Media Analysis Paper

Media Analysis Paper

COMS1002A [11137] Current Issues in Comm & Media
Media Analysis Paper
Writing up your Proposal and getting instructor feedback has given you a good start on this paper. Now, it’s time to take the ideas you sketched out and elaborate them, turning them into a complete Media Analysis Paper.

As mentioned in class and in the guidelines for the Proposal, the aim of this assignment is to not only get you thinking critically about the media you consume, but to have you develop a thoughtful position on what that media is and what it does.

Media Analysis Paper

Throughout the semester, we will unpack a series of case studies in class and in discussion group, all of which offer a model for doing media analysis that should inspire your approach. But in addition to those case studies, a useful reminder of how to do a media analysis is available in Chapter 1 of the Media Essentials textbook. In particular, have a look at the section titled “Critiquing Media” (p. 23), which offers a discussion of the ‘critical process’ and outlines the type of thinking media analyses require.

Media Analysis Paper

Guidelines:
Select one episode of a fictional show (not a documentary) on cable/satellite TV or a streaming service and develop a clear and methodical media analysis. What this entails is the following: a description of the media thorough enough to build an argument, an argument or a position that you the author takes on the basis of observable evidence, and developing the details of that evidence in a way that supports your argument.

Media Analysis Paper

On every level, this paper will gravitate around your argument (your thesis). So it’s important to keep in mind that if you’re thinking of including details about the show that do not in some way help support your thesis, those details are likely unnecessary.

You might want to think of the paper on the following terms to help guide its organization (organization is key).

Media Analysis Paper

Introduction:
This should be no more than a single paragraph. In it, you’ll set the stage for the paper: what is the show, the episode, and why is it worth investigating? Build a tension: there has to be a reason you’ve chosen it, so say it. Of course, you’ll also need to state your thesis (i.e. “In this paper I will argue…”), and lastly, tell us how you’re going to support the claim you make in the thesis. Using what evidence? Taken together, this intro paragraph tells us (the reading audience) why the paper is being written, what your position is, and how you’re going to argue it. Think of it as a sort of ‘road map’ that prepares the reader for what’s to come.

Media Analysis Paper

Writing a good intro is difficult. Why? Because it requires a lot of thought. This doesn’t happen in 10 minutes. But a clear and well-crafted introduction is almost always indicative of a strong paper to follow, so spend the time on this.

Description:
It’s likely that the reader will need to learn some details about the show in order to understand what it is (characters, plot, etc). So you might want to include a brief section (1 pgh?) that develops a bit of broader context before drawing on the finer details of the show as evidence.

Media Analysis Paper

Evidence/Analysis:
Here you will want to think about 2-3-4 moments/themes/characters in the episode during which your thesis comes true. Where’s the evidence for your thesis? What, precisely, led you to argue what you did in the intro? It could be the case that there are 10-15 items worth talking about. So it’s your job to decide which ones make it into the paper by asking: Which items are most deserving of our attention? Writing this section takes some thought in terms of how you might organize and present this info in the most succinct way possible.

For clarity and organization, you might want to develop discrete sections with titles for each item (1-2 pgh’s each). For instance, if you want to develop the paper according to individual characters, you could have one section per character. Or if you want to develop it according to particular turning points in the plot, then organize it in that way. Whatever you choose, remember that each of these items are directly related to your thesis and each will be listed in the ‘road map’ indicated in the intro.

Media Analysis Paper

Conclusion:
In no more than one paragraph, revisit the intro developed at the outset. Restate what it is you set out to argue, how you developed your analysis throughout the paper, and what it all might mean moving forward.

Expected Length: 1500-1750 Words (6-7 Pages; Excluding Bibliography)
References & Reference Style: The paper should include 1-2 sources drawn from course readings. You are to use APA referencing style (for more info: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/2/10/). Make sure this style is used correctly and consistently throughout your paper.

Media Analysis Paper
On Topic No submission points
0points Does not respond to assigned topic
10points Responds to topic in general but lacks a clear trajectory
20points Responds to topic with clear trajectory but may not be adequately supported by examples
22.5points Clear, specific line of argumentation supported by examples
25points Clear and insightful line of argumentation supported by compelling examples
30points

Use of Examples No submission points
0points No examples provided to support points
10points Some examples used, but overtly general and unrelated
17.5points Consistently uses examples to support points; clear relationship between particular & general
20points Well-chosen, telling examples that provide insight into points being discussed
22.5points Well-chosen, telling examples that are clearly articulated and demonstrate considerable reflection
25points

Writing: Structure No submission points
0points Lacks organizational structure; written mostly as stream of consciousness
3points Lacks some organizational structure; paragraph breaks do not correspond with conceptual divisions
6.5points Organized into conceptually distinct paragraphs with an intro and conclusion
7.5points Organized into conceptually distinct paragraphs; thoughtfully ordered into a coherent overall design
8.5points Organized into conceptually distinct paragraphs; thoughtfully ordered; effective transitions
10points

Media Analysis Paper

Writing: Spelling + Grammar No submission points
0points Problems with spelling & grammar; difficult to understand
3points Generally understandable but numerous, recurring errors
6.5points Few errors of spelling, grammar or usage
7.5points Relatively complex vocabulary and sentence structure; mostly free of errors
8.5points Makes use of advanced vocabulary and sentence structure; no spelling or grammar errors; carefully edited
10points

Writing: Style No submission points
0points Tone is wholly inappropriate to formal writing in academic context
3points Tone is appropriate but expression is awkward or indirect
6.5points Writing is only occasionally awkward; tone is appropriate in academic setting
7.5points Writing is succinct, tone is appropriate, shows signs of an individual voice
8.5points Writing is succinct throughout; clear individual voice that is rhetorically effective
10points

Media Analysis Paper

Presentation + Formatting No submission points
0points Difficult to read; presentation/layout issues
2points Presented clearly
3points Presented clearly; efforts have been made to customize layout
4points Form and content reinforce one another; design supports and enhances the paper
5points

Thesis No submission points
0points Not clearly articulated
2points Identifiable but lacks clear direction
3points Identifiable and verifiable through the use of examples
4points Well-written, verifiable, and offers a particularly insightful and reflexive perspective
5points

Media Analysis Paper

References No submission points
0points Inappropriate use of source(s)
2points Identifiable citation(s), awkwardly executed
3points Appropriate citation(s); efforts have been made to integrate it into the flow of the paper
4points Excellent use of academic source(s); supports the argument and is formatted correctly
5points

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