Media Studies

Head of Department: Mr D Powell

Overview

The Media Studies Dept offers courses in A Level Media Studies and Film Studies and works in close collaboration with the English Dept.  Both Media Studies and Film Studies are available to study at A Level and both courses produce very good results. They can be taken together or studied separately. This combination of subjects is aimed to develop students’ communication and creativity.

The vision of the department is to provide students with the opportunity to learn and develop creative skills
in a professional working environment. The ethos of the department is inclusive and all students of are encouraged to take responsibility for their learning, share facilities and work flexibly as members of a team in which individual interests and specialisms are recognised, encouraged and nurtured.

The department aims to provide the students with learning which is relevant to living in the modern world, to make them aware the media industries’ influence on student’s everyday lives. We also aim to engender an appreciation of creative opportunities within the media and to help students develop high level skills.

Increasingly diverse ways of learning are being explored and the department and the department’s classrooms include two computer rooms in which the students work on a range of creative activities including magazine print based projects, web-design and video work which demand high level use of image manipulation. The software used by the students include Adobe Premier Pro and the Adobe Creative suite including Photoshop and InDesign.

Our classrooms also include a green screen and photographic back drop as well as a range of lighting. Students are encouraged to utilise these and the Sony A5 digital cameras to produce high quality images for their work.

Expectations for students are high and media students are expected to be both responsible and professional. Our methods of working allow for opportunities for independent learning and for students to take responsibility for their learning, combining theory with practical skills while always remembering to have fun.

There are also clubs and activities offered by the department which is home to the Warlingham Film Club offering a chance to younger students to develop an interest in film and open a window on the wider world with a range of genres and films from other cultures. Those who join are encouraged to participate actively in the club and we have had students become national Filmclub Ambassadors. The Media Department often contributes to whole school projects and club members have also participated in the BBCs School Report as well as making an film about the school’s Olympic Ambassadors.

Film Studies Course Overview

A Level Media Studies

Learners study a range of media forms – advertising and marketing, film, magazines, music video, newspapers, online media, radio, television and video games through age appropriate products set by WJEC. Learners will also study additional age appropriate products chosen by the teacher.

Collectively, the products studied:

•             possess social, cultural and historical significance

•             illustrate a range of products in terms of genre/style, form and audience

•             represent different historical periods and global settings

•             illustrate different industry contexts, including those outside the commercial mainstream include those aimed at or produced by, minority groups

•             reflect contemporary and emerging developments in the media

•             provide rich opportunities for analysis and application of the theoretical framework detailed below

•             include media products that stimulate learners and extend their experience of the media.

Component 1: Media Products, Industries and Audiences

Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes

35% of qualification

The examination assesses media language, representation, media industries, audiences and media contexts. It consists of two sections:

Section A: Analysing Media Language and Representation

This section assesses media language and representation in relation to two of the following media forms: advertising, marketing, music video or newspapers. There are two questions in this section:

•             one question assessing media language in relation to an unseen audio-visual or print resource

•             one extended response comparison question assessing representation in one set product and an unseen audio-visual or print resource in relation to media contexts.

Section B: Understanding Media Industries and Audiences

This section assesses two of the following media forms – advertising, marketing, film, newspapers, radio, video games - and media contexts.

It includes:

•             one stepped question on media industries

•             one stepped question on audiences.

Component 2: Media Forms and Products in Depth

Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes

35% of qualification

The examination assesses media language, representation, media industries, audiences and media contexts. It consists of three sections:

Section ATelevision in the Global Age

There will be one two-part question or one extended response question.

Section BMagazines: Mainstream and Alternative Media

There will be one two-part question or one extended response question.

Section CMedia in the Online Age

There will be one two-part question or one extended response question.

Component 3: Cross-Media Production

Non exam assessment

30% of qualification

An individual cross-media production based on two forms in response to a choice of briefs set by

WJEC, applying knowledge and understanding of the theoretical framework and digital convergence.

A Level Film Studies                         

Introduction: Studying film

At the root of all film studies is a recognition that films are made: they are constructed using a range of elements – cinematography, mise-en-scène, sound, editing and performance (the key elements of film form) – which are organised structurally in terms of narrative and often genre (the structural elements of film form). How filmmakers use these elements, frequently in complex and highly artistic ways, is a large part of what constitutes the formal study of film. Equally important is how spectators respond to the work filmmakers create and how learners interpret the films with reference to spectator response, relevant contexts, critical approaches and debates. In turn, these formal studies have a direct impact on learners' own work as filmmakers and screenwriters.

For this specification, the elements underpinning the study of film are organised into:

•             Core study areas, which learners apply to all the films they explore

•             Specialist study areas, which learners apply to specific films

Component 1: Varieties of film and filmmaking

Written examination: 2½ hours

35% of qualification

This component assesses knowledge and understanding of six feature-length films.

Section A: Hollywood 1930-1990 (comparative study)

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to two Hollywood films, one from the Classical Hollywood period (1930-1960) and the other from the New Hollywood period (1961-1990).

Section B: American film since 2005 (two-film study)

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to two American films, one mainstream film and one contemporary independent film.

Section C: British film since 1995 (two-film study)

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to two British films.

Component 2: Global filmmaking perspectives

Written examination: 2½ hours

35% of qualification

This component assesses knowledge and understanding of five feature-length films (or their equivalent).

Section A: Global film (two-film study)

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to two global films: one European and one

produced outside Europe.

Section B: Documentary film

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to one documentary film.

Section C: Film movements – Silent cinema

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to one silent film or group of films.

Section D: Film movements – Experimental film (1960-2000)

One question from a choice of two, requiring reference to one film option.

Component 3: Production

Non-exam assessment

30% of qualification

This component assesses one production and its evaluative analysis. Learners produce:

•             either a short film (4-5 minutes) or a screenplay for a short film (1600-1800 words) plus a digitally photographed storyboard of a key section from the screenplay

•             an evaluative analysis (1600 - 1800 words).

September 2017