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- Departments   -   Media Studies

Members of Department

Mrs A Murphy

What is media studies?


Media studies as a subject offers a range of practical and theory work to our students. It makes learning interesting, challenging, creative and fun.

News Cameras

We look at areas of the media such as:


  • Film.

  • Magazines.

  • Newspapers.

  • Music Promotion.

  • Advertising and Marketing.

  • Promotion of Video Games.

As well as analysing media texts, students are also given the opportunity to create their own media product - this may be the front page of a magazine, a radio script, a music poster, a website home page or a film trailer.

What makes media studies so relevant in today's society?


In this short space of time, media and communications have become even bigger business than they were before. Think of the companies and brands whose names have dominated the past ten years or so – Facebook, YouTube, Google, Twitter, Apple, Nokia – and you’ll notice that they all fall under the media and communications umbrella.

Media Studies improves literacy and ICT skills due to analysing texts and using software packages such as Adobe Photoshop and iMovie.


Key Stage 4

At GCSE level the subject comprises of two units:

  • Unit 1: Investigating the media - externally assessed, requiring candidates to investigate a pre-released media topic and undertake research and planning in order to respond

    to four tasks.

  • Unit 2: Understanding the media - comprises three controlled assessments which require candidates to build on their understanding of the media key concepts for their own pre-production planning, leading to a realised production for Assignment 3.

Unit 1: Investigating the Media

The aim of this unit is to enable students to develop their critical understanding of the role of mass media in society.


In preparation for the external assessment students will be expected to have studied a wide range of examples. Students will need to consider aspects of style, presentation, values, audience and representation and show their understanding of the relevant codes and conventions. Students need to show awareness of new technologies involved in the production and consumption of the media.

Students need also to be aware of any current debates and audience issues, as well as issues of bias and representation. Production skills will be expected with students showing effective practical skills such as storyboarding, scripting, selection and editing and other design skills appropriate to the topic. Students will be expected to spend an equal amount of time on each task.

Students will be expected to:


  • AO1: Recall, select and communicate their knowledge and understanding of media products and the contexts in which they are produced and consumed. (20%)

  • AO3: Demonstrate research, planning and pesentation skills. (10%)

  • AO4: Construct and evaluate their own products using creative and technical skills. (10%)

Assesment consists of:

  • Written Paper - 1 hour 30 mins - 60 marks - 40%

  • External Assessment

  • Based on pre-released topic (changed annually) with guidance and stimulus.

  • Four Tasks

Unit 2: Understanding the Media

The aim of Unit 2 is for candidates to develop an understanding of how and why media texts are produced as they are.


In Unit 2 candidates will produce one introductory assignment, one assignment that requires candidates to look closely at cross-media platforms which more closely reflects the media industry today and one Practical Production and Evaluation, each chosen from a different bank of assignments.

Students will be expected to:


  • AO2: Analyse and respond to media texts/topics using media key concepts and appropriate terminology. (20%)

  • AO3: Demonstrate research, planning and presentation skills. (20%)

  • AO4: Construct and evaluate their own products using creative and technical skills. (20%)

Assessment consists of:

  • Controlled Assessment taken from banks of set assignments - 90 marks - 60%

  • Three Assignments: Introductory assignment; Cross- media assignment; Practical Production and Evaluation.

  • Pupils will develop their skills in analysing media texts, photography, filming and using iMovie and Photoshop in the Mac suite. They will create media texts such as magazine covers, CD covers, posters and movie trailers.

Key Stage 5

A-level Media Studies specification is designed to encourage candidates to:

  • enhance their enjoyment and appreciation of the media and its role in their daily lives.

  • develop critical understanding of the media through engagement with media products and concepts and through the creative application of practical skills.

  • explore production processes, technologies and other relevant contexts.

  • become independent in research skills and their application in their practical work and in developing their own views and interpretations. 


Candidates investigate the media in order to understand and evaluate how meanings and responses are created. The contemporary media landscape and its changing contexts are studied in terms of products, platforms and technologies:

  • Unit 1: Investigating Media

  • Unit 2: Creating Media 



Candidates are encouraged to demonstrate, develop and formulate their understanding of the media and its influential role in today's society as well as debating major contemporary media issues:

  • Unit 3: Critical Perspectives

  • Unit 4: Media: Research and Production.

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