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Big Media


Admission requirements

Same as admission requirements for the BA Art History/BA Arts, Media and Society.


This course aims to provide an introduction to the development, transformations, and cultural functions of major media in western contemporary society. Media like the visual arts, literature, television, games, photography, cinema, the Internet, and social media, can all be viewed as major media in western contemporary society. In this course we will discuss the changing landscape in which such media can be situated. We will examine how changes, continuities and convergences of media use, determines our notions of (popular) culture, ethics, and aesthetics, and how these changes colour the social, political, and cultural role of these media.

Course objectives

  • Students become familiar with the major forms and technological underpinnings of media such as books, cinema, television, games and digital media.

  • Students become acquainted with and will be able to make use of the main introductory texts on the topic of the theory and function of media in society.

  • Students develop an understanding of what the main cross-media themes are in the study of media and acquiring knowledge of how these themes can be contextualized.

  • Students learn to understand on a general level the social and cultural implications of the introduction and advance of (new) media.


The timetables are available through My Timetable.

Mode of instruction

  • Lecture.

  • Quiz.

  • Discussion/seminar (Q & A).

Assessment method


  • Final exam (100%): Take home exam with short open questions.


The weighted average of the (constituent) examinations must be at least 6.0 (= a pass).


A resit/ rewrite can be done for constituent examinations which are failed. As far as applicable all resits take place at the same time, after the final (constituent) examination.

Inspection and feedback

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.

Reading list

The booktitles and / or syllabi to be used in the course, where it can be purchased and how this literature should be studied beforehand.
The reading list will be available on Brightspace


Enrolment through My Studymap (Login | Universiteit Leiden) is mandatory.

General information about uSis is available on the website

NB: First year students will be enrolled by the coordinator of studies. All other students need to contact the coordinator of studies to be enrolled for this course.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte
Registration Contractonderwijs