I lead (convene) the following modules:
- Subject to Culture: Individuality and Identity
This advanced level double honours module is designed to encourage you to think carefully and critically about your own use and consumption of the objects and artefacts of contemporary culture. We examine theories concerning how cultural factors contribute to our values, our identities, our sense of self. What is it that makes us each a distinct individual, with our own ideas and beliefs, a unique 'self' differentiated from everyone else? Are we, in fact, all unique and different, or are we subject to a variety of social and cultural pressures to which we must submit.
- Understanding Culture
This large, first year, survey module introduces participants to key concepts and themes within the study of contemporary culture, including theories of Psychoanalysis, Marxism, Structuralism, Cultural Imperialism and the Politics of Taste. It enables participants to investigate and reflect critically on different aspects of culture, such as Identity, Representation and Power, and to explore the impact of contemporary culture on individuals and society. It investigates how to make sense of cultural artefacts, activities and events, from hairstyles and dance crazes to public intuitions and national symbols. In doing so it presents participants with a range of perspectives and critical skills with which to engage with contemporary culture.
- Critical Media Literacies
This module develops students’ understanding of critical approaches to media analysis and how media texts construct meaning from individual, cultural and institutional perspectives. From consumer identities in Sex and the City to the sociology of Sci-fi, this module offers opportunities to consider the relationship between the media, culture and the consumer, and to become familiar with some of the chief theorists in the field. The module helps students to develop textual analysis approaches and to understand aspects of the technologies of meaning production. Taught sessions involve students in discussion of key critical ideas, and applying them in the analysis of various media texts including film, television, digital media and the press and cultural sites such as counter-culture, celebrity culture and consumer culture
- Making NewsThis module aims to explore the question of what makes news on television. As well as introducing students to current theories on the format and content of news broadcasts, it will also provide them with a number of opportunities to experience the practical procedures which underpin news production, with group work culminating in in students filming their own broadcast news bulletin.
I teach on the following modules:
- Digital Media and Youth Identities
This module investigates issues in digital media use and identity among young people in a range of individual and social contexts. Students will consider how new forms and practices such as mobile phones and SMS, gaming and social networking sites offer new ways of expressing and communicating selfhood, and are shifting perceptions of private and public identity.
- Research Methods
This module provides students with skills in the research methods required to carry out small-scale research projects at university and in the world of work. Consideration will be given to important methodological issues such as sampling, reliability, validity and ethics. Students also learn how to carry out a literature review, a key skill for those undertaking a dissertation in their final year.
- Special Topics in Communication, Media and Culture
This module offers students an opportunity to engage in depth with issues in communication, media or culture studies that are the subject of current scholarly and popular interest. The specific contents of the module will be selected yearly to match current open questions in the disciplinary context.