SFU Calendar 2001-2002

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School of Communication


6141 Robert C. Brown Hall, (604) 2913595 Tel, (604) 2914024 Fax, www.sfu.ca/communication

Director

(to be announced)

Graduate Program Chair

(to be announced)

Faculty and Areas of Research

For a complete list of faculty, see "School of Communication"..

P.S. Anderson - telecommunication and broadcasting policy; communication technology; communication to mitigate disasters/emergency communications

R.S. Anderson - international development; communication in conflict and intervention; community economic development; negotiation as communication; research methods in field situations

E. Balka - women and information technologies; technology assessment; participatory design of technology; information technology and work; technology and social movements

A.C.M. Beale - communication theory; history of communication; cultural policy; feminist analyses; film and video

G.W. Faurschou - media analysis; aesthetics and popular culture; social and political theory; economic discourse and market populism

R.S. Gruneau - popular culture, media; communications and cultural theory

D. Gutstein - journalism studies; information policy; access to information; documentary research techniques

R.A. Hackett - political communication; journalism and media studies; news analysis; press policy; media democratization

L.M. Harasim - computer mediated communication and collaboration; telelearning and telework; social network design and evaluation

M.P. Hindley - interpersonal communication; communication and psychological issues; family communication; conflict resolution

J.A.D. Holbrook - measurement and quantitative analysis of innovation and S&T activities; regional systems of innovation; innovation and S&T policy analysis

P.M. Howard - communication in the computerized workplace; technology transfer; knowledge systems in development; risk communication with a focus on biotechnologies

R.W. Howard - communication in development; conflict and communication; international environmental issues; participatory research

S. Kline - advertising; children's media and culture; audience research; public communication campaigns; non-broadcast video designs and uses

M. Laba - popular culture; media; applied communication for social issues

B. Lewis - Pacific Rim; film, broadcasting and communications policy; documentary media

M. Lipsett - science, technology and innovation metrics; management of technology; policy development and analysis

R.M. Lorimer - publishing; mass communication

C.A. Murray - strategic marketing, policy and regulation in telecommunications and broadcasting; political communication and opinion research; social marketing

W.D. Richards - communication/social network theory and network analysis methods; simulation methods; organizational communication/information networks and network analysis

R.K. Smith - management of technological innovation; innovation and cross-cultural communication; information society; the role of design in new service formulation

B.D. Truax - acoustic and electroacoustic communication; audio aspects of media and advertising; electroacoustic and computer music

J.W. Walls - intercultural communication; communication in East Asian languages and cultures; language and culture in translation

Y. Zhao - political economy of international communication; relationship between communication, development and democracy; media and telecommunication industries in China

Communication is a comparatively new discipline that builds on traditional social science disciplines. It focuses on analysis of the context and means in which information in its diverse forms is created, packaged, circulated, interpreted, and controlled. As an applied science, communication is important in the creation and critical evaluation of legal and public policies in broadcasting, telecommunications, and community and international development. The study of communication has also become prominent in the professions, notably in law, education, community medicine, counselling, and mental health, and in business administration, advertising, and broadcasting.

The school draws on a variety of perspectives, but it is most readily distinguished by the fact that it treats communication as a humanistic social science with both theoretical and applied dimensions. Students are given opportunities to explore communication theory and practice and are encouraged to apply research and theory to issues and problems in contemporary societies and cultures.

The school offers graduate programs leading to an MA degree or PhD degree.

Fields of Study and Research

Faculty resources provide for graduate studies in the following general areas of interest. Students may wish to specialize in one or more of these general areas, or to select related aspects from two or more.

Research and Training Facilities

Assessment of Technology in Context Design Laboratory

Graduate Resource Centre

Interactive Media Lab (network and multimedia studies)

Media Analysis Laboratory

Sonic Research Studio and Soundscape Archives

Telematics Laboratory

MA Program

Admission

Admission requires a bachelor's degree in communication (with at least a good second-class standing) or an equivalent degree in an interdisciplinary or humanities program, in one of the social sciences, or in socially oriented information systems, or biological sciences. However, qualified students will be accepted only if the communication graduate studies committee find a suitable thesis supervisor. Besides applications from communication students, the school encourages applications from those with experience in humanities, social or biological sciences, and interdisciplinary studies.

All applications should be directed to the graduate studies committee and, in addition to general university requirements, should include the following.

The application deadline is January 15. The committee announces decisions before the last week of April. Students enter the program in fall semester.

The school recognizes the special needs of working individuals who wish to upgrade their qualifications. The graduate program in communication has been approved for part time students; however, University regulations require all MA students to complete their studies within 12 full time equivalent semesters or six years, whichever is shorter.

Advising and Supervision

Each new student is assigned an interim advisor upon program admission. The student selects a senior supervisor and in consultation with this faculty member selects one or two other faculty to serve on a supervisory committee by the beginning of the student's third semester. Although the graduate studies committee (GSC) will endeavor to provide interim advisors with expertise in the student's stated area of research interest, there is no obligation to select the interim advisor as senior supervisor.

Degree Requirements

Graduate courses are organized into six groups. Group 1 contains survey courses that define and map the field in addition to exposing students to faculty interests and programs of research. Group 2 contains courses in research methods and methodology designed to help students with research projects in the field. Group 3 contains courses in the various research areas available in the school. Group 4 courses provide the opportunities for students to do field work or to work and study in a professional setting. Group 5 courses allow students the opportunity to carry out research and/or reading under the direct supervision of a faculty member. Group 6 refers to the course designations for work on theses, projects, extended essays, or dissertations in process, for colloquia where students present such work, and for comprehensive examinations.

Candidates for the master's degree must normally satisfy the following.

Course Work

At least six graduate courses (normally completed before beginning a thesis, a project, or two extended essays) which must include the following.

CMNS 800, 802, 804

Group 2 Courses: Research Design and Methods

CMNS 801, 805

Group 3 Courses: Research Area Courses

CMNS 815, 830, 840, 845, 855, 856, 859

Group 4 Courses: Research Internship and Fieldwork

CMNS 881, 882

Group 5 Courses: Directed Readings and Studies

CMNS 850, 851, 880

Group 6 Courses: Colloquia, Theses and Comprehensives

CMNS 860, 895, 898, 899

Cooperative Master's Option

In the fall of 1998, the School of Communication introduced a cooperative education option on a trial basis for master's students. This program combines professional work experience with academic studies. After the first two semesters of the program, students may alternate work and academic terms. All work positions are in paid, study related jobs and may lead to the communications project or extended essay in lieu of a master's thesis. Application for the cooperative education program is made through the school's coop coordinator and the University office of Cooperative Education.

PhD Program

The school will offer PhD students the opportunity to choose from the fields of study and research listed above under Faculty and Areas of Research and Fields of Study and Research.

Admission

Admission requirements for this program will normally include a master's degree or an exceptional record of undergraduate and/or graduate work in a relevant area of study. Enrolment is strictly limited by the school.

For general university admission requirements, see "Graduate General Regulations".. In addition to satisfying general requirements, applicants are asked to provide

Students will normally enter the program in the fall semester. The annual deadline for applications is January 15. The committee will announce its decisions to applicants before the last week of April.

Degree Requirements

All doctoral candidates must complete course work, take a comprehensive examination, and submit a dissertation which demonstrates the student's ability to make an original contribution to the field of communication. Candidates must normally satisfy the following requirements.

Course Work

Students must complete course work consisting of a minimum of nine courses at the graduate level for those students entering with a bachelor's degree (including CMNS 860) or five graduate courses for students who have completed a master's degree. The graduate studies committee may require additional courses depending upon a student's background and dissertation project. These courses are normally completed before taking the comprehensive examinations, or beginning a dissertation, and will include the following.

CMNS 800, 802, 804

Group 2 Courses: Research Design and Methods

CMNS 801, 805

Group 3 Courses: Research Area Courses

CMNS 815, 830, 840, 845, 855, 856, 859

Group 4 Courses: Research Internship and Fieldwork

CMNS 881, 882

Group 5 Courses: Directed Readings and Studies

CMNS 850, 851, 880

Group 6 Courses: Colloquia, Theses and Comprehensives

CMNS 860, 895, 898, 899

The Comprehensive Examination

With the consent of their supervisory committee, students may apply to take the comprehensive examination following completion of required course work and normally no later than the third year of study. Upon passing, the student will be admitted to full degree candidacy. The examination may be retaken once.

To prepare for the comprehensive exam, the student shall select at least three fields of interest related to communication. At least one field shall focus on either the theory, methodology, or history of communication.

The student shall submit a short definition paper, including bibliography, on each of the fields selected in preparation for both a written and oral examination. Specific guidelines for these examinations are available from the departmental graduate secretary.

An Original Dissertation

PhD students complete a doctoral dissertation that demonstrates an ability to make an original contribution to the field of communication.

Advising and Supervision

Students are advised to read section 6 of the General Regulations and the school's Guidelines for Supervisory Committees.

Each new student is assigned an interim advisor upon program admission. The student is expected to select a senior supervisor and in consultation with this faculty member to select two or three other faculty to serve on a supervisory committee by the beginning of the student's third semester. Although the graduate studies committee will endeavour to select interim advisors with expertise in the student's stated area of research interest, there is no obligation to choose the interim advisor to be senior supervisor.

Students have the right to discuss their programs and status with communication graduate studies at any stage, to ask for a review of any recommendation or grade, and to appeal any committee, supervisor or faculty decision.

Graduate Courses

CMNS 800-5 Contemporary Approaches in Communication Studies

This course surveys current interdisciplinary perspectives in communication studies and theory. It is normally offered in the fall term, and expected in the first year of graduate study.

CMNS 801-5 Design and Methodology in Communication Research

A survey course which examines the problems, methods and theoretical assumptions in communication research using case studies of research design and methods. Students may design a research project and conduct a small pilot study in a selected area. Normally offered in the spring semester and expected in the first year of graduate study.

CMNS 802-5 History of Communication Theory

A survey of classic works, issues and debates in communication theory.

CMNS 804-5 Seminar in Advanced Communication Theory
CMNS 805-5 Communication Research Methods and Techniques

Survey of research methodology and techniques used in empirical communication studies. Includes research design, measurement, and the use of the computer in evaluation.

CMNS 815-5 Social Construction of Communication Technologies

A study of the social theory of information technologies, examining issues affecting computer-mediated communication.

CMNS 830-5 Popular Culture and Media Theory

Examines recent debates in popular culture and media theory, including post-modernism, hegemony, resistance and culture at the margin.

CMNS 840-5 Political Economy of Communications

A study of the political, economic and social process that produces the structure and policies of mass media, and of telecommunication agencies in their historical setting.

CMNS 845-5 Communication, Knowledge Systems and Development

A study of communication in development, with a special emphasis on indigenous knowledge systems, the processes of globalization and cross-cultural communication, and the sustainability of local cultures. Prerequisite: one of CMNS 800, 801, 802.

CMNS 850-5 Directed Readings and Research

Pursuance of particular areas of interest related to a student's program.

CMNS 851-5 Directed Study

Pursuance of interest in specific areas, including field studies related to the student's program. May include work and study in supervised professional settings.

CMNS 855-5 Selected Topics in Communication Studies

Specialized one-time graduate course offerings on topics related to the current research of school faculty of visiting professors.

CMNS 856-5 Graduate Seminar

Advanced work in an area of specialization. Review and evaluation of research in progress.

CMNS 859-5 Acoustic Dimensions of Communications

Special topics in sound and communication studies with emphasis on specific problems in psycho-acoustics, 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. Prerequisite: CMNS 359 or equivalent.

CMNS 860-2 Graduate Colloquium

Discussion of essentials of researching, writing, and defending a thesis. Presentation by students of thesis related research plans or results, thesis architecture, of finished chapters for critical review by faculty and students. MA students must complete this course once before proceeding to a thesis defence. S/U standing only.

CMNS 880-5 Directed Readings and Research

Supervised enquiry in concentrated areas of specialization.

CMNS 881-5 Research Internship

Work and study in an approved professional setting.

CMNS 882-5 Research Field Work

External research beyond regular contact with the University.

CMNS 891-0 Co-op Practicum I
CMNS 892-0 Co-op Practicum II
CMNS 895-0 Comprehensive Examination

Examination of three areas of which one must be on the theoretical or methodological framework/procedures indicated by the proposed dissertation. S/U standing only. The exam may be retaken once in the event of unsatisfactory performance.

CMNS 898-0 MA Thesis
CMNS 899-0 PhD Thesis


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Index : searchable with the Find function in your web browser Calendar.pdfs Office of the Registrar / SFU
Table of Contents : searchable with the Find function in your web browser Course Database or Course Outlines
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Financial Assistance