Please check all the instructions and requirements before you start
Social Studies 110: Media Analysis Assignment Guide
Syllabus description of assignment:
For this assignment, you will choose a piece of news media and analyze it through the 5 filters of Chomsky and
Herman’s Propaganda Model. News media pieces should be articles, not videos, and can be either a traditional news
story (from a source such as CBC, The National Post, CTV News, etc.,) or a longer form investigative piece (from a
source such as The Atlantic, Vox, The New Yorker, etc.). In the assignment, you will introduce your chosen media
piece (with a brief summary of the story itself and the connection to current events), the Propaganda Model itself,
provide an analysis of the news piece through each filter of the model, and then finally provide a concluding
reflection on your findings. You will also provide some additional analysis with your discussion of the filters and
your concluding thoughts with outside sources. For example, if you find a theme of racism through your findings in
utilizing the model, you may wish to spend some time discussing this pattern in news media via other scholars who
have addressed this issue. Or perhaps you will find it pertinent to address the patterns of media conglomerate
ownership and who is given the most space to speak in a story via other scholars in the filter on Ownership. You
might also bring in additional references as part of the concluding discussion to reflect on how using the model may
have supported or challenged your own assumptions, or perhaps to reflect on larger patterns that your news piece is
reflective of in our social environment. How you provide critical analysis will be up to you and what you find as you
use the model! This assignment should be approximately 1,300-1,500 words. You can consider breaking down this
word count to be approximately 200 words per filter (depending on the discussion present – some filters may require
more discussion, and some less so), plus 300-500 words for your assignment’s introduction and conclusion. You may
go slightly over the word count if needed, but try to keep your discussion as focused and succinct as possible
Key components/structure of the assignment:
1) Introduction (introduce the model and the chosen media piece/piece’s relevance)
2) Analyzing the media piece through the 5 filters of the Propaganda Model
3) Conclusion/Reflection on your findings
All assignments must be typed and double-spaced, and properly edited for grammar, spelling, and essay
format. Assignments should be in Times New Roman, 12-point font. Assignments should include a
minimum of 3 academic references (journal articles, scholarly books, etc.), NOT including the Propaganda
Model. Module content should NOT be used for this assignment but assigned scholarly course readings
• The project will be in APA format, using proper in-text and reference list citation formats. If you are not familiar
with APA, check out the Owl at Purdue website here: https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/
o If you have any questions as to what qualifies as an academic reference, or with regard to referencing in
APA format, please don’t hesitate to email your instructor for clarification!
• Projects will be graded in accordance with the University of Regina’s grading system, found here:
Here you will introduce the overall assignment, introduce the theory of the Propaganda Model, and introduce your
chosen media piece.
The 5 Filters of the Propaganda Model
Analyze your chosen media piece through the five filters:
1) Ownership: who owns the news source? Why is this important?
2) Funding: What are the main sources of funding for this news source? (Advertisers, private investors,
etc.) Why is this important?
3) Source: Who provides the information in the article used to tell the story/explain the issue? How much
space is given to each source? Where in the article do these pieces of information appear?
4) Flak: What is being criticized/challenge in the piece? By whom? Why is this important?
5) Fear (originally anti-communism): Who/what is the target of fearful discussion? What are readers being
directed to see in a negative light? Why is this important?
Finally, you will reflect on any key themes or important ideas that have emerged in your analysis. NOTE: This is a
space for critical conclusions based on the evidence you have drawn through this analysis, not for opinions. What
themes came up for you in doing this analysis? What are the important connections to draw between, for example,
who is used as a source in the article, and who the Flak/Fear is directed at? This is not to conclude that a particular
media source, or government agency, or social actor, etc. are bad, but to pull information from between the lines of
your chosen news piece to consider how stories and information are shaped for public consumption. Why are your
findings important when considering how much our society relies on news media for daily information?
• Assignments should be approximately 1,300-1,500 words in length (not include cover page/list of
• Remember to engage with the themes you explore in this assignment; it is not just a summary of the news
• Throughout this assignment, you are required to use at least 3 academic references, not including Chomsky
and Herman’s text. How and where you utilize these sources is up to you! Bringing in additional references
can help you to expand on any key themes or ideas that come up as you unpack your chosen media piece,
either through the filters or in your concluding reflections.
• All references must be in APA format! Course module notes are not permitted as references (other than
any assigned readings).
• Your arguments must be based on supporting evidence, not opinions.
• Your assignments must be in proper essay/sentence structure, and the writing should be clear and edited
for grammar and style.