Technology & Society

The evolution of technology and way that it interacts with and shapes our society is a core part of all programs in our faculty. Our School of Communication’s Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology (CPROST) is at the forefront of technology policies, while degree programs in the school equip students with the critical thinking to evaluate the way that communication technologies shape our lives. Students in our School for the Contemporary Arts and School of Interactive Arts and Technology also engage deeply with these topics, while courses in the Publishing Minor program examine the way technology is changing books and periodicals. 

Selected programs and courses

The programs below are a sample of the many offerings across our faculty. 

Bachelor of Arts — Communication Major

A major in communication provides students with a foundation in critical thinking, reading, analysis and production in the field of communication that allows them to study the cultures, histories, technologies, and ideologies that shape technology and society. These structures inform and shape how we experience technology and how we interact as a society, and communications students are equipped to meaningfully participate in, question, and redefine these structures as they move into careers in diverse fields.  

Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts — Interactive Arts and Technology Major

Both the BA and BSc programs in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology offer an opportunity to work with technology and learn how it impacts and shapes our society. While learning media and digital arts, user experience theory, and design, students are encouraged to take their studies in a direction that most interests them and to collaborate with their peers and instructors while building a portfolio of impressive work.

Master of Digital Media

Located at the Centre for Digital Media in Vancouver, this program is at the intersection of art, design, business and engineering. Students gain skills in user experience design, software development, project management, and interactive storytelling that applies to any industry where digital content is used. 

Selected courses

The courses below are just a few of the many offerings related to art and design across our faculty.

CMNS 353 — Topics in Technology and Society

An examination of the emergence and shaping of information and communication technologies in the digital age, this course explores new media and social change between everyday life, social institutions, and various enterprises. Emphasis is placed on social context and relations of power. 

CMNS 452 — Race and the Media

This course examines the contemporary construction and maintenance of race and ethnicity, through movies, music, and the Internet. It provides grounding in scholarship on media, race, ethnicity, and identity while exploring the historical role of entertainment in racialization. Student also investigate contemporary issues and forms of media and race.

PUB 401 — Technology and the Evolving Book

This course explores the dramatic, controversial, and sometimes baffling movement within the contemporary book industry as writers, readers, and markets move increasingly online. This course attempts to envision the future of the book by making sense of their past and present, and by understanding the technological and social forces that have shaped their trajectory. In doing so, it explores developments in the way books are produced, marketed, distributed, retailed, and perceived.

CA 313 - Arts, Audience, Patronage, Institutions

Through an investigation of the fine and performing arts, their audiences, patronage and institutions in a specific historical context, this course provides students with an in-depth understanding of a selection of art works and their relationship to their specific cultural context.

IAT 351 — Advanced Human-Computer Interaction

In this hands-on course, students will learn about and gain experience with a wide variety of interaction technologies, environments and architectures supporting user interaction with systems in work, learning and play. Applied topics may include, but are not limited to, collaboration and computers; ubiquitous and responsive environments; security, trust and privacy; networking; and distributed and heterogeneous interfaces.