Principles of Media Studies

262 is the first course in the Journalism and Mass Communication Media Studies concentration.  It is designed to offer you an overview of the most important issues in the field of media studies. 

This field seeks to understand the importance of media in our everyday lives and the pleasures we derive from media.  But it also takes a critical perspective on media, questioning why and how media industries, media products, and media audiences function as they do.  Central to this course is the idea that media matter both to societies  and to individuals in their everyday lives.  Thus we will treat all kinds of media seriously, even the stuff most people consider trash.  And even when a media product seems to be pure “entertainment,” we will consider its formal design, its social significance, and the forms of pleasure it offers. 

We will consider a range of different media, such as film and television, print, and the internet.  Although most of our examples will be drawn from the mainstream major media industries, we will also consider media produced by ordinary people like Star Wars fans and amateur zine publishers.  We will consider media in terms of three key aspects:  media production, media texts, and media audiences.  We will explore the central issues in each of these key areas.

This course's instructor is Michael Z. Newman.  E-mail me at mznewman [at] uwm [dot] edu.


Industry Analysis Paper Assignment

Final Paper Assignment





Glossary of Terms: Copyright