Master's Degree Pathway in Popular Culture Studies

Learning outcomes

The master's pathway in popular cultural studies allows students to pursue degrees in cultural history, media studies or musicology in the framework of popular culture research. The pathway helps students to understand the meanings, contexts and social implications of contemporary and historical phenomena related to popular culture. Furthermore, it provides students with a thorough knowledge of the histories, theories and concepts that have been employed to explain popular culture, as well as the analytical and critical skills necessary for understanding and interpreting popular music, entertainment, media culture and practices of daily life.
The MA in Popular Culture Studies prepares you for higher position in many professional spheres, including libraries, archives and museums, cultural organizations, non-university research institutions, managerial positions in the arts or education, and industry jobs in media or music. You will additionally gain the requisite skills for a career in journalism and, if you excel in your studies, the qualifications required for postgraduate studies leading to an academic career.
The degree pathway benefits from close collaboration with the Turku based International Institute for Popular Culture (IIPC) and it trains experts with a broad knowledge of popular culture. The pathway is run jointly by the departments of Cultural History, Media Studies and Musicology at the School of History, Culture and Art studies within their existing degree programmes yet by incorporating studies in the two neighbouring disciplines and a jointly organised master's seminar. The pathway benefits from the international scholars who visit Turku to give IIPC lectures and participate in Erasmus teaching.
The main language of the degree is English and the programme has no tuition fees. We offer this study pathway to students who wish to pursue their master's level studies in an international and strongly interdisciplinary study context. The master's degree requires two years of study, during which time the graduate will earn a degree in cultural history, media studies or musicology.

Content

POPULAR CULTURE STUDIES PATHWAY COURSES:  40 ECTS:

S1. Introduction to Popular Culture Studies, 5 ECTS
Person in charge: Hannu Salmi

Learning outcomes:
The student is familiar with the key concepts and issues of popular culture studies as well as the main periods of the history of popular culture.

Contents:
The course explores the key concepts of popular culture studies, such as the notions of the popular and entertainment, ideology, opposition and capitalism, affects and emotions, and stardom and fandom. The course draws also an outline of the history of popular culture, with a special emphasis on the history of popular culture studies as a field of critical research.

Teaching methods:
Lectures (16 h), additional reading, essay

Teaching language:
English

Modes of study:
Participation in classroom and in the moodle platform, written essay

Evaluation:
Numeric 0-5

Recommended year of study:
Period I, autumn 2014


S2. Theories and Methods of Popular Culture Studies, 5 ECTS
Person in charge: Yrjö Heinonen

Learning outcomes:
The student is familiar with a selection of the most widely used methods and most influential theories and research directions in popular culture studies.

Contents:
The module comprises an overview of some of the most influential theories and methods in popular culture studies. Approaches discussed might include close reading and critical analysis, ethnography, audiovisual analysis, discourse analysis, methods of historical research and other qualitative methods. Theoretical background is covered in readings discussed in weekly seminar meetings and exercises on topics relevant to thesis topics.

Teaching methods:
Lectures (12 h), seminar discussion (12hrs), additional readings,

Teaching language:
English

Modes of study:
Participation in classroom and in the Moodle platform, written exercises and discussion

Evaluation:
Numeric 0-5

Recommended year of study:
Period II, autumn 2014


S3. Perspectives in Popular Culture Studies, 20 ECTS
Person in charge: Variable

Learning outcomes:
The student is familiar with a selection of different perspectives in popular culture studies with an emphasis on the main subject of the degree (Cultural History, Media Studies and Musicology). The student understands the histories and conventions of specific forms of popular culture and is able to analyse them.

Course contents:
Histories, forms and genres of popular culture. Different methodological approaches to the study of popular culture.

Teaching methods:
Courses offered by Cultural History, Media Studies and Musicology

Evaluation:
0-5

Year of study:
Years 1 and 2


S4. Master's thesis seminar, 10 ECTS
Person in charge: University lecturer in Media Studies and professors

Learning outcomes:
The student is able to formulate a research problem for a master's thesis, to choose a relevant theoretical and methodological framework for his/her study, to plan a schedule for writing a thesis and to receive and give feedback on academic writing.

Course contents:
Conventions of academic writing in popular culture studies in the humanities, research ethics, writing a research plan and planning a schedule for the study, presenting thesis chapters, commenting on the work of others.

Teaching methods:
Seminar sessions, meetings with supervisor, written assignments

Evaluation and evaluation criteria:
Pass/Fail

Year of study:
Years 1 (regular seminar meetings) and 2 (sessions in the spring and autumn)

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S5. MASTER'S THESIS, 40 ECTS

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MINOR SUBJECT AND GENERAL STUDIES OR WORK EXPERIENCE: 40 ECTS

Prerequisites

Students admitted to the programme must hold a three years Bachelor's degree or an equivalent degree at the university level in an applicable field. The degree should correspond to 180 ECTS. The quota is 12 students, 4 for each participating department.
Good knowledge of English language is required from the students admitted to the programme.

Preceding studies

Minumum amount of preceding studies

180 ECTS.


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School of History, Cultural Research and Art Studies
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