Communication Studies (CMNS) 321

Computing in Everyday Life (Revision 5)

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Revision 5 is closed for registrations, replaced by current version

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online
Video component* or grouped study (check availability).
*Overseas students, please contact the University Library before registering in a course that has an audio/visual component.

Precluded course: CMNS 321 is a cross-listed course—a course listed under 2 different disciplines—HSRV 321. (CMNS 321 cannot be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for HSRV 321)

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: None

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Communication Studies home page

CMNS 321 has a Challenge for Credit option.

check availability


Computing in Everyday Life surveys the psychological and sociological impact of computers on the people who use them. The course situates the computer in the history of mediated communication by examining such key factors in computer-mediated communication as artificial intelligence, robotics, virtual reality, and the Internet. Implications of these factors for the nature of human experience with computers are then explored in selected applied units on the cellphone, augmented reality, video games, and health information. Students have ample opportunity to connect theory and actual experience through online research and discussion.


Core Units

  • Unit 1: Overview
  • Unit 2: Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • Unit 3: Virtual Reality (VR) and Robotics
  • Unit 4: The Internet

Application Units

  • Unit 5: Cell Phones
  • Unit 6: Augmented Reality: Portability, Accessibility, and Wearability
  • Unit 7: Video Games
  • Unit 8: Health Information and Disabilities: Computer Applications


To receive credit for CMNS 321, you must complete all assignments, achieve at least 50% on the final exam, and obtain a minimum composite course grade of at least "D" (50 percent). The chart below summarizes the course activities and the credit weight associated with each.

Assignment #1: Online discussion (5 posts at 2% each) Assignment #2: Experiential/Academic Reports (5 reports at 12% each) Final Exam Total
10% 60% 30% 100%

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Note: Weighting in grouped-study offerings may be altered to accommodate a classwork component.

Course Materials

All course materials for CMNS 321 are available online.

Challenge for Credit Course Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows students to demonstrate that they have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university level course.

Full information for the Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the CMNS 321 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least “D” (50 percent) on the examination.

Take home exam Exam Total
50% 50% 100%

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Current Grouped Study Locations

Note: All courses are subject to approval and availability
Institution Contact Dates Delivery Status
Sorry "cmns321" is not offered by Grouped Study at present.

NOTE: Students registering in grouped study mode are advised that there may be some differences in the evaluation and course materials information indicated above.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 5, February 25, 2010.

View previous syllabus