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Join us at Laurier

Becoming a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


We offer six courses each year. CS600 and CS601 are required courses. You must also register for CS695 or CS699 while working on your major research paper or thesis.

You are allowed to take up to 1.0 credit from other graduate programs with approval from the graduate coordinator. In the past, Communication Studies MA students have taken graduate courses in programs such as Cultural Analysis and Social Theory, English and Film Studies, and Applied Politics.

2019/20 Course Offerings

CS600: Graduate Seminar in Communication Studies (0.5 credit)

This team-taught course introduces students to the core concerns, theoretical concepts and research approaches in communication studies. Particular attention will be paid to the areas of research specialization of faculty. This mandatory course is designed to enable students to do the preparatory work necessary to their research projects.

CS601: Communication Studies Research Methods (0.5 credit)

This course will provide students with advanced training in the methods of research employed in the field of communication studies. Students study reactive or interactive research methods (participant observation, experimental designs, surveys and interviewing) and unobtrusive or non-reactive methodological designs (discourse analysis, semiotics, content analysis, and rhetorical and historical approaches). Students are encouraged to develop their major research paper or thesis research proposal as the final assignment for this course.

CS604: Network Cultures (0.5 credit)

This course investigates cultural practices, institutional contexts, and social implications of contemporary networked media, such as the internet, social media, mobile media, and similar assemblages. The course engages theoretical perspectives from fields such as cultural studies, critical internet studies, medium theory, and political economy.Specific topics may include but are not limited to algorithmic culture, big data, digital creativity, digital media industries, hacking, internet infrastructures, remix culture, and social media and politics.

CS615: Global Cultures: Hybrids, Homogeneities and Flows (0.5 credit)

What do wasabi peas, salsa music, the Lonely Planet, and Ciao Bella all have in common? This course explores these and other cultural forms and discusses the various forms and flows of global cultural communication. The global diffusion of radio, television, the Internet, satellite and digital technologies has made instantaneous communication possible, rendering many border controls over these transnational flows ineffective. Through these communication networks, new cultural forms and cultural expressions have emerged; and new cultural identities and power relations are being negotiated and contested transnationally. This course examines global cultures in relation to the information and communication technologies (ICTs) and practices that have enabled and constrained cultural forms and flows.

CS617: Risk, Media and Science (0.5 credit)

This course is an exploration of a number of critical approaches to risk communication, framed by a number of case studies. It examines the ways that risk messages are created, the influence they have on public understandings of science, and the effect these understandings have on attitudes and ideas regarding risk. Looking first to the ways that risk may be theorized, constructed and codified, this course then explores the role of media in evaluating and disseminating risk messages. The role played by news media in risk communication, and a look to risk communication by government, non-governmental organizations (such as Greenpeace and the AIDS Committee of Toronto), and other risk stakeholders (such as the pharmaceutical and insurance industries) is explored. 

CS640d Mobilities: On the Move (0.5 credit)

This course explores the interdisciplinary area of research known as “mobilities studies.” In the “new mobilities paradigm,” which is the founding manifesto of mobilities studies, mobility is defined as the actual or potential flows of information, ideas, images, objects, and bodies. These are familiar flows previously interpreted by scholars in communication studies, cultural studies, geography, transport studies, and migration studies. So, what is “new” about the new mobilities paradigm and about mobilities studies? In particular, how does mobilities studies intersect with communication studies?

Contact Us:

Jenna Hennebry, Graduate Coordinator

E: jhennebry@wlu.ca

General Inquiries

E: shoang@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x2806

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