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Dr. phil. Steffen Lepa M.A.


Scientific collaborateur in cluster-of-excellence research project Medium und Emotion

Leader of research project:
"Survey Musik und Medien. Empirische Basisdaten und theoretische Modellierung der Mediatisierung alltäglicher Musikrezeption in Deutschland"

Office hours: Tuesdays 12-14h (Room H 2001 E)
If you are planning a visit, please send me an email in advance!


E-Mail: steffen.lepa AT tu-berlin.de
Phone: +49 30 314 29313
Telefax: +49 30 314 21143

Private website

Research interests

  • Media reception / media use
  • Media education / instructional design
  • Social research methodology
  • Computer-based research and analysis instruments
  • Neurocognitive social media psychology
  • Bologna process and study programmee evaluation
  • Digital Cultures and media philosophy
  • Sound design, film music, multimedia production
  • youth culture / adolescence research




Media Appropriation from a Critical Realist Point of View? Theoretical Premises and Empirical Research
Citation key lepa_media_2010
Author Lepa, Steffen
Title of Book Comunicação, Cognição e Media. Volume 1
Pages 379–390
Year 2010
Address Braga (Portugal)
Editor da Silva, Augusto Soares and Martins, José Cândido and Magalháes, Luísa and Goncalves, Miguel
Publisher Aletheia
Abstract This paper is a theoretical and empirical critique of the appropriation concept as often employed in educational media studies and is also the proposal of a theoretical alternative. The main points of critique mirror the “New Revisionism Debate” (Curran 1990) that took place within cultural studies, but I try to reconsider some of the arguments to get to a new perspective from a critical realist (Danermark, Ekström, Jakobsen & Karlsson 2002) point of view. By additionally drawing on Leontjews (1959/1973) Activity Theory, I try to reestablish the historic conception of the psychological appropriation concept and link it with newer developments in social psychology and the praxeologic sociology of knowledge. In result, the process of mass media reception is differentiated theoretically into two parts: The often automatic and quasi‑unconscious decoding of socially shared meanings leading to (necessarily but gradually polysemic) individual cognitive meaning constructions (“Kommunikatbildung”) and the process of personal responsive sense‑making of subjects (“Sinn”) which (inter alia) brings about readers position (Hall 1973/1999) towards a mass media text in terms of individual appropriation and produces an empirical reading that is later on subject to communicative appropriation as well as empirical research. Similarly to the latter, the former process also heavily relies on socialized strategies and practices of aesthetic experience that are unequally shared within society but is nevertheless still a different cognitive process. Since the inter‑individual structuration of both of these mechanisms may only be reconstructed quantitatively in the realm of the empirical, ‘extensive’ (quantitative) methodological procedures for the analysis of empirical readings are needed to complement customarily employed ‘intensive’ (qualitative) interview procedures in mass media audience research.
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Curriculum Vitae

since 2012
Project leader of national-funded research project “Survey Musik und Medien. Empirische Basisdaten und theoretische Modellierung der Mediatisierung alltäglicher Musikrezeption in Deutschland” as part of the DFG-priority programme DFG-Schwerpunktprogramms “Mediatisized Worlds” .

since 2010
Postdoc researcher at the Audio Communication Group, Institute for Language and Communication at Technical University of Berlin, in the research project “Medium und Emotion” as part of the Berlin Cluster of Excellence network “Languages of Emotion

2009 – 2010
Teaching appointment for questionaire design and graphical data analysis with SPSS at the Faculty for Education and Social Sciences at Oldenburg University

2009 – 2010
Scientific lecturer (social research methodology) at the Institute for Pedagogics der Universität Oldenburg

2009 – 2010
Teaching appointment for multivariate statistics at the Faculty for Education and Social Sciences at Oldenburg University

September 2009
Promotion to a Doctor of Philosophy (“summa cum laude”) by the Faculty for Education and Social Sciences of Oldenburg University with the dissertation thesis:
“Jenseits des Films. Quantitativ-inhaltsanalytische Rekonstruktion von filmischen Verstehens- und Aneignungsprozessen mit Hilfe der Postrezeptiven Lesartenanalyse (PLA)”, supervised by Prof. Yvonne Ehrenspeck (general pedagogics) und Prof. Bernard Kittel (social research methodology)

2007 – 2010
Scientific lecturer (media education, social research methodology) at the Institute for Pedagogics at Oldenburg University

2007 – 2009
Teaching appointment for statistics with SPSS at the Faculty for Education and Social Sciences at Oldenburg University

2005 – 2009
Teaching appointment for digital audio editing at Braunschweig University of Fine Arts

2005 – 2007
Scientific research assistant in the national funded research project “Kommunikatbildungsprozesse Jugendlicher zur Todesthematik und Filmische Instruktionsmuster” at the Arbeitsbereich “Philosophie der Erziehung” (Prof. Dieter Lenzen) at Freien Universität Berlin

2005 – 2006
Teaching appointment for information psychology at the Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences

2003 – 2005
Master Study of Media Management at the Hannover University of Music, Drama and Media (Master of Arts degree, final grade: 1,5 / ECTS-Grade B – very good)

2003 – 2005
Responsible leader of the digital audio studio of the Central Media Service Unit at Braunschweig University of Fine Arts

Student research assistent at the BmBF/MWK-funded research project “CRIMP – Criteria for Evaluation of Audiovisuals in Multimedia Production“, of the Research Centre L3S, University of Hannover

1998 – 2003
Master study of Media Studies, Psychology and Media Technology at the Technical University of Braunschweig and Braunschweig University of Fine Arts (Master of Arts degree with final grade: 1,3)

1997 – 1998
Alternative civilian service at the daycare house for the elderly disabled of Lebenshilfe gGmbH, Braunschweig

University entrance diploma (“Abitur”) in English, Music, History (bilingual) und Computer Science at the Gymnasium Ricarda-Huch-Schule, Braunschweig, Germany (final grade: 1,8)

born on July, 30th 1978 in Braunschweig, Lower Saxony, Germany.


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