MC418      Half Unit
Communication: Cultures and Approaches

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Myria Georgiou FAW.6.01D


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Media and Communications. This course is available on the MPhil/PhD in Data, Networks and Society, MPhil/PhD in Media and Communications, MSc in Gender, Media and Culture, MSc in Media and Communications (Media and Communications Governance) and MSc in Media and Communications (Research). This course is not available as an outside option.

In order to accommodate academic staff leave, and in order to maintain smaller group sizes, this course is capped, meaning there is a limit to the number of students who can be accepted.

Course content

This course examines key concepts and critical perspectives on the processes of communication that underpin social, economic and cultural relations across diverse spheres of modern life. It takes an interdisciplinary and theoretical perspective, comparing the claims and contribution of selected key approaches of communication in order to understand and critique the symbolic and material power of communication media. With a substantive focus on the shifts from mass to networked media and from national to globalised communication processes, the course offers a selective introduction to key approaches in communication. It examines a series of critical perspectives, drawing on current research debates in the field of media and communications and beyond. The course is team taught by active researchers in the field of media and communications and aims to enable students to develop their critical understanding of the communication processes central to the contemporary media and communications environment.


10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the LT.

Formative coursework

All students are expected to complete advance reading, prepare seminar presentations, and submit an essay of 1,500 words. 

Indicative reading

Banet-Weiser, S. (2018) Empowered: Popular Feminism and Popular Misogyny, Duke University Press;

Castells, M. (2009) Communication Power, Oxford University Press;

Chadwick, A. (2013) The Hybrid Media System, Oxford University Press;

Couldry, N. (2012) Media, Society, World, Polity;

Curran, J. and Park, M.J. (ed) (2000) De-Westernizing Media Studies (Communication and Society), Routledge;

Dutton, W.H. (2013) The Oxford Handbook of Internet Studies. Oxford University Press;

Georgiou, M. (2013) Media and the City, Polity Press;

Hall, S. (ed.). (1999) Representation: Cultural representations and signifying practices, Sage;

Iqani, M. and F. Resende (eds.) (2019) Media and the Global South: Narrative Territorialities, Cross-cultural Currents, Routledge;

Mansell, R. (2012) Imagining the Internet: communication, innovation, and governance, Oxford University Press;

McLuhan, M. (2001[1964]); Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, Routledge;

Meyrowitz, J. (1985) No Sense of Place, Oxford University Press;

Silverstone, R. (2007) Media and Morality, Polity Press;

Udupa, S. (2018) Making news in Global India,Cambridge University Press;

van Dijck, J. (2013) The Culture of Connectivity, Oxford University Press


Essay (100%, 3000 words) in the ST.

Student performance results

(2015/16 - 2017/18 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 16.5
Merit 58.8
Pass 20.4
Fail 4.3

Teachers' comment

This course offers a critical understanding of processes of communication and the ways they shape political, cultural and economic life.

A stimulating and challenging entry point to theories and concepts associated with processes of communication, this course provides students with tools to understand the formation and consequences of communication for social, political and cultural life.

Students' comments

"Theories are useful for dissertation/other classes on the course."

Key facts

Department: Media & Communications

Total students 2018/19: 89

Average class size 2018/19: 15

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Communication
  • Specialist skills