Type of entity
Authorized form of name
School of Communication
Parallel form(s) of name
Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules
Other form(s) of name
- Department of Communication (1978 - 1994)
- Department of Communication Studies (1973 - 1978)
- Behavioural Science Foundations and Communications (1972 - 1973)
- Communication Studies Program (1965 - 1972)
Identifiers for corporate bodies
Dates of existence
The School of Communication has built its curriculum and research around understanding the organization, operation and meaning of the communication messages on which personal, national and global associations are built and sustained.
The School had its origins in 1965 as the Centre for Communications and the Arts, a unit in the Faculty of Education which offered credit courses, non-credit workshops, and public events. In 1970, the Faculty of Education was reorganized. The Arts program separated from the Faculty of Education to become part of the Division of General Studies. It retained the organizational title of Centre for Communications and the Arts although it no longer offered academic courses in communication studies. These courses remained in the Faculty of Education and became part of that faculty's Educational Foundations Centre. In 1972 Communication Studies became a department of the newly created Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies. In 1977-1978, its name changed to the Department of Communication.
The School concentrated on six areas in the undergraduate program: theory and systems, history of communication, communication processes, communication media, political economy, and communication policy. In 1980, the School played an active role in founding the Canadian Communication Association (CCA). In 1981 a proposal was submitted to the Universities Council of British Columbia to establish a Ph.D. program in Communication. Approval for this program was obtained in 1983, making it the only Communication Department in Canada (west of Ontario) to offer a full set of academic degree programs (Ph.D., M.A., and B.A.) in the communication field. In 1984 the School consolidated its teaching and research areas, focusing on three areas of specialized concentration: communication media, technology and policy.
In 1985 after the dissolution of the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies, the School moved into the Faculty of Applied Sciences, in recognition of the fact that communication is a discipline of practical application. In 1994, the School adopted its current name, the School of Communication.
The School continues to be leader in local and international communication research and is involved in a number of projects including the Canadian Centre for Studies in Publishing (founded in 1987), Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology (established in 1988), The Digest (an on-line journal published by the Centre for Policy Research on Science and Technology), Emergency Preparedness Information Exchange (operated by the Telematics Research lab), and NewsWatch Canada. The School also has a number of lab facilities that supporting research and communication development. These include the Assessment of Technology in Context Design Lab (ATIC-DL) created in 1997, the Emergency Preparedness Information eXchange Lab, the Media Analysis Lab and the Sonic Research Studio (home of the World Soundscape Project established at Simon Fraser University during the late 1960s and early 1970s).