Media Studies

Subject Overview

Media Studies is a course offered at Sixth Form as an A Level subject.

Most students are very aware and interested in the influence of social media; this course allows students to gain a deeper understanding of the media industry and become more media savvy. Students will analyse a wide variety of media texts aimed at different audiences, including print and digital media. Students will learn to recognise how the media represents and sometimes shapes cultural values through its representation of events, individuals and groups within society. One of the criticisms of the media industry is that there are often stereotypical or simplistic representations of different genders, social classes, nationalities, ethnicities and different sub-cultural groups. Students will look at these issues and the judgments media texts may make about their target audience.

Media Studies is different to most A Level courses because the majority of the content studied is contemporary. The course blends the teaching of the language used for studies of the media, the consideration of how media texts appeal to their audiences, and an applied coursework project.

Students who pursue Media Studies at Waddesdon take the Media Studies course offered by AQA. The course is designed to be accessible and challenging, so that students of all abilities can take the course, enjoy it and be successful.

Media Studies is a subject that will be of interest to many and complements many other subjects, including: English, Graphics, History, Business Studies, Computing, Art and Drama.
Course Information

AQA A Level Media Studies

Students will learn the conventions of media texts and certain genres, theories related to the media, the media industry and how certain media texts fit within their social, historical, political and media contexts. Students will analyse non-fictional and fictional texts and analyse how the media represents certain groups, events, issues and individuals. Over the two years, students will study newspapers, magazines, advertising, television, music videos, film, online journalism and video games. Whilst some of the media texts studied will be historical, others will be studied to demonstrate emerging, future developments of the media. Theories related to the study of the media will be applied to all of the media texts studied.

Students will study and compare media texts of the same type; for example, a classic radio programme from the 1930s and a contemporary one, and two current newspapers with different audiences and styles.

The course consists of two exams, worth 70% of the course, and the practical coursework project, which is worth 30% of the course.

The coursework expects students to apply their learning of media products and utilise and develop their creativity and ICT skills, creating media products like a magazine, tabloid newspaper, film trailer, print advertisement or website. The coursework expects students to acquire and show knowledge of a range of media, audiences and a range of skills, which should be useful in future employment or further education.
  • Subject Leader: Lauren Haggerty
  • Teachers: Sarah Caswell, Sarah Davis