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Challenge in Media

Challenge in Media - How to achieve an A*

How the subject is examined and what you need to do

  • The exam board is AQA
  • There are three controlled assessments worth 60%, completed over both Yr 10 & Yr 11
  • There is one exam worth 40%, taken in June of Yr 11, on an annually changing topic

Which skills are essential to gain an A*?

Key Skills

A* Grade

C Grade

Analyse & Respond (AO1 & AO2)

Convincing and effective analysis; Media Terminology used extensively and effectively with confidence; responses are precise and accurate and clearly supported by evidence

SOLO Links: synthesise/elaborate/hypothesise/assess/deep understanding/debate

Solid analysis with appropriate technical terminology used; responses are reasonably accurate and usually supported by evidence


SOLO Links: analyse/classify/contrast/combine

Research, planning and presentation  (AO1 & AO3)

Independent and effective evidence of research and planning; demonstrates flair and creativity and work is presented skilfully

SOLO Links: hypothesise/theorise/assess/initiate/elaborate/


Appropriate research and planning and material is well-presented


SOLO Links: inquire/summarise/combine/observe/outline/


Construct (AO4)

Use production skills appropriately and effectively and handle technology with confidence; consideration of institutional requirements and audience expectations is evidence

SOLO Links: develop/initiate/create/imagine/visualise

Use production skills appropriately with appropriate techniques and conventions demonstrated

SOLO Links: apply/combine/demonstrate

Evaluate (AO4)

Use conventions of the medium effectively with a successful evaluation of own products and place in wider media landscape; all key concepts incorporated

SOLO links: evaluate/judge/synthesise/imagine/reflect

Able to discuss how some of the key concepts have informed the production

SOLO links: explain/interpret/summarise

Assessment Objectives Level 6 Criteria


Recall, select and communicate their knowledge and understanding of media products and the contexts in which they are produced and consumed.

  • Thorough knowledge of *media texts*. Comprehensive examples of contemporary *texts*
  • Substantial arguments given.
  • Substantial evidence of knowledge and preparation.
  • reative ideas about format, style and content.



Analyse and respond to media texts/topics using media key concepts and appropriate terminology.


Demonstrate research, planning and presentation skills.

  • Answer is well structured and demonstrates autonomous research and planning.
  • Assured written style and extended use of terminology


Construct and evaluate their own products using creative and technical skills.

  • Assured explanation showing detailed understanding of audience.
  • Creative and fully appropriate design.
  • vidence of imagination and aptitude to create an attractive design.

Essential Knowledge

Media Language: to understand and use the terminology used in Media analysis & production; to develop conceptual knowledge & understanding

Media Institutions: to be able to assess and reflect upon the processes and people responsible for production, distribution, exhibition, regulation and promotion of the media

Media Audiences: to be able to classify, and categorise specific audience types and appreciate how the media targets and manipulate audience responses

Media Representations: to be able to assess and judge media re-presentations and to develop appropriate representations in your own work