CS101 Lecture 1 Week 2
a) Intro to Communication Studies
b) The Structures and Institutions of Mass Media
What is communication studies?
-A broad discipline
-Incorporates both social sciences’ (ex. Politics, economics) and humanities’ (ex. History, philosophy)
perspectives. One of these is fact-based, and one isn’t.
-Considers the role of communication in the ongoing production of social relations. Social relations are in
categories. Ex. Teacher, T.A, students.
-Interpersonal and personal communications
What is Communication?
1. Part of all social behaviours
2. Essential to any society (verbal, written)
3. Connects people at specific points in time and space (skype across the world)
4. Encompasses both transmission and transformation of meanings, values, and information (Information
View 1: It is a Process
Figure 1: Linear Model
Sender(s) message Medium message Receiver(s)
who says what channel to who effect
Ex. CNN is sending a message through television to us.
They have more power than us.
-Channel-movies or film, how the message is sent.
-Communication is the transmission of messages
-Misunderstanding occurs when there is a failure in the process
-One way process
View 2: It is Culture
-Many theorists do not like the linear model:
It is too simplistic
Lacks human agency
It ignores power
Overlooks cultural and social differences
-Communications is the production (reproduction) and exchange of meanings (sharing)
-These meanings could be:
a) Identities –who we are. Ex. class and ethnic identity, etc. How we think about ourselves.
b) Ideologies – How do we see and understand the world. Beliefs. Ex. If you are Buddhist you see the
world in a particular way.
c) Social norms and traditions. What is socially acceptable in your society?
-The broken telephone game can be used as an analysis for communications
-The production, exchange and circulation of these meanings is tied to social power (social relations)
-There is power in:
1. The production of knowledge (encoding) CS101 Lecture 1 Week 2
2. The circulation of knowledge. How do you circulate your knowledge? Do you have access to a TV
3. The receiving of knowledge (decoding)
-All of these are related to social power
What is the Role of Communications?
1. Inform – to inform people
2. Persuade – to persuade people. Ex. Politicians.
3. Entertain –