The reintroduction of the AQA Media Studies course has been well received, not only by teachers, Mr Mackenzie and Miss Sabatina, but also by the pupils who have chosen this option at Key Stage four! The current course has been meticulously planned for all pupils. All pupils who access this course will be introduced to a range of media platforms and introduced to a whole new language when analysing media texts… Exciting! Pupils are issued with a ‘Media Studies glossary’ in the first week of the course to allow them to immediately integrate themselves with the expectations of vocabulary.
As mentioned above, all pupils will study the AQA GCSE Media Studies course. As part of the specification, there are two examination papers worth 35% each. These papers will question the pupils upon a series of pre-released media products that will be studied across the duration of the course.
The remaining 30% is formed by a coursework element that is released by the exam board in the June of year 10 for all pupils in that specific cohort.
In year 9, all pupils will be given an introduction into the range of genres that will be examined upon in year 11. These range from the connotations and denotational meanings formed on magazine covers to the significance of advertising and marketing in the media. This is the year in which pupils are exposed to the vocabulary and theory required to answer examination questions in year 11. Pupils will be exposed to the Media Studies terminology gradually throughout year 9. This will allow the pupils to access the pre-released examination materials from year 10 onwards. One P2S assessment element involves forming and presenting materials – similar to the coursework element in year 11. There are deadlines associated with this task – as there will be in year 11.
Within this year, all pupils begin to study the pre-released materials from the exam board. They receive a booklet with all relevant materials inside. The materials will examine understanding from the following range of media forms:
advertising and marketing
online, social and participatory media
Pupils will be examined at the end of year 11 on the following four areas of the Media Studies framework:
All pupils will have received an introduction to each of these areas in year 9 and can therefore apply the skills studied to each area of the Media Studies materials in years 10/11. In the June of year 10, pupils will be distributed the coursework element titles from the exam board.
Across that summer and the beginning of year 11, pupils will be expected to prepare their responses to the coursework title distributed to them in the June of that year. From September – October half term in year 11, pupils will continue to work upon the examination materials – although one dedicated coursework lesson per week will be allocated to allow pupils to complete their responses to the deadline given.
From January onwards, dedicated lessons per week will be allocated to answering past examination paper questions. This will allow all pupils to sharpen their exam techniques and to utilise the vast Media Studies terminology available to them. Allowing the pupils to access these questions, will allow us to formatively assess each individual pupil on a consistent basis and will therefore inform our understanding of the progress being made throughout the course.
The course concludes with two examination papers worth 35% each being completed in the summer of year 11. The examination papers will assess our pupils understanding of the pre-released materials studied across years 10 and 11.
Dedicated weekly revision sessions are offered from year 9 onwards for all pupils. These sessions initially allow pupils to become accustomed to using the Media Studies terminology. In year 10, the sessions are dedicated to the specific materials being studied with the revision of the key elements being vital for progress. In year 11, the revision sessions will be tailored for the specific needs of the classes. It is VITAL that all pupils dedicate time outside of lessons to revising the pre-released materials – otherwise it will be impossible for pupils to maintain their knowledge of ALL of the materials studied on the course!