MEVIT4800 – Methods in media studies: qualitative and quantitative data and analysis

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course presents methods that are central to empirical research in media and communication research and in journalism research. These methods include in-depth interviews, document analysis, quantitative content analysis, surveys, and introductory statistics. A central aim of the course is to increase students’ understanding of the choices involved throughout a research process, including assessing what methods are appropriate for different research purposes, and how to analyze empirical data.

Learning outcome


After completing the course, you will be able to:

  • Understand and explain different methods in media and communication research, including in-depth interviews, document analysis, content analysis, and surveys
  • Understand the relationship between research questions, theory and empirical data
  • Understand and explain key concepts in introductory statistics such as populations, samples, variables, the normal distribution
  • Understand and explain the concepts reliability, validity and generalizability and how they relate to different methods
  • Understand and explain research ethical guidelines
  • Understand the scientific process, including choices and assessments in various phases of this process


  • Assess what methods are appropriate for different research purposes
  • Analyse different types of data using quantitative and qualitative techniques
  • Critically evaluate and assess existing empirical research
  • Design and conduct your own scientific investigations within media and communication research
  • Assess and choose between statistical tests and perform statistical analyses using statistical software

General competences

  • Carry out and critically assess empirical research
  • Critically evaluate the role of quantitative and qualitative research within media and communication studies


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

Admission as master student, with a Bachelor´s Degree in Media Studies or equivalent.


Recommended previous knowledge

The course builds on basic methodological knowledge such as provided in MEVIT2800 – Metoder i medievitenskap or similar courses in quantitative and qualitative methodology.


Teaching takes place throughout the semester organized as lectures, working groups and SPSS seminars. The workload is equivalent to seven weeks of full time studies.

Lectures will be given in English. The working groups will decide themselves which language to use.

This course contains a qualification assignment, graded approved/ not approved. The qualification assignment will involve participation in the SPSS seminars, where the students will solve various tasks using SPSS. The SPSS seminars will take place one full day a week for two weeks.
The details and deadlines for the qualifications assignment will be given at the beginning of the semester.

Obligatory activities and absence

It is the student's own responsibility to stay informed about the obligatory activities  and to uphold deadlines. Everyone must familiarize themselves with the rules concerning obligatory activities at the Faculty of Humanities. If you get ill or have other valid reasons for being absent from obligatory activities, you must apply for a leave of absence as soon as possible and no later than the day of absence or the deadline. Documentation of the absence must be sent to the institute within three working days. 


School exam (4 hours).

A qualification assignment must be approved before the exam.

Digital examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Examination support material

Students  may bring a monolingual or bilingual English dictionary.
The dictionary must be inspected and approved before the exam. Please contact the study administration at IMK for an appointment. 

You must bring a signed and stamped approval form along with the dictionary on the exam. You receive the form from the administration when the dictionary is inspected. 

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English.You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Periodic course evaluation, autumn 2020

Periodic course evaluation, autumn 2017 (PDF)

Periodic course evaluation Autumn 2013 (only in Norwegian)

Periodic course evaluation spring 2009

Facts about this course






Every spring

The course will be taught for the last time spring 2022


Every spring

Exam in this course will be given for the last time spring 2023

Teaching language