Genres are cultural categories that surpass the boundaries of media texts and operate within industry, audience and cultural practice.

The second assignment asks you to come up with your own research question and write a research essay that engages with the fundamental ideas raised during this semester in FTVMS 309. You may choose to consider an overarching perspective raised across the weeks (media convergence, for example, or Stuart Hall’s Encoding/Decoding model), or to delve into a specific week that interests you. Either way, you will draw from theoretical material in the readings, lectures, and tutorials to consider the big picture of television at our exciting juncture. Your essay should show that you have a good grasp on the main concepts of the course and can synthesize these into a coherent argument on the given topic. Make sure you include a clear expression of your research question in the first paragraph and relate your argument to concrete examples of shows/content from television and/or new media.


Your aim will be to write an essay that offers an elegant response to your research question. You must engage explicitly in your paper with five scholarly readings: at least three of these must be selected from the required readings in the course reader, and an additional two may come from the reader, additional suggested readings, or another scholarly source (check with us if you are unclear what a scholarly source is). Be sure that your use of all the readings is sustained and relevant (not simply a quote from a powerpoint slide). You may also draw on ideas from the lectures and tutorials, but these need to be backed up by concrete examples from shows or scholarly texts.

Much of the success of the paper will depend on formulating an original, interesting, and answerable research question. We recommend you discuss this with your tutor at the earliest opportunity in order to help you to focus your reading, find media sources, and formulate a rich analysis and argument in the final paper.

Details of your assignment:
This essay should be 3000 words (+/-10%) and constitutes 40% of your final mark. You may not cut and paste material from your first assignment (turnitin will pick this up). The deadline for submission is Tuesday 10th June before 4pm.
Essays must be submitted BOTH electronically to and in hard copy to Arts 1 reception (3rdfloor) by the deadline.

Turnitin ID:

The hard copy must be accompanied by the FTVMS coversheet generated via the instructions on cecil. Please complete and sign this form.

A significantly higher or lower word count than the number specified will be penalised. Make sure your paper has your name and the topic typed on it.

All work must be typed in a plain 12pt font, 2 cm margins, double-spaced. Students must use a recognized citation style (Chicago, APA, or MLA) to cite all sources. It is your responsibility to learn how to use a citation style correctly. Tutors will not read drafts of your essays but we are happy to discuss ideas and further readings with you. For more extensive support with writing, please consult the resources listed at the end of the course outline.

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