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Media Arts

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Learning in Media Arts

In Media Arts students engage with communications technologies and cross-disciplinary art forms to design, produce, distribute and interact with a range of print, audio, screen-based or hybrid artworks. Students explore, view, analyse and participate in media culture from a range of viewpoints and in a variety of contexts. They acquire the knowledge and skills to work in a range of media forms and styles. Students learn to reflect critically on their own and others’ media arts experiences and evaluate media artworks from different cultures, time periods and contexts. They express, conceptualise and communicate through their media artworks using creative and critical use of language and technologies with increasing complexity and aesthetic understanding.

Students learn to reflect critically on their own and others’ media arts experiences and evaluate media artworks from different cultures, time periods and contexts, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures.

All teachers must follow the relevant protocols when teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures. The protocols provide guidelines about how to protect the integrity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural expressions and enable all Victorian teachers and students to engage respectfully and feel connected to this identity. For advice, please refer to the Department of Education and Training's Koorie Cross-Curricular Protocols.

Further advice is also available from the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Inc., (VAEAI), which has produced Protocols for Koorie Education in Victorian Primary and Secondary schools. These protocols include advice to assist schools to provide a welcoming environment for Aboriginal community members and how to work respectfully with the Koorie community to enrich schools' teaching and learning programs.

Students make and respond to Media Arts forms such as film, news report, documentary, advertisement, music video, animation, video games, graphic novels and/or a combination of these. From contemporary and personal experiences of media culture, they learn how forms, styles and contexts of media artworks are shaped by histories, purpose, traditions and communications technologies. They produce artworks in narrative and non-narrative forms that reach audiences through specific media contexts that include but are not limited to radio, print, cinema, television, internet, mobile devices or new and emerging contexts.

Students learn through critical thinking and creative processes in media arts practice. They learn to collaborate in creative teams and analytically respond to and interact with, context and audience. Students learn to apply key concepts, story principles, and symbolic and technical elements of media as they design, produce, distribute and analyse media artworks. Students learn and use established and emerging techniques and practices (media conventions) for creating within different media forms.

As students’ learning progresses, they learn about safe practice in media arts and develop digital citizenship through processes that respect rights, responsibilities and protocols in the creation of their media artworks.

Making and Responding in Media Arts

Common to all The Arts curriculum, each Arts discipline incorporates two interrelated principles:

  • Students learn as artist and audience
  • Students learn through making and responding.

Making includes learning about and using knowledge, skills, techniques, processes, materials and technologies in media arts practices, and to make media artworks that communicate ideas and intentions. Making involves using techniques, technologies and processes to design, produce and distribute media artworks. As students make they consider both the audience and their own response to developing artworks as an artist.

Responding includes exploring, analysing and interpreting media artworks.Students explore, view, analyse and participate in media culture. As students respond to artworks they draw on the knowledge, understanding and skills acquired through their experiences in making artworks.

Making and responding are intrinsically connected. Together they provide students with knowledge, understanding and skills as artists and audience. In the experience of making and responding to media artworks, students develop critical perception, personal expression and collaboration. In making and responding students engage with the key concepts, story principles and both technical and symbolic elements both of media.

Key Media Arts areas

Students develop knowledge and understanding of five key areas:

  • the media languages used to tell stories
  • the technologies which are essential for producing, accessing and distributing media
  • the various institutions that enable and constrain media production and use
  • the audiences for whom media arts products are made and who respond as consumers, citizens and creative individuals
  • the constructed representations of the world, which rely on shared and disputed social values and beliefs.

The five interrelated key areas of media languages, media technologies, institutions that produce media artworks, audiences and constructed representations of the world, provide a framework within which students operate to create and analyse media artworks. They develop an understanding of how representations, including constructed realities of the world, are communicated through languages and technology, for an audience in communities and institutional contexts.

Technical and symbolic elements

The technical and symbolic elements of media arts, including composition, space, time, movement, sound, colour and lighting, work together to create meaning in different contexts and forms for different purposes.

In Media Arts, both technical and symbolic elements work together within established and emerging genre conventions and technologies to inform, persuade, entertain and educate through story principles.

Story principles

The elements of media arts are combined and shaped using story principles of structure, intent, characters, settings, points of view and genre conventions.


In both Making and Responding, students learn that meanings can be generated from different viewpoints and that these shift according to different world experiences. As students make, investigate or critique media artworks as producers and consumers of media artworks, they ask and answer questions to interrogate the practice of the artist, the representation of meanings and the interpretations of the consumer. Meanings and interpretations are informed by the contexts of societies, cultures and histories, and an understanding of how elements, materials, skills and processes are used. These questions provide the basis for making informed critical judgments about the students own media artworks and the media artworks they see, hear, interact with and consume as audiences. In the later years, students will consider the interests and concerns of artists and audiences regarding philosophies and ideologies, critical theories, institutions and psychology.

Techniques and processes

The skills, techniques and processes to create media artworks are developed through the three stages of production:

  • pre-production including scriptwriting, storyboarding, sketching designs, planning, research
  • production including capturing, recording, directing
  • post-production including mixing, editing, assembling, laying out, distributing.


In planning and producing Media Arts, students use images, sounds and text and the technologies. They use equipment, props, costumes and sets during production, depending on what is suitable to the form of the media artwork and the intention of the artist.

Information Communication Technologies and The Arts

Information Communication Technologies (ICT) are powerful tools that can support student learning. Students can develop and demonstrate their understanding of concepts and content in The Arts through using a range of ICT tools. It is also important that students know how to use these ICT efficiently and responsibly, as well as learning how to protect themselves and secure their data.

Details of how ICT can support student learning in The Arts is set out in the attached Information Communication Technologies and The Arts pdf.

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