MEDIA CRITICISM FINAL PROJECT

MEDIA CRITICISM FINAL PROJECT

CMST 325 | MEDIA CRITICISM FINAL PROJECT (100 points)

OVERVIEW
You have read in Peter Orlik’s Media Criticism in a Digital Age and blogged about the various aspects
of media criticism—including its history, the role of the critic, the communication process, critical
ingredients, business & consumer gratifications, and depiction and structural analytical methods
(see table of contents). Your task now is to conduct an in-depth piece of media criticism using a
theoretical framework of your choice and a media text/platform of your choice. The media to be
critiqued can be in any format (i.e., a popular television show, a radio program or podcast, website,
social network platform, video game, variants of advertising, print media, etc.) that lends itself to
analysis. Your written essay will consist of approximately 2500-3000 written words, accompanied by
a multimedia presentation that integrates embedded video, images, graphics, and hypertext. You are
bound by all the rules of APA Style and both your essay and blog post will be assessed according to a
formal rubric available in Canvas.
STEP ONE: SELECT A MEDIA TEXT
I recommend that you review your blog posts to determine if any particular media format, platform,
or genre stands out to you as particularly interesting, controversial, and/or worthy of deeper study as
a media critic. You may select from any of the media formats contained in your blog posts or critical
responses, however you must choose an alternate episode/app/site than the one(s) you originally
discussed. If nothing from previous assignments inspires you, then you can select an entirely new
media text/form. Keep in mind that a major premise of media criticism is that all media have value,
even those we might initially relegate to be “junk media.” Do not select a media text or
episode/video/film that has previously been used in class to illustrate a principle.
STEP TWO: CHOOSE A THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
We have encountered various communication theories throughout the semester, including (but not
limited to):
• Uses and gratifications theory (p. 208)
• Theory of Flow (p 199)
• Inheritance Effects (p. 199)
• Gans’ Taste Publics (p. 235)
• Social Learning Theory (p. 249)
• Cultivation Theory (p. 251)
• Symbolic Interactionism (p. 289)
• Social Values Model (p. 314)
• Semiotics (p. 316)
An other option is to select a theory from those you studied previously in CMDA 210 (Theorizing
Communication and Media Arts) and apply one (or more) to your chosen media text for this
assignment. You may not submit the same critique that you did for that class.Dr. V. E. Greenwood | updated 8/4/2021
2 of 5
STEP THREE: COMPOSE AN EVIDENCE-BASED WRITTEN CRITIQUE
Overall, your critique should include all five (5) elements of criticism (see chapter one) in varying
degrees and in whatever sequence you deem logical and appropriate in achieving your goal:
• Apprehend (observe and describe) the various elements of your media text/platform
• Analyze the media text according to the type of critique (i.e., originator, message, or medium
criticism—see chapter three) paying attention to specific elements pertinent to the type of criticism
you are conducting.
• Interpret possible meanings according to your chosen theoretical framework;
• Orient or contextualize the work to its place in the history of similar works
• Valuate the particular and general quality of the media text/platform. The end of your essay should
summarize the importance of your criticism to both theory and current practices.
As a budding media critic your goal is to craft the most detailed and insightful critique as possible in
approximately 2500-3000 words (12-point font, double-spaced, paginated). As an academic essay,
your media critique should follow the norms and standards of college-level writing and you are
bound by all the rules of the APA Style Guide (see www.apastyle.org).
Keep in mind that academic writing requires you to do research to enable framing your critique with
the appropriate social, political, and economic contexts. Therefore, cite all sources for your
research in APA format and including a References list at the end (not included in your word
count). A public or shareable URL to your supplemental blog post (using multimedia) should be
included in the header of your written essay (see Step Four).
Upload your essay as a doc, docx, or rtf file within the Media Criticism Project Assignment in
Canvas so that it can be run through anti-plagiarism software. Do NOT upload a PDF file. Your
submission will be processed through anti-plagiarism software and assessed according to the rubric
embedded within Canvas and included at the end of this document.
STEP FOUR: PRODUCE A MULTIMEDIA BLOG POST
This production phase should come after you have composed your essay.
As a budding multimedia producer your goal is also to clarify and deepen the meaning of your ideas
using basic multimedia artifacts. Your written essay should be accompanied by a final blog post that
integrates embedded video, images, graphics, and hypertext to illustrate and summarize your overall
critique. To this end, your blog post should include:
• An abbreviated blog post title (similar to the title of your essay)
• Begin your blog post with a brief 50-word abstract paragraph that summarizes the key ideas of your essay.
• Your blog post (including the abstract paragraph) should be a 450-500-word summary of the key ideas
from your essay. You can include reflective commentary, if you wish.
• Include a minimum of 3 embedded images or graphics that illustrate key ideas in your essay. Make sure
to caption them with proper source attribution. For example: [Source: Gannett News © 2021]
• Include a minimum of 1 embedded video clip to support your essay
• At least 10 embedded hyperlinks (hypertext) that deepen the readers’ understanding of your ideas. No
naked URLs. Note: An image or video linked to a source does not count towards this 10 embedded hyperlink
requirement.
• Make sure to include the direct blog post URL in the header of your essay. MEDIA CRITICISM FINAL PROJECT


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