Media Representations Analysis 2: Images, Social Semiotics and Multimodality [Summer School]


Media Representations Analysis 2: Images, Social Semiotics and MultimodalityPeriod: 7-11 August 2017

Program: Click Here to Download Course Program

To apply for the course: please visit Maastricht University website (application process starts on Monday 13 February)


Millions of daily posts by social media users, disinformation efforts by governments and the increased visualization in the traditional written press underline the continued importance of visual media analysis. This course teaches you the skills necessary to study how media images can be interpreted, and how their interaction with surrounding textual elements contribute to their meaning potential. What are the possible meanings of a photo in a newspaper article, a drawing on a magazine cover or a cartoon on social media? How can the juxtaposed texts affect the meaning potential of these images? And what does it take to develop a coherent analytical framework and a decent structure for your paper? In a step by process with daily presentations, you address these questions. You write a paper in which you use a qualitative method to analyse a media image or a representation with both visual and textual elements. Interactive lectures and roundtable discussions help you prepare for the different steps in the wiring process. The companion course is Media Representations Analysis 1: Texts, Critical Discourse Analysis and News Framing.


▪ Designing an analytical framework to study (textual-)visual representations in the media, in line with your research objectives

▪ Applying qualitative methods from social semiotics to study the possible meanings of visual and multimodal media representations

▪ Understanding the complexities of text-image relations and their role in meaning-making processes


▪ Strong motivation and good command of English are essential to get a pass for the course.

▪ Basic knowledge of visual analysis is recommended.

▪ Aimed at Bachelor/ Master/ PhD students in Media Studies/ Journalism/ Cultural Studies/ Linguistics/ Political Sciences/ International Relations/ Geography/ History. Professionals with various backgrounds benefitted as well from taking previous editions of the course. If in doubt, please contact Leonhardt for personal course selection advice.

Media Representations Analysis 2: Images, Social Semiotics and MultimodalityRecommended literature

▪ Bateman, J. A. (2014) Text and image. A critical introduction to the visual/verbal divide. Routledge.

▪ Caple, H. (2013) Photojournalism. A social semiotic approach. Palgrave Macmillan.

▪ Machin, D. (2007) Introduction to Multimodal Analysis. Bloomsbury.

▪ Van Leeuwen, T. (2005) Introducing Social Semiotics. Routledge.

You are further recommended to read some of these blog posts by Leonhardt.

Please note that it is not required to do some reading before the course. If you like to read something, select a book that is closest to your research interests or ask Leonhardt for personal reading advice. For more suggested reading materials, check the following reading lists.

Teaching methods

▪ Lectures ▪ Presentations

Assessment methods

▪ Attendance ▪ Final Paper ▪ Participation ▪ Presentation


▪ Analytical Skills ▪ Qualitative Research Methods ▪ Analytical Framework ▪ Research Paper Template ▪ Visual Analysis ▪ Social Semiotics ▪ Multimodality ▪ Text-Image Relations ▪ Media Representations

Accommodation: please visit Maastricht Housing website

Funding: not available

Language: English


Related GeoMeans Summer School Courses: 

Media Representations Analysis 1: Texts, Critical Discourse Analysis and News Framing

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.