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Communication Fundamentals

Course Code CDEV-116
Lecture hours per week 3
Lab hours per week
Course Availability: Open

Effective communication is of obvious importance for successful interactions, both within a community and a culture, and across cultures.  This course allows students to learn how to build relationships with community members, examining methods of community engagement, community dynamics, networking, negotiation, conflict management, cross cultural communication, and ways to form collaborations/partnerships are essential components for successful interaction in the community. A focus on the use of strategic language, problem solving techniques, critical thinking, social marketing tools and methods for marketing CD campaigns to various target audiences will be examined as a foundation for promoting community dialogue. As well, community outreach strategies will be explored to increase understanding and appreciation of the many challenges inherent in reaching different groups within the community setting. Methods for interpreting and regulating both verbal and non-verbal forms of communication, and how cultural rules, socio-cultural values and norms impact communication will be discussed.  Appreciating the importance of local knowledge and customs and how this knowledge informs communication will be addressed. An emphasis on the need for cultural competency as a key component of CD is an integral part of the course.  How to facilitate, chair and evaluate community meetings as well as navigate through bureaucracies will be addressed as well as promoting the understanding of respect and sensitivity when working with communities.


Course Learning Outcomes

  1. Explore the critical importance, key facilitative roles and fundamental goals of effective, culturally sensitive communication both within and between communities
  2. Examine the many interpersonal communication skills, networking approaches and forms of partnerships used to build relationships and address conflicts with, and between community members  
  3. Assess the effectiveness of the media, public relations strategies, e-development strategies and various social marketing tools used to build community consensus, capacity and in promoting advocacy efforts
  4. Apply various interpersonal communication skills crucial to effective, ethical CD practice and identify ways to maintain these relationships
  5. Analyze the profound impact that cultural values and norms have on communication processes between individuals and communities       
  6. Define the concept of cultural competency and explain its importance as a critical component in the processes of mediation, negotiation, group facilitation, social animation and ethical community practice
  7. Explain the importance of the collective sharing of knowledge and experience between community workers in order to facilitate best practices in
Course Outline CDEV-116.pdf