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AQA GCSE Media Studies Paper 1 Question 2

Richard Gent | Wednesday March 11, 2020


On Your Marks!

There are several key aspects to approaching this question. As always, and as with any question on any paper, taking a moment to break down the wording is crucial.

I know, from bitter experience, a number of candidates who will be supremely confident about their understanding of the codes and conventions of magazine front covers but will launch off into answering this question without securing the actual requirements of the task in their minds.

So what are the examiners looking for here?

Click for Question 2 Paper 1 pdf


Analyse the front cover of Games TM (Figure 1) to show how its design and layout communicate meaning.

So break it down again and let’s look at the specific Assessment Objectives (AOs). 

And in this instance, examiners are looking at the following: “Analyse media products using the theoretical framework of media, including in relation to their contexts

Click here for Levels 2, 3 and 4 Examples pdf

Where do we start?

Breaking Down The Key Words


  • Look at something in detail
  • Break down the relevant component parts

Theoretical Frameworks Leads Us To…………………….

The Crucial 30 Seconds

So, this is what the student’s mind-set should be at this point: (And they have to do it at relative warp speed of course, not this laborious twenty five words a minute typing nonsense I’m doing here.  Forgive me though.  It’s been a long few days.  I only flew in from Vegas after attending the 2020 Edusites AGM on Sunday so I’m a little bleary-eyed.  That Fury bloke certainly can party)

  • What’s this question related to in the CSPs?
  • This was the same as Reveal and Tatler.
  • What were we looking at with Reveal and Tatler?
    • Media Language
    • Media Representations
    • Social and Cultural Contexts
  • So what do each of these entail?
  • Media Language – So things like semiotic analysis


What signs or symbols can we see that might suggest something interesting or that might have meaning or...

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