Studying media at Lancaster
From radio broadcasters to social media managers and newspaper clippings to viral videos, our media environment is constantly changing and so are the cultures that surround it.
We know from our own lives that media continuously influence how we live, make connections with others, and become informed about the world. But how much do we really know about the huge variety of messages, texts, images, and representations that we encounter? How are they produced and shared? How are they received? What competing ideas, opinions and values do they put forward? Who benefits and who loses out in the process?
Our Media and Cultural Studies degree focuses upon the key roles of media in shaping who we are, what we think, and what we value. Rather than just learning about media practices, we invite you to consider critically how such practices are situated within social, cultural, economic and political contexts.
As a student, you will be situated in a top Sociology Department, recognised for the quality and impact of its research and publications. Our staff are involved in research on everything from digital journalism and Trump to remix and mashup communities, fan communities, video games and the stigmatisation of families and welfare on (reality) TV programmes. Our ‘research-led’ teaching approach means that you will have an opportunity to encounter and discuss this work in the classroom, drawing both inspiration and very relevant insights into the challenges and spaces for creativity in changing media industries. This excellent research is also one of the reasons that our degree is so highly ranked.
Marta Wojtowicz (BA MCS 2020)
In order to be a well-rounded Media and Cultural Studies student you need to have a solid grounding (or at least an avid interest) in history, art, literature and politics. The Sociology Department recognises the importance of this interdisciplinarity and allows you to choose a variety of modules from within the department, but also from outside of it. The friendly atmosphere between staff members and the students definitely helps in creating an environment in which everyone is welcome and equipped with necessary tools for bettering themselves as both students and people.
Teaching you at Lancaster
In my research, I look at the creative and technological dimensions of digital music practices to get a better understanding of how popular music is created, shared, and appropriated in an online context. In the modules I teach on social media and digital audio culture, I use this and other research to think critically, together with students, about how the production and consumption of popular music is constantly changing. – Dr Maarten Michielse
Reality television and class
One area of strength in our research is the relationships between diversity, inequality and popular culture. Whether looking at reality television, fan culture, or video games, our staff are interested in how media represent different social groups and help to reproduce or challenge existing gender or class divisions.