Media Studies A2 Revision

Revision cards for A2 to help with the exams.

  • Created by: Gemma
  • Created on: 22-12-08 16:45



LifeMatrix defines ten audience categories, centered around, values and beliefs to make more fundamentalaudience categories for the modern society.

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The ten categories are: Tribe wired Digital, free-spirited, creative young singles

Fun/Atics Aspirational, fun-seeking, active young people

Dynamic Duos Hard-driving, high-involvement couples

Priority Parents Family values, activities, media strongly dominate

Home Soldiers Home-centric, family-oriented, materially ambitious

Renaissance Women Active, caring, affluent, influential mums

Rugged Traditionalists Traditional male values, love of outdoors

Struggling Singles High aspirations, low economic status

Settled elders Devout, older, sedentary lifestyles

Free Birds Vital, active, altruistic seniors

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How to categorise the target audience


Demographics are characteristics within the audience which cannot be physically or mentally changed.

Here are some examples of demographic values.





Employment Status


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Reception analysis

Reception Analysis

Reception analysis is all about trying to look at these kinds of differences and to understand them. What reception analysts have found is that factors such as a gender, our place inside society, and the context of the time we are living in can be enormously important when we make the meaning or a text.


The best known theorist to tackle this line of thinking is David Morley. His 1980 study of audience responses to the BBC programme Nationwide was designed to analyse the different ways in which viewers interpreted media texts. He suggested that audiences tended to fall into three groups, based on the their different readings of the text.

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catergorising target audience (psychographics)


Psychographics are characteristics that can be physically and mentally changed about yourself.

Here are some examples of psychographic values.

Social class





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Reception readings

Preferred/dominant reading- The preferred reading is the reading media producers hope will take from the text. For example, and advertisement for a McDonalds Big Mac is intended to encourage feelings of hunger in the audience, and propensity to buy a McDonald’s burger the next time they’re passing. Assuming the majority of the audience respond by salivating and rubbing their tummies (!) this is also the dominant reading.

Oppositional reading- Audience members from outside the target audience may reject the preferred reading, receiving their own alternative message. The health-conscious, anti-globalisation campaigners and vegetarians will most likely respond to the McDonald’s advert with frustration and annoyance.

Negotiated reading- The ‘third way’ is one in which audiences acknowledge the preferred reading, but modify it to suit their own values and opinions. A negotiated response to the McDonald’s advert might be “I love Big Macs – but one a month as a treat is all my figure can stand.” Morley's view of dominant, negotiated and oppositional readings of texts is a semiological approach because it recognises the importance of the analysis of signs, particularly visual signs, that shape so much of modern media output. It ties to our understanding of connotations, studied as part of media language.

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This stands for Values, Attitudes and Lifestyles. These are what segment the audience into seen groups.

These are a more complexed categories than the Youngs and Rubicams four consumers, and are split into more detailed consumers.

  • Actualisers
  • Fulfillers
  • Acheivers
  • Experiencers
  • Believers
  • Strivers
  • Makers
  • Strugglers
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Young's and Rubicam's Four consumers

These four consumers were the orignal, and the easiest to understand.





Make up 40% of the population. They like security, and belonging to a group.

Define themselves by their self-esteem and self-fulfilment.

People who have already got status and control.

Want status and the esteem of others. Like status symbols, designer labels etc.

Live off credit and cash.

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