Arthur Asa Berger is Professor Emeritus of Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts at San Francisco State University, where he taught between 1965 and 2003. He has published more than 100 articles, numerous book reviews, and more than 60 books. Among his latest books are the third edition of Media and Communication Research Methods: An Introduction to Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches (2013), The Academic Writer's Toolkit: A User's Manual (2008), What Objects Mean: An Introduction to Material Culture (2009), Bali Tourism (2013), Tourism in Japan: An Ethno-Semiotic Analysis (2010), The Culture Theorist's Book of Quotations (2010), and The Objects of Our Affection: Semiotics and Consumer Culture (2010). He has also written a number of academic mysteries such as Durkheim is Dead: Sherlock Holmes is Introduced to Sociological Theory (2003) and Mistake in Identity: A Cultural Studies Murder Mystery (2005). His books have been translated into eight languages and thirteen of his books have been translated into Chinese.
Media and Communication Research Methods, Fourth Edition is a concise and practical text designed to give students a step-by-step introduction to conducting media and communication research. Offering real-world insights along with the author's signature animated style, this text makes the discussion of complex qualitative and quantitative methods easy to comprehend.Packed with detailed examples and practical exercises, the Fourth Edition of this bestselling introductory text includes a new chapter on discourse analysis; expanded discussion of social media, expanded coverage of the research process, and more. Ideal for undergraduate and graduate students conducting research for the first time, this accessible text will help students understand, practice, and master media and communication research.
Part I: Getting StartedChapter 1: What Is Research? We All Do Research, All the Time Scholarly Research Is Different From Everyday Research Cultural Studies and Research Nietzsche on Interpretation Problem of Certainty Diachronic and Synchronic Research The Way the Human Mind Works Overt and Covert Oppositions Thinking Fast and Slow Quantity and Quality in Media Research Media and Communication Why a Book That Teaches Both Methodologies? Considering Research Topics What Is Research? Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 2: The Research Process Search Strategies Sources of Information How to Read Analytically Doing a Literature Review Primary and Secondary Research Sources Searching on the Internet or the Game of "Find the Info If You Can!" Analyzing Methodology in Research Articles The Research Process: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingPart II: Methods of Textual AnalysisChapter 3: Semiotic Analysis Saussure's Division of Signs Into Signifiers and Signifieds Semiotics of Blondeness Semiotics and Society Peirce's Trichotomy: Icon, Index, and Symbol Allied Concepts Clotaire Rapaille on Culture Codes Semiotics in Society: A Reprise Syntagmatic Analysis of Texts Paradigmatic Analysis of Texts Skyfall: A Paradigmatic Analysis Applications of Semiotic Theory Paul Ekman on Facial Expression Semiotics: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 4: Rhetorical Analysis Aristotle on Rhetoric Rhetoric and the Mass Media A Brief Note on the Communication Process Certeau on Subversions by Readers and Viewers Applied Rhetorical Analysis A Miniglossary of Common Rhetorical Devices Other Considerations When Making Rhetorical Analyses A Sample Rhetorical Analysis: A Sea to Skin Advertisement Rhetorical Analysis of the Visual Image Images in Narrative Texts Rhetorical Analysis: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 5: Ideological Criticism Mannheim's Ideology and Utopia Defining Ideology Marxist Criticism Roland Barthes on Mythologies The Problem of Hegemony The Base and the Superstructure, False Consciousness, and the "Self-Made Man and Woman" Post-Soviet Marxist Criticism Basic Ideas in Marxist Criticism A Marxist Interpretation of the Fidji "Snake" Advertisement John Berger on Glamour Identity Politics Feminist Criticism of Media and Communication The Social Conception of Knowledge Phallocentric Theory: The Physical Basis of Male Domination Political Cultures, the Media, and Communication Pop Cultural and Media Preferences of the Four Political Cultures Marxist Perspectives on Social Media A Preview of Critical Discourse Analysis Ideological Criticism: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 6: Psychoanalytic Criticism Freud's Contribution Cell Phones and the Psyche: Applying the Theories of Erik Erikson Neuropsychoanalysis: Freud and Neuroscience Jungian Theory Psychoanalytic Criticism: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingPart III: Qualitative Research MethodsChapter 7: Discourse Analysis Defining Discourse Analysis Teun A. Van Dijk on Discourse Analysis Spoken and Written Discourse Styles and Written Discourse Political Ideology and Discourse Analysis Critical Discourse Analysis Advertising and Critical Discourse Analysis Multimodal Critical Discourse Analysis A Multimodal Critical Discourse Analysis of an Advertisement Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 8: Interviews The Prisoner Interviews Number Two What Is an Interview? Four Kinds of Research Interviews Why We Use Interviews How to Interview People Questions Investigative Reporters Ask The Structure of Conversations and Interviews Transcribing Tapes Making Sense of Transcribed Interviews Coding Problems With Interview Material Interviews: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 9: Historical Analysis What Is History? History as Metadiscipline or Specialized Subject Is History Objective, Subjective, or a Combination of the Two? Kinds of Historical Research The Problem of Writing History The Problem of Meaning Historical Periods Baudrillard and Jameson on Postmodernism Postmodernism and Historiography The Historical and the Comparative Approach History Is an Art, Not a Science Doing Historical Research Historical Analysis: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 10: Ethnomethodological Research Defining Ethnomethodology Boxed Insert on Ethnomethodology by Dirk Vom Lehn Garfinkel's Ingenious and Mischievous Research Using Ethnomethodology in Media and Communication Research Metaphors and Motivation Love Is a Game Humorists as Code Violators Techniques of Humor Ethnomethodology and the Communication Process Ethnomethodological Research: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 11: Participant Observation Defining Participant Observation Significant Considerations When Doing Participant Observation A Case Study of Participant Observation: Readers of Romance Novels Problems With Participant Observation Benefits of Participant Observation Studies Making Sense of Your Findings An Ethical Dilemma Ethics and Research Involving Humans Participant Observation: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingPart IV: Quantitative Research MethodsChapter 12: Content Analysis Defining Content Analysis Why We Make Content Analyses Methodological Aspects of Content Analysis Aspects of Violence Advantages of Content Analysis as a Research Method Difficulties in Making Content Analyses Content Analysis Step by Step Content Analysis: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 13: Surveys Defining Surveys Kinds of Surveys: Descriptive and Analytic The VALS Typology Survey Methods of Data Collection Advantages of Survey Research Problems With Surveys Surveys and the 2012 Presidential Election A Note on Media Usage Surveys: Shares and Ratings Open-Ended and Closed-Ended Survey Questions Writing Survey Questions Making Pilot Studies to Pretest Surveys Conducting Online Surveys Samples Obtaining Random Samples Evaluating Survey Accuracy Surveys: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Notes Further ReadingChapter 14: Experiments Everyday Experimentation Defining Experiments The Structure of an Experiment The Hawthorne Effect Advantages of Experiments Disadvantages of Experiments The "Black Rats" Case and Experimental Fraud A Checklist on Experimental Design What's an Experiment and What Isn't? Experiments: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 15: A Primer on Descriptive Statistics with Felianka Kaftandjieva Levels of Measurement Descriptive Statistics Measures of Central Tendency Measures of Dispersion The Normal or Bell-Shaped Curve The Problems With Ratings A Cautionary Note on Statistics Statistics and Comparisons Data on Media Use in America Smartphones The Problem of Interpretation Statistics: Applications and Exercises Conclusions Note Further ReadingPart V: Putting It All TogetherChapter 16: Nineteen Common Thinking Errors Common Fallacies Conclusions Further ReadingChapter 17: Writing Research Reports Keeping a Journal A Trick for Organizing Reports Outlines, First Drafts, and Revisions Writing Research Reports The IMRD Structure of Quantitative Research Reports Writing Correctly: Avoiding Some Common Problems Academic Writing Styles A Checklist for Planning Research and Writing Reports Conclusions Further Reading