Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film
MEDIA AND CULTURE: TEXTS AND PRACTICES
NEWS ANALYSIS ASSIGNMENT
Value: 15% of final grade
Upon completion of this assignment you should be able to:
T Understand the concepts and methods of narrative analysis and discourse analysis in media studies.
T Apply these concepts and methods to examples of television news reporting.
T Present your analysis and arguments about narrative and discourse in news in clear and effective written form.
G For this assignment you must choose an example of a news story from a Canadian television network on a recent national or international issue or event.
G The news story must come from CBC, CTV, or Global national television news (broadcast or online version) in January or February 2021.
G You may wish to record your television news example for detailed analysis. PVR, digital cameras and cell phones can be used to record a TV news segment. News stories may be found on CTV, CBC or Global web sites, but these videos may not easily be saved to your computer and may not be permanently accessible on-line.
G Complete and attach the summary sheet provided to give a one-page summary of your television news story. You do not need to submit videos or links to on-line news source.
G Your written analysis must be 2000 words, double-spaced, 12-point type.
G The title page must include the course code, assignment title, your name, and student number.
G No additional research or reading outside course material is required, but key terms and concepts should be defined with reference to Chapters 11,12,16,20-22 in O’Shaugnessy, M., J. Stadler, & S. Casey (2016) Media and society (6th ed.),
Melbourne: Oxford University Press.
G Your essay must have an introduction, a manageable thesis statement and a conclusion.
G Your thesis statement should explain how narrative structure and dominant discourse are used to create meaning for the events or issues recorded in the news stories.
G Use the course text (Chap.11&12) to define and explain the concept of discourse.
G Use the framework given on p.239 (Chap.17) to answer the six main questions that inform the steps of narrative analysis. Applying these six steps, give specific examples of the narrative structure in your news story, use subheadings for each step.
G With attention to Step 4 in your narrative analysis, give examples of the hierarchy of residual, dominant, emergent discourses (p.183) in your news story.
G Identify the dominant discourse and the preferred reading (p.96) in the news story and explain why it seems to be the most persuasive.
G Define and explain the role of binary oppositions and conflict in constructing the meaning of news narratives (Chap.17). Give specific evidence from your news story.
G Explain how dominant discourses in the news help construct the audience’s understanding of such things as sexuality, masculinity or femininity, natural environments, age, race or ethnicity, economy or class, disability, criminality or national identity(Chap. 20-22).
G In your conclusion, sum up your evidence to make a concluding argument about how narrative and dominant discourse contribute to the meaning and interpretation of news in Canadian society.
Your essay will be graded on the following basis: Comprehension and application of terms and concepts Grade: /5
C Analysis demonstrates understanding of the terms and concepts of discourse and narrative.
C Terms are clearly defined in your own words, with reference to course text and/or
C Terms and concepts are applied to the most appropriate examples of narrative and discourse in your news story. Thesis and argument Grade: /5
C Essay has a strong thesis statement and conclusion.
C Thesis explains how narrative and discourse are used in the story to create meaning for news.
C Argument develops convincingly throughout the essay, using evidence from the TV news story.
C Analysis demonstrates how news narratives are structured and identifies how specific discourses are used.
C Conclusion supports initial thesis and relates to examples given throughout.
Organization, clarity and format Grade: /5
C Includes summary sheet and shot list for television news video.
C Well written, using correct spelling, grammar, sentence structure and paragraph form.
C Well-organized ideas, expressed clearly and in a logical order.
C Respects format and word length, gives enough relevant detail and avoids unnecessary repetition.
C Properly cites concepts and arguments taken from the textbook or course content. For more information on News Analysis visit this: https://www.dictionary.com/browse/analysis
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