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Theory and History of Communication

Code: 104720 ECTS Credits: 6
Degree Type Year Semester
2503873 Interactive Communication FB 1 1


Emilio Fernandez Peņa

Teaching groups languages

You can check it through this link. To consult the language you will need to enter the CODE of the subject. Please note that this information is provisional until 30 November 2023.


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Objectives and Contextualisation

As a general objective, students will learn to think about interactive communication. Interactive communication is understood as that of the technical devices and programs that are used to communicate the so-called internet protocol. It also includes video games, virtual reality and big data. At the same time, the subject has the following secondary objectives:

a) Know the culture of the internet, computing and social networks

b) Learn its origins, its historical evolution and its influences on people's lives.

c) To deepen in those aspects of interactive communication that go beyond their appearances


  • Act with ethical responsibility and respect for fundamental rights and duties, diversity and democratic values.
  • Act within one's own area of knowledge, evaluating sex/gender-based inequalities.
  • Distinguish between and apply the principal theories, conceptual frameworks and approaches regulating interactive communication.
  • Introduce changes in the methods and processes of the field of knowledge to provide innovative responses to the needs and demands of society.
  • Manage time efficiently and plan for short-, medium- and long-term tasks.
  • Search for, select and rank any type of source and document that is useful for creating messages, academic papers, presentations, etc.
  • Students must be capable of applying their knowledge to their work or vocation in a professional way and they should have building arguments and problem resolution skills within their area of study.
  • Students must be capable of collecting and interpreting relevant data (usually within their area of study) in order to make statements that reflect social, scientific or ethical relevant issues.
  • Students must have and understand knowledge of an area of study built on the basis of general secondary education, and while it relies on some advanced textbooks it also includes some aspects coming from the forefront of its field of study.
  • Take account of social, economic and environmental impacts when operating within one's own area of knowledge.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Communicate using language that is not sexist or discriminatory.
  2. Cross-check information to establish its veracity, using evaluation criteria.
  3. Differentiate between the actors of communication structure in new media. .
  4. Discuss data from social behaviours in the interconnected society.
  5. Distinguish the salient features in all types of documents within the subject.
  6. Identify situations in which a change or improvement is needed.
  7. Identify the social, economic and environmental implications of academic and professional activities within one's own area of knowledge.
  8. Interpret and discuss documents on the main theories of interactive communication and communication structure.
  9. Master basic theoretical concepts of communication in new media and its distinguishing features.
  10. Plan and conduct academic studies in the field of theory, history and structure of communication and photography.
  11. Propose new methods or well-founded alternative solutions.
  12. Propose projects and actions that are in accordance with the principles of ethical responsibility and respect for fundamental rights and obligations, diversity and democratic values.
  13. Propose projects and actions that incorporate the gender perspective.
  14. Propose viable projects and actions to boost social, economic and environmental benefits.
  15. Submit course assignments on time, showing the individual and/or group planning involved.


1. Interactive communication: a definition 

2. The origins of interactive communication 

3. Internet

4. The birth of the World Wide Web

5. Internet Communication Processes 

6. Hackers' Culture

7. The social Internet

8. Apple: a holistic vision

9. Big Data, privacy and application 

The calendar will be available on the first day of class. Students will find all information on the Virtual Campus: the description of the activities, teaching materials, and any necessary information for the proper follow-up of the subject. In case of a change of teaching modality for health reasons, teachers will make readjustments in the schedule and methodologies.


The theory part will be taught through master classes by the professor responsible for the subject. At the same time, the responsible teacher will supervise the work of the students throughout their realization process. The seminar classes will consist of the discussion of readings and the preparation of critical comments of the same that will be delivered on the day scheduled for the seminar. Attendance at all theory and seminar sessions is compulsory. The detailed calendar with the content of the different sessions will be exposed on the day of presentation of the subject. It will also be posted on the Virtual Campus where students can find the detailed description of the exercises and practices, the various teaching materials and any information necessary for the proper monitoring of the subject. In the event of a change in the teaching modality for health reasons, the teaching staff will inform of the changes that will occur in the programming of the subject and in the teaching methodologies.

The proposed teaching methodology and evaluation activities may undergo some modifications depending on the health authorities' attendance restrictions.

Annotation: Within the schedule set by the centre or degree programme, 15 minutes of one class will be reserved for students to evaluate their lecturers and their courses or modules through questionnaires.


Title Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Type: Directed      
Theory 33 1.32 3, 9
Type: Supervised      
Essay 92.5 3.7 5, 3, 8
Seminar 15 0.6 2, 5, 8, 15
Tutorial 2 0.08 8


It is compulsory to attend all the theory and seminar sessions. To be able to take the reassessment it will be necessary to get more than 3.5 points in the theory exam. To pass the subject it will be necessary to individually past the theoretical part and the work.  An average will only be done in the event that the student has obtained a 5 or more in each of the parts. The teaching methodology and the proposed assessment may experience some modification depending on the restrictions on face-to-face attendance imposed by the health authorities. Plagiarism and copying in any exercise of the subject: theory, seminars or work is penalized with a 0 as a final grade in the subject.

At the beginning of December there will be a multiple choice exam in which questions will be asked about the theory matter taught so far. This exam will be worth 25% of the theory part, which accounts for 40% of the total. The student who gets more than a 7.5 in this exam will get 0.5 points that will be added to the final theory part. The multiple choice exam is not recovered. The theory exam, with 4 or 5 questions, will compute 75% of the total theory part and it will be necessary to pass the subject to obtain at least a 5 in this exam so that it averages with the multiple choice exam and the rest of the subject notes. The work and the seminars will be explained in the Virtual Campus at the beginning of the course. Attendance at all theory and seminar sessions is mandatory. In order to be able to attend the the revaluation exam, it will be necessary to obtain more than 3.5 points in the theory exam. To pass the course it will be necessary to individually pass the theory part and the essay. The teaching method and the proposed evaluation  may undergo some modification depending on the restrictions on attendance that the health authorities impose. Plagiarism and copying in any exercise of the subject: theory, seminars or work will be sanctioned with a 0 in the final grade of the subject.  


In the case of a second enrolment, students can do a single synthesis exam/assignment that will consist of an exam on the subject, accompanied by questions about the compulsory readings. The grading of the subject will correspond to the grade of the synthesis exam/assignment.


The activity that is excluded from the revaluation process is the essay. 



Single Assessment

The single evaluation will take place on the dates indicated by the faculty and will consist of three parts:

Theory, which will have a total value of 40% of the final mark. The theory will be evaluated on the day of the exam as follows. The students must first take a multiple choice exam with content on the subject. The result of the test type exam will be eliminatory, that is, it is necessary to get at least a five to pass the subject. Subsequently, the students who take advantage of this modality of evaluation must take a development exam of 4 questions and must pass this test individually to pass the subject, thus obtaining at least a 5. The value of the multiple choice exam It will be 30% of the total theory (remember that the value of the theory is 40% of the final grade) and that of the development exam is 70% of this part. The theoretical part may be recovered but for this thestudent must obtain at least a 3.5 in each of the two parts of the theoretical test in the first exam.

At the same time, the student body must deliver a piece of work on the day of the single assessment test whose final weight in the course grade will be 40% of the total. The work must be approved with a 5 or more and has no possibility of recovery. The work will consist of the design of an application or video game, whose characteristics will be explained in full on the virtual campus. 

The part of seminars has a valueof 20% and must be carried out as follows: The students must actively read three readings that will be communicated at the beginning of the course on the virtual Campus. On the day of the exam, the student body has to submit three comments in response to a series of questions formulated by the professor on the virtual campus. At the same time, the teacher will carry out a multiple choice exam asking for the content of the readings on the day of the exam. The works will have a value of 50% of the final grade and the multiple choice exam of the readings will have a value of 50% of the value of this part.




Assessment Activities

Title Weighting Hours ECTS Learning Outcomes
Essay 40% 2 0.08 2, 9, 10, 15, 11, 14
Seminar 20% 2.5 0.1 2, 5, 6, 8, 15, 12
Theory 40% 3 0.12 1, 3, 4, 9, 7, 11, 13, 14


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Jarvis, Jeff (2010). Y Google ¿cómo lo haría?. Barcelona : Gestión 2000.

Himanen, Pekka  (2002). La Ética del hacker y el espíritu de la era de la información / Pekka Himanen ; prólogo de Linus Torvalds ; epílogo de Manuel Castells ; traducción de Ferran Meler Ortí. Barcelona : Destino.

Sloterdijk, Peter  (2012). Has de cambiar tu vida : sobre antropotécnica. Valencia : Pre-Textos. 

Tarnas, Richard (2008). Cosmos y psique : indicios parauna nueva visión del mundo. Vilaür, Girona : Atalanta. 

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