If you want to become more confident in discussing ideas and important issues, learn more about how producers communicate ideas to the audience, and show off your practical skills by devising and creating your own media production, then you really need to pick A Level Media Studies. OCR’s specification gives you lots of opportunities to apply critical and theoretical frameworks to media texts so you can develop your understanding of their impact on the world.
This overview of the specification includes information about what to expect int the exam and some thoughts about the coursework (NEA).
Summary of Assessment
There are two examination papers, both worth 35% of the overall grade, and a cross-media product which makes up the final 30%.
Media Messages is the first paper. There are 70 marks available, the exam lasts for 2 hours and it is divided into two sections.
Section A: News and Online Media
This section focuses on contemporary news in the UK. You need to explore how and why newspapers continue to evolve as media products and analyse the relationship between both online and offline news. You are expected to study:
- two front covers and one complete edition of The Daily Mail
- two front covers and one complete edition of The Guardian
- at least two articles from both The Mail Online and The Guardian websites.
Section B: Media Language and Representation
Once again, OCR sets which media texts for study, but they will be in the following forms: magazines, advertising, and marketing and music videos.
- Old Spice advertisement
- Lucozade advertisement
- Shelter advertisement
- The Big Issue
You need to choose one text from List A
- Corinne Bailey Rae – Stop Where You Are
- Massive Attack – Unfinished Sympathy
- Emeli Sandé – Heaven
You also need to pick a music video from List B
- Fatboy Slim – Ya Mama
- Radiohead – Burn the Witch
- David Guetta – Titanium
The second paper is called Evolving Media. It is marked out of 70 and the exam lasts for 2 hours. Again, there are two sections.
Section A: Media Industries and Audiences
- The Jungle Book (1967) and The Jungle Book (2016)
- One complete episode of the BBC Radio One Breakfast Show
Section B: Long Form Television Drama
You must study two complete episodes of the television dramas listed below. Pick one US English Language programme form List A and one European non-English language show from List B:
- Mr Robot
- House of Cards
- Stranger Things
- The Killing
- Deutschland 83
Making Media (NEA)
One of the reasons why students are attracted to the subject is the opportunity to create a cross-media product. Your responses are marked out of 60 and the results makes up 30% of the total A level.
You are expected to complete a Statement of Intent which outlines how your products demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the key concepts in media studies. If you would like know more about this part of the Making Media component, you should look at our statement of intent examples. Your response should be around 500 words.
The NEA briefs are set by OCR and they change each year. However, you will have to satisfy certain requirements for each media form if you want to achieve the top marks. For example, if you are expected to deliver a television extract, it needs to last three minutes. Anything less than that amount could cost you marks.
For more information about the length and scope of each product, you should read our guide to the indicative content. We have suggested amounts for websites, magazines, newspapers, film trailers, advertisements and other media forms.
OCR A2 Level
Past Papers and Mark Schemes
The following pdf files from OCR’s website will open in new tabs.
|Question Paper||Mark Scheme|
|Media Messages SAM (includes mark scheme)|
|Evolving Media SAM (includes mark scheme)|
|2019 Media Messages||2019 Media Messages Mark Scheme|
|2019 Evolving Media||2019 Evolving Media Mark Scheme|
|2020 Media Messages||2020 Media Messages Mark Scheme|
|2020 Evolving Media||2020 Evolving Media Mark Scheme|