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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Centre for Open Learning : Literature, Languages and Cultures

Undergraduate Course: Introducing Cultural Studies (Credit Plus) (LLLG07067)

Course Outline
SchoolCentre for Open Learning CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 7 (Year 1 Undergraduate)
Course typeSandwich AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course is for CAHSS International Foundation Programme students only; it is not available to undergraduate students.

Introducing Cultural Studies is designed to encourage critical thinking and to help students develop the analytical skills required to interpret and critically assess texts, images and objects across diverse media. The course will introduce key ideas and theories in the field of cultural studies, and the knowledge and skills developed will be transferable to a broad range of disciplinary contexts.
Course description There will be three 1.5 hour sessions per week, over 11 weeks. Each session will deal with a specific topic and will combine short lectures (with audio/visual materials), group tasks, and discussion. The first five weeks focus on key arguments and explicitly develop critical skills, in order to model good practice in close reading and analysis. Thereafter, study skills (analysis, argumentation, critical reading, etc.) will be embedded. The course material will be made available through Learn and links to external online sources will be given. Students will be expected to undertake reading/ viewing in preparation for classes.

1. Introduction
a. What is Cultural Studies?
b. The Object of Cultural Studies
c. Culture and Everyday Life

2. Reading Texts, Images and Objects
a. What are the differences between texts, images and objects?
b. Semiotics: Signs and their Role
c. Analysis 1: Advertising

3. High and Low
a. Culture, Tradition and the Role of Institutions
b. Taste and Distinction
c. Analysis 2: Art by Yasmin Reza

4. The Culture Industry
a. Mass Culture: Propaganda and Kitsch
b. Aestheticising Everyday Life
c. Analysis 3: Newspapers, Montage and Film

5. Counter Cultures
a. Avant-gardes and cultural resistance
b. Approaches to analysis 3: The Spectacle and the Gaze
c. Analysis 4: Public Events: The Olympics
a. Practice Unseen and Essay Planning Workshop

6 & 7: Digital Culture
b. The Internet and New Media
c Technology and the Body
a. Virtual identities and Social media
b. Gaming and Digital Ethics
c. Feedback and Essay Planning Session

8 & 9: Film, Music and Fashion
a. Gender and the gaze
b. Hollywood and Independent Films
c. Fan Culture
a. Fashion, Music and Rebellion
b. Fashion and Identity

10 & 11: Spaces, Places and Movement
b. Globalism and Post-Colonialism
c. Multiculturalism
a. Tourism and Travel
b. Pseudo-Spaces: Airports and Hotels
c. Unseen Assessment and Essay Guidance

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  30
Course Start Lifelong Learning - Session 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 78 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) The course will be assessed through two instruments of assessment.

Essay: Students will submit one essay of 2000 words at the end of the course. This will account for 75% of the overall course grade. Individual essay questions will be developed over the course, allowing students to select and focus on an area of particular interest to them and giving them practice in defining a focus for their writing. As a formative task, students will complete a formative essay plan to decide on their essay topic.

The remaining 25% will awarded on the basis of a time-limited short essay assessment.

To pass, students must achieve a minimum of 40% overall.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Identify and understand some of the central issues in cultural studies;
  2. Demonstrate their understanding both orally and in writing;
  3. Employ critical skills of interpretation, argument and analysis;
  4. Define a research question;
  5. Undertake further study in the humanities and engage confidently with a range of media and learning technologies.
Reading List
Bennett, Andy 2005. Culture and Everyday Life. London: Sage.

Adorno, T. W., 2001.The Culture Industry: Selected Essays on Mass Culture. London: Routledge.
Barthes, Roland 1972. Mythologies. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Benjamin, Walter 2008. The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility, and Other Writings on Media. Ed. Michael Jennings, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.
Bennet, T. et al eds., 2005. New Keywords: A Revised Vocabulary of Culture and Society. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Bordieu, Pierre 1984. Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste. Cambridge MA: Harvard UP.
During, Simon ed., 1999. The Cultural Studies Reader. 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
Debord, Guy 2000. The Society of the Spectacle. Detroit: Black and Red.
Foucault, Michel 1995. Discipline & Punish: The Birth of the Prison. London: Vintage.
Jameson, Fredric 1990. Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Durham: Duke University Press.
Mulvey, Laura 2009. Visual and Other Pleasures. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Turkle, Sherry 2012. Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other. New York: Basic Books.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills The critical skills learnt through cultural analysis can be applied across the range of academic disciplines and beyond. In addition, the students will engage with a variety of learning technologies and develop their confidence in academic writing.
Special Arrangements Students must only be enrolled by the Centre of Open Learning
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserMs Malgorzata Bugaj
Course secretaryMs Kameliya Skerleva
Tel: (0131 6)51 1855
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