Visual Culture & Communication

Photograph of middle-aged man carrying Egyptian flag past a garage on with the word twitter has been spraypainted
Twitter graffito, Egypt, photographer unknown (2011). 

Visual Culture & Communication Program

Visual Culture and Communication (VCC) is an interdisciplinary undergraduate curriculum that provides students with a foundation in both visual cultural and communication studies (history, theory and criticism) and digital communication practices (with courses taught at Sheridan Institute). The Specialist Program offers grounding in both the analysis of visual culture, and the practices of visual communication. Students also take courses that are drawn from the Institute of Communication, Culture, Information and Technology program. Students graduate with an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and a certificate in Digital Communications from Sheridan. Students must achieve a minimum 2.0 GPA in order to be granted the Sheridan Certificate in Digital Communications.

Increasingly, global cultures are dominated by visual communication, from art to advertising, propaganda to documentary photography, and film to websites. People of all generations are becoming active producers and consumers of visual culture. As digital technology expands, expertise in visual communication and design becomes essential for meeting the challenges of the global culture. VCC will prepare students to take an active and informed role in shaping twenty-first-century visual culture by bringing historical and theoretical study from multidisciplinary perspectives to bear on contemporary practice and debate. 

  • Degree options: specialist.
  • Degree requirements: visit the UTM Course Calendar.
  • What courses will I take?: Visual Culture and Communication students take courses with the prefixes VST, VCC, and CIN (in the Department of Visual Studies), as well as courses with the prefix CCT in the Institute of Communication, Culture, Information and Technology. A full listing of VST, VCC, and CIN courses can be found by visiting the All DVS Courses page of this website. A list of cross-listed CCT courses is provided below.  

Possibilities with a Visual Culture & Communication Degree

Specialization in this program equips graduates with strong writing and analytical skills and a broad overview of issues associated with the production, dissemination, and consumption of media. Many VCC students go on to graduate school in areas such as Visual Culture Studies, Cultural Studies, Critical Theory, Media Studies, and Cinema Studies. Training in digital media production may lead to further study and specialization in areas such as video game design, animation, web or graphic design. A VCC degree may lead to careers in digital media production; curatorial work; media archiving and librarianship; advertising and marketing; administrative work in film, television, or new media; journalism.

Cross-listed Courses

In addition to Department of Visual Studies VCC courses, students select from the following CCT courses as part of a Visual Culture & Communication degree:

CCT109H5 Contemporary Communication Technologies (SSc)
CCT110H5 The Rhetoric of Digital and Interactive Media Environments (SSc)
CCT200H5 Intercultural Communication (SH) (SSc)
CCT204H5 Design Thinking I (SH) (SSc)
CCT205H5 Digital Innovation and Cultural Transformation (SH) (SSc)
CCT206H5 Law, Technology and Culture (SSc)
CCT210H5 Signs, Referents, and Meaning (SSc)
CCT260H5 Web Culture and Design (SH) (SSc)
CCT300H5 Critical Analysis of Media (SH) (SSc)
CCT305H5 Design and Implementation of Multimedia Documents (SH) (SSc)
CCT310H5 Mass Communication and Popular Culture (SSc)
CCT351H5 Theory and Practice of Animation (SH) (SSc)
CCT352H5 History and Practice of Design (SH) (SSc)
CCT353H5 Digital Media: Movement and Sound (SH) (SSc)
CCT357H5 Digital Media: The Still Image (SH) (SSc)
CCT410H5 CCIT Internship I (SSc)
CCT453H5 Advanced Video Production (SH) (HUM)

Series of still images showing the moving of a horse running with rider
Eadweard Muybridge, Phayne L Running Stride, 19ft, 9in, Plate XVI (1878-79). Courtesy of the National Gallery of Art, Washington.