Curriculum Overview – Year 9
In Year 9 students begin their GCSE Media Studies course and study the EDUQAS specification. The course begins with an introductory topic based on the study of the music industry, and through this students are introduced to key theories and concepts that underpin the GCSE course. We then go on to study the set texts from the exam board that appear in Section A of the Component one exam. These texts explore print advertising, magazine covers, film posters and newspaper front pages, and students are expected to explore the social, historical, cultural and political contexts of these texts, before going on to analyse them further under the concepts of media language and representation.
Alongside the study of these set texts, we continue to develop students’ practical skills adding to their understanding of key design software such as Photoshop. Students them go on to begin to study the set industries in Section B of Component one and look at the newspaper industry in more depth, focusing on aspects such as the impact of technological developments, funding and regulation. Lastly, the course in Year 9 explores the video games industry and students again examine how technological advancements, regulation and revenues impact upon audiences and the overall success of this key media industry.
Curriculum Overview – Year 10
As students progress into Year 10, we complete the coverage of Component one, by studying the two final Section B topics of the film industry and the radio industry. As in Year 9, the key areas to analyse in conjunction with these topics are how they are funded, regulated and how the changing nature of technology has impacted upon their success.
At the start of the spring term, we begin to look at the set texts for Component two, starting with the topic of crime drama. Closely examining the current set text of Luther, students explore the conventions of crime drama, key narrative theories and the technical components of moving image products such as lighting, set design, shot types and so forth.
The course then moves on to look at the music industry and we examine how key issues are explored in music videos and how these and the artists are represented to audiences. The study of this topic is set around two main musical artists, and we go on look at how they use a variety of social media platforms to engage with their fans and further their success.
In the final summer term, the non-examined assessment coursework based component of the course is undertaken. This accounts for 30% of the overall GCSE Media course, and following a set brief from the exam board; students create their own media products and justify their design choices in written form. The product created can take the form of film posters, DVD covers, magazine covers, and articles. All products have to be original and students must use original photography designed to meet the requirements of the exam brief.
Curriculum Overview – Year 11
In Year 11, the aim is for students to revise all of the content they have been taught and continue to practise and refine their exam skills. We work our way through the Component one and Component two topics covered in Year 9 and 10, and ensure that learning is fully embedded and that students are confident both in their knowledge and understanding of these areas and how they can apply this to exam based questions. We put specific focus on practising the longer 20 and 25 mark responses that can be particularly challenging for students to master, and in further enhancing the students’ ability to use key theories in supporting their analysis of texts.
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