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Film and Media Studies: F19: Johnson - 139W Sports Media Writing

Fall 2019 - 139W - Writing on Film & Media - Sports Media - Professor Johnson

How do we write about sports, as Film and Media Studies scholars? What are the key questions we should ask when we write about sports media? What is sports media (generically, textually, socially)? This writing-intensive course allows close examination and application of different approaches to thinking and writing critically about and conducting research regarding sports media.

Resources to get you started!

Encyclopedias and handbooks are excellent resources to get started on your research because they provide you with topical overviews that are (1) shorter than scholarly articles and (2) written a in language that is meant for novice researchers learning about a new topic or field of study. They often include excellent bibliographies to help you identify core books/articles to continue your reading. Some examples are below to get you started but you can always make an appointment with me if you are feeling overwhelmed.

Think of the various chapters in a book as similar in scope to scholarly articles. You do not have to read a book cover-to-cover to enhance your understanding on a topic.  Instead, pick the most interesting chapters to you, ready closely, and trace some of the footnotes/citations which will help you discover more sources to delve a little deeper and identify key scholars and resources. Below are just a few books that might inspire your topic or research, but try Library Search and Melvyl to find other books, or email me for help.

Keywords are the easiest way to search, but sometimes subject headings can really help you to narrow down your results. Here are some examples:

Mass media and sports
Sports Journalism
Television broadcasting of sports -- History
Communications in sports
Media Sports
Sports Communication
Mass media and sports - United States - History
Sports -- Social Aspects -- United States

The library subscribes to/pays for many different multidisciplinary and specialist databases which is the best way to discover and access resources such as scholarly, peer-reviewd research articles, magazine and news articles, trade publications, book reviews, dissertations, and more! 

Depending on your topic, you may want to try searching on various databases as each of them will index (provide information about) different journals and resources. There is no "one size fits all" when it comes to academic research. Although Google Scholar can be a good starting point, it only indexes publications and will lead you back to the library's resources to access the full-text of most articles. I have linked some helpful databases you may want to try searching on to get you started.

Humanities/Sociological Databases

Business & Industry Databases

Try "Journals at UCI" to search for a specific journal title. 

Other Journals that might be useful in your research topic:

Critical Studies in Media Communication

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal covering media and mass communication from a cultural studies and critical perspective. 

Feminist Media Studies

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal with a transdisciplinary, transnational forum for researchers pursuing feminist approaches to the field of media and communication studies, with attention to the historical, philosophical, cultural, social, political, and economic dimensions and analysis of sites including print and electronic media, film and the arts, and new media technologies.

International Journal of the History of Sport

  • A peer-reviewed journal covering sport history is the world’s leading sport history including global and regional coverage including the Americas, Africa, Asia, Australasia and the Pacific, Europe, and from 2012 the Middle East.

International Review for the Sociology of Sport

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal which disseminate research and scholarship on sport throughout the international academic community. The journal publishes research articles of varying lengths, from standard length research papers to shorter reports and commentary.

Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal that covers the field of communication and journalism.

Journal of Sport & Social Issues

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes papers in the field of sociology bringing you the latest research, discussion and analysis on contemporary sport issues.  

Sociology of Sport Journal

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal  framed by social theory, on exercise, sport, physical culture, and the (physically active) body. Analyses from diverse theoretical and methodological perspectives are encouraged to stimulate further research, critical thought, and theory development on topics ranging in broad scope from global professional sport, coaching, commercial exercise/fitness, and recreational physical activity. 

Television and New Media

  • A peer-reviewed academic journal that publishes papers in the field of communication

Women in Sport & Physical Activity Journal

  • A peer-reviewed journal that provides a forum for scholarship advancing our understanding of women in sport and physical activity. 


Trade publications cater to a specific industry or trade - they are also referred to as trade magazines. UCI Libraries does not subscribe online to Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal, but there are other trade publications you may come across when searching in several of the databases listed on this course guide.

News sources (historical and current) can be excellent sources for your research as they may include quality reporting as well as a variety of voices through opinion editorials on certain issues in sports and the media. Below are a few US based newspaper sources available online through the libraries, but you can also find many more nationally and internationally by visitng the Newspapers Guide.

Did you know? Access the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and New York Times (NYT) online for FREE, compliments of UCI LIbraries.