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Media AS and A Level at Newman Catholic School

Course description

If you’re interested in the media and their influence in (and on) society, this could be the subject for you. We study a wide range of interesting media and students have the opportunity to create their own media texts.

Course content

At AS, candidates will investigate the media in order to reach an understanding and basic evaluation of how meanings and responses are created. The contemporary media landscape and its changing contexts will be studied in terms of products, platforms and technologies. In Unit 2 candidates will produce two linked media artefacts taken from two of the three media platforms studied in Unit 1 with a single, accompanying evaluation and preproduction folder for both pieces.

At A2, candidates are encouraged to examine the media in a less formulaic way and 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 4 will investigate a media theme/text in more depth and realise a production piece reflecting this research.

Unit 1, Investigating Media

You will study: media texts, concepts and contexts; platforms including e-media, broadcasting and print; cross media studies from broadcast fiction, film fiction, documentary, lifestyle, music, news and sport.

Unit 2, Creating Media

You will carry out independent research, preproduction and planning of a practical production. This should include: a demonstration of your technical and creative skills; your knowledge of relevant codes and conventions; awareness of the relevance of platforms and target audiences; knowledge of production in broadcast, e-media and conventional print media; an evaluation of your work. 

Unit 3, Media; Critical Perspectives

You will study the following pre-set topic areas: representations in the media; the impact of new/digital media; cross media issues and debates; media theories. 

Unit 4, Media: Research and Production

You will carry out a critical investigation. It will be based on a focused title (approved in advance by AQA) and will involve: the collection and evaluation of evidence; conclusions based on the evidence; a linked production piece; a fully realised media artifact. It will follow on from research undertaken, all media are acceptable. 

Entry requirements

You will require a C grade in English Language and demonstrate an interest in the media if you wish to take this course.


Unit 1

 Assessment will be through a written paper, 2 hours, 50% of total AS marks, 25% of total A2 marks. There are two sections:

  • Section A – short questions on unseen stimulus material (from moving image, digital/web-based or print)
  • Section B – one essay question from choice of two based on cross media case study

Unit 2

Assessment will be through coursework with externally set production briefs, 50% of total AS marks, 25% of total A2 marks. You will complete two linked production pieces (from two of the three media platforms in Unit 1) and a written evaluation (1500 words) on both production pieces.

Unit 3

Assessment will be through a written paper, 2 hours, 25% of total A2 marks. There are two sections:

  • Section A – compulsory questions on unseen stimulus materials
  • Section B – one essay question from a choice of two pre-set topics

Unit 4

Assessment is through coursework, 25% of total A2 marks, and will be a critical investigation (2000 words) and a linked production piece.


How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Newman Catholic School directly.

Last updated date: 29 September 2016
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