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BMS(Hons) - Public Relations as a major

Gain the strategic insights and leadership qualities to help companies achieve global success with New Zealand’s first truly international business degree.

The world of public relations is fast-growing and exciting. Get the public relations skills you need to help an organisation build trusted relationships with its key stakeholders and enhance its public reputation.


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Key information

Entry Requirements:

University Entrance, or its equivalent, or on a case-by-case basis. Note: To be admitted into year 3 of the BMS(Hons), students must achieve a grade point average of 6 or better (B+) in their first two years of study. See 'Entry requirements' below.

Years: 4
Points: 480
Start Dates: Trimester A (March) and Trimester B (July)
Fees (Domestic): $6,720 per year (approx) - 2020 fees
Fees (International): $29,380 per year
Entry Requirements: Undergraduate International
Area of Study:
*Tuition fees shown are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.

Career opportunities

  • Public relations executive
  • Communications advisor/manager
  • Community liaison manager
  • Content writer
  • Digital and social media manager
  • Events and sponsorship manager
  • Internal communications advisor
  • Media relations adviser
  • Press secretary
  • Sponsorship/fundraising manager
  • Stakeholder and engagement manager

Degree Planner

Degree planner — BMS(Hons) in Public Relations

Year 1

Choose either:
MRKTG101 or STMGT101

100 Level
One of Business Fundamentals

100 Level
One of Business Fundamentals

100 Level
One of Business Fundamentals

100 Level
One of Business Fundamentals

100 Level
Elective or Minor

100 Level
Elective or Minor

Year 2

PUBRL2xx
Internal Communication and Organisational Change

Any Level*
Management paper

200 Level
Elective or Minor

200 Level
Elective or Minor

Year 3

PUBRL302, PUBRL303, or PUBRL3xx

Work-Integrated Learning: WSOMM396/399

200 Level
Elective or Minor

200 Level
Elective or Minor

Year 4

PUBRL302, PUBRL303, or PUBRL3xx

PUBRL3xy
PR Campaigns Capstone

500 Level
Work-Integrated Learning

200* or 300* Level
Elective or Minor

300 Level
Elective or Minor

  • Major
  • Field
  • Elective

Note: The revised papers in this major are subject to University approval in late 2020.

This information is provisional and subject to change.

Required papers

Open this section to read more

Business Fundamentals papers:

  • ACCTN101 Accounting for Management
  • ECONS101 Business Economics and the New Zealand Economy
  • FINAN101 Introduction to Finance
  • MGSYS101 Digital Business and Supply Chain Management
  • MRKTG101 Fundamentals of Successful Marketing
  • STMGT101 Introduction to Management

300 Level Public Relations papers:

  • PUBRL302 Issues and Crisis Management
  • PUBRL303 Events Management
  • PUBRL3xx Corporate Social Responsibility and Social Licence

Work-Integrated Learning papers:

*BMS(Hons) completion requirements:

  • No more than 9 100-Level papers may be included in your degree.
  • No more than 10 200-Level papers may be included in your degree.
  • You must complete at least five papers at 300 Level.


Public relations is an exciting, fast-growing industry that involves using strategic communication to help an organisation maintain trusted relationships with its key stakeholders, seek to influence people's opinions or behaviour, and achieve its overall mission. If you enjoy writing and talking to different people, and love framing ideas in imaginative and engaging ways, then a career in PR may be right for you. It may also involve working with journalists, organising events, crisis/issues management, sponsorship and fundraising, government lobbying, and community/corporate relations.

Public Relations is available as a first major for the Bachelor of Business (BBus), the Bachelor of Communication (BC) and the Bachelor of Management Studies with Honours (BMS(Hons)). Public Relations may also be included as a second major or minor in other undergraduate degrees, subject to approval of the Division in which the student is enrolled.

To complete Public Relations as a single major for the BBus, BC and BMS(Hons), students must gain 135 points from papers listed for Public Relations, including 105 points above 100 level, and 60 points above 200 level. Students must complete PUBRL101, STMGT101, PUBRL201, PUBRL202, PUBRL204, PUBRL301, PUBRL302, PUBRL303and 15 points from DIGIB301, LCOMM301, LCOMM340. BBus and BMS(Hons) students may count one of WSOMM396 or WSOMM399, and BCS students may count LCOMM300, in place of 15 points from the 30 point option list.

To complete Public Relations as part of a double major for the BBus, BC, BMS(Hons) or other undergraduate degree, students must gain 120 points from papers listed for Public Relations, including 90 points above 100 level, and 45 points above 200 level. Students must complete PUBRL101, STMGT101, PUBRL201, PUBRL202, PUBRL204, PUBRL301, PUBRL302 and PUBRL303.

To complete a minor in Public Relations, students must complete 60 points from the papers listed for the Public Relations major, including at least 30 points above 100 level. Students must complete PUBRL101.

100 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN101Accounting for Management15.021A (Hamilton), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Tauranga), 21C (Waikato Pathways College) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper explains that accounting is an important social practice; an integral aspect of organisational management and covers both the technical aspects of the provision and use of accounting information.
COMMS100Fundamental Skills for Media and Creative Industries15.021A (Hamilton) & 21B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to creative technologies and tools that enable the development of creative ideas and expression in a digital world. Students will develop key skills necessary to generate creative works and projects in an interdisciplinary environment that comprise and blends visual art, design layout, audio-visual pr...
COMMS101Communication Competencies15.021A (Hamilton) & 21B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to the significance and meaning associated with our everyday communication choices. From inscriptional technologies (pencil, pen, typewriter, word processor), modes of address to communication applications, these choices serve to communicate something about the message maker and the appropriateness an...
COMMS102Communication in a Digital World15.021A (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to communication practices, concepts, and issues that they are likely to encounter as citizens, communicating professionals, community members, and participants in a highly mediated online world.
COMMS103Communication and Organising15.021A (Hamilton)
The paper introduces students to key communication theories within organisational contexts. It will demonstrate the power of communication in constructing organisational and social reality. The paper will also provide a brief introduction to three major organisational communication practices: public relations, marketing and leaders...
ECONS101Business Economics and the New Zealand Economy15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Secondary School - Unistart), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Waikato Pathways College) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper offers insights into the behaviour of consumers, firms and the government within the economy, giving students skills in analysing and predicting the actions of individuals and businesses.
FINAN101Introduction to Finance15.021A (Hamilton), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Tauranga), 21B (Waikato Pathways College), 21H (Hamilton) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper introduces the three core areas of finance - financial management, investments, and capital markets and institutions. The paper also examines applications of corporate finance concepts to personal finance.
MGSYS101Integrated Thinking - Digital Business and Supply Chain Management15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Waikato Pathways College) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper explores the dual concepts of digital business and supply chain management. The interactive lectures help in developing critical thinking skills and highlight many topical case studies.
MRKTG101Fundamentals of Successful Marketing15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Hamilton), 21C (Waikato Pathways College), 21H (Hamilton) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper focuses on the role of Marketing in business, introducing students to marketing research, consumer behaviour, and analysis, as essential tools for developing brand positioning strategies that create value.
PUBRL101Introduction to Public Relations15.021A (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to various kinds of tools and expertise used by public relations practitioners in their effort to build relationships between an organisation and its stakeholders.
STMGT101Introduction to Management15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Waikato Pathways College), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Tauranga), 21B (Waikato Pathways College), 21C (Waikato Pathways College), 21X (Hamilton) & 21X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
Explores the world of management in organisations, the roles of managers and how they strategise, plan, organise, and motivate staff to achieve goals.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
COMMS200Communication Ethics15.021A (Hamilton)
This paper provides a foundation in communication ethics by working with students to examine, negotiate, and take sound decisions on ethical issues in a variety of contexts including interpersonal, intercultural, organisational, societal, mass media, and social media ones.
COMMS202Intercultural Perspectives in Communication15.021B (Hamilton) & 21C (Hamilton)
This paper examines concepts of intercultural communication where consideration is given to individual and cross cultural values and practice. Communication will be considered through a range of themes including Treaty partnership in Aotearoa, cultural understanding and influences, perceptions and personality, motivation, decision ...
PUBRL201Media Relations and Publicity15.021B (Hamilton)
This paper provides students with concepts and techniques that enable them to create and report news for traditional and social media and to communicate effectively on behalf of organisations.
PUBRL202Health Communication15.021B (Hamilton)
This paper explores the construction and evaluation of communication campaigns to address health issues in communities and organisations. The campaigns use communication theory to design persuasive and innovative health campaigns.
PUBRL204Contemporary Public Relations Writing15.021A (Hamilton)
Modern communications professionals write to represent organisations across many different audiences, purposes and contexts. PUBRL204 teaches students to select and use a range of genres from established media to emerging digital platforms.

300 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
COMMS300Communication Consulting Project15.021B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces the use of action research methodology for an integrated work experience to identify communication needs in specific organisations from business, government, community or non-profit sector. Needs assessments and interventions are covered.
DIGIB301Creating Value with Social Media Analytics15.021B (Hamilton)
The paper offers advance concepts and techniques needed to extract hidden business insights from big social media data while developing critical thinking of social media security and privacy issues.
LCOMM301Professional Speaking15.021A (Hamilton) & 21G (Hamilton)
This highly practical paper focuses on the skills, principles, and practices of developing and delivering professional speeches and presentations across a wide range of professional purposes and contexts
PUBRL301Stakeholder and Community Engagement15.021A (Hamilton)
This paper is designed to develop capacity in students to develop and facilitate ethical collaborative communication and relationship engagement activities with a diverse range of stakeholders within communities.
PUBRL302Issues and Crisis Management15.021B (Hamilton)
PUBRL302 takes a case study approach to learning to understand and strategically adapt to a wide range of issues and to respond to crises that may threaten organisational viability and wellbeing.
PUBRL303Events Management15.021A (Hamilton) & 21A (Tauranga)
This experiential paper draws together best practice in event management from a practical, business, and operational perspective. The paper covers researching, designing, planning, and implementing an event for a client.
WSOMM396Management Internship15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Tauranga), 21C (Hamilton) & 21C (Tauranga)
The Management Internship provides students with the opportunity to apply their management discipline-based knowledge to an authentic project within an organisation.
WSOMM399Report of an Investigation15.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Hamilton), 21B (Tauranga), 21C (Hamilton) & 21C (Tauranga)
This paper offers students the opportunity to complete a directed investigation of an approved topic relevant to an organisation or industry and in an area related to their management discipline of study.

500 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
LCOMM502Managing Virtual Team Communication15.021B (Online)
Managing and participating in teams is a feature of organisational life and the everyday workplace. Increasingly, work teams are dependent on communication technologies for effective communication. This paper investigates theory and practice of team communication with specific reference to the capacities of communication technologi...
LCOMM583Leadership, Communication and Transformation30.021A (Hamilton)
Our focus in this paper will be on leadership communication, or the ways leaders and followers interact and the ways leaders attempt to create and shape meanings through images and words. We will also explore a range of ideas about what it means to lead and the assumptions, beliefs, and values embedded and shaped in diverse leaders...
LCOMM584Sustainable Futures30.021B (Hamilton) & 21B (Online)
Individuals and organisations operate in contexts that are increasingly complex and uncertain. They face issues that are global in nature and which threaten long term sustainability. To successfully meet fast changing futures, contexts and stakeholders must be addressed. New styles of leadership and management are thus required, ac...
PUBRL591Public Relations Dissertation30.021X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
PUBRL592Public Relations Dissertation60.021X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
PUBRL593Public Relations Thesis90.021X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
PUBRL594Public Relations Thesis120.021X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.

800 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
PUBRL800Public Relations MPhil Thesis120.021X (Hamilton)
No description available.

900 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
PUBRL900Public Relations PhD Thesis120.021X (Hamilton) & 21X (Tauranga)
No description available.

Scholarships and prizes

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Public Relations as a 1st Major (Bachelor's degree)

Public Relations as a 2nd Major or Minor (Bachelor's degree)

Graduate qualifications

Postgraduate qualifications


Contacts

Management Student Centre (MSC)

Phone: +64 7 838 4303
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.management.ac.nz/msc

Opening hours: 8.45am - 4.45pm Monday to Friday
Location: MSB.1.50, Hillcrest Road, University of Waikato, Hamilton

One of the best times to pop into MSC is Open Advice Day, held every Wednesday from 10am to 2pm.