Summer 2023 - CMNS 304W D100

Communication in Everyday Life (4)

Class Number: 1689

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 11:30 AM – 2:20 PM
    HCC 1900, Vancouver

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Aug 10, 2023
    7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
    HCC 1900, Vancouver

  • Prerequisites:

    45 units, including one of CMNS 220, 221, 223, 223W, 235, with a minimum grade of C-.



An examination of a range of theories of everyday language focused on specific forms of discursive practice, including gossip, humour, religion, and sarcasm. Students with credit for CMNS 304 may not take this course for further credit. Writing.


CMNS 304W examines the interaction between language and culture in everyday life, by applying Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) to a variety of broadly defined texts encountered in our daily lives, e.g.) interpersonal dialogue; news reports, comedy, music, and social media; national and political rhetoric; medical and scientific discourse; and even our engagement with the city and nature. After introducing key theories and tools for discourse analysis, CMNS 304W critically examines everyday language beginning with the Self and moving out to our interactions with Others, culture, institutions, and finally the environment.

The course explores how language gives order and meaning to one’s perception, understanding, and experience of the world, as well as how social, political, and cultural relations influence the evolution of language to reflect social processes of privilege, oppression, and domination. The course will not only explore how structures of power and oppression are embedded in everyday relationships, media content, institutions, and the environments in which we live, but also how we can express our opposition to this power and oppression through everyday communication.

CMNS 304W is a writing intensive course. Students will propose, plan, draft, and edit a research paper that makes meaningful use of the course readings, as well as their own original research. In an effort to improve students’ writing skills, all course assignments are iterative, that is, each course assignment builds upon the next to culminate in one final paper. Students may write a research paper that prepares them for an academic career or one that prepares them for work outside the university.


  • Tutorial Attendance 5%
  • Tutorial Participation 10%
  • Autoethnography 15%
  • Paper Proposal 15%
  • Literature Review 20%
  • Paper Skeleton 5%
  • Final Paper 30%


Assignments/Grading subject to change with notice.



A set of readings will be made available via Canvas.

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.