Researching MEDIA Audiences (101053)

week9 break

Welcome to the unit, which will be running for the last time in the current program. Assoc Prof Virginia Nightingale set this unit up over 10 years ago as part of the Media Study and Policy elective stream. You will be the last students to have the good fortune to undertake this unit and thus be influenced by Virginia, who started at UWS in 1987 and is now situated at Sydney Uni.


Major Essay is due in Week 8 in class:

Select ONE of the following questions and, write an essay of no fewer than 2500 words and no more than 3000 words. Value is 40%..

Question 1:  Henry Jenkins claims that fans are the pioneers of cyber culture. Explain what Jenkins means by this (referring to his articles and books) and his reasons for making such a claim. Basing your argument on additional (published) research about fans and fan communities, explain why you agree or disagree with his views.

Question 2:  Media ethnography has recently become very popular with media researchers. Explain its strength and weakness as media audience research. Discuss types of studies it can best investigate and those it is less well suited to research.

Question 3:  Effects research is currently being redefined. The search for direct effects is giving way to research that addresses more complex social effects – like effects of the media on issues of identity. Why are such changes occurring in audience effects research? Explain recent developments in effects research and the innovations in research methods they have encouraged.

Question 4:  The most recent research views audiences as sub-cultures or producers. Discuss the argument for, or against this way of conceptualising the audience. What are the benefits/disadvantages of accepting or rejecting this view?

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      Dr. Ray Archee (r.archee@uws.edu.au) 
       0413 149-824 mobile

      Colin Dawson (c.dawson@uws.edu.au)