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While you are waiting for the lesson to begin…. Look at this advert – who is it aimed at and what is the purpose?. Unit: Information and Ideas Title: Representation. Aims: To understand how to analyse and interpret a print media text. Unit: Information and Ideas Title: Representation.

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While you are waiting for the lesson to begin…

Look at this advert – who is it aimed at and what is the purpose?


Unit: Information and IdeasTitle: Representation

  • Aims:
  • To understand how to analyse and interpret a print media text

Unit: Information and IdeasTitle: Representation


In the exam, question 2 (both parts) expects that you are able to show how ideas are represented. This lesson should consolidate your learning on how meaning is conveyed both in terms of presentational features and language devices. For both part a and b you will need to identify the target audience in order to explain the effect on the reader.


‘What is Representation?’

  • What is the text representing? – an individual, a group, a place or something more abstract like an idea (e.g.: global warming)
  • How is it being represented? – fairly, balanced, biased, misrepresented, stereotyped, positively or negatively
  • How has media language been used to create this representation? – images, signs, camera angles, mise-en-scene, sound, text, language devices such as direct address and headlines in newspapers etc

Lets read through the example together…

Bullet points give short sharp facts and opinion. Sentence structure is informal to create impact – “London suicide terror” The second bullet represents Britain’s strength.

Main image dominates the page to demonstrate the level of destruction caused

The headline is short and bold. Alliteration of the letter B has been used to send a stern message – the representation of Britain is very strong – suggesting that as a nation we are not week – this is supported by the bold san-serif font and the capitalisation of the word NOT in the second bullet point. Also the word “Bloodied” is reinforced by the images at the bottom.

The images of the people give a balanced representation of who was affected – it also reinforced both the message of the main image and the headline – the bandages, bruises and blood denote the damage caused while the selection of a varied group of people represents the diverse nature of London’s population and that they are united.


You are going to complete a detailed analysis of an ad campaign. The campaign was created by the NSPCC in order to raise awareness of child abuse and their ‘ChildLine’ service…

  • Firstly – please read through and annotate the two ads.
  • You should focus on the following features:
  • Framing – camera distance and angle
  • Mise-en-scene – what has been included – what is interesting about them, what meaning is created?
  • Text – Language used, interpret the meaning…how are the images and text connected?
  • Text – Font style, size etc
  • Layout and positioning
  • Use of colour

You are going to complete a detailed analysis of an ad campaign. The campaign was created by the NSPCC in order to raise awareness of child abuse and their ‘ChildLine’ service…

  • Secondly, answer the questions below in as much detail as possible.
  • Through framing and mise-en-scene how have the children been represented as victims of child abuse?
  • What is the message behind the ads? To do this effectively, explain how the images and Strapline (the main piece of text) are connected.
  • Who is the target audience for these ads? How are they being appealed to?
  • How is the issue of child abuse being represented? Be as detailed as possible, making explicit reference to features of the ads.
  • Extension: How would you change these ads so that they were aimed towards the people committing the abuse?

Thinking about TONE

Read the following headlines – decide what tone is created by each one.





first glance

First glance

Read the text and summarise what it is about in a few key points.


What is the genre of the text? (type)

Who do you think the audience is and why?

What is the purpose or purposes of the text?

take a closer look
Take a closer look

Focus on the presentationfeatures and think carefully about what has been used.

Can you see:

  • Photos, illustrations and pictures?
  • Different font sizes and styles?
  • Colour?
  • Layout features, such as bullet, boxed text, headlines, sub-headlines?

Think about why they have been chosen. DO they tell us more about the purpose of the text or the audience who would read it, e.g. age group, gender or lifestyle?

focus on the shape
Focus on the shape

To get to grips with the content and meaning of the text, trace its structure (the way it’s built) and development (the direction in which it’s heading) carefully. Think about:

  • How the first paragraph introduces the topic
  • How the piece of writing ends
  • How each new paragraph moves the meaning forward or tells us something new
  • Look for discursivemarkers (linking and introducing words and phrases such as ‘however’, ‘as a result’.
  • Look for lexical sets (groups of words related to the same theme)
zoom in on the language
Zoom in on the language

Pick out and underline key words and phrases that you think are interesting, unusual or striking in helping to get the message across. Remember:

  • Emotive vocabulary is often most memorable and provokes our feelings
  • Rhetorical devices are often used for emphasis and try to persuade us
  • Formal word choices create distance and ‘authority’
  • Informal word choices create friendliness
  • Pronoun choice tell us something about the point of view or perspective the text is coming from( e.g. first person using ‘I’ or third person using ‘he’ or ‘she’) and how we fit in as readers (e.g. talking to us directly, ‘you’ or including us, ‘we’ or ‘our’).
piece together your gap evidence
Piece together your GAP evidence
  • Were you right about the genre of your text? Do all the clues match with what we’d expect to find?
  • Can you make a firm decision about the purpose by using your evidence to support your conclusions? Is there just one purpose or does your text do two things?
  • Have you made a firm conclusion about the audience, based on your close look at presentation and language?
  • What is the reader meant to take away from this text?
  • What did the writer want us to know?
  • What was their intention in writing it?
  • Is there a message for us? Something we should have learned, or something we are supposed to want to do as a result of reading it?
  • What is the writer leaving us thinking?

Revision – Getting prepared for the exam!

Create a revision sheet – you might want to include some of the following information:

  • What is a fact / opinion?
  • How do you identify audience and purpose?
  • How do you locate the key points in the text?
  • What is meant by structure? How are media texts structured?
  • What are language devices? How do you recognise them and what do each of them do?
  • What do media texts do visually to engage the reader?
  • What should you look for to help identify the tone of the text?