Module Identifier TFM3130  
Academic Year 2007/2008  
Co-ordinator Dr Merris Griffiths  
Semester Semester 2  
Course delivery Lecture   10 x 2 hour (Weekly) Lecture-Workshops  
  Seminars / Tutorials   5 x 1 hour (Fortnightly) Tutorials  
  Workload Breakdown   It is recommended that the 300 notional hours for this 30-credit module be distributed over the following activities: Contact hours 25 hours Regular background reading 50 hours Preparing for tutorials 50 hours Work for assignments 175 hours  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment 1 x 3,000 word traditional written essay  40%
Semester Assessment 1 x 4,000 word research-based report  60%
Supplementary Assessment If the module is failed, students must re-sit all failed elements of assessment, but chooseing a different question from the original assignment options. 

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
1. Discuss and assess the theoretical frameworks within which a study of children and the media is located.
2. Critically evaluate the validity of the major 'concerns' that are voiced about the child's relationship with and use of the media.
3. Apply their knowledge of key paradigms and methodologies to the design and execution of a focused piece of small-scale, ethically sound research.
4. Apply their knowledge of the theoretical underpinnings (and various 'concerns') that chatacterise the field as a whole, to map out the ways in which children are 'positioned' within and by the media.
5. Demonstrate the ability to map out and reflect upon some of the ways in which children, as an audience, are 'positioned' within and by the media.


This module will give students pursuing the MA in Audience and Reception Studies the opportunity to explore the specialist sector of 'children' - an increasingly distinct and delineated group in audience research. Students do not encounter this social group in any other module within the scheme, so it will enhance and deepen their understanding of key audience questions across a broader spectrum. This module will also offer students the opportunity to conduct a small-scale research project with a group of children/young people (within a clear ethical framework of 'best practice'), to apply and experiment with some of the ideas explored within formal sessions.


Lectures will cover the following aspects:

Seminar style discussions will clarify or further illustrate points raised in the lectures and students will be expected to read and prepare in advance of every session, to facilitate quality/informed debate and emphasize the complexity of many of the issues in this field.

Brief description

This module will introduce students to the major theories that underpin academic investigations of children's relationships with and uses of the mass media, together with a balanced overview of adult 'concerns' about the media in the context of child-audiences, a critical analysis of constructed representations of 'childhood' and reflections on the media literacy/citizenship/agency debate.

Module Skills

Problem solving * Problem identification and analysis, particularly when exploring related research and studies. * Ability to rationalise, utilise and apply different interdisciplinary approaches and materials to understand problematic data and research designs. * Ability to evaluate the success of different strategies used within related research/sources.  
Research skills * Students will be able to develop their skills of information location and retrieval. * Students will be given opportunities to develop effective note-taking skills. * Students will develop the ability to analyse, interpret, evaluate and integrate knowledge and understanding gained from a variety of sources whilst making links to accomodate new ideas. * Students will design their own small-scale research project.  
Communication * Students' written communication skills will be developed (e.g. appropriate language and style, accuracy, precision and ability to be concise). * Opportunities will be given through interactive lecture-workshop sessions for students to develop confidence in using their speaking and listening skills when communicating their ideas.  
Improving own Learning and Performance * Students will be able to develop their skills of information location and retrieval. * Students will be given opportunities to develop effective note-taking skills. * Students will develop the ability to analyse, interpret , evaluate and integrate knowledge and understanding gained from a variety of sources whilst making links to accomodate new ideas. * Through group and whole class discussion students will be given opportunities to develop an awareness of the opinions of others and reconsider initial ideas if necessary.  
Team work * Most sessions will involve group work where students will be able to collaborate through discussion. * Group-work/collaboration will empower the student to utilise their skills in co-operation, leadership, use of initiative and peer scaffolding which in turn will enhance the students' ability to work individually.  
Information Technology * Students will be given opportunity to develop their authorial and note-taking skills when planning and preparing for a written assignment, and will be encouraged to develop their note-taking skills in lectures. * Students will be given opportunities to develop their skills using electronic search and retrieval of sources both on the web and on the UWS LIS. * Students will develop their skills when referencing from the web and related sources, whilst the ability to evaluate (not describe) and ability to be selective in using these materials are also essential key skills. * E-mail and Blackboard will be the main forms of communication and information-sharing in this module, so students will be encouraged to actively engage in these processes.  
Application of Number * Students will be given the opportunity to handle, generate and reflect upon basic statistical data (primarily presented in percentages), through encountering key research studies in the field.  
Personal Development and Career planning * Students will be given the opportunity to evaluate current knowledge and skills and set for self-improvement. * Students will be encouraged to take increasing responsibility for managing their own learning. * Students will be encouraged to build upon the knowledge gained from lectures through developing skills in self study (supported by the general and specific reading lists and other resources distributed throughout the module).  
Subject Specific Skills * Students will be encouraged to apply their knowledge of children and the media to their own small scale research investigation of the 'child audience', with particular emphasis on the development of specialist methodologies and an understanding of ethics.  

Reading Lists

** General Text
Barcus, F. Earle (1977) Children's Television: An Analysis of Programming and Advertising Praeger
Boyd-Barrett, Oliver & Newbold, Chris (Eds) (1995) Approaches to Media - A Reader Arnold
Buckingham, David (1996) Moving Images: Understanding Children's Emotional Responses to Television Manchester University Press
Buckingham, David (Ed) (1993) Reading Audiences - Young People and the Media Manchester University Press
Buckingham, David (Ed) (2002) Small Screens Leicester University Press
Condry, John (1989) The Psychology of Television Erlbaum
Durkin, Kevin (1985) Television, Sex-roles and Children Open University Press
Farrell, Ann (Ed) (2005) Ethical Research with Children Open University Press
Goodwin, Andrew & Whannel, Gary (Eds) (1990) Understanding Televsion Routledge
Gunter, Barrie (1986) Dimensions of Television Violence Gower
Gunter, Barrie & Furnham, Adrian (1998) Children as Consumers Routledge
Gunter, Barrie & McAleer, Jill (1997) Children and Television (2nd Edition) Routledge
Hodge, Robert & Tripp, David (1986) Children and Television Polity Press
Holland, Patricia (2005) Picturing Childhood - The Myth of the Child in Popular Imagery I.B. Tauris
Howard, Sue (Ed.) (1998) Wired-up - Young People and Electronic Media UCL Press
Kudanis, Rose M. (2003) Children, Teens, Families and Mass Media Lawrence |Erlbaum Associates
Lemish, Dafna (2007) Children and Television - A Global Perspective Blackwell
Livingstone, Sonia (1998) Making Sense of Television (2nd edition) Routledge
Livingstone, Sonia & Bovill, Moira (Eds.) (2001) Children & Their Changing Media Environment Lawrence Erlbaum Associates
Meyer, Manfred (Ed) (1983) Children and the Formal Features of Television K.G. Saur
Noble, Grant (1975) Children in Front of the Small Screen Constable
Palmer, Sue (2006) Toxic Childhood: How the Modern World is Damaging Our Children and What We Can Do About It Orion
Sefton-Green, Julian (Ed) (1998) Digital Diversions - Youth Culture in the Age of Multimedia UCL Press
Signan, Aric (2005) Remotely Controlled: How Television is Damaging Our Lives - and What We Can Do About It Vermillion
Strasburger, Victor C. & Wilson, Barbara J. (2002) Children, Adolescents and the Media Sage
Van Evra, Judith (1990) Television and Child Development Erlbaum


This module is at CQFW Level 7