Our aim is for all students in Media to have the skills to enable them to turn intuitive knowledge into a ritualised strategy for learning. Our aim is for our learners to engage critically with both contemporary media and its historical context, focusing on issues of representation, industry, genre and audience. We want students to have the technical skills to construct texts that are creative and relevant to both media consumers and the wider economy. Above all we want students to view media as a tool to understand cultural diversity, technical convergence and aesthetic debate in a complex global society.
Media Studies is one of the most popular subjects at The Burgate School and Sixth Form Centre with exam results that are consistently excellent. In part, the success can be attributed to excellent facilities and teaching but also the way in which Media Studies embraces visual, kinaesthetic and auditory forms of learning. Students can opt to take a GCSE course at Key Stage 4 as well as A-level Media Studies in the Sixth Form. In addition to this, Media is part of the National Curriculum in English at Key Stage 3 and students in Years 7,8 and 9 have the opportunity to participate in Lights, Camera, Action during Activities Week in which students make a science fiction film in a day.
What is Media Studies?
Media is often defined in relation to the study of discrete media forms (television, film, advertising, radio, magazines etc) and this is reflected in the diversity of units on offer at the Burgate School and Sixth Form centre. However, students are also encouraged to reflect upon the nature and purpose of the key concepts of audience, institution, representation and genre. In addition to this we strive to position the study of media texts in the context of cultural history, exploring the social dimensions of technological change.
Our GCSE course is taught in purpose built rooms and compromises both coursework and exam units. In addition to studying radio, television and advertising, students have the opportunity make their own short film utilising digital video cameras and a purpose built editing suite.
Lessons takes place in purpose built rooms and offer a range practical and taught units. Lower Sixth students study television drama and the magazine industry before producing their own practical production: the opening to a film in the thriller genre. Alongside their practical work students are required to keep an online record of their work in the form of blogs, pod casts and video diaries.
In the Upper Sixth students build on the skills acquired in the Lower Sixth and the examined units require students to reflect upon their practical work in terms of genre, audience, representation and institution. Time is also spent studying what is meant by the term ‘post-modern media’ from the early days of film to the proliferation of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace.
The Advanced Portfolio in Media constitutes the course’s practical component and includes a popular music video, magazine advert, and DVD cover.
Media Studies Curriculum Overview
GCSE Media Studies Eduqas
Component One: Written examination - 1 hour 30 minutes 40% of qualification 80 marks.
Exploring the Media: This component provides a foundation for analysing media products, introducing learners to media language and representation through the study of print media forms. Learners will develop their ability to analyse media language, representations and meanings in a range of media products. In addition, learners will study products from specific media industries and audiences to develop their knowledge and understanding of those areas of the theoretical framework. Learners will also begin to explore how media products reflect, and are influenced by, the social, cultural, historical and political contexts in which they are produced.
Component Two: Written examination: 1 hour 30 minutes 30% of qualification 60 marks
Understanding Media Forms and Products: This is component builds on the introduction to key areas of the theoretical framework provided in Component 1. In Component 2, learners will gain a deeper knowledge and understanding of media language and representation, as well as extending their appreciation of these areas through the study of media industries and audiences. Learners will also develop knowledge and understanding of how relevant social, cultural, political and historical contexts of media influence media products.
Component Three: Non-exam assessment 30% of qualification 60 marks
Creating Media Products: This component draws together knowledge and understanding of the media theoretical framework gained throughout their course by requiring learners to apply their knowledge and understanding of the media synoptically through practical production.
In Components 1 and 2, learners gain a detailed understanding of media language, representation and audience in relation to a range of media forms. In this component, learners must apply their knowledge and understanding of media language and representation to an individual media production for an intended audience in response to a choice of briefs set by EDUQAS. The set production briefs will change every year, requiring learners to create a production in a different genre/style and/or for a different intended audience.
The briefs will be released annually on 1 March in the year prior to assessment, and will be published on the WJEC Eduqas website. Task-specific indicative content will be issued each year with the non-exam assessment briefs. Production briefs will always be set in the following media forms: television, magazines, film marketing and music marketing. The briefs will always specify the intended target audience, as well as other key requirements such as genre/style. Learners will develop a response to their chosen brief by creating a production aimed at the specified intended audience
A-level Media Studies - Eduqas
This specification offers learners exciting opportunities to:
Make connections: between different media forms and products, between media products and their contexts, and between theory and practical work.
Engage with a range of rich and stimulating media forms and products.
Develop media production skills, apply their knowledge and understanding of the theoretical framework to media forms and products.
Written exam: 2 hours (35%)
Written exam: 2 hours (35%)
Non-exam assessment (30%)