The Royal Belfast Academical Institution

Media Studies

Media Studies

Media Studies was introduced to RBAI in 2003 and is offered as a GCSE and A level subject (WJEC/Eduqas course is followed). This course offers students a unique insight into the mass media, developing a critical understanding of media products, industries and audiences across the worlds of print, radio, TV, film and new digital technologies. Media Studies is a stimulating, creative subject that helps students to develop skills and attitudes that are valuable for employment in any career. Through its study, students develop analytical, research and practical production skills and this course offers an excellent foundation for a wide range of careers in media industries such as advertising, journalism, graphic design, film, television and radio production, marketing and promotion or for those who wish to pursue further study.

The media play a central role in contemporary culture, society and politics. They shape our perceptions of the world through the representations, ideas and points of view they offer. The media have real relevance and importance in our lives today, providing us with ways to communicate, with forms of cultural expression and the ability to participate in key aspects of society

The Media Studies department has three full-time members of staff: Miss Zoe Huston (Head of Department E1) Mrs Kate Walsh (W6) and Mrs Kerry Gilmore (W12). The department is well resourced in terms of materials and practical equipment. Facilities include:

  • ICT – 20 iMac computers with Creative Cloud software, a high quality photo printer and a laser printer. Each classroom is fitted with an interactive whiteboard and has access to the internet and C2K.
  • Digital photography and video – 3 DSLRs for still photography and moving image.
  • Access to CP6 ICT suite with over 20 windows computers equipped with Premiere Pro, Photoshop, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Animate.

GSCE Level

During year 12, pupils study components 1, 2 and 3 of the WJEC Eduqas GCE Media Studies Revised Specification (see eduqas.co.uk) as follows:

Component 1: Exploring the Media Written examination (1hr 30 = 40% qualification)

Section A: Exploring Media Language and Representation

This section assesses media language and representation in relation to two of the following print media forms: magazines, marketing (film posters), newspapers, or print advertisements. There are two questions in this section:

  • one question assessing media language in relation to one set product (reference to relevant contexts may be required)
  • one two-part question assessing representation in relation to one set product and one unseen resource in the same media form. Part (a) is based on media contexts. Part (b) requires comparison through an extended response.

Section B: Exploring Media Industries and Audiences

This section assesses two of the following media forms: film, newspapers, radio, video games. It includes:

  • one stepped question on media industries
  • one stepped question on audiences.

Component 2: Understanding Media Forms and Products Written examination (1 hr 30 = 30% qualification)

This component assesses all areas of the theoretical framework and contexts of the media in relation to television and music.

Section A: Television

  • one question on either media language or representation, which will be based on an extract from one of the set television programme episodes to be viewed in the examination

(reference to relevant contexts may be required)

  • one question on media industries, audiences or media contexts.

Section B: Music (music videos and online media)

  • one question on either media language or representation (reference to relevant contexts may be required)
  • one question on media industries, audiences or media contexts.

Component 3: Creating Media Products Non-exam assessment

(30% qualification)

An individual media production for an intended audience in response to a choice of briefs set by WJEC, applying knowledge and understanding of media language and representation.

A Level

During year 13, pupils study units 1 and 2 of the WJEC Media Studies Revised Specification as follows:

AS Unit 1: Investigating the Media

Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes

24% of qualification (100 marks)

The exam consists of three sections.

Section A: Selling Images – Advertising and Music Video

This section assesses knowledge and understanding of media language, representation and audiences in relation to advertising or music video.

There is one question based on unseen print or audio-visual resource material.

Section B: News in the Online Age

This section assesses knowledge and understanding of media language, representation, media industries and audiences. There is one two-part question requiring reference to the set news products studied.

Section C: Film Industries – from Wales to Hollywood

This section assesses knowledge and understanding of media language, media industries and audiences.

There is one two-part question requiring reference to the set films studied.

AS Unit 2: Creating a Media Production

Non-exam assessment

16% of qualification (80 marks)

  • A media production, including individual research and planning, created in response to a choice of briefs set by WJEC, and applying knowledge and understanding of key concepts
  • An individual reflective analysis of the production.

A2 Unit 3: Media in the Global Age

Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes

36% of qualification (90 marks)

This unit assesses knowledge and understanding of media language, representation, media industries and audiences. The exam consists of three sections. One section will also assess knowledge and understanding of media contexts and one section will also assess knowledge and understanding of critical perspectives.

Section A: Television in the Global Age

There is one question from a choice of two based on the set television programmes studied.

Section B: Magazines – Changing Representations There is one question from a choice of two based on the set magazines studied.

Section C: Media in the Digital Age – Video Games

There is one question from a choice of two based on the set video games studied.

A2 Unit 4: Creating a Cross-Media Production

Non-exam assessment

24% of qualification (80 marks)

  • A cross-media production, including individual investigative research and development, created in response to a choice of briefs set by WJEC and applying knowledge and understanding of key concepts and digital convergence
  • An individual critical analysis of the production.

Recent Examination Results:

GCSE

A* - A

A* - B

A* - C

2018

30%

75%

100%

2017

13%

88%

94%

2016

17%

100%

100%

AS

A

A* - B

A* - C

2018

41%

94%

100%

2017

14%

36%

79%

2016

23%

54%

100%

A2

A* - A

A* - B

A* - C

2018

25%

67%

100%

2017

23%

62%

100%

2016

13%

75%

100%

Trips and Tours

The annual AS Art and Media Studies trip to London is an invaluable opportunity for students to develop knowledge in their respective subject areas whilst also supporting coursework; it encourages inspiration and ideas and is a great opportunity for students to take pictures which they can use for this purpose. Recent trips have included visits to Warner Bros Studios, the Shard, the Sky Garden, The Royal Academy, Tate Modern, The British Museum, The Tower of London, Alternative London walking tours of East London and West-End theatre productions of The Woman in Black, School of Rock, War Horse and Billy Elliott.

Useful links for Media Studies

www.wjec.co.uk

www.mediaedu.co.uk

https://cinemagic.org.uk/

www.bfi.org.uk

www.mediamagazine.org.uk

www.screenonline.org.uk

https://www.northernirelandscreen.co.uk/

www.imdb.com

www.impawards.com

www.queensfilmtheatre.com/

www.guardian.co.uk/culture

www.metacritic.com

www.rottentomatoes.com

Sep
16 2019
GCSE Geography Field Trips
Sep
17 2019
Translink Safety Bus
Sep
18 2019
Year 13 Parents' Information Evening
Sep
19 2019
Ganaway (Kelvin and Larmor)
College Square East, Belfast, Co. Antrim, BT1 6DL
Tel: 028 90 240461
© 2019 The Royal Belfast Academical Institution