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2019/20 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

SPPO3690 New Media in Latin America

20 creditsClass Size: 20

Module manager: Dr Thea Pitman
Email: t.pitman@leeds.ac.uk

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

Pre-requisite qualifications

Successful completion of level 2

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module aims to introduce students to the exciting and fast-developing field of new media in Latin America by providing them with the methodological and theoretical frameworks within which to work in this field; a historical overview of new media’s development in Latin America; and more detailed exploration of its impact on/uptake by the societies of the region – both Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking – and on how particular groups of people negotiate its impact on their sense of identity. On completion of the module, students should have been able to demonstrate their grasp of the above by means of a literature review and argumentative essay. They will also have had the opportunity to investigate a topic of their choice and evidence this via the presentation of a group project.

Objectives

This module aims to build on level 2 modules in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies that focus on in-depth study of cultural production (literature, cinema, theatre and performance), as well as those dealing with complex socio-historical issues, by bringing these two disciplinary approaches together and moving the focus of attention from traditional topics of study within the subject area to the exciting and fast-developing field of new media in Latin America.
In terms of content, the module aims to provide students with the methodological and theoretical frameworks within which to work in this field; an historical overview of new media’s development in Latin America; and more detailed exploration of its impact on/uptake by the societies of the region and on how particular groups of people negotiate its impact on their sense of identity. All of this aims to equip students with the necessary knowledge and skills to work productively with the complexities of contemporary Latin American societies.
Its final objective is to offer students the opportunity to move from research-led teaching to research-based learning of their own via a group project on an aspect of Latin American new media of their choice.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students should:

1. Possess good general knowledge regarding the historical development of new media technologies, in particular the internet, in Latin America. They should also be aware of the effects of state policies and grassroots activism associated with new media in the region, as well as of the complexities of the relationship between new media technologies and globalisation, and the way this problematises the paradigm of area studies per se.

2. Have a good understanding of the methodological issues, including ethics, that studying new media raises.

3. Be able to evidence a sound grasp of the main theoretical approaches to the study of new media, particularly those dealing with the representation of aspects of identity, and be able to adapt them, where necessary, to suit the particular context which they are studying. These first three learning outcomes will be evidenced, in the first instance, by a literature review.

4. Possess in-depth knowledge of a selection of key topics and be able to apply suitable theoretical approaches to those topics, evidenced by means of an argumentative essay.

5. Be able to develop a suitable methodology and theoretical framework to investigate a topic of their choice and evidence this via the presentation of a group project.


Syllabus

The module will be delivered via a series of lectures and seminars designed to present and explore key issues in methodology/theoretical approaches as well as selected case studies. Typical topics to be covered include: the discourse of Latin American-ness (‘latinidad’) in the new mediascape, social activism and new media, and the expression of key aspects of identity (eg. race and ethnicity; gender and sexuality; class and nationality) through new media. The module will take its examples from both Spanish-America and Brazil, and from both (new) genres of cultural production facilitated by new media platforms (hypermedia fiction, net.art, blogs, computer games), as well as from ethnographic case studies of the use of new media by different groups of people. The lecture/seminar part of the module will facilitate students in the production of a literature review and an argumentative essay. Subsequently students will be divided into small groups for project work which will be supported by means of individual group tutorials and will culminate in the final presentation of group projects in the last week of classes.
Nb. for students of SH Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies: this module can count for either your Spanish or your Portuguese credits.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning20.501.00
Lecture71.007.00
Seminar61.006.00
Private study hours186.00
Total Contact hours14.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Reading prescribed materials/ preparation for seminars – 74 hours
Web-based research – 30 hours
Preparation for literature review – 20 hours
Preparation for essay – 40 hours
Preparation for group project – 20 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Seminar participation throughout the module - informal monitoring of student progress.
The literature review will also provide a more formal, summative means of monitoring student progress early in the module and therefore allow for any necessary intervention to help any students who are struggling with the materials.

Methods of assessment


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay3,000 words50.00
Group ProjectOpen Format30.00
Literature Review1,000 words20.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Suitable format for group project to be agreed in discussion with individual groups. Should any group of students fail the group project they will be given an alternative form of assessment (an essay or series of short answer questions) to complete individually by way of resit.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 13/11/2018 09:25:41

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