Dissertation)
Mobile Media, Promotion and Exhibition (optional)
Digital Communications (optional)
Copywriting in the Creative Industries  (optional)
Public Relations and Promotion (optional)

How you'll be assessed

Assessment is continuous throughout each term and is undertaken individually and in groups in relation to both theoretical and more practice-based modules. We assess modules on the course through essays, presentations and production pieces. Other modes of assessment unique to the course include, in year three, the presentation of an advertising industry pitch to 
industry professionals and, in year two, the running of a focus group as part of the study of market and consumer research methodologies.

Course specification Foundation Year Specification

How you'll learn

We want to equip you properly for the workplace. That’s why we put a strong emphasis on your involvement with live briefs, work placements and consumer research projects. 

You’ll have the chance to complete a career development project, with the support of a tutor, and enjoy work placement opportunities. Our students have been placed with top London-based advertising agencies such as DLKW Lowe and First City Advertising, and with international firms like the New York-based Wunderman.

You’ll also gain invaluable experience from projects such as creating a poster campaign or viral ad, presenting an advertising pitch or running a focus group.

You’ll be able to make use of our excellent facilities, including a dedicated advertising suite with the latest multimedia production equipment. You’ll also have extensive access to the best online resources, such as Warc, which offers research and advertising information from the world's leading brands.

Who’ll be guiding you in all this? Your teaching team at UEL, headed by Dr Julia Dane, have published in the areas of advertising theory and practice including The Advertising Handbook (2009) and Promotional Culture and Convergence:  Markets, Methods, Media (2013) edited by Helen Powell.

The team also includes industry professionals with expertise in branded content, account planning, digital media strategy, campaign execution and media production techniques. Supportive and dedicated, they’ll offer personal supervision throughout your studies.

Your future career

We pride ourselves on teaching such a range of key skills that you’ll find many doors to stimulating future employment open to you after graduation – and not just in advertising. UEL graduates have gone on to
succeed in other areas such as market research, marketing and public relations.
That is, in part, down to the contacts you can make during the course. Many students have managed to land jobs after making an impact with employers during their work placements.

UEL advertising graduates have the advantage of enjoying a wealth of industry knowledge together with a deep understanding of consumer culture. So it’s little wonder our graduates are in demand to work in a range of promotional industries.

One recent graduate was taken on by top London agency ArtScience and has been working on social media for TalkTalk’s sponsorship of ‘The X Factor’. Another has been providing marketing expertise for small businesses.

Kahmarl Gordon, who graduated in 2013, established the successful, trend-setting art and popular culture magazine WEARECOLLISION during his time at UEL, which is now sold all around the world. He has also returned to teach on our course, offering his expertise and experience to future entrepreneurs.

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Meet us in your country

Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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