Module title: Covering the Arts

SCQF level: 07:
SCQF credit value: 20.00
ECTS credit value: 10

Module code: JAC07119
Module leader: Allan Boughey
School School of Arts and Creative Industries
Subject area group: Media and Screen


2019/0, Trimester 1, Face-to-Face,
Occurrence: 001
Primary mode of delivery: Face-to-Face
Location of delivery: MERCHISTON
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: Allan Boughey
Module Organiser:

Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
Learning & Teaching methods including their alignment to LOs
The weekly classes will focus largely on the conversion of theory into practice and encompass all five learning outcomes. Lectures will concentrate on the theories, ideas, and information that underpin arts and culture journalism, including how the arts industries function, culture and society, understanding arts and culture audiences, the role of the media, and the mechanics of reviewing (LOs 2, 3, 4, and 5). Tutorials will involve consideration of previews (and links to news writing), reviewing techniques (comparing and contrasting different writers and approaches), and long-form arts and culture reporting (LOs 2, 3, 4, and 5). In addition, organised group and independent individual field trips will offer the opportunity to gain an understanding of a range of arts and culture events (LO1), and practise the skills, knowledge and understanding gained in classes (LOs 4 and 5). These field trips, and independent study around them (such as research), will further help inform your understanding of the function of arts and culture journalism (LO2) and its relationship with the arts and culture industries (LO3).

Embedding of employability/PDP/Scholarship Skills
This module is vocational and analytical in nature and will be delivered by experienced practitioners. The practical component of the assessment will enable you to build your understanding of the arts and culture industries as well as the reporting of it, thus building strong skills that can be used in a professional capacity (reviews are used widely across the news and information media and offer a good opportunity to be published). The essay component of the assessment is designed to develop your scholarship skills by requiring you to engage with relevant theory, ideas and information.

Research / teaching linkages
The module will consider the latest research into arts and culture journalism (for instance, our shifting ideas about the links between culture, identity, and society, and the digital impact of arts information provision on traditional media – for instance, are bloggers killing the print review?). It is also likely to involve input from other areas of the school.

Supporting equality and diversity
Every effort will be made to ensure all students benefit from a similar experience, in terms of classes and field trips. Classes and field trips will be specifically tailored to student needs and requirements.

The module will consider how arts and culture journalism functions in other countries, especially the US and within continental Europe. Media convergence means it is relatively straightforward to engage with, for instance, reviewing techniques used in India or China. Consequently, students will be encouraged to consider the different approaches taken around the world and the social and cultural conditions that necessitate them.

Formative Assessment:
There will be both formative and summative assessment. You will practice writing previews and reviews and be given feedback on your work. This will enable you to build your practical skills as you work towards the summative assessments.

Summative Assessment:
The first assessment will be an essay of 1,500 words that should present and evaluate arguments, information and ideas to evidence your understanding of an aspect of the UK arts and culture (the aspect you chose to write about should be negotiated with the module leader). The second assessment will be a portfolio of arts writing, consisting of at least one preview piece plus two reviews, totalling 1800 words).

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Seminar 12
Face To Face Tutorial 24
Independent Learning Guided independent study 152
Face To Face Lecture 12
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200

Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Essay 40 4,5 8 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 1500
Portfolio 60 1,2,3 14 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 1800
Component 1 subtotal: 40
Component 2 subtotal: 60
Module subtotal: 100

Description of module content:

This module seeks to develop your journalistic skills, knowledge, and understanding of the UK arts industries. The emphasis will be on journalistic practices within arts and culture reporting using a “hands on” approach that offers considerable scope for gaining practical experience in an area that appeals to you, whether that is popular music, theatre, movies, or modern art. Building on the reporting skills that you are acquiring in other modules, you will gain an understanding of the function and form of covering the arts, especially previewing and reviewing live events, while underpinning and contextualising learning with critical analysis of arts and culture journalism practice. As a result, module content will require you: 1) to consider and practice how news reporting techniques can be used to preview arts events; 2) to critically analyse and practice different reviewing techniques; 3) to analyse other aspects of arts reporting, such as long-form feature articles and profiles. The weekly lectures will encourage you to engage with key aspects of arts journalism, while tutorials will give you the chance to compare and contrast different reviewing and writing styles and work on your own reviews. To ensure you have sufficient material to work on in tutorials (and to enable you to meet the assessment requirements), a number of live arts event field trips will be organised (for instance, to music gigs, live theatre, film screenings, gallery exhibitions, and even opera).

Learning Outcomes for module:

Upon completion of this module you will be able to:
LO1: Develop an awareness of a range of live arts and culture events in Edinburgh;
LO2: Develop an understanding of a range of arts and culture journalism;
LO3: Demonstrate your understanding of an aspect of UK arts and culture and its relationship with journalism;
LO4: Demonstrate your knowledge of “reviewing” live arts and culture events;
LO5: Show an understanding of different reviewing techniques and approaches.

Indicative References and Reading List - URL:
JAC07119 Covering the Arts