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Harris Academies
All Academies in our Federation aim to transform the lives of the students they serve by bringing about rapid improvement in examination results, personal development and aspiration.

Media Studies


Media Studies is a subject for the 21st century student. Focusing on the world of film, television, on-line media and advertising, Media Studies allows students to investigate and understand the world they live in now.

Students are studying Media in increasing numbers as it is fun, creative, challenging and, importantly, relevant. Here is what students can expect from GCSE Media Studies:

  • Extensive and meaningful coverage of media theory and practice
  • Practical work which integrates theories and concepts allowing students to develop their creative talents and showcase their ideas
  • A range of assignments for controlled assessments to allow for personalisation and choice
  • Opportunities to learn about real media products and industries

Media Studies is the ideal subject for students who already live a digital life communicating and using a variety of media on a daily basis, with the future study and career paths being extensive.

For further information please email Charmaine Garton

Curriculum summary

Students can select to study Media Studies as a GCSE subject from Year 9. They will spend at least two hours per week working towards their GCSE qualification.

As part of their controlled assessment portfolio, they will study and create their own examples of magazines, adverts, posters, storyboards and scripts, trailers for films, and music videos.

The exam topic changes each year and is released to school by November of Year 9. Previous topics have ranged from TV News to Science-Fiction films to Advertising and Marketing of Video Games.


Each half-term, Year 10-11 students will either work on an element of their exam or an aspect for their controlled assessment portfolio.

At the end of Year 11, their final grade will be decided by the following assessments.

Unit One – Investigating the Media

Externally assessed written exam worth 40% of overall grade (60 marks).

The topic changes for this each year, with previous topics ranging from TV News to Science-Fiction films to Advertising and Marketing of Video Games.

Unit Two – Understanding the Media

Controlled assessments worth 60% of overall grade.

Students choose three tasks from a bank of assignments.

1.   Introduction to the media – magazine covers (15 marks)

2.   Cross-media assignment – film promotion (30 marks)

3.   Practical production – radio/sound (45 marks)

Examples of work

Example of work 1 - Independence Day overview (pdf) - by Darweshi, Year 10

Example of work 2 - Independence Day poster (pdf) - by Darweshi, Year 10

Example of work 1 - An evaluation of horror films (pdf) - by Hendy, Year 10

Revision resources


Journalism. Writing for newspapers and magazines as well as online journalism via blogs and websites.

Broadcasting. Working in TV and radio presenting or producing content.

Film and TV. Media can prepare you for working in any aspect of the film and TV industry from directing, to sound engineer, to prop designer to camera operator.

Research. All film and TV companies require specialist researchers to carry out detailed research for them to ensure their productions are as accurate as possible and these researchers must have a good working knowledge of the industry.

Animation. Media can lead you into the world of animation and game design.

Advertising. Understanding how products are advertised and marketed and how target audiences are used is a huge part of Media Studies.

Teaching. Media Studies feeds into other subjects such as English, Art and History so is a good path to take if you wish to teach any of these subjects.