# Comparing newspapers

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Introduction

My Hypothesis for This Coursework on Comparing Newspapers:

Collecting The Data and Making it Balanced.

The data we have been asked to collect is known as Primary Data. This is because we ourselves have to abstract various pieces of information from newspapers provided by our teacher. These newspapers are; ‘The Times,’ ‘The Daily Mail’ and ‘The Daily Mirror.’ We then have the opportunity to carry out our investigations to try and prove our own hypothesis.

To make certain that collecting the data is unbiased I’ve decided to select three completely different sections from each article. However, each section has identical number of lines and this is my contribution to making the investigation fair and balanced. (If I selected any numbers of lines from each article then I wouldn’t be able to observe the variations between the word lengths from each individual paper.)

From these different sections in each article, I’m going to calculate the length of each word and work out an approximate average, (Mean,) for each section. The results will hopefully show, which newspaper I have taken the sample from, (I.e. The longer the word length, the more sophisticated the paper.) However, if this plan fails then I can observe and investigate the proportionality of the page contained by pictures. I’m mainly going to concentrate upon the sport pictures from each newspaper and this will hopefully confirm the type of newspaper, (i.e. Tabloid or Broadsheet) I’ve taken the picture from. (This should illustrate the space surrounded by pictures within a certain article.) The results should show that the MORE space contained by pictures, the LESS mature the paper will be.

Hopefully, this will help prove my hypothesis and if one strategy fails then I can always rely on the other.

Middle

Frequency (f)

Number of Letters (fx)

1

1

1

2

9

18

3

12

36

4

4

16

5

3

15

6

5

30

7

8

56

8

3

24

9

5

45

10

2

20

11

1

11

12

1

12

13

1

13

Total:

Σ= 55

Σ= 297

This section again shows an increase in letters. To make certain the results above were correct, I went through again and counted each individual letter by hand and was amazed when I found that there was exactly 297 letters with in this section.

My next measure is to find the approximate ‘Mean’ number for the Length of Words. To do this, I simply need to divided the total number of letters (297) by the total from the frequency (55) and this gives me the ‘Mean,’ (average) of 5.4.

The Mean = Σfx = 5.4

Σf

Below is a table representing the third section I’ve chosen from ‘The Daily ‘Mail’

Length of Words (x) | Tally | Frequency (f) | Number of Letters (fx) |

1 | 2 | 2 | |

2 | 14 | 28 | |

3 | 16 | 48 | |

4 | 8 | 32 | |

5 | 7 | 35 | |

6 | 8 | 48 | |

7 | 3 | 21 | |

8 | 5 | 40 | |

9 | 4 | 36 | |

10 | 4 | 40 | |

11 | 1 | 11 | |

12 | 0 | 0 | |

13 | 0 | 0 | |

Total: | Σ= 72 | Σ= 341 |

This section again shows an increase in letters. To make certain the results above were correct, I went through again and counted each individual letter by hand and was amazed when I found that there was exactly 341 letters with in this section.

My next measure is to find the estimated ‘Mean’ number for the Length of Words. To do this, I simply need to divide the total number of letters (341) by the total from the frequency (72) and this gives me the ‘Mean,’ (average) of 4.7.

The Mean = Σfx = 4.7

Σf

What Does ‘The Daily Mail’ Show?

After studying the three different sections within this Green Issue article, it shows that there’s a high dispersion of results away from the mean. The average word length ranges between 4.7 and 5.8. As you can see there’s quite a major difference between these two numbers. In fact, if you round the numbers up, one is equivalent to 5 and the other is 6. Therefore, the average word length for ‘The Daily Mail’ is approximately 5.5.Actually, there’s not a lot of difference between ‘The Mirror’s’ word lengths and ‘The Daily Mail’s’. This then confirm that both papers are basically at the same standard (tabloid.) ‘The Daily Mail’ however, does have the potential of being a broadsheet newspaper.

I’m now going to examine three different sections within ‘The Times’ and hopefully this will prove my hypothesis.

Below is a table representing the first section I’ve chosen from ‘The Times,’ (within the Green Issue article.)

Length of Words (x) | Tally | Frequency (f) | Number of Letters (fx) |

1 | 1 | 1 | |

2 | 8 | 16 | |

3 | 7 | 21 | |

4 | 12 | 48 | |

5 | 6 | 30 | |

6 | 9 | 54 | |

7 | 7 | 49 | |

8 | 1 | 8 | |

9 | 2 | 18 | |

10 | 1 | 10 | |

11 | 0 | 0 | |

12 | 0 | 0 | |

13 | 0 | 0 | |

Total: | Σ= 54 | Σ= 255 |

To make certain the results above were correct, I went through again and counted each individual letter by hand and was amazed when I found that there was exactly 255 letters within this section.

My next measure is to find the approximate ‘Mean’ number for the Length of Words. To do this, I simply need to divide the total number of letters (255) by the total from the frequency (54) and this gives me the ‘Mean,’ (average word length) of 4.7.

By looking over the results so far it seems that ‘The Daily Mail’ has the same if not more letters than ‘The Times.’ You can definitely see why ‘The Daily Mail’ is known to be a Middle-Classed paper. This is because results are showing that not only can it be of a Tabloid standard but it also has the potential of being a broadsheet paper.

The Mean = Σfx = 4.7

Σf

Below is a table representing the second section I’ve chosen from ‘The Times’

Length of Words (x) | Tally | Frequency (f) | Number of Letters (fx) |

1 | 2 | 2 | |

2 | 12 | 24 | |

3 | 12 | 36 | |

4 | 10 | 40 | |

5 | 3 | 15 | |

6 | 3 | 18 | |

7 | 2 | 14 | |

8 | 5 | 40 | |

9 | 4 | 36 | |

10 | 4 | 40 | |

11 | 1 | 11 | |

12 | 0 | 0 | |

13 | 0 | 0 | |

Total: | Σ= 58 | Σ= 276 |

Conclusion

- Finally, I described and explained (by using my graphs and charts) my thoughts to whether I had yet proven or disproved my hypothesis.

What Have I Learnt From This Investigation?

During this investigation, I’ve basically covered a lot of things I already know. However there are two topics which I wasn’t too familiar with but I now know extremely well. These include:

- How to deal with large numbers. - I usually find large numbers extremely difficult to deal with, especially when you have to either cube or square them as well. However, I now feel proud of completing this coursework, knowing I’ve finished something I usually struggle with. It just shows that if you practice it, it becomes perfect.

- Finding specific patterns. – This may seem a little silly but I’ve never been to keen on patterns. However, during this piece of coursework I had a go at tackling them and I’m glad I did. By looking thoroughly at tables, charts and graphs I created, it helped be to find the mathematical expressions to find the overall answer to the provided question.

Things I Would Change If I Had A Second Chance.

I’d like to think that this piece of coursework has been pretty good if not successful. Sadly, after putting my up most effort into it, there are still two issues I would change. These include:

- I think during this investigation, I’ve blabbed on a bit too much. Next time, I’ll use precise words and straight to the point sentences. (This will hopefully save a bit of paper and time.)
- Talking of time, I’d work consistently on the coursework instead of leaving it to the last few days, which slightly added the pressure.

I’ve extremely enjoyed this investigation and I’m certain it has been a beneficial task!

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Comparing length of words in newspapers section.

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