This is for all students who are going to sit the Broadcast Regulation exam.

Even if you didn't do the mock (boo). Particularly if you didn't sit the mock. 

Please come to the big UG newsroom on the first floor, G1-04 at 1pm today, Monday 5 March.


PS I am attaching the marking guide to sample exam 3, the mock, which has model answers, and another sample exam, number 1, with both a marking guide and model answers.


For the people who did (and also those who didn't do) the Broadcast mock exam, these are David's comments:


'I just had a look through the students’ mock scripts – unfortunately I really don’t have time to actually mark each of them, but I have noted down a few general comments that you might want to mention if you have a session with them next week:

  • In general, I was actually pleasantly surprised by the knowledge of the Code in most of the answers. I’m hoping since then they’ve had some more time to revise it and that this will be even better when it comes to the exam.
  • One major thing that was lacking from a lot of answers – which is required for the higher mark boundaries – was any analysis of whether/how the content in the scenario might have been allowed under the Code. That is, there’s a tendency for students to say, for example, ‘there’s offensive language, so section 2 on harm and offence has been breached.’ But ‘offensive content = breach of section 2’ is not the correct analysis. Instead it should be ‘offensive content -> was it justified by the context? -> if yes, there’s no breach; if no, there’s a breach.’ Students (last year as well) quite often miss out that middle step – what arguments could the broadcaster put forward to say the content was justified? This applies to almost all of the Code, not just section 2 – so for example, content inappropriate for kids can be broadcast if there’s ‘editorial justification’ (section 1); unfair treatment of participants can be justified in the public interest (section 7); breaches of privacy can be ‘warranted’ if they’re in the public interest (section 8); and so on. Some discussion of whether broadcasters could defend their actions is going to be necessary to get into the decent marks.
  • The other point of analysis that’s often missed is – if there is a breach, and it’s not justified by the context or whatever, how could it have been avoided or mitigated? For example, if the breach is caused by a guest on a show (as in Q2 on this mock), say ‘guests should be properly briefed before going on air, and if they still say something that might be in breach of the Code, the presenter should challenge them and/or apologize to viewers.’
  • The only other things I noted were just a few bits we’ve already mentioned, but that it might be worth reminding them of:
    • They need to remember always to refer to sanctions, even if in general terms, and that sanctions are applied against broadcasters, not against presenters.
    • It’s probably also worth encouraging them again to refer to adjudications wherever possible.
    • Sections 7 (fairness) and 8 (privacy) only apply to the treatment of participants in programmes, so you can’t for example breach section 7 by saying something unfair about your audience.
    • The rule in section 3 against incitement of crime is quite a high bar – it’s material that is ‘likely’ to instigate criminal behaviour. If students think there’s an issue with that rule, it’s much more likely to be a problem with section 1 (under 18s) or 2 (harm and offence), depending on the context.
    • They should avoid too much (or really any) discussion of the law – eg contempt, defamation, etc. At best it’ll get them a mark or two that they could easily have got with more detail/discussion of the Code. At worst they’ll get it wrong and look like an idiot and/or lose a bunch of marks.
    • Lastly, gently remind them that they only need to answer 2 of the 3 questions on the exam!

I’m hoping that the above makes sense – if any of it doesn’t, let me know.

Broadcast regulation mock feedback