Monday, November 19, 2007

What you have to do...10 tips

To do well in this project you must...

1. Use six different methods, some secondary and some primary
2. Use at least two different sources for each method
3. Fully reference all your sources
4. Be able to detail advantages and disadvantages of each method and source
5. Show how the material you have used links together and forms a trail of research
6. Back all your points with examples and explanation
7. write for an hour each on your methods and your findings, relating the latter to the broader topic itself
8. Do the work yourself !
9. Be ready for the exam on Jan 22
10. take our advice throughout !

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Ideal project

would use:

two or three books, properly referenced, with notes to summarise key points you have extracted plus quotes from each.

two journals or magazines, similar notes

four websites of a variety of kinds- institutional, fansites, critical, etc

some textual analysis of relevant texts- films, tv programmes, etc

some primary research such as interview, focus group, questionnaires, forum interviews from the web

Friday, November 16, 2007

Next steps

When you have collected material from a range of sources and used a variety of methods, your next step will be to start to shape it for the exam itself. In the first lesson back, we will help you to see how you might organise your material effectively; in the meantime, if you look at the examples we gave out in the first sesion, you will have a good idea of one way to do it.

overall you will need: an introduction, a paragraph or two on each method, including proper referencing and examples as well as a consideration of the advantages and disadvantages of the method itself. the whole thing needs to be sequenced logically so that there is a sense of your research being a journey.

Q.2 is harder and involves placing your close study within the wider context of the overall topic area, thus considering in what ways what you have looked at typifies the issues around the overall topic. Again it needs planning in order to read as a systematic project rather than a random set of quotes.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

January lesson tips

How to answer question 1

You need a brief intro which sets out which area you are investigating and what your specific focus is.

You then need a paragraph (or two) on each of your methods, which should include at least four secondary and at least two primary.

Each paragraph needs to include an account of the method, which will involve some explanation, examples (for secondary) of two sources, fully referenced and their content briefly explained, at least one specific detail from each source (e.g. a quote) and an evaluatioon of the strengths and weaknesses of the method overall.

You should end with a conclusion, which again should be brief and just sum up your main points. Your FINDINGS can be left to Q.2

Extra tips: leave a line between each para, don't make your paras last more than a page, highlight key points if you want.

Scroll down for more advice !

Monday, November 12, 2007

Links to blogs by London students

Really useful material on the Latymer school site, including blogs by students who took this exam last summer.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

answering Q.2

Where q.1 was about METHODS and paragraphs should be organised by method, q.2 is about FINDINGS and paragraphs should perhaps be organised by concepts so that there is clear distinction between the two.

A structure something like this should work

para 1 Intro- what are the key issues in relation to your area of study ?

For example you might consider:

World Cinema: funding/distribution (Inst) how they reach audiences and how audiences receive/interpret/watch the films (aud) how they represent the culture (rep) how they are similar to/differ from western films (forms/conv)

TV Drama: budgets/scheduling/distribution in other formats e.g. DVD, competition with other genres, extra-textual life e.g. spin-off progs (Inst) issues covered and how they represent social groups (Rep) conventions e.g. genre, innovation or not (F and C) audience pleasures (Aud)

Politics: how we learn about issues and politics (Rep), forms and conventions of coverage (F/C) audience participation (aud) bias and PSB (Inst)

Sport: how sports may be represented (nationalism, gender etc) dominance of certain sports and certain teams v minority coverage (Rep) conventions of coverage (F/C) importance of sport to media and of media to sport local sport/media (inst) and audience reception of sport in media (aud)

Children: concerns about what is represented to children/how they are represented (Rep) what kids understand/the impact of media texts upon them/their pleasures (aud) importance of child audiences to media institutions (Inst) the forms and convs of children’s media texts (F/C)

Para 2 How does your specific focus relate to the issues in the topic as a whole ?

Para 3-6 one on each conceptual area: Institution, Representation, Forms and Conventions, Audience as they relate to your topic. Maybe more than one paragraph on some areas but throughout referring to method, sources, references, quotes, ideas etc

Para 7 brief conclusion

Key is how to cross reference concepts with your research

Friday, November 09, 2007

How to fill in your cover sheet:

Date is today's date.

As topics have changed, top box on page 2 would include films used for World Cinema and TV programmes for TV Drama.