Master of Arts in Communication Studies



The programme is anchored on, and informed by, the vision and mission of the University of Nairobi. The programme seeks to provide quality education in media and communications training to produce qualified and competent graduates who are able to engage in sustainable global development. 


1.3.1 Justification of the need for the programme 

The programme provides a chance to train a high calibre of professionals in the discipline of communications studies. It aims to produce well-grounded scholars with competencies in teaching and research, development communication, journalism, and public relations. It is intended to prepare students for careers in communication and media in public and private sectors, civil society, and international and inter-governmental organisations. The programme will expose students to broad interdisciplinary perspectives on communication, including communication research techniques; communication for social change; strategic image management; monitoring, management and evaluation of communication; and journalism and media studies. Emphasis will be placed on mastery of knowledge and acquisition of the skills necessary for demonstrating first-rate techniques in writing and editing, communication planning, public relations, and management of communication and mass media organisations in a dynamic compositional and technological environment. 

 1.3.2 Needs assessment and market analysis 

Development of this programme was informed by a market survey of the media and communications industry that revealed a dire need for competent and well-skilled communication professionals. Some of these areas that are in urgent need of highly skilled and University of Nairobi Revised MA in Communication and Information Studies July 2022 Page 3 of 35 competent communication professionals include teaching, research, management and various forms of consultancy. The programme will ensure that students acquire knowledge on a specialized body of theoretical and applied topics; higher order skills in analysis, critical evaluation, and the ability to solve complex problems; and to think rigorously and independently. The programme is intended to provide students with an opportunity to delve into the theoretical and practical depths of communication studies and information studies. The programme is informed by the dynamic changes and complexities in the communications landscape, coupled with market trends and industry needs. It is also structured to instil the requisite communication skills necessary for the realisation of Vision 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals. Indeed, Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel Prize-winning economist, recognises that lack of information has adverse political as well as economic effects. Better and timelier information results in better, more efficient resource allocation             


The objectives of the programme shall be to:

  1. Provide students with advanced knowledge of the different tools and techniques used by various media to communicate public information and entertainment to different audiences.
  2. Provide students with an in-depth understanding of the major philosophies and methods underlying the study and practice of communications and the legal and ethical issues and challenges associated with the discipline.
  3. Equip students with specialized knowledge of advanced tools to research, synthesize and interpret knowledge and experience to solve social communications problems or achieve societal communication objectives.
  4. Prepare students to use the knowledge, skills, attitudes and ethics gained through the program to build careers in government, public sector, private sector, civil society, and international organizations as well as in teaching, research, and consultancy in communications-related fields.
  5. Equip students with specialized knowledge and skills that will enable them to address emerging societal communication concerns in a changing communication terrain

Goals of the programme

The goal of the programme is to equip the student with foundational, scientifically derived, practical and theoretical knowledge, understanding and skills of communication in its widest meaning is mediated, group, interpersonal, mass, and intercultural forms. 

Expected learning outcomes

At the end of the programme, the learner should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate academic competencies in communication studies
  2. Apply critical scholarship skills in communication and information
  3. Carry out scholarly research in humanities and social sciences
  4. Apply theoretical, philosophical and practical approaches to communication and information
  5. Demonstrate critical awareness and understanding of the effects of communications and information on society.

Contact of Support Persons


Department of Journalism and Mass Communication,

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences,

University of Nairobi

P.O. Box 30197-00100,


Main Campus,

Education Building,

3rd Floor, Room 302,

Tel: +254 020 4913208

Cell: +254 757 115431


Exams Regulations

Coursework examination

  1. Each course shall be examined by a three-hour written examination paper. A candidate will be required to sit for the examination at the end of each semester. 
  2. A written examination for each course unit shall be held at the end of the semester in which the course is taken.
  3. A candidate shall not be allowed to sit any examination unless he/she has attended at least two-thirds of the total course hours.
  4. Continuous assessment shall be evaluated in each course based on seminar papers, tutorials, essays, practical exercises, and assignments.
  5. There shall be a special examination where a student fails to sit a scheduled examination provided there are valid reasons.
  6. Candidates shall be required to pass all the prescribed course units before undertaking the research project.
  7. The written examination shall constitute sixty per cent [60%] of the marks in each course while the continuous assessment shall constitute forty per cent [40%].
  8. The pass mark shall be fifty per cent [50%] in each course unit.
  9. A candidate who fails in any course shall on the recommendation of the Departmental/FacultyCommittee of Examinersand approval by the Senate be allowed to sit up to two (2) supplementary examinations.
  10. A candidate may be allowed to sit a supplementary examination in the failed course units during the next supplementary examination period.
  11. A pass mark obtained in a supplementary examination shall be graded as fifty per cent [50%].
  12. A candidate shall be discontinued from the programme on the recommendation of the Departmental/Faculty Committee of Examinersand approval of the Senate of the University of Nairobi if the candidate fails the supplementary examination in any given course, fails to take any prescribed course unit(s) without good cause, fails to complete the course units within the prescribed period, or fails more than two-course units.
  13. Candidates must attend the prescribed courses of study in accordance with University regulations and those of the Department before being permitted to sit for the examination. 
  14. A candidate who fails in any unit on the first attempt shall be allowed two more attempts to re-sit and pass that unit.

Schedule of intakes

Once in a year (September)

Course Duration and structure

  1. Duration 
  1. The programme shall be covered in a minimum of four (4) and a maximum of eight (8) semesters for both full-time students and part-time students from the date of registration.
  2. Each course unit shall consist of a minimum of 45 contact hours and shall be covered within a semester of 15 weeks.
  3. The programme has eight (8) core units which shall be undertaken in year one, semesters one and two and four (4) elective courses in the third semester. A student shall study and pass 12-course units to qualify for the award of the degree.
  4. Each student shall be required to complete the prescribed courses in each respective semester and academic year of study.
  5. No student shall proceed to a subsequent academic year before completing the courses of the preceding lower academic year.
  6. Students wishing to defer their admission shall fill out the relevant deferment form stating the reason for deferral and when he/she will take up admission.
  7. Deferrals shall be granted for a period not exceeding 8 semesters. Applicants seeking deferrals for more than 8 semesters shall be required to make a fresh application for admission.


  1. Structure
  1. The degree programme shall consist of coursework, examination and a final research project.
  2. In each semester, students shall be required to take a minimum of 2 units and a maximum of 4 units.
  3. The research project shall be equivalent tofour (4) course units.
  4. The elective units shall be undertaken in year two, semester one and are considered as the specialization units. 
  5. The Department reserves the right to advise students on subject combinations.
  6. The Department may from time to time, determine the elective courses offered in any academic year.
  7. Graduate projects shall be done under the guidance of a supervisor(s) allocated based on their knowledge of the topic, research methodologies, and any other technical expertise.
  8. To enhance linkages and networking, industry visits and academic fieldwork shall be done at least once (preferably in year one) or before students graduate.
  9. The instructional methods for the course shall comprise lectures, discussions, class presentations, seminars, demonstrations, fieldwork, student lecturer- consultation, supervision of research, media production, or any combination of these plus any other the course leader /lecturer may identify.




Contact hours

Year one: Semester one

Core units


Theories of Communication 



Communication Law and Ethics



Research Methods in Communication 



Trends in Communication and Information technology


Semester two


Media Production 



Statistical Methods in Communication



Contemporary Issues in Communication



Management and Evaluation of Communication Programmes


Year two: Semester one

Third semester(Electives) Students to choose any four


Development Communication Practice



Public Relations Practice



Media and Journalism Practice 



Advanced Writing Editing and Reporting



Communication Leadership and Development 


Year two: Semester two

CCS 6250 

Research Project (Equivalent 4 units)



  1. Face-to-face mode

Lectures, discussions, presentations, seminars, tutorials, demonstrations, case studies, fieldwork, practicums, studio projects, individual and group consultations, independent studies, guest speakers, field visits, industry visits, and field research.

  1. Open, distance, and e-learning mode

This will be offered using a multi-media approach that includes self-instructional print and electronic study materials. This will include interactive study materials and both synchronous and asynchronous modes of learning. Online teaching and learning shall be offered through the Learning Management Systems (LMS) of the University of Nairobi.

  1. Blended learning mode

This will combine both face-to-face and online learning approaches.


Minimum admission requirements

The common regulations for admission into the Master's degree programmes at the University of Nairobi shall apply. In addition, the following shall be eligible for admission:

  1. Holders of a bachelor’s degree of the University of Nairobi with at least Upper Second Class honours.
  2. Graduates of any other university whose qualifications have been accepted by the Senate as being equivalent to 3.1.1 above.
  3. Holders of a bachelor’s degree, Lower Second Class Honours, of the University of Nairobi or other equivalent qualifications as approved by the Senate and who must also possess any one of the following qualifications:
  1. At least two years of work or relevant experience
  2. Relevant research and media publications
  3. A postgraduate diploma from a recognized academic institution
  1. Holders of a pass degree of the University of Nairobi or equivalent qualification from any other university as approved by the Senate and a postgraduate diploma in mass communication plus one of the following qualifications:
  1. At least two years of work or relevant experience
  2. Relevant research and media publications
  1. In all cases, the Department may require applicants to appear for an interview to determine their suitability for admission into the programme.

Credit transfer and exemptions

The common University regulations governing the transfer of credits shall apply. Applicants may transfer credits for similar courses taken at the Masters's level in other institutions recognized by Senate. The applicant may be allowed, on the recommendation of the Chair of the Department and approved by Senate, to transfer up to a maximum of one-third of the course units offered in the programme provided that:

  1. The applicant shall have passed the course units which are equivalent to those offered by the University of Nairobi at the Master's level.
  2. The applicant shall have passed an assessment test administered by the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication only after payment of the prescribed application fees
  3. Applicants seeking transfer of credits shall apply in writing to the Director of the Board of Postgraduate Studies through the Chairman of the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication and provide evidence of the relevant credential(s) to support such a request
  4. Applications for transfer of credits shall be considered only after payment of the prescribed application fee.

Attachment Opportunities

  • News Media Outlets: Nation Media Group, Royal Media, Standard Group, Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, K24, Kenya New Agency, only to mention afew.


Careers In Journalism and Communication Studies

Upon graduation with Master of Arts in Communication Studies degree, a graduand may pursue the following career opportunities:

  • Broadcast Journalist
  • Chief Editor
  • Editorial Director
  • Communications Director
  • Marketing Consultant
  • Marketing Account Executive
  • Market Research Analyst
  • Public Relations Manager
  • Internal Communications Manager
  • Sales Account Executive
  • Learning and Development Analyst
  • Human Resources Manager
  • Journalist
  • Speech Writer
  • Political Campaign Manager
  • Technical Communication Specialist
  • Health Communication Specialist
  • Web Producer
  • Fundraising Manager
  • Non-Tenure Track Academic (e.g., lecturer, admissions director, academic advisor, etc.)
  • Tenure-Track Professor
  • Community College Professor


Tuition Fees


Per Unit

Examination Fees


Per Unit 

Sub Total



No. of Units

SEM. 1








173,950 (Project)









Other Charges


Caution Money


Per Year

ICT Services








Student ID


Student Organisation


Broadcast Studio Services


Per Semester