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Media Studies AQA A Level at Poynton High School

Course description

Unit 1: Investigating Media: Examination (two questions, one an unseen textual analysis and one a pre-studied case study). In this unit students will investigate a broad range of media – film and television fiction, documentary, lifestyle, music and sport – to gain an understanding of how ‘meaning’ is constructed in different media texts.
Unit 2: Creating Media: Two linked practical pieces with written brief and evaluation
Here students will put Unit 1 theoretical skills into practice. The task will involve research, pre-production planning and completion of two different media practical productions – e.g. for film and television. Students will write a short evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of their practical work.
Unit 3: Media – Critical Perspectives: Examination (two questions, one an unseen textual analysis and one a pre-studied case study). This unit will cover two pre-set topic areas – media and identity and the social impact of new/digital media. There will be a strong focus on the role and influence of the modern media in our everyday lives, in shaping our attitudes, ideas and opinions.
Unit 4: Research and Production: Critical Independent Investigation of different media forms with a linked production piece Students will follow an area of personal interest and will apply it critically to a range of media texts. For example ‘Rise of the celebrity culture’ or ‘The commercial relationship between sport and the media’. They will then produce an extended essay and a linked production piece.

Course content

Learning Method:
An interest in power, influence and the social effects of the modern mass media is essential for engagement with Media Studies. If you enjoy analysing texts, discussing important social and cultural issues and researching, planning and producing your own media productions then this is the course for you. Research and practical skills will be developed for University and beyond. This essentially is an academic course and will involve research, investigation and essay writing. Students will enjoy practical workshops with industry professionals, take part in cinema study days and have the opportunity to attend regular film screenings.

Entry requirements

  • 5 grade Cs or above at GCSE level, including a C or above in English Language. It is not necessary to have studied this subject at GCSE level to enter this course, but an interest in film, television and popular culture is highly desirable.


Unit 1 Investigating Media 50% of AS level, 25% of A2 level
Unit 2 Creating Media 50% of AS level 25% of A2 level
Unit 3 Media – Critical Perspectives 25% of A2 level
Unit 4 Research and Production: 25% of A2 level

Future opportunities

An advanced level Media Studies qualification is a useful tool in a wide range of career options. Skills in analysis, research, presenting fluent and logically structured oral and written responses and the ability to engage productively in debate and discussion are essential in advertising and marketing, media and cultural industries, management and teaching. The media and cultural industries are rapidly expanding and will provide a whole host of future employment opportunities.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Poynton High School directly.

Last updated date: 19 September 2016

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