Communication Theories (261111)

Learning Outcomes

The objective of this course is for students to acquire basic knowledge about the theories that have permeated mass communication studies, not neglecting the role played by the media in society. The multiplicity of existing theories on mass communication will be addressed, while trying to stimulate in students a critical and reflective sense from of determining themes in communication studies. 
From the materials generated, students should be able to develop and analysis capacity on the mass communication system, identifying the main theories of social communication and relating the modes and effects. 
They should be able to apply communication theories to the cases presented. 

Study Program

1 – Introductory notes
Mass communication as an object of study
The structure of mass media and communication models

2– Evolution of research 
Hypodermic Theory 
Lasswell Model
Empirical-Experimental or Persuasion Approach 
Empirical Field or Limited Effects Approach 
Functionalist Theory

3- The critical theory. Long term cognitive effects
The Frankfurt School and the concept of Cultural Industries 
Cultural Studies

4 – Reception: encoding/decoding
The Agenda-setting Hypothesis 
The Spiral of Silence Theory

5- Communication and new technologies
Technological determinism 
The Information Society 
New media and networks



FISKE, John (1999). Introdução ao Estudo da Comunicação. Lisboa: Edições ASA 
HARTLEY, John (2004): Comunicação, Estudos Culturais e Media. Conceitos- chave. Lisboa, Quimera
HOLMES, David (2006): Communication Theory. Media, Technology and Society, Sage
MCLUHAN, Marshall (2008): Compreender os Meios de Comunicação. Extensões do Homem, Relógio d’Água
Noelle-Neumann, Elisabeth (1995). La_espiral del silencio, Paidos
WOLF, Mauro (2001): Teorias da Comunicação. Lisboa, Editorial Presença