Faculty of Arts

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitCommunications and Media Studies
OfferedCaulfield Second semester 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Xin Gu


Previously coded COM5010


This unit engages with the challenges facing the traditional media companies at a time when the mass-market and advertising business models that have long sustained them are under assault from new digital production and distribution technology that is fragmenting audiences and enabling smaller, more entrepreneurial organizations to compete against bureaucratic 'empires'. How do companies such as News Corporation, Channel Nine or Fairfax respond to the threats and opportunities posed by the new digital media businesses like Google, Apple iTunes and Facebook, and community activist projects such as Wikipedia that are leading and exploiting changes triggered by the digital revolution.


Upon completion of this unit students are expected to demonstrate an ability to;

  1. Critically analyse the business models of a variety of traditional media companies and the challenges and opportunities posed by new digital media;
  2. Assess government policy responses to issues arising from new digital technology, media convergence and fragmentation of audiences;
  3. Understand key debates surrounding transformation of public media, such as the Australian Broadcasting Corporation;
  4. Engage in discussion informed by current media research and theory about the changing media environment in Australia and internationally;
  5. Conduct independent research in the field of communications and media;
  6. Think critically and conceptually about contemporary media industries and how they relate with content producers and audiences.

In addition, students taking APG5401 should be able to demonstrate additional conceptual ability in written work.


First Essay (3500 words): 40%
Second essay (3500 words): 40%
Seminar presentation (2000 words): 20%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

One 2-hour seminar per week