Postgraduate Publishing studies at Edinburgh Napier University. INDUSTRY APPROVED Publishing degrees (accredited by the Professional Publishers Association and Creative Skillset). MSc Publishing was the first Publishing programme in the UK to be accredited by the Professional Publishers Association (PPA). It is now accredited by Creative Skillset (only one of two courses to hold this award). MSc Magazine Publishing is the only course of its kind in Scotland and is the only publishing course in the UK to be accredited by the PPA. The PPA is the lead body for best practice in training, development and people management for the magazine and business media industry.
Recently I was contacted by someone possibly undertaking the MSc Publishing course later this year, looking for some answers and reassurance about what the course entails. I was immediately reminded of my own nerves prior to postgrad life, having had many of the same questions myself (but not taking the smart step of finding the answers, as this person has done). Whilst I’m one who’d only call themselves wise ironically, and definitely don’t have all the answers, perhaps this post will help relieve some stress, even if only for one person! Now, all aboard the train to Tip Town.
Don’t panic (as any good hitchhiker will know).
Generally good advice for life, but especially on an MSc. Whether you’ve gone straight into an MSc from undergrad, or are returning to education after however many years, it can be a shock to the system with how it differs from what you’re used to – whether that be assessments, the level of independent study, etc. Don’t panic! The tutors on this course are happy to answer your questions, no matter how stupid the questions may seem to you. We’re all here to learn, and they’re here to teach us.
Help others, and let others help you.
The peer support throughout this course has been spectacular. At the beginning of the year someone set up a Facebook group for all of us to join, and it’s a great way to check if your small queries can be answered before emailing one of the tutors who are undoubtedly very busy. In class it’s also super handy – everyone has different experiences which lend varying skills, for example I used to be an English tutor and therefore have a keen eye for grammar and can glance over pieces of writing. Others have more technical experience, and can help in an InDesign or Photoshop crisis. Helping your pals as you go is also a great way to cement what you’re learning in your brain, and ensure that you’re remembering the new skills being taught.Continue reading “Lizzie’s List of Postgrad Pointers”
When it was time to announce my plans after accepting the offer to join the Publishing MSc at Napier, the conversation always went the same way. “I’ve decided,” I’d say, “That I’m going to go for the publishing postgrad.”
“That’s great!” they’d reply enthusiastically. Then, inevitably, the pause. Then – “So, uh. What does that involve?”
It would be my turn to hesitate. “Oh, you know. Making books and stuff. Editing. Printing. That sort of thing.
They’d nod and smile and tell me it sounded great, and none of us would be any the wiser. I had read the Napier website and this Publishing Postgrad site, and I’d searched around a little. I knew my explanation was lacking, but, despite that, I could not shift the image in my head. I’m sure every reader of this post will recognise it: the author in their study, tapping away at their keys, sending out the printed manuscript to hundreds of different publishers by post and waiting anxiously for an acceptance letter. The publisher receiving the big envelope, becoming engrossed by the story, and deciding to go ahead. The editing, taking out all the mistakes, and then, somehow, a cover appears and suddenly the book is in bookshops. A romantic, cinematic notion to be sure, and one that absolutely did not prepare me for the myriad of jobs that realistically need to be completed before – and after – a book is published.
I have now been on the MSc Publishing course for almost ten weeks, and have been thoroughly disabused of the above notion, learning parts of the publishing process of which I had never even dreamed.
When I applied to do MSc Publishing in June 2016, I had worked in various forms of publishing as a journalist, copywriter and editor, so deciding to study it seemed like the logical next step in my career. However, unlike the average student, I had been out of higher education for seven years and I also had a daughter (the spirited creature here) who had just turned two.
Now that I’m at the end of the second trimester of the course, I have some advice for any parents thinking of making a return to higher education, because I know from when I was researching courses that a lot of the information I read was tailored towards students who didn’t have any dependents.
Our Postgraduate Publishing studies start in the first week of September with our Welcome events (Induction).
During this time (one or two days, see also the section on ‘What help is provided during my studies?’), we will introduce you to the Programme, the staff, the individual modules and their assessments and, of course, to the other students!
Teaching commences the following week. (The first class is normally on Monday, but the time of your class will depend on the tutorial group you are assigned to.)
Successful applicants will be sent details of the start date and the schedule for Welcome events nearer the time.
We have two Postgraduate Publishing courses at Edinburgh Napier University (ENU): MSc Publishing and MSc Magazine Publishing.
Both are practical, vocational courses, designed to help you gain and develop skills in publishing, while being supported by experienced academics and industry experts.
Each programme provides you with a comprehensive experience of the book and magazine publishing industry, and enables you to gain specific skills which are highly attractive to publishing employers.
We know this because we are the first and only Publishing Programmes in the UK to be accredited by the PPA, the lead body for training for the industry. We have also been awarded the prestigious CREATIVE SKILLSET Tick, the industry kitemark of quality.