Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Cyberculture

LEVEL 03 - Years 2, 3, 4 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Media and Communications

DESCRIPTION This study-unit introduces new media, exploring the social and cultural contexts out of which it has emerged and through which it continues to evolve.

Study-Unit Aims:

The aim of the study-unit is to introduce the different ramifications of new media within social and culture contexts, mapping changes to the way that people in society are now living with the presence of cyberculture communities affecting their lives.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

-Think critically and consider multiple perspective of the “cyber” culture, in order to be able to grapple with the complex issues emerging from the technological landscape;
- Learn about the historical development of the Internet and other forms of new media, as well as the repercussions of the digital revolution for our communities, our identities, politics and daily interactions
Develop a critical awareness of the sociological, cultural, economic and political impact of new media.

2. Skills
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Navigate through the different manifestations of social media;
- Relate your own experience to wider empirical evidence and theoretical perspectives;
- Discern the empowerment that is brought about by open cultures.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

New books are recommended every year because of the ever-changing nature of technology. Updated readings will be provided in the Course Description available in the VLE.

L1: Introducing Cyberculture and the new media landscape:

- Gazzaley, A., & Rosen, L. D. (2016). The distracted mind: Ancient brains in a high-tech world. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
- Ruddock, A. (2017). Exploring media research. London: SAGE Publications.
- Siapera, E. (2018). Understanding New Media (2nd Edition). London: SAGE Publications.

L2: Communities & Social Networks:

- Boyd, d. (2014). it`s complicated. New Haven: Yale University Press.
- Boyd, danah & Marwick, A. E. (2011). Social privacy in networked publics: Teens’ attitudes, practices and strategies. A Decade in Internet Time: Symposium on the the Dynamics of the Internet and Society. Retrieved from
- Wellman, B. (2007). Editorial: The network is personal. Social Networks, 29(3).

L3: Identity and my-15minutes of fame:

- Mayer-Schonberger, V. (2009). Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age. Princeton University Press.
- Rosen, J. (2010). The web means the end of forgetting. The New York Times. Retrieved from
- Turkle, S. (2015). Reclaiming conversation: The power of talk in a digital age. New York: Penguin books.

L4: Empowered users in an open culture:

- Gauntlett, D. (2011). Making is connecting: The social meaning of creativity, from DIY and knitting to YouTube and Web 2.0. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
- Jenkins, H. (2006). Convergence Culture: Where old and new media collide. New York & London: New York University Press.
- Ong, W. J. (1982). Orality and literacy : the technologizing of the word. London: Methuen.
- Wasik, B. (2011). #Riot: Self-Organized, Hyper-Networked Revolts—Coming to a City Near You. Wired Magazine. Retrieved from

L5: Big Brother in new Media

- Cadwalladr, C., & Graham-Harrison, E. (2018). Revealed: 50 million Facebook profiles harvested for Cambridge Analytica in major data breach: The Cambridge Analytica Files. The Guardian. Retrieved from
- Zuboff, S. (2019). The Age of Surveillance Capitalism. London, Profile Books.


Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Presentation SEM2 No 40%
Assignment SEM2 Yes 60%

LECTURER/S Romina Cachia

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2021/2. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.