As I noted, I had planned on you working on a final project due at the end of the term. However, because so many of you expressed a desire to work on your writing, I scrapped that in favor of three smaller assignments where I can give you real-time feedback.
Each of these papers will be a 1,200-1,500 word analysis of the frames used by media to discuss a specific incident within a given topic area. The goal of the assignment is to take a specific news event from within the past two years (24 months) and analyze the frames used by media in different countries to explain it, and look for any evidence of the effectiveness of that framing. Look for a specific news event, like a player or team winning an event, rather than an ongoing issue, like the pandemic. Use established news media—tabloids and online news sources are ok, but look for traditional news outlets and not bloggers or aggregators.
The incidents you choose can be from within the world of sports, but they don’t have to be. I urge to to choose incidents about which you’re knowledgeable or very interested in, but you will have a lot of latitude. I will ask you to pitch three potential incidents, and I’ll provide you feedback to help steer your choice.
As for topic areas, the first framing analysis should be of a news event involving an issue of gender. The second one should involve an issue of race. The third one is completely up to you.
At the end of the course, you will present one of your framing analyses to the class. It is up to you which one you want to present, and you should incorporate the feedback I provide into your presentation.
Pitches should be sent to me as a DM in Slack. Final analyses should be written in Google Docs; send a link to me in a Slack DM.
A final twist: you can do these analyses (and presentations) as 2-3 person team projects or as individuals. I will grade them exactly the same either way, but everyone in a group will get the same grade. If it’s a team, we’ll just be doing a lot of Slack group chats.
Present the basic facts of the event.
Briefly introduce at least 10 different news stories from at least two different countries about the event, providing the headline, the publication, and the author if available. Try to group the articles based on the frames mentioned in the headline if available.
Explain the 3-4 most common frames used in these articles.
Which articles use them, and in which articles are they most prominent?
Which articles don’t use those those frames, and what do they emphasize instead?
What can you conclude about the authors and publications studied by their use of frames? What about their audience or the culture for which they’re writing?
Are there national differences that emerge from the articles you find? Why or why not?
Can you find any evidence, in terms of polls or further coverage, of whether the public believes in the frames used in the stories you selected or rejects them?
Which interests—those of organizations, individuals, businesses, governments, leaders—are best served by the frames most commonly used?
What other frames do you think authors should have discussed in their coverage of this event? Why do you think they didn’t include those frames?
What are the bigger implications for society and culture for the use of these frames to cover this event? What do you expect to see in the coverage of the next comparable event?
Did the student/group meet the deadlines for the proposal and the full assignment?
Did the analysis meet the assignment specifications for length and topic?
Was the analysis written coherently, with good grammar, mechanics and organization?
Did the analysis demonstrate good research and background information?
Did the analysis include thoughtful analysis of news stories?
Did the analysis coherently explain frames involved?
Did the analysis provide conclusions about differences among authors, publications, and national/international context?
Did the analysis offer appropriate conclusions about interests served, limitations of the analysis, and implications of the frames used?
In the presentation...
Did the student/group present frames compellingly?
Did they present context?
Did they present conclusions and implications for media and society appropriately?
Framing analysis schedule
Readings and assigment (due 11:59pm)
Proposal for gender framing analysis
Final for gender framing analysis
Proposal for race framing analysis
Two questions for Stef Reid
Final for race framing analysis
Proposal for wildcard framing analysis
Final for wildcard framing analysis
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