CMNS 2171: Interpersonal Communication

Students learn a range of theories and perspectives related to interpersonal communication. Emphasis will be on understanding the importance of effective interpersonal communication to establishing and maintaining relationships as well as achieving goals in social and workplace environments. Students assess the use of interpersonal communication in given scenarios and are encouraged to reflect on and improve their own interpersonal communication skills. This study of interpersonal communication includes several contexts, including the workplace, social and family environments.


After successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  1. Explain the basic assumptions and characteristics of key theories and perspectives related to interpersonal communication.
  2. Explain the importance of interpersonal communication as a key factor in social, cultural, and workplace communication contexts.
  3. Describe the role of communication in defining the nature and quality of interpersonal relationships.
  4. Analyze based on theory the effectiveness and appropriateness of particular interpersonal communication strategies in a given situation or scenario.
  5. Apply principles and approaches to interpersonal communication effectively to particular communication scenarios based on context, goals, and needs.
  6. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your own interpersonal communication skills.

Course outline

CMNS 2171, Interpersonal Communication includes the following 12 modules:

  1. The Interpersonal Process
  2. Communication and the Self
  3. Perceiving Others
  4. Emotions
  5. Listening
  6. Language
  7. Non-Verbal Communication
  8. Dynamics of Interpersonal Relationships
  9. Communication Climate
  10. Managing Conflict
  11. Communicating with Family
  12. Work, Group, and Team Communication

Required text and materials

  • Adler, R. B., Rosenfeld, L. B., Proctor, R. F., & Winder, C. (2016). Interplay: The process of interpersonal communication (4th Canadian ed.). Don Mills, ON: Oxford University Press.
    Type: Textbook ISBN 978-0-19-900962-6


Please be aware that due to COVID-19 safety guidelines all in-person exams have been suspended. As such, all final exams are currently being delivered through ProctorU, which has an approximate fee of $35 involved. There will be more information in your course shell, on how to apply, if your course has a final exam.

To complete this course successfully, you must achieve a passing grade of 50% or higher on the overall course and 50% or higher on the mandatory Final Exam. The following table shows how your final grade will be determined for this course.

Assignment 1: Journal A 10%
Assignment 2: Research Essay Thesis Statement 5%
Assignment 3: Journal B 10%
Assignment 4: Research Essay 20%
Quiz 1 10%
Quiz 2 10%
Quiz 310%
Final Exam (mandatory)25%
Total 100%


Open Learning Faculty Member

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Primary communication is through the Learning Environment's "Mail" tool or by phone. Students will receive the necessary contact information at the start of the course.

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