Learning & Achieving Together

Media Studies

The media studies department offers a wide range of multimedia learning opportunities. Students will have the opportunity to study cross media platforms including film and video, print, video games, radio and web design.

At the end of the course students will be effective critical thinkers and communicators, skilled in the development, analysis and production of 21st Century media texts.

Key Stage 4

The GCSE is comprised of three units:

  1. The individual media studies portfolio focuses on the key concepts of media language and representation. Students are given an opportunity to demonstrate skills in analysing, planning, constructing and evaluating a media text within the chosen topic area. Briefs include: popular music, celebrity, soap opera, advertising and video games.
  2. The textual analysis examination requires students to write about a short, previously unseen, section of film by identifying and analysing the filming techniques used by the director to create meaning for the audience. In addition, students answer questions on a given topic, for example the scheduling and audience behaviours linked to British TV comedy.
  3. The production portfolio in media studies requires students to create their own advanced media product, applying fully their research, technical, theoretical and creative skills in an area such as print, video, audio, website or cross media.

Assessment and Examinations (OCR)

Production portfolio (30%): Controlled assessment. Learners will produce a portfolio containing an assignment and a production exercise based on at least 2 texts.

Examination Unit (40%): 1 hour 45 minutes, written examination. The examination requires students to write analysing the filming techniques employed within a short section of film and also to answer on a prepared media topic.

Group production portfolio (30%): Controlled assessment. This can be individual or as part of a larger group (5 maximum) to produce a major practical production in response to set briefs.

Key Stage 5

Students will learn how to use a range of new technologies to produce movies, documentaries, print advertisements, radio/podcasts, website interactives or video games. Each student will produce an individual production portfolio and may produce a media text individually or as part of a group. The examination unit requires students to develop high level creative, technical and analytical skills in order to write in response to questions about the impact of the director’s choices on the audience. In addition, students will study a media industry in depth in order to write about the key issues and debates linked to that industry. Students will complete an AS qualification in the first year and may continue into the second year for the full A level qualification.

Assessment and Examinations (OCR)

The AS course involves the creation of a practical portfolio working in one of the following media: print, video, audio and website. There is also a written examination on key media concepts such as genre, audience and representation.

The A level course involves an advanced production portfolio in one of the following areas: print, video, audio, website and games software. In addition, there is an examination on a given media concept or debate, for example the representation of a particular social group within films and an essay requiring students to apply their theoretical knowledge to the analysis of their own media production skills.

Extra Curricular Opportunities

An A level will allow a student to follow a wide range of courses at university, both theoretical and practical in nature. If they chose to embark on a media career and enter employment in that field, the practical experience they will have gained and their knowledge and familiarity with real-world production strategies will be highly valued by employers. There is also a weekly Coursework club after school where pupils can receive more personal support for their work as well as an opportunity to 'catch up' on any work missed.