Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector)
Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector)

Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector)

Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector)

Study the Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector) to develop neccessary skills that will allow you to manage specific issues, events and tasks within the public sector environment. This qualification provides a professional development opportunity for a communications professional who wants to specialise in local government working at a higher level.

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Key Details
SIT2LRN Distance Learning
Qualification:
Graduate Diploma
Level:
7
Credits:
120
Duration:

One year full-time

Up to five years part-time

Intakes are 17 weeks long

Study Modes:
Distance Learning
Dates:

2021 Intake 1: 08 February to 04 June - Applications Close 18 January 2021

2021 Intake 2: 29 March to 23 July - Applications Close 08 March 2021

2021 Intake 3: 14 June to 08 October - Applications Close 24 May 2021

2021 Intake 4: 02 August to 26 November - Applications Close 12 July 2021

Fees:

This programme is eligible for the Zero Fees Scheme.

  • No Tuition Fees
  • Direct Material Costs: $7.50 per credit (incl GST) (e.g. $750.00 for 100 credit course)
  • $50 Administration Fee per Application (non-refundable)

International Students

  • $100 per credit

The Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector) aims to provide those people working in middle management at territorial authorities the opportunity to formalise their practical communications skills into a qualification and to gain a sound theoretical base on which to structure regular tasks. They may already be working in the communications field or another area within the council (supported by an undergraduate degree) which requires recognition of higher-level communication knowledge.

Graduates will be media-savvy communication practitioners who know the local government environment and understand how it works. They will be able to plan for internal and external change or crises utilising new media as well as traditional means. They will also be able to take a lead role in engaging with communities, managing events and protecting their organisation through adverse situations. 

You will learn to:

  • Develop and maintain good relationships with local and national media
  • Plan for events, positive or adverse, which may impact on the local authority and its community
  • Advise senior management and Council when required
  • Utilise a variety of communication methods including new media
  • Be able to communicate effectively - internally and externally
  • Be able to keep pace with, and communicate changes in local government

The Graduate Diploma/Certificate in Local Government has now been changed to Public Sector. These changes have been made to reflect changes to both cultural and communication environments and the market place for communication professionals. If you are part way through this qualification, please see the attached transition table to see what papers you need to complete. If you are not sure, please contact the course administrator for assistance.

Public Sector

Choose two from the list below:

BPC235 Communication Strategy - Public Sector (15 credits)

This paper provides students with an understanding of the principles, tools and application of communication strategies for disseminating a political or government agency/department communication, announcement or campaign in the political and public sector.

BPC230 The Political Environment (15 credits)

Students will understand the political framework of local and central government in New Zealand, including election processes, roles and responsibilities. Students will be able to explain and assess the roles of management and governance, the implications of same, and their inter-relationship. Students will also understand the legislative process at a central Government level and the consultative process at a local government level.

BPC240 Communication Law and Ethics (15 credits)

This paper aims to provide students with an understanding of New Zealand law as it relates to mass communications. It will highlight the law as it is developing regarding digital platforms. The paper also aims to give students an understanding of the role of ethical practice in the media and the recourse to regulatory bodies available to the public.

Choose three from the list below:

BPC328 Advanced Media Studies (15 credits)

This paper provides students with a critical understanding of the effects of culture, language and political correctness on the contemporary media landscape and vice versa.

BPC350 Online and Advanced Technologies (15 credits)

This paper provides students with an understanding of the use and application of current and emerging web technologies for publishing effective messages in the corporate, political or public sector working environment.

BPC313 Crisis and Emergency Communication (15 credits)

Students will be able to identify potential crises for organisations, and transfer the threat into an opportunity with pro-active crisis planning and the use of PR practices. They will be able to manage crises for various organisations and develop the necessary knowledge to evaluate the results, assessing ethical issues and social responsibilities.

MGT309 Relationships, Influence and Leadership (15 credits)

This paper presents insights to enable students to recognise their role in influencing decision makers and understand how to use influential tactics.

Compulsory:

BPC302 Research Methodology (15 credits)

This paper will introduce students to the skills required to complete a degree level dissertation. It will cover advanced research skills; various methodologies available to gather and present primary and secondary information and data; and it will take students through the literature review process.

Choose one from the list below:

BPC310 Dissertation (30 credits)

This paper provides students with an opportunity to conduct advanced research into an aspect of communication theory or practice by integrating the body of knowledge learnt in communication papers.

BPC320 Internship (30 credits)

This paper provides students with an opportunity to become familiar with the communication environments of an organisation and to apply the knowledge and skills acquired throughout the course of their degree study. Using knowledge and skills gained in the first two years of the degree, students will be enabled to present a development/problem-solving proposal in an area relevant to the internship organisation. Students will also gain reflective skills through the reflection on the internship and how their personal and professional communication skills have developed and broadened.

The qualification prepares graduates for employment or employment advancement in communications roles in the public or private sectors.

Entry is open to degree graduates, however those who have been able to demonstrate equivalent practical, professional or educational experience of an appropriate kind, may be granted admission.

English Language Requirements

Applicants, whose first language is not English, or who come from a country where the language of instruction in schools is not English, are required to provide evidence of having achieved one of the following

NCEA Level 3 with University Entrance, or

an International Baccalaureate Diploma or Cambridge A- level qualification for which the teaching and assessment was conducted in English; or

Cambridge Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA),or Trinity College London Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CertTESOL);or

Successful completion of all primary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand primary school years 1 to 8) and at least three years of secondary education (being the equivalent of three years from New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools in either New Zealand,,Australia,Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States one of the countries listed in Rule 18.5 where the student was taught using English as the language of instruction; or

Successful completion of at least five years of secondary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools in either New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States where the student was taught using English as the language of instruction; or

Successful completion of a Bachelor's Degree, Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Bachelor Honours degree, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma, Masters' Degree or Doctoral Degree, the language of instruction of which must be in English and which must be from a tertiary education provider from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom or the United States or

Successful completion of one of the following internationally recognised proficiency tests listed below to the level required of the programme of study and with all scores achieved in a single test during the two years preceding the proposed date of enrolment


IELTS test - Academic score of 6 with no band score lower than 5.5
TOEFL Paper based test (pBT) - Score of 550 (with an essay score 5 TWE)
TOEFL Internet based test (iBT) - Score of 60 (with a writing score of 18)
Cambridge English Examination - B2 First or B2 First for schools or C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill.
OET - Minimum of Grade C or 200 in all sub-tests
NZCEL - a) Expiring Level b) Current: a) Level 4 (Academic) b) Level 4 (Academic)
Pearson Test of English (Academic) - PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42
Language Cert - C1 Expert IESOL (LRWS) with PASS and no less than Pass in each skill
Trinity ISE - ISE II with no less than distinction in any band

* New versions of some NZCEL qualifications, and in some cases new qualifications, were published on 13 June 2017. These are intended to replace pre-existing versions and qualifications, which have been given expiring status until discontinued on 31 December 2019. (a) denotes expiring (b) denotes current

Suggested study path / combinations

Full time study

Full time study is completing 60 credits (four papers) per intake. Full time acceptance into the programme is at the Programme Manager’s discretion.

Part time study

The number of credits selected per intake should depend on work, family, and other commitments. The recommended maximum number of credits per intake compared to working hours are:

  • 37+ hours per week = maximum of 30 credits per intake
  • 20 – 37 hours per week = maximum of 45 credits per intake
  • Fewer than 20 hours per week = maximum of 60 credits per intake (full time study)

Additional information

  • As a guideline, one credit equates to approximately 10 hours study within an intake period.  Click HERE to download a Study Load Calculator (spreadsheet).
  • All papers selected within a particular intake must be completed within that intake unless a transfer is requested (conditions apply; see FAQs).
  • Online enrolments are on a year by year basis and students are welcome to apply for multiple intakes in one enrolment.  Further enrolment is the responsibility of individual students.  There is no automatic enrolment rollover. 

All SIT2LRN courses require you to have a computer and Internet access. Students are required to use their SIT webmail only for all SIT2LRN communications. All course materials and information, including assessments and due dates, are located on the online Blackboard system. Once you have been accepted into a programme you will receive an Important Information Booklet that includes information that you can use to familiarise yourself with our online Blackboard learning environment. From the intake start date you will have access to the online course materials to work through.

Facilitator Assistance: During the enrolled intake period, students have email access to Facilitators, who endeavour to respond to emails within 48 hours (week days only). All students are required, within the first two weeks of an intake, to send an email to their Facilitator confirming their start on the programme of study. Students who have not emailed their facilitator or embarked upon their course of study by the end of the 2nd week of an intake, will be Faculty Withdrawn from the programme. Such withdrawals may impact on future access to SIT Zero Fees Scheme and Student Direct Material Costs are still liable for payment.

Progress reports are sent out 6-8 weeks after the end of each intake.

We recommend students new to SIT2LRN read through the Frequently Asked Questions section of our website for further study and enrolment information.

Please use the following checklist to ensure that all relevant information and documentation has been included. Remember, your application will be assessed based on the information that you provide us with.  Processing of your application will be delayed if we need to come back to you for missing information.

  • I have read all sections of the Programme Information on this page
  • I have read the SIT2LRN Frequently Asked Questions section
  • I have met all admission criteria for the programme (found under Application Criteria)
  • I have met all the criteria for individual papers (found under Course Content).
  • I have selected the paper(s) I wish to study
  • I have selected intake(s) (I have selected alternate intakes rather than overlapping intakes)
  • I know my intended payment method
  • If my organisation/company is paying for my studies, I have a completed and approved purchase order to attach to my online application.  I am aware that should my organisation or company not pay my fees, these will become my responsibility.
  • New students – I have provided an active NSN in the name I am enrolling in or I have verified ID and will attach it to my online application.
  • New students – I will attach academic documentation (NZQA record of achievement/academic transcripts/certificates).  These do not need to be verified. (If you do not have any academic documentation to support your application, please attach a comprehensive CV outlining your education and work experience).
  • I have computer access,  an Internet connection and access to software to create electronic documents e.g. Microsoft Word or Open Office

What is the Zero Fees Scheme?

The Zero Fees Scheme means we do not charge tuition fees. However, there is a Student Direct Material Cost that you need to pay and a non-refundable administration fee. The administration fee is for processing your application and the Student Direct Material Cost gives you secure access to Blackboard® our online learning environment and to student support services throughout your study with us.

Who qualifies for the Zero Fees Scheme?

  • A New Zealand citizen completing the full qualification or 
  • An Australian citizen/New Zealand Resident or Permanent Resident who will be residing in New Zealand for the duration of your enrolment.

Instructions to help you with your application:

  1. Read the Programme Information on this page and the SIT2LRN Frequently Asked Questions and find out if you meet the application criteria for both the programme and the unit/s you wish to study.
  2. Check your eligibility for Zero Fees. If you are not eligible to study under this scheme, please call
    0800 748 257 for further options.
  3. Complete your online enrolment checking that:

If you are a new student …

  • Provide an active NSN number in the name you are enrolling in (contact NZQA on 0800 697 296 to get your NSN number if you do not know it);
  • If you do not have an active NSN, then attach a copy of your verified ID in the name you are enrolling in.
  • If you are a Resident or Permanent resident of NZ, please provide a copy of proof of residency;
  • Attach all academic documentation to support your application including copies of any certificates of courses you have undertaken / NZQA record of achievement / transcripts / CV;

Attach supporting documents as required and outlined on the previous page.

  1. Please check that you have included all the required information and supporting documents.  Your application will be assessed based on the information that you provide.  Missing information will delay the processing of your application.
  2. Please scan and email all additional documentation to sit2lrn@sit.ac.nz.

What happens next?

  • You will receive an automatic email confirmation when we receive your online application. Processing may take up to three weeks. However, we will get in touch with you sooner if we require further documentation.
  • Once your application has been accepted you will be sent a conditional offer of acceptance with an invoice and instructions on how to make payment.
  • Once we have received your payment (or if you have opted to pay by Credit Card, Student Loan or Purchase Order) you will be sent an Enrolment Confirmation Letter and Important Information Booklet. Closer to the start of the intake you will receive a Time To Get Started Letter which will give you all the necessary information, tools and guidance to start your study with us.

For students to be considered to have satisfactorily completed this programme and be eligible for the awarding of the qualification Graduate Diploma in Communication (Public Sector), they must have completed all scheduled course work requirements and assessments, successfully completed assessment requirements for all papers, and achieved a total of 120 credits as specified in the programme schedule. The timeframe for completion of this programme is five years.

Assessments for this programme may include written assessments, presentations, reports and online examinations.

For more information on required and recommended textbooks for this course please refer to the textbook list here

Please note that textbooks need to be ordered at least 3-4 weeks prior to the commencement of your study

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