Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title Communication and Media Research I
Code COMM207
Coordinator Dr WM Motta Guarneros
Communication and Media
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2021-22 Level 5 FHEQ First Semester 15


1. To introduce students to key terms in academic research and the main elements of a research study.

2. To provide an overview of key research methods and theoretical frameworks in communication and media studies.

3. To provide students with the necessary analytical skills to interpret different communication media texts and contexts

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Students will demonstrate knowledge of the key principles of research, including design frameworks and methods.

(LO2) Students will demonstrate awareness of research ethics.

(LO3) Students will evaluate and compare relevant academic studies on a topic.

(LO4) Students will compare approaches to research and present reasoned and coherent arguments.

(S1) Research skills

(S2) Global citizenship skills

(S3) Study skills

(S4) Digital fluency skills

(S5) Critical thinking skills

(S6) Communication skills



The module content may include the following topics:

BLOCK 1 Introduction to research
Introduction to the module and academic research (What is research? Why does it matter? Why research matters in the professional world beyond academia.
Research design – essential elements of a research project (eg. literature reviews); the distinction between primary and secondary research; text and context; theory and method.
Research questions: how to develop good research questions the role of textual analysis and medium specificity; using theory (what theory is for, and what is its role in a research project).
Research ethics and ethical procedures, policies, and processes at the University.
Argumentation and critique – how arguments are built and how we can critique the work of others; Literature reviews and annotated bibliographies; alternatives to literature reviews, how to develop a critical and theoretical perspective.

BLOCK 2 Research methods
Analysing communication and media:
Potential approaches could include (but are not exhaustive): textual analysis, content analysis, thematic analysis, discourse analysis, surveys, interviews, focus groups, visual analysis, ethnographic methods.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Teaching method: Workshop
Description: The workshops will incorporate lecture material which will introduce students to key concepts, theories, approaches and ideas. There will also be space for seminar discussion of key concepts/ideas and opportunities for the students to attempt some of the approaches and methods introduced on the module. The module could be taught online and on-campus and teaching methods may be subject to changes.

Schedule directed student hours: 24
Unscheduled directed student hours: 126
Attendance recorded: Yes
Description of how self-directed learning hours may be used:
Students should always complete the assigned readings and take relevant notes before the lectures/workshops, as well as any other set activities by the tutors. They should start working on their assignments as soon as the assignments are introduced in class. It is also a good idea for students to book themselves onto any offline or online tutorials or book individual appointments with the aim of improving their academic writing and critical thinking skills.

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours           24

Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 126


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Essay  1350-1650 words    80       
Class test  30 minutes    20       

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.