In the UK, teaching aspects of Crime and the Media is part of the model curriculum for criminology as a subject. The paper introduces a concept for a “Crime and the Media” module, as offered at Bangor University (Wales) for undergraduates. Its roots go back to a “Law in Film” module taught by the presenter at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum (Germany), starting in 1995.
A Crime and the Media module should take account of the findings from academic
research and the students’ own contemporary experiences with media. The content of a module can be extraordinarily varied: drawing on different media from different times to highlight developments, and on examples from a range of countries.
Students can be introduced to methods of systematic content analysis, for example, focusing on news values in news stories, or on entertainment values in films and tv series on crime.
Through group discussions, student presentations, essays involving small-scale
empirical research and other methods, students should be included as “active learners”.
An additional attraction of such a module is that it supplements the lecturer’s own research on crime, media and audience reactions.