Module Identifier TFM1030  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Professor Martin J Barker  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment 3,500 word essay 1 x 3,500 word essay: an exploration of the circumstances of emergence of a contemporary issue50%
Semester Assessment 3,500 word essay 1 x 3,500 word essay: an exploration and evaluation of the current state of audience/reception research in a chosen field50%

Learning outcomes

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

1. engage in an informed and critical way debates about contemporary research problems and projects, evaluating them in terms of the formulation of research questions, conceptualisation of tasks, and methods of research
2. make valuable connections between past traditions and procedures of research, and contemporary problems and tasks
3. understand the potentials of audience and reception research to contribute to important public and policy issues
4. critically examine the relations between the current dominant traditions of audience and reception studies, and parallel tradition.


Indicative sessions might include:

Brief description

The primary emphases of this module will be two-fold: (1) a focus on current and emerging issues and topics, and (2) a focus on the ways in which audience and reception studies can potentially make a contribution and a difference to those issues and topics. Because of this, the content will necessarily vary from year to year, as new topics, debates and possibilities are located, and as we seek to address the particular interests of the students taking the module and the MA.


To provide an opportunity for students to engage in debate on current live issues concerning audiences and reception, in both academic and non-academic spheres.

To provide a space within which students are able to encounter and debate with audience research practitioners, from both academic and non-academic backgrounds.

To enable students to explore aspects of audience and reception studies not otherwise developed within the MA Audience + Reception Studies.

Module Skills

Subject Specific Skills Potentially, a wide range of both generic and subject-specific skills will be developed, and in some cases directly tested, through this module. The generic will include advanced searching abilities and an address to the Internet as a locus and object of research. Subject-specific skills will include critical engagement with the specific contributions that can be made by audience and reception research, to contemporary cultural, political and policy debates  

Reading Lists

** Recommended Background
Barker, Martin, Jane Arthurs & Ramaswami Harindranath (2001) The Crash Controversy: Censorship Campaigns and Film Reception London: Wallflower Press
Cumberbatch, Guy et al (1985) Television and the Miners? Strike London: Broadcasting Research Unit
Kitzinger, Jenny (1999) A sociology of media power: key issues in media audience research?, in Greg Philo (ed), Message Received , London: Longman
Kritzinger, J in Philo, G. (ed.) (1999) Mesage Received 'A Sociology of media power:key issues in media audience research' London:Longman
Livingstone, S. (ed.) (2005) Audiences and Publics London:Intellect
Morrison, David et al (1999) Defining Violence: the Search for Understanding Luton: University of Luton Press
Philo, G. and Berry, M. (2004) Bad News form Israel London:Pluto Press
Seiter, Ellen (1999) Television and New Media Audiences Oxford: Clarendon Press
Vorderer,P. and Bryant, J (eds.) (2005) The Psychology of Entertainment NY:Lawrence Erlbaum

Morley, D. and Barker, M. (2006) The Communication Review Debate on the State of Audience Research 9:2.


This module is at CQFW Level 7