Professional PR Diploma

Take a strategic approach to PR and prepare to lead at board level. Gain an advanced understanding of professional practice, including PR strategy and planning, content management, media and engagement, measurement and evaluation, and PR leadership. All underpinned by reference to ethics and the code of conduct. You’ll also put your learning into practice, evaluating a wide range of PR concepts and techniques and applying them practically to your own work and sector.

Why take this course?

It’s right for you if you’re an experienced PR professional and are ready to progress towards a senior management position, or if you have previously studied the CIPR Advanced Certificate in Public Relations. Students who successfully complete all three units will be awarded a CIPR Professional PR Diploma

Course Units:

  • Unit 1: PR Strategy and Planning

    This Unit situates public relations within a strategic management framework, enabling critical and ethical examination of the role and responsibilities of the function, and senior practitioners, within a contemporary context. It considers practical challenges and conceptual underpinnings relating to public relations strategy and planning in a variety of situations and types of organisation. The importance of organisational and functional objectives is emphasised with a focus on research and analysis to support problem identification, stakeholder mapping and objective setting.

    An analytical perspective is applied to encourage a reflexive approach in examining candidates’ own experience alongside case studies of organisations and scenarios.

    Unit 1 Assessment Method:

    2,000-word executive report + supporting summary analysis of secondary research findings (maximum of 2,000 additional words)

  • Unit 2: PR Content, Communications and Engagement

    This Unit focuses on PR strategies involving content, communications and engagement. It investigates the contemporary media landscape (including digital and ICT developments) and helps candidates to develop creative solutions, create and curate multimedia content and apply communications concepts to a variety of situations facing a range of organisations.

    A professional approach emphasises the importance of ethical practice, maintaining trust, reputation management, and informed judgement. Candidates are encouraged to draw on their own experience alongside case study examples of campaigns and strategic practice.

    Unit 2 Assessment Method:

    1,000 – 1,500-word thought leadership article + supporting statement of personal reflection (maximum of 2,000 additional words)

  • Unit 3: PR Management, Measurement and Evaluation

    This Unit concentrates on performance improvement in respect of the management, measurement and evaluation of professional PR practice. It offers critical examination of the effectiveness of public relations strategies, campaigns and programmes.

    Principles relating to accountability, socio-cultural considerations, ethical practice and continuous professional development will be applied. Candidates will be able to examine their own processes and practices alongside case study examples.

    Unit 3 Assessment Method:

    2,000-word management proposal + supporting review of proposal for change (maximum of 2,000 additional words)

Entry Requirements:

You qualify for the CIPR Diploma if you have any of the following:


  1. CIPR Advanced Certificate in Public Relations
  2. One of the following plus 1 year’s relevant full-time employment in public relations (or related sectors, e.g. marketing, journalism):
  • CIPR Internal Communications Certificate
  • postgraduate professional qualification in a related discipline (e.g. CIM diploma)
  • UK Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in a PR-related discipline: business, marketing, management, communication, media or journalism.
  1. One of the following plus 2 years’ relevant full-time employment in public relations (or related sectors):
  • CAM Advanced Diploma in Marketing Communication
  • A degree in any other subject
  1. 4 years’ relevant full-time employment in public relations (or related sectors) and/ or equivalent 5 GCSEs at grade C or above, 1 of which must be in the English language.


In addition, those whose first language is not English must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the language – spoken and written – to an International Language Testing System (IELTS) band score of 6.5 or equivalent.

Course Level

Level 7 | Masters | 11 SQA


4 Intakes in a year

Mode of Study

Face to Face


9 months