Participation – 15%
Prior to each session, students will be required to devise a thoughtful and open-ended question (a minimum of five sentences in length) that engages with at last one of the assigned readings and that focuses on one key theme or argument that they find provoking and worthy of further examination and discussion.
Class Presentation – 35%
Each week, one student will have to prepare a 30-minute presentation on a media artifact (film, TV show, website, video game, music album, magazine, news article, podcast, blog, meme, etc.) or an event (news coverage, presidential debate, release of a new technology, digital action, etc.) in relation to the topic of that week. In addition to describing the object, the student will present an analysis of its economic, cultural, social, ethical, or political significance in relation to the assigned readings. The presentation will be followed by a 20-minute period of questions and discussion that the student will have to facilitate. A transcript of the presentation (7–10 pages) has to be submitted to the instructor one day before the presentation, and a hardcopy of the transcript (1 inch margins, 1½ spaced, Times New Roman, size 12) has to be submitted in class before the presentation.
Grade: / 35
- Respect of the guidelines (deadline, time, quotations, references): / 4
- Quality of the writing / speaking (clarity, flow, grammar and syntax): / 5
- Organization and coherence (development of ideas, logic, transitions): / 8
- Mobilization of the assigned readings that reflects a good understanding: / 8
- Visual support (presentation, clips, etc.): / 5
- Originality and pertinence of the object: / 5
Dissertation – 40%, due last session
At the end of the semester, you will have to submit a 15-page dissertation (1 inch margins, 1½ spaced, Times New Roman, size 12) on the current debate of your choice. You will have to discuss this debate by using the thesis / antithesis / synthesis method and by referring to class material and other reliable sources. Each paper should include a clear thesis statement, supporting evidence, original ideas, counter-arguments, and examples to illustrate your point of view. Your dissertation should have proper quotations.
Grade: / 40
- Respect of the guidelines (deadline, number of words, quotations, references): / 6
- Quality of the writing (clarity, flow, grammar and syntax): / 6
- Organization and coherence (development of ideas, logic, transitions): / 10
- Quality of the argumentation: / 10
- Pertinence and good use of the sources: / 8
Student Work Examples (PDF - 1.4MB) Edited by the instructor. All dissertations are courtesy of MIT students and used with permission.
Participation in the Class Project – 10 %
The class will select one common theme that combines their interests and perform a collaborative media analysis on the class forum. Each student will choose his / her own perspective; post a 350-word analysis on the forum and comment on others' work.
Class Project Question
Do you consider Internet as a means to democratize societies and to empower people or as a media that facilitates the proliferation of ideologies, propaganda, violence, surveillance or control?
- You can focus on one or two aspects of the question (democracy, empowerment, ideologies, propaganda, violence or surveillance).
- You have to include a list of references at the end of the text and make proper quotation.
- Your essay is due by Session 8 (max 450 words).
- You have to comment on five of your classmates' essays by Session 8 (max 150 words).
Grade: / 10
- Respect of the guidelines (deadlines, number of words, quotations, references): / 1
- Quality of the writing (clarity, flow, grammar and syntax): / 1
- Organization and coherence (development of ideas, logic, transitions): / 3
- Mobilization of the assigned readings that reflects a good understanding: / 3
- Pertinence of the comments on five classmates' essays: / 2
Graduate students are required to present in class twice and write a 30-page dissertation.