MC422 Half Unit
Critical Studies in Media and Journalism
This information is for the 2017/18 session.
Prof Charles Beckett TW2.7.01K
This course is available on the MSc in Media and Communications (Data and Society), MSc in Media and Communications (Research), MSc in Politics and Communication and MSc in Women, Peace and Security. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
In order to accommodate academic staff research leave and sabbaticals, and in order to maintain smaller seminar group sizes, this course is capped, meaning that there is a limit to the number of students who can be accepted.
The news media is vital not just for the dissemination information but as a forum for debate. Journalism shapes our individual and community lives. It frames ideological disputes and is a site of contestation. But journalism and the news itself is changing because of technological, social, economic and political forces. This course led by a media professor with 20 years of experience as a journalist, takes an ethical perspective on media change. It asks what impact journalism has, what kind of journalism do we want, and how will journalism reconstruct itself according to competing national, cultural, or political contexts. On completion of this course, students should be able to: understand the role of journalism in society today; critically discuss different theoretical conceptions of journalism as practiced in a wide variety of social and political contexts; compare and contrast the role of journalism in contexts ranging from mainstream to alternative media outlets; evaluate the normative and empirical connections between media journalism, the production of news and ethical considerations; critically assess contemporary debates about the changing nature of journalism and its implications for cultural understanding and democracy.
10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the MT.
All students are expected to complete advance reading, prepare seminar presentations, and submit one essay of 1,500 words.
Allan, S. (2009) The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism, London: Routledge;
Beckett, C. (2008) Supermedia, London: Blackwell;
Bell, E & Owen, T (2017) The Platform Press: How Silicon Valley Re-engineered Journalism (Tow Center, Columbia University)
Chouliaraki, L. (2006) Spectatorship of Suffering, London: Sage;
Hafez, K. (2007) The myth of media globalization, Cambridge: Polity;
Muhlmann, G. (2008) A Political History of Journalism, Cambridge: Polity;
Rodgers, J. (2012) Reporting Conflict, Palgrave;
Schudson, M (2008) Why Democracies Need An Unlovable Press (Polity)
Silverstone, R. (2006) Media and Morality: On the rise of the Mediapolis, Cambridge: Polity.
Essay (100%, 3000 words) in the LT.
Student performance results
(2013/14 - 2015/16 combined)
|Classification||% of students|
Department: Media & Communications
Total students 2016/17: 46
Average class size 2016/17: 15
Controlled access 2016/17: Yes
Lecture capture used 2016/17: Yes (MT)
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Team working
- Problem solving
- Application of information skills
- Commercial awareness
- Specialist skills
Course survey results
(2013/14 - 2015/16 combined)1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score
The scores below are average responses.
Response rate: 89%
Reading list (Q2.1)
Course satisfied (Q2.4)