Media Studies 2nd Ed. Non-thesis Master's Program

The 2nd Ed. Media Studies program, which primarily targets media professionals or those pursuing a career in this sector, aims to help its students develop an understanding and a critical eye towards different processes and forms of media production and consumption in relation to wider contexts, as well as to foster their professional skills. As an interdisciplinary field of study, the program consists of courses from a variety of subject areas covering social, political, cultural and technical issues relevant to the study of the institutions, content and audiences of the media. The program offers only evening courses, which allows the professional people continue their higher education. In order to earn the master’s degree, students have to complete 30 credits (10 courses) along with writing a term project once they are done with their course work. Upon the successful completion of the requirements of the program, a M.S. degree in MCS will be conferred. A good command of the Turkish language is required of all students since some of the courses taught in the program are designed to examine written and audio-visual materials in Turkish. Candidates whose primary language is not Turkish have to submit proof of proficiency in Turkish.



Admission procedure will be implemented according to the Academic Rules and Regulations Concerning METU Graduate School of Social Sciences.




Introduction to Media Studies

As an introduction to theories of media and communications this course aims to offer to students a critical exposition of the explanatory frameworks provided by a range of different perspective. On the basis of an historical introduction it focuses on the theoretical contributions of major schools (namely, political economy, critical theory, structural and post structural approaches and cultural studies). The course aims a systematic expositions of the key concepts of each approach placed in its historical context and offers a critical and comparative perspective to assess the strengths and weakness of each theoretical framework.


Sociology  and ethics of journalism

The course examines the profession of journalism in its relations to other socio-economic and political actors and discusses the key ethical issues confronting media professionals, journalists. The relationship between media atmosphere (which consists of the level of democratic development, characteristics of state and government in a given country), nature of the media ownership and civil society, and the practice of journalism will be discussed. The course argues that media ethics cannot be understood without refering to such socilogical dimensions of the profession.  Topics to be covered include: 'What are the critical ethical considerations to which journalists need to be sensitive during the practice of reporting?' What is ethics and professional ethics? Is there an ethics for journalists? What is the relationship between media and democracy? Ethical dilemmas in war and election reporting. Privacy, sexism, plagiarism and reporting on minorities. Emerging ethical concerns in the new electronic media, etc. The course will emphasize discussion, debate and analysis of specific concrete cases from the international and Turkish practice of journalism


News Writing and Reporting

The course aims to introduce students with the basic skills required for a journalist or news reporter. Focusing on practical work, students will learn basics of news writing and reporting such as accuracy, newsworthiness, fairness, objectivity and respecting ethical principles and deadlines. A lot of news reading and writing will be done throughout the course to develop skills in writing hard news, features, interviews, analysis and columns and to make students more familiar with different styles. Students will also have the opportunity to listen to and to ask questions to senior journalists who will be coming to the class as guests to talk on their specific fields of specialization such as interviews, war and conflict reporting, investigative journalism, column writing, etc.


Introduction to cultural studies

The course is designed to provide students with analytical tools to conceptualise the field of cultural practices. It presents a critical review of contemporary theoretical positions developed by the Frankfurt School, neo-Gramscian Marxism, Bakhtin, de Certeau, Bourdieu, Lefebvre, Debord, etc. A brief introduction on the theory of ideology, with which most students are likely to be unfamiliar, will be made since it constitutes the basic analytical premise of cultural studies.  Special attention will be paid to the interplay of ideology, culture, and power, the trans-formation(s) of the field of cultural practices, and the contestatory character of popular or mass-mediated cultural forms. Among the themes to be explored are the elite/mass or high/popular culture binaryism, the dichotomies of domination versus resistance and opposition versus ideological incorporation, the pragmatics of everyday life, and the culture of the society of spectacle. Within this context, various popular or mass-mediated cultural forms, texts and narratives (e.g. popular cinema, popular music, televised sports, and television serials) will also be referred to.


Cinema Studies

Cinema Studies is a broad field that takes as its subject matter the interdisciplinary study of various aspects of the institution of cinema. Cinema Studies encompasses the studies of the modes of production and distribution of films on the one side, and the various loci and nature of the viewing experience on the other. The two sides of this process are intermediated by the interference of social, political, and cultural factors that make history, of which the films produce a certain specific representation. In addition, this course will selectively focus on at least one period, one national cinema, one genre, one auteur and one film theory.


Media economics

This course, which is accessible to Media Studies students with or without a background in economics, aims to provide an understanding on major principles, concepts and theories in media economics. It examines the distinctive economic characteristics of the media industry. Areas that will be covered include economics of print media, broadcasting, film and new digital media.



Filmmaking techniques

In this course, the conventional techniques of filmmaking are given to students in practical sense. Thereofore, starting from the development of an idea to the preparations for the shootings (pre-production) and then from shootings of the film scenes (production) to the editing of the images and sounds (post-production) are all in the scope of this course. The conventional techniques used in these phases of filmmaking will be pratically produced as filmic exercises.


Documentary Film Making

In this course, the theoretical readings is articulated with practical exercises on documentary filmmaking. After secreening of some outstanding documentary films, students discuss not only the basic issues but also elaborate the audio-visual regimes and techniques that unfold those issues in a filmic way as well. Thus, at the end of the course, the documentary filmmaking process will be clarified for the students.


Media audiences

The course examines different approaches to the study of media audiences and reception. It compares and contrasts the ways in which the modes of reception and appropriation of media texts are analysed by media studies. Focusing on the interplay of encoding and decoding, it explores the ideological effects of media representations and the use of media in everyday life. It also deals with empirical audience studies, examining audiences for a variety of genres such as news and talk shows. 


Television Programming

This course covers all aspects of a production of various TV programs including forming an original idea, sponsorship, equipment, personnel and budgeting. At the end of the semester, following their project work, students are expected to reach an adequate level of expertise to be a producer.

Note: Conditions permitting, this course may be conducted in parallel with a advanced video production course, and students may produce video material in their projects.


New Media Technologies

Recent adoptions of new media technologies, primarily including the Internet, mobile phones and satellite television, have had critical implications for the transformation of communication environment in modern societies. In order to understand and explain this process, it is necessary to build an extensive debate and a critical perspective on communication, technology and society relationship. This graduate course, in this context, will start with a discussion on main theoretical approachs of technology and society relationship which comprises ‘technological determinism’, ‘social shaping of technology approach’, and ‘socio-technical approach’. What will follow is a further discussion about the interaction among ‘power/social control’ and communication technologies in modern societies.  Relatedly, the topics to be covered include the distinctions between new media and old media, new media technologies and their social adoption process, the diffusion of new media technologies across the societies, structural transformation of media industries, Information/Knowledge Society, democracy and new media, and lastly new media and culture.


Campaign Planning

This course covers all aspects of a communication campaign (from forming opinions to planning of media selection) with domestic and international case studies and term projects. Students will prepare  a full project report and  present their projects at the end of the semester.


Texts, Contexts and Readers

The aim of this course is to construct a theoretical perspective for the analysis of media texts. For this purpose, theoretical approaches of Barthes, Bakhtin, Volosinov, Hodge, Kress, Fowler, van Dijk will be read and their methodologies will be disscussed. The course will focus on language and representation, social construction of media narratives, semiotic structure of different media, reading and signification, with a special emphasis on culture and power. Different media genres including news, TV series, serials, continuous serials, talk shows, reality shows, advertisements etc. will be analysed focusing on their narrative and semiotic characteristics.


Media and Society

As a member of contemporary societies we share a general view that the role of media in modern life is significantly increasing. However, the nature and the extent of media infuence in society is a point of important debate in scholarly accounts as well as popular commentary, casual conversations and daily experiences. This course intends to give a review on main paradigms of media studies for second education students, and to fulfil absence of systematic studies on general theories about the media and society relations. The main concern of this course is to locate and clarify the fundamental scholarly assumptions as to the role of the media in society viewed from different perspectives and methodologies, in order to make them avaible for reassessment.