Media and Culture Taster Course
The University of Worcester are hosting a FREE adult Media and Culture taster course at the Hive for anyone interested in the subject of media and culture, getting back into studying or developing their professional skills in an informal and flexible way.
Running from May to June, the course consists of six stand-alone 2- hour sessions that will introduce some of the key fields of study concerning media and culture, whilst also engaging participants in discussion and debate of their own real-life experience.
The course will be delivered by Media & Culture Course leader Katy Wareham Morris and her team, and these sessions are informed by the lecturers’ published research.
If you would like to find out more, please email Katy: email@example.com
Do I need to book?
Places on the course are limited and you will need to book each session individually below. There are no qualifications or prior knowledge necessary to join us, but participants will need to access course reading and writing materials and be able to participate in classroom discussions. Each session is stand-alone, and you can choose to join us for individual sessions or the full course.
Week 1 - Tuesday 9 May: The Social Role of the Media – 12:00pm-2:00pm
This session will explain why it is important to study the media and its relationship with culture. We shall discuss the changing social role of the media in the last 70 years and debate how contemporary media developments have and continue to shape our values, attitudes, beliefs and behaviours.
Week 2 - Tues 16 May: The Rise of Social Media – 12:00pm-2:00pm
This session will focus on developments in the internet, from the early ‘world wide web’ to the social media, web 2.0 boom in mid 2000s. We will pay particular attention to the way user generated content has changed the way audiences engage with the media. We will debate the role of the prosumer (internet users as simultaneously producers and consumers of the media); social media as ‘identity work’; and the role of the influencer.
Week 3 - Tues 23 May: Media, Culture and the Pandemic – 12:00pm-2:00pm
This session will explore the role various different types of media played in the pandemic. From formal daily briefings on TV to online PE lessons with social media influencers; from fake news about Covid cures to Zoom birthday parties, the media transformed how we perceived the pandemic and how we coped with it. We will also look at the role culture had to play in global responses to the pandemic and ask if our culture has, in turn, been changed by it.
Week 4 - Tues 6 June: Fake News – 12:00pm-2:00pm
This session will examine the history, and debate definitions of fake news. We will discuss how technologies are engaged in the creation and circulation of fake news, as well as its relationship with ‘post-truth politics’. We shall debate how fake news influences society and to what effect.
Week 5 - 13th June: Politics and the Media – 12:00pm-2:00pm
This session will consider the treatment of a series of geo-political issues ranging from TV coverage of the Vietnam War to the role of social media in the Arab Spring and the war in Ukraine. The rise of democracy in western societies was always dependent on the growing circulation and accessibility of newsprint and a little later cinema (newsreels), radio and television broadcasting; there could never have been mass politics without the mass media. We shall debate how the free exchange of information and ideas was compromised by censorship and distorted by propaganda.
Week 6 - Tues 20 June: Media Futures – 12:00pm-2:00pm
In this session will focus on the ‘internet of things’; a contemporary way of life that functions through and because of the ‘network’. We shall discuss how and why the media has become more interactive and immersive. We shall debate the social, moral and ethical implications of Artificial intelligence and Virtual Reality.