MDIA 2301 - Media Policy and Media Law

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2015

This course examines the various media law, policy and regulatory frameworks in Australia that affect media establishments and how they enhance or constrain media institutions and the public in their communication activities. It will also examine the media regulatory frameworks of other countries. The course will examine the success or failure of existing media policy and regulations in a technologically dynamic media environment.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code MDIA 2301
    Course Media Policy and Media Law
    Coordinating Unit Media
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites At least 12 units of level 1 Arts courses or equivalent, including 3 units in Media
    Incompatible MDIA 2202
    Restrictions Available to BMedia students only
    Course Description This course examines the various media law, policy and regulatory frameworks in Australia that affect media establishments and how they enhance or constrain media institutions and the public in their communication activities. It will also examine the media regulatory frameworks of other countries. The course will examine the success or failure of existing media policy and regulations in a technologically dynamic media environment.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Ying Jiang

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Understand how Australian media laws and regulations compare with those of select ther nations
    2 Understand certain media policies and regulations can either enable or constrain effective medi environment
    3 Understand the obligations and rights of media praticitioners in the execution o their duties
    4 Understand some of the problems and limitations of applying old media laws in new media evironments
    5 Become more skilled in critical thinking and case analysis
    6 Become more skilled in evaluating the relevance and appropriateness of regulatory frameworks
    7 Be able to appreciate the complex issues associated with media regulation
    8 Be able to research and evaluate media products and policies
    9 Understand changing media landscapes and their possible legal implications

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1,2,3,4
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 6,7,8
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 4,7
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 3,5
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 9
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 4,7
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 7,8
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1,2,4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    A textbook must be purchased.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    1 x 2 hour lecture each week
    3 hours reading each week in which the content from the lecture is elaborated
    1x1 hour tutorial each week in which interactive learning in small groups applies the knowledge to a series of case studies

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    1x2-hour lecture per week 24 hours per week
    1x1-hour tutorial per week 12 hours per week
    3 hours reading per week 36 hours per week
    4 hours research per week 48 hours per week
    3 hours assignment preparation per week 36 hours per week
    TOTAL=156 hours per semester
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week 1 Welcome, Course Overview
    Week 2 Basic Concepts in Media Law and Regulations
    Week 3 Freedom of Information
    Week 4 Offensive Publications
    Week 5 Privacy
    Week 6 Contempt of Court
    Week 7 Defamation
    Week 8 Copyright and Intellectual Property
    Week 9 Media Ownership and Control
    Week 10 Regulation of Content & Classification Board
    Week 11 Media and National Security
    Week 12 Course Review and Closure

    Specific Course Requirements
    There are no specific course requirements.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Students will work in smaller groups in tutorials to analyse cases for each topic. Each assignment requires students to conduct independent research about the legal environment and media industry and prepare reports on their findings using a variety of online platforms.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    Assessment Task Task Type Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    Online tests Formative and Summative

    Week 3,6,9

     20% LO1,2,3,4

    Research/project proposal 
    Formative and Summative Week 6 30% LO4,5,6,7,8
    Final essay Formative and Summative Week 12 40% LO1,2,4,5,6,7,9
    Attendance and participation Formative weekly 10% LO5,6,7,8
    Assessment Related Requirements
    All students are expected to work consistently outside of class hours, both on assignments and in preparing for and reflecting on the topics for both tutorials and their major essay/project.
    Assessment Detail

    Assessment 01: E-tests

    Three online tests will be available on myuni, the questions are based on the textbook this course is using.

    Value 20%

    Assessment 02: Research/Project proposal and literature review

    Due date: 1 April

    Worth: 30%

    Length: 1000- 1500 words max

    This piece of assignment is meant to get you started on your major research project and to ensure that you apply research skills and due diligence in your work. You are expected to submit the title and outline of your major research or project with proper research methodology. We expect an analysis of at least 8 refereed and published references plus a body of literature to be used in the final essay/project. Include a bibliographic list of sources to be used for the major project/research. Refer to the attached template of research proposal.

    Value 30%

    Assessment 03: Attendance and participation

    Tutorial attendance is worth 10%. While university regulation requires at least 80%

    attendance to complete the requirements of a course, it is advisable that you attend all classes where practically possible. Please note that paid employment/work is not a valid excuse for absence. You must make such arrangements with your employer.

    Please note that even though this aspect of the course is only weighted 10%, if a student fails to meet the attendance and participation requirement, it will be assumed that such a student did not fulfil the requirements of the course irrespective of the cumulative average of other assessable components and therefore will fail the course. Your participation in the student led discussions plus attendance will make up this component of the course.

    Assessment 04: Final essay/project

    Due: 3 June

    Worth: 40%

    Length: 2000 words or project equivalent

    Topic: TBA


    Each essay or project should be printed and bound. Please NO assignment should be submitted in plastic sleeves or printed on two sided paper. Make sure you keep both a hard and an electronic copy of your final essay or project in case something goes wrong.

    All assignments (excluding digital work) must be submitted to the School of Humanities Office (Napier Building, Level 7) before 5pm on the due date. Please attach a signed coversheet (blue for Media).

    Assignments need to be printed (one side of the page only), double-spaced where relevant, with pages numbered. Digital assignments must be submitted in the advised format by the due date/time.

    Students must keep a secure copy of the assignment, whether print or digital format.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
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