Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Media Industries: History and Policy
Academic Year
Semester 1
Successful completion of Part 1
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 10 x 2 Hour Lectures


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Essay 1 (2,000 words)  40%
Semester Assessment Essay 2 (3,000 words)  60%
Supplementary Assessment Essay 1 (2,000 words)  40%
Supplementary Assessment Essay 2 (3,000 words)  60%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of the historical foundations of the media industries in the UK and beyond.

2. Outline and evaluate key media policy debates.

3. Write a cogent academic essay based on scholarly material.

Brief description

Taking a predominantly ‘political economy’ approach to the media, this module will (a) consider key moments in the history of the media, focusing on the relationship between media and society, and (b) apply political economy frameworks to the consideration of policy debates that have shaped the media industries in the UK and beyond.


10 x 2-hour lecture workshops on the following topics:

1. Introduction: the political economy of the media

2. Growth of the media industries

3. Case Study 1: The Press Barons

4. Case Study 2: Public Service Broadcasting

5. Case Study 3: The alternative voice (Channel 4 and S4C)

6. Case Study 4: British Quality vs American Trash?

7. Policy Debates 1: The role of the State

8. Policy Debates 2: Transnationalism

9. Policy Debates 3: What to do with social media?

10. Conclusions

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Not developed explicitly in this module though some data and statistics (e.g. from the regulator, OFCOM) will be studied.
Communication Communication skills will be developed through the weekly workshop activities – through oral presentations (non-assessed) – as well as through the essays (written communication).
Improving own Learning and Performance Developed through workshop activities and assessed through the formative assessment.
Information Technology Developed through the use of online resources for the assignments.
Personal Development and Career planning In studying the media industries – both historically and in terms of contemporary debates – students will be encouraged to think of their own place within these industries.
Problem solving Assignments and workshop tasks will invariably require students to solve problems relating to media history and policy.
Research skills Students will be required to research topics for their essays and will be expected to construct bibliographies using printed and online resources.
Subject Specific Skills Historical and analytical skills in relation to the media will be developed as will critical skills in relation to policy developments in the media. The ability to critique contemporary media issues is a key skill expected by employers and noted in the most recent Subject Benchmark statements.
Team work This will be developed during the workshop element of the 2-hour lecture/workshop when students will work in small groups on pre-set tasks and will present to the rest of the group.


This module is at CQFW Level 5