Media Studies allows students to develop many creative industry-relevant skills and engage in various exciting and innovative activities. The number of students who select the subject as an option has increased each year, and the exam results have been consistently strong. In 2015, 34% of the cohort achieved an A or A* with the A*-C being 94%. Results are unfailingly excellent year upon year, significantly surpassing the national average results for the subject. The exam board we use is WJEC.
Students who opt for media studies will study a wide range of media formats such as magazines, newspapers, advertisements, comics, films, television, music, radio, websites and computer games. Practical work involves the use of digital editing equipment, digital cameras, radio equipment and a variety of computer programmes. Many of our students go on to study media studies at A-level and secure careers in broadcasting, advertising and journalism, including working for online sports and fashion magazines.
KS4 Scheme of Assessment
Three controlled assessment tasks (60%)
- Production Task
- Production piece
- Textual Investigation: Genre
- Textual Investigation: Representation or Narrative
Written Examination at the end of Year 11 (40%)
The students will study a range of modern and exciting topics.
Camera Work and Analysing Images
Students learn how to deconstruct the visual language of images, studying the effects of camera angles, colour connotations and body language. They will also practise taking their own images.
Students will discover how companies build multimedia campaigns and how to use online marketing techniques like viral advertising and social media. They will be able to plan and design their own advertising campaigns and create products and brands.
Students will discover the power of persuasive techniques in advertising and will design their own public relations campaigns.
Pupils will look at the radio industry in depth and learn how radio shows are planned and created. They will create their own jingles, links and plan out shows, learning about the importance of scheduling and target audiences. There are also opportunities for enthusiastic students to become involved with the school radio students and practise their presenting skills by broadcasting to school during lunchtimes and special events.
Pupils will complete their first Controlled Assessment worth 10% of their GCSE grade. They will investigate DVD covers and research the concept of genre in the film industry, currently the Superhero genre and its codes and conventions.
Representations of Men and Women in the Media
Pupils will complete their second Controlled Assessment worth 10% of their GCSE grade. They will investigate how the images of men and women are constructed to appeal to audiences in media texts such as computer games, music videos and perfume advertisements.
The Music Industry
The end of year examination is on the music industry and will require students to answer questions on the key concepts of genre, audience and representations. They will also be asked to plan creative design for music magazines.
The third and final controlled assessment piece is worth 40%. It is a long-term project to create a media text. Pupils can choose which genre of magazine interests them and promote their own brand by creating their own magazine cover and contents page. These are professionally printed and the students can keep a copy for their portfolio for when they leave school.
Research into magazines (5%)
Pupils will use a variety of research techniques including audience profiling, analysing how covers and contents pages appeal to their target audiences, investigating competitors and considering how industry impacts upon circulation by looking at publishing houses suitable for their brand of magazine.
Planning their own magazine (5%)
Pupils will plan all aspects of their own magazine such as the masthead design, mock-ups of the cover and contents page or font choices. They can create mood boards and reader profiles and will also take part in photo-shoots in order to create their own images for their magazine cover and contents page.
Production of their own front cover and contents page (25%)
Pupils will be required to create their own images and content for a magazine cover and contents page of their choice. There are some examples of previous students’ work below and also on the ‘outstanding work’ section of this website. This project ensures the students can work to deadlines and can create a professional magazine front cover and contents page within a specified time-frame, simulating a real creative-working environment and giving them that valuable ‘real-feel’ experience before leaving school.
Evaluating their magazine (5%)
These topics change each year to reflect the constantly changing nature of the media. The topic for 2017 is News – Newspapers and Radio news.