Our Program

photo of two students at a computer

Harold [Innis] taught us how to use the bias of culture and communication as an instrument of research. By directing attention to the bias, or distorting power of the dominant imagery and technology of any culture, he showed us how to understand cultures. – Marshall McLuhan

The Joint Graduate Program in Communication & Culture is a unique partnership. Together, Ryerson and York offer a critical mass of faculty needed to advance the study of communication and culture.

Drawn from a number of disciplines, the distinguished faculty collectively represent a breadth of perspectives and professional experience in communications, the social sciences, humanities, media, and fine arts.

All professors have strong records of achievement in scholarship and/or professional activity and many are internationally known. The Program, leading to MA and PhD degrees, is unique in Ontario in combining academic and professional work, with the objective of promoting the application of theory and research to contemporary issues and practices in communication and culture.

The Program brings together perspectives from the social sciences, humanities and fine arts, and communication-and media-related professions, and aims to encourage innovative thinking, research, and practice. The curriculum reflects the view that advanced work in this field requires not only a thorough grounding in theory and method but also a grasp of the practices, processes, and technologies in contemporary communication and cultural production.

The program provides students with opportunities to:

  • Examine the social, political, and economic dimensions of such issues as globalization, deregulation, privacy and security, convergence of communication industries, cross-cultural communications, and new media.
  • Conduct research that sheds new light on issues and problems in theory, empirical studies, and professional practices.
  • Report research in the form of either a major research paper, thesis, or project, and in a variety of non-traditional ways.
  • Participate in seminar discussions with faculty and production staff, to discuss student research as well as delve into the implications of current and emerging themes of interest.
  • Elect, in the master's program, for some self-directed course studies and field placements.

The Partnership

Through this partnership, you are able to capitalize on courses and other resources available at both campuses. In particular, you profit from:

York's tradition of innovative, interdisciplinary graduate programs—ones that break new ground for learning and are as internationally well recognized as is the university's strong history of theory-building, research, and professional training.


Ryerson's record of applied education, and its extensive industry links in film, photography, multimedia and information technologies, radio, television, and new media.

Drawing on faculty from many programs in both universities, the Programme's curriculum is structured around three flexible areas of study:

  • Media & Culture
  • Politics & Policy
  • Technology In Practice: Applied Perspectives

Information about technical facilities and policies in the Joint Program in Communication & Culture.