In a world where we are constantly bombarded with vast amounts of information from all angles and where the media impacts all our lives, an understanding of the way that the media industries operate and the impact they have on their audiences is vital. Through completing the Media Studies GCSE course, students gain a holistic understanding of how the media works, as well as an understanding of how different groups in society are represented by the media. Students also develop skills in the creation of a variety of media products.
Whilst Media Studies is taught only in Key Stage 4, students will build on their knowledge and understanding from a number of subjects studied in Key Stage 3. We study a range of media texts dating from 1956 to 2022 and students are required to develop their understanding of the social and historical contexts of these texts. Students use their literacy skills in analysing the various media texts and their creative skills in creating new ones.
“Whoever controls the media, controls the mind.” - Jim Morrison
Students are entered for the Eduqas GCSE Media Studies course. This course comprises the study of advertising, magazines, the film industry, the music industry, newspapers, television, radio, video games and social media. The texts are changed by the exam board on a regular basis and therefore remain up to date and relevant to the students. An integral part of the GCSE course is the Non-Examined Assessment (coursework) which is worth 30% of students’ final grades. This provides students with the opportunity to produce a piece of media, according to the exam board briefs, from initial concept to finished article. This could include a music video, a short film, sections from a magazine or marketing material for a new film. This is completed in the summer term of year 10, thus giving students the opportunity to build on the knowledge and skills learned so far in the course.
A GCSE in Media Studies is, in many ways, a gateway to other qualifications and career opportunities allowing students to develop their critical and analytical skills alongside their creativity. It is a natural progression from GCSE Media Studies to A Level Media Studies, A Level Film Studies or one of the BTECS in Film and Television Production. Whether the student has an intention to enter the media industry or not, the GCSE certainly help to develop skills which are transferable across a range of careers.
“The media transforms the great silence of things into its opposite.” - M de Certeau
Students are taught in a modern, well equipped specialist suite, allowing them every opportunity to maximise their potential. There are numerous opportunities throughout the year for students to widen their knowledge of the media, whether this be through online events, wider reading, additional creative projects or after school sessions in the media suite.