Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2012 (Day)
Clayton Second semester 2012 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr David Holmes (Caulfield, Clayton)


Previously coded COM3020


What is the 'second media age'? Does it offer new insights into what was the 'first media age? The different kinds of social, political and communication dynamics which can be found in cyberspace demands a reassessment of the methodologies used to explore media, as well as new understandings of interaction as they relate to old and new media. The difference between information and communication, interaction versus 'integration', analogue versus digital culture, cyberspace and virtual reality is also explored. Numerous theoretical perspectives will be introduced including the work of Adorno, Ang, Baym, Bennett, Baudrillard, Calhoun, Carey, Hall, Innis, McLuhan, Mellencamp, Meyrowitz, etc.


On successful completion of this subject students will be able to demonstrate:

  1. An understanding of the formal difference between Communications Studies and Media Studies which define the program that this subject is a part of.
  2. An appreciation of the difference between first media age and second media age.
  3. A knowledge of the social, economic and political impact of television and the internet.
  4. An understanding of how new communication technologies have changed the nature of modern audiences.
  5. An understanding that traditional media also provide for the formation of 'virtual communities' just as new media do.
  6. A sociological understanding of 'advertising' and why it does not work on the internet and how this led to the dot.com crash of the late 1990s.
  7. An understanding of the different ways in which media, old and new condition influence cultural globalisation.
  8. An appreciation of the difference between being an audience member of broadcast media and a 'user' of new media technology.


Short essay (1575 words): 35%
Blackboard posts (1125 words): 25%
2 Hour exam (1800 words): 40%

Chief examiner(s)

David Holmes (Caufield, Clayton)

Contact hours

One 2-hour lecture/seminar per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study