In the first instance, our vision is to introduce all students through Year 7 to 9 to a number of core information technology skills enabling learners to effectively contribute to their broader academic and creative curriculum.  In addition to this, it is intended to support aspects of the requirements of the interleaved ‘No Limits’ curriculum, including oracy.  Beyond Year 9 the programme of study from YR7 to YR9 is designed to inform students of their YR10 basket three choices, and where appropriate, enable the smooth transition to a range of basket 3 subjects including: media and photography.  There is also scope to study A Level media for those interested in extending their understanding of the power of message to convey meaning to audiences through the study of a range of media examples.


In Design Technology year 7 to 9 students are allocated six 1 hr 50 minutes over a 12 week period.  BTEC Media is delivered as an optional unit for students and they are allocated 2 single and one double sessions over a two week cycle.  The BTEC Tech Award in Creative Digital Media is divided into 3 components: analysing media texts, media skills development and production and workshop exam.



1. Using Word 2. Using Power-point 3. Research skills 4. Manual digital photography 5. Using Photoshop
Dual coding through the use of the a student selected Knowledge Organiser Using as many features of Power-point as possible related to:

Subject topic, hobby or interest and formal presentation

a. Booleon research – AND / OR / NOT

b. Google, Duck Duck Goose and Google scholar.

Taking photographs of objects using the manual setting Creating a canvas – sizing images – using image ‘adjustments’ and ‘filter gallery tools’ to manipulate meaning.


1. Using your imagination 2. Video editing skills 3. Video project 4. Photoshop (a) 5. Photoshop (b)
Short challenges to stimulate creativity – individual and collaborative Using Premiere Elements to edit a bank of video clips as well as add transitions, text and sound. In small groups plan, storyboard, film and edit a short sequence based on a specific scenario Workshop of skills development in terms of: sizing, cropping, adding shapes, magnetic lasso and spot healing brush… To embed their skills in the Photoshop workshop, students are asked to a publishing brief:

Magazines, movie posters, game cases.


1.Using your imagination 2.Introduction to BTEC Media – 3. Manual Photography skills 4. Media analysis task 5. Blog challenge for YDigital
Short challenges to stimulate creativity – individual and collaborative Setting out component 2 creative brief and a range of tasks: research, planning, design comps, dummy copy using Photoshop Take a range of photographs:

Rule of thirds, shallow depth of field, composition, colour…

Analysis of a moving image text focuses on:

Media language, audience, representation and messages and values.

Create a 2 to 3 minute radio feature in small groups on a youth themed topic.

Individually edit using Premier Elements


1.Skills development – practical 2. Skills development analysis and Component 1 task a 3. Preparation for the Component 2 exam 4. Exam 5. Component 1 – analysis of selected media sector: 5. Component 2

Photography / design comps / mini-practical (print) / storyboarding, filming and editing an opening sequence / recording sound.

Comparing old and new media products from publishing, audio-visual and interactive sectors.

Students encouraged to research and select appropriate examples but, where necessary, back up choices are provided

Students work through past exam paper to explore and understand the exam process. Students sit the workshop exam between February and May. Students analyse 3 self-selected examples for:





audio or audio-visual

Students work individually to respond to a set publishing brief where they re-imagine a:

Magazine, DVD or computer game case to make the product more appealing to a teenage audience.


1.Skills development – analysis Component 1 2. Skills development analysis, application and evaluation of theoretical concepts

Component 2

3. Non-Examined Assessment – The Practical (NEA)

Component 3

4. Exams
Learners are invited to explore how meaning is constructed through the analysis of a range of set products including:


-Movie marketing

-Advertising campaigns


-Music videos

-Radio podcasts

Their analysis will be informed by the study and the application of key concepts linked to:

-Media language



-Media Industries

In this part of the exam students study set examples from the following areas of media:

Publishing – an historical and alternative publication.

Audio-visual – a recent British and international drama series

Interactive – Blogging and websites from an individual and media publisher respectively.

The focus of these studies is to apply theoretical concepts from a range of academic theorists to investigate their relevance and validity to the understanding of possible meanings.

The theorists explored include the work of Stuart Hall and bell hooks on representation; Roland Barthes and Steve Neal on Media Language; and Henry Jenkins and Clay Shirky on audiences.

The exam board set a specific brief where students select one scenario from a choice of 3 and produce a cross-media response, which will include work from the publishing, interactive or audio-visual platforms.

Students will select the two or the three tasks to complete in as creative a manner as possible to fulfil the specified demands of their chosen brief.

The exam is divided into two parts.

Component 1:

Students will respond to a number of questions related to the set examples.  There will be a mixture of knowledge, comparison, analysis and evaluation questions.

Component 2:

Questions will be focused on the set topics studied for publishing, interactive and audio-visual case studies.  Questions will require learners to apply, assess or evaluate the specific concepts and ideas of theorists to the examples studied.

Curriculum Overviews: ♦ KS3 Computer Science & Media Studies ♦ KS4 BTEC Media Studies
Computer Science Age Related Expectations
Computer Science & Media Studies Assessment Journey


As students in year 7 and 9 get a taste of what will be covered in subjects such GCSE Photography and BTEC Media, this will lead to them being able to make informed choices for their year 10 options.  In addition to this, they can develop their basic skills of IT and file management to support their other courses.  In every lesson, visual assessment for learning is used to gauge technical and creative competences.  At the end of each 6 sessions course learners submit their best pieces of work and this is celebrated around the academy.

The BTEC Media students individually receive verbal feedback on their work.  The skills covered throughout year 7 to 9 greatly support learners to build competence and confidence to enable learners to focus on their creativity and the full realisation of their creative ideas for coursework.  

The A Level Media qualification enables students to extend their analysis, creative and communication skills beyond YR11.  The course exposes them to many critical ways of seeing the world and the examples chosen by the exam board enable students to both critically engage and respond to the more familiar world of music videos and movie marketing, but also extend their cultural capital by exposing them to more challenging content with explores important issues around ethnicity, identity and the modern digital media landscape.  In terms of the practical element of the course, with its challenge to successfully respond to a specific brief, exposes learners to a number of important skills including: time management; meeting the specific needs of others; exploring creative solutions to problems posed and enhancing practical technological skills across a range of media technologies.

Where next

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This is a very important time in the life of any student preparing for a variety of year group assessments, mocks or final course exams. In…

Effective Revision

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