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Media Studies

A LEVEL (WJEC)

What interests should I have if I want to take this course?
 
Students taking this course should have an interest in investigating the role the media industries have on our lives.  They should be interested in developing critical and analytical skills in order to examine how a wide range of media texts influence and entertain us.  They should enjoy learning and using practical skills such as camera work and video editing.  They should be willing to take an active role in lessons and to work with others in group situations.  They should be regular consumers and audiences of a wide range of media texts, from television to newspapers and magazines, internet sites, radio shows, social networking sites and films.
 
What will I learn about?
 
You will develop a thorough and in depth understanding of the media’s role in contemporary culture and society, considering its economic and political importance.  You will examine the key media frameworks, including media language, representation, media industries and audiences.  You will apply a range of media theories to these frameworks by focusing on a range of contemporary and historic media texts from advertising and marketing, film, newspapers, television, radio and video games.
 
Component 1 – Investigating the Media
 
Section A of this module focuses assesses your knowledge and understanding of media language and representation in relation to: advertising and marketing, music videos or newspapers.  Section B  is a stepped question allowing you to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the theoretical framework by writing about key products studied in class.  This section will focus particularly on industry and audience issues.
 
How will I be assessed?
 
Component 2 –  Media Forms and Products in Depth
 
A 2 hour 15 minutes written exam – 35% of the total mark for the subject.
 
In this component, you will be expected to:
  • Analyse how media products construct and communicate meanings
  • Use relevant theories of media studies 
  • Debate key questions relating to the social, cultural, political and economic role of the media
  • Construct and develop a sustained line of reasoning in an extended response
The paper is divided into three sections.  Section A is on Television, section B on Magazines and section C is on Online Media.
 
Component 3 – Media Production
 
A 2 hour 30 minutes exam – 35% of the total mark for the qualification.
 
This is the non-exam assessment unit of the course.  The exam board will set a number of practical briefs for you to choose from.  They will be from the following media forms:
  • Television
  • Magazines
  • Music marketing
  • Film marketing

Whichever brief you choose, you will be expected to produce two practical pieces, e.g. a music video and website for a new artist if you choose the music marketing option.

Two pieces of practical coursework and a statement of aims.  The unit is worth 30% of your overall mark for the A level.
 
What can I do when I complete my qualifications?
 
You will have developed practical, interpersonal and study skills which you can use in employment or academically on other courses.  Alternatively, if your leisure pursuits involve media technology, your skills will be enhanced.
 
How can I find out more information?
 
If you have any further questions, please contact Mr Scott in the English Department.