English Language in the media

The details
Language and Linguistics
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 15 December 2023
09 October 2023


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA QQ13 English Language and Linguistics,
BA QQ15 English Language and Linguistics (Including Placement Year),
BA QQ16 English Language and Linguistics (Including Foundation Year),
BA QQ3D English Language and Linguistics (Including Year Abroad),
MLINQA15 English Language and Lingistics (Including Placement Year),
MLINQA16 English Language and Linguistics (Including Year Abroad),
MLINQQ14 English Language and Linguistics,
BA P510 Journalism and English Language,
BA P511 Journalism and English Language (Including Placement Year),
BA P512 Journalism and English Language (Including Year Abroad),
BA QP10 English Language with Media Communication,
BA QP11 English Language with Media Communication (Including Year Abroad),
BA QP12 English Language with Media Communication (Including Placement Year),
BA QP13 English Language with Media Communication (Including Foundation Year)

Module description

This module explores the ways in which language is used for different purposes within and across a range of mass and social media. In the module we examine how language is used in such contexts as social media posts, political speeches, interviews and the mass media more broadly to explore questions such as how do people make use of social media to construct identities for themselves; how are media used to disseminate political messages; how are public figures held to account through the media; how is political rhetoric constructed to generate audience approval; how is the media related to language change; and how are language attitudes and ideologies related to notions of correctness/standardness in the media? Throughout the module we will focus on language at the micro and macro level and we will discuss topics such as language and power, language and identity, and language and ideology. The module will present different analytic tools and techniques for investigating language use in different media.

Module aims

This module aims to introduce you to the analytic strategies for understanding how language is used in and across a range of different media to achieve different sociocultural aims and objectives. The module will raise your awareness of different ways in which individuals use language in media contexts, as well as how language use and change is shaped and influenced in and through media. The module aims to provide you with opportunities to identify, document, and analyse common types of language use, change, variation and standardisation occurring in different media.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module you will be able to
a) critically discuss how language is used across a range of media
b) evaluate different media texts using a range of linguistic tools and techniques
c) identify how identities and language ideologies are promoted and/or challenged through media
d) use conversation-analytic methods to analyse the means by which public figures are held to account by questioning
e) apply a basic understanding of socio-linguistic perspectives and principles on language use, change and variation, including language attitudes and ideologies, to media

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

Weekly 2 hour lecture/seminar


The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Individual written project     80% 
Practical   Group Presentation    20% 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Marisa Brook, email: marisa.brook@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Marisa Brook and Dr Rebecca Clift
marisa.brook@essex.ac.uk, office 4.207, Number 2286 Rebecca - rclift@essex.ac.uk, Room 4.332, Number 2888



External examiner

Dr Sam Christian D'Elia
Available via Moodle
Of 20 hours, 20 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information
Language and Linguistics

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