ATS2693 - Politics and the media - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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



Organisational Unit

Politics and International Relations


Dr Narelle Miragliotta

Not offered in 2017


The media is one of the most important components of any political society. In a liberal democracy its role, functioning and political economy have profound implications for the conduct of politics and the nature of democracy. In this unit, the politics of the media (understood to mean the politics that goes on within the media as well as the contribution the media makes to politics) is studied from three broad perspectives. First, the politics of the media is investigated from the perspective of liberal democratic theory in order to understand the role of newspapers, electronic news media, entertainment, popular culture and so on in that which we might consider 'the political'. Second, the political economy of the media is investigated with particular emphasis on the structure of media ownership in Australia, how this links with patterns of global media political economy, the link between media workers and media managers, and debates about foreign media ownership. Third, the unit undertakes a study of the relationship between the media and politics including studies of the dominant trends and themes in media policy.


  • The ability to identify the relationship between the liberal democratic tradition and the mass media, and the assumptions (and tensions) that underpin this relationship;
  • Understanding of the legal and regulatory framework of the media industry;
  • The ability to identify the key literatures on media power and effects;
  • Identify the impact that new technologies have on the media and the opportunities and constraints this presents for democracy;
  • Locate the key literature on the media using library sources;
  • Develop an argument, or to provide an opinion, and to do so clearly, accurately and concisely both in written and oral form;
  • Develop skills of collaboration and team work through participation in tutorials.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

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


Twelve credit points of first-year Arts units. It is highly recommended that students only take this unit after they have completed two gateway units in Politics.