WiSe 12/13: Candidate Framing in Campaign Ads (linked to 28812)
When dealing with a research project, scholars need to pass through several stages, namely: establish a research goal, identify and review the relevant literature, formulate a research question, ... read more
When dealing with a research project, scholars need to pass through several stages, namely: establish a research goal, identify and review the relevant literature, formulate a research question, develop a research design and a research instrument, collect the data and interpret the results. The purpose of this seminar is to create a working environment in which students go through all these phases under the supervision and with the help of the course instructor.
The research goal of the seminar is to analyse the campaign ads of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama for the 2012 United States presidential election. To this end, we start with the literature review on the topic, in particular on campaign ads as a medium and framing as a strategy in political communication. In a nutshell, framing draws upon the metaphor of a cropping frame around a picture. The border highlights and holds together certain aspects of reality, while marking off competing, distracting, or contradictory elements. With regard to campaign ads, candidate framing can thus be understood as the employment of the above described technique by communication professionals. This technique is aimed at focusing audience attention on particular characteristics of the candidate or on particular aspects of a topic in order to gain a favourable response.
Next, we formulate one precise research question and develop hypotheses. The next step will be to establish a research design suitable for the answering of our research question. Then, we develop and test our research instrument (i.e., the codebook). Finally, we collect the data through coding and then go back to the reviewed literature to interpret our results.
After attending this seminar, students should be able to: develop complex research questions and/or hypotheses; develop complex codebooks used to analyze verbal and visual information; analyze strategic communication in election campaigns.
In order to get course credit, students are expected to: identify and review relevant literature; formulate one precise research question; develop a research design and a research instrument; collect the data (i.e., coding); interpret the results; work in teams during the whole seminar; give a presentation (incl. 5-page handout); take part in discussions.
Please note that the seminars “28815_Ü_Candidate Framing in Campaign Ads” “28812_HS_Public Communication in the European Union” are consecutive. Thus, they should be attended together.
This course is a graduate level class designed for graduate students (master’s program) in media and political communication. Graduate exchange students (master’s program at home university) are welcome to attend. Yet, no undergraduate students (bachelor’s level) will be able to join the seminar. Working knowledge of the English language (listening, reading, writing, speaking) is a must. close