Courses in Acoustic Communication


School of Communication, Simon Fraser University
(Note: Since the retirement of Prof. Barry Truax, these courses, except for CMNS 486 which he still teaches, now have revised content and therefore these links should only be used for reference; consult the School for current versions)

Special Topics Course: CMNS 486

Soundscape Composition as Context-Based Creation

The "acoustic" stream:

·       CMNS 259-3, Acoustic Dimensions of Communication I
"A course designed to develop the student's perception and understanding of sound and its behaviour in the interpersonal, social, environmental, media and creative fields. The acoustic and psychoacoustic bases of sound will be introduced with special reference to acoustic design, the electroacoustic media, and sonic environments. (lecture/laboratory)"

Note: CMNS 259 is offered both on campus and on-line in a Distance Education version

·       CMNS 359-4, Acoustic Dimensions of Communication II
"A special topics course and small class work group at an intermediate level in acoustic communication dealing intensively with special problems in psychoacoustics, acoustic design, soundscape studies, noise in the community, acoustic aspects of social organization, language and interpersonal communication, electronic sound production, media analysis, theories of sound cognition and information processing. (seminar/laboratory)"

·       CMNS 859-5 (graduate), Acoustic Dimensions of Communication
"Special topics in sound and communication studies with emphasis on specific problems in psychoacoustics, theories of sound cognition and information processing, soundscape studies, acoustic design, community noise surveys, media analysis and related technology. Students will gain experience in designing and conducting research projects in one of these areas. (seminar/laboratory)"

The "electroacoustic" stream:

·       CMNS 258-3, Introduction to Electroacoustic Communication
"An introduction to the audio medium as a communicational tool and to electroacoustic aspects of communication in general. Specific techniques of field recording, interviewing, editing, sound processing, multi-tracking, and basic digital studio techniques will be presented using the school’s studio facilities. Applications of the audio medium to such areas as media analysis, aural history, social documentation, interpersonal communication and sound-based composition will be discussed. (lecture/laboratory)"

·       CMNS 358-4, Sound Recording: Theory and Design
"An intermediate level studio workshop to develop the student's skills in sound production with an understanding of the communicational implications of sound design. Audio theory and its applications in both the digital and analog formats will be presented, along with practical studio techniques for stereo and multi-channel sound production. (seminar/laboratory)"

·       CMNS 357-4, Audio Media Analysis
This course provides an intensive analysis of the design and function of audio in all forms of electroacoustic media, including both historical analog and contemporary digital forms of communication. Specific attention will be given to sound design in advertising and other types of soundtracks, the structure of broadcast media considered as a surrogate listening environment, the sound recording as document, patterns and functions of electroacoustic media usage in daily life, and alternative uses of audio media.

.    CMNS 486-4, Soundscape Composition as Context-based Creation (seminar/laboratory)

Note: both streams of undergraduate and graduate study can lead to individual Directed Study courses.

Acoustic Communication Bibliography.

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