Summer 2024 - CMNS 221 D100

Media and Popular Cultures (3)

Class Number: 1088

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 6 – Aug 2, 2024: Thu, 10:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    Nine CMNS units with a minimum grade of C-.



Focuses on communication for social change; historical and contemporary perspectives in consumer culture; technology, media and popular culture; media and identity; and communication as public education.


This course is an introduction to and survey of the study of popular culture and communication, with a specific focus on the social and cultural dimensions of media and media environments. The course examines media-audience relations in regard to critical issues and controversies in media, society and popular culture. A broad range of themes will structure our investigation, including: communication and social change; citizenship, media and culture; the rise of industrial capitalism and the emergence of consumer cultures; controversies and practices of technology in media cultures; theories of mass culture and society; the nature and role of audiences in contemporary media culture; the dominance of visual/image culture in contemporary life; problems in relation to modernism, postmodernism and popular culture; globalization; media, identities and urban life; and communication as public education. In addition to course readings, we will also look closely at various films, examples of popular music, and other forms of audio/visual culture as part of our investigation.


  • Assignment 1 20%
  • Assignment 2 25%
  • Assignment 3 35%
  • Tutorial Participation 10%
  • Peer Review 5%
  • Lecture Attendance 5%


The school expects that the grades awarded in this course will bear some reasonable relation to established university-wide practices with respect to both levels and distribution of grades. In addition, the School will follow Policy S10.01 with respect to Academic Integrity, and Policies S10.02, S10.03 and S10.04 as regards Student Discipline (note: as of May 1, 2009 the previous T10 series of policies covering Intellectual Honesty (T10.02) and Academic Discipline (T10.03) have been replaced with the new S10 series of policies). For further information see:



Course readings, media, and other materials will be available on Canvas.


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at:

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university.


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the term are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.