CPT-33306 Communication Strategies in Everyday Life


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Individual Paper1
Independent study
Course coordinator(s)prof. dr. HFM te Molder
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. HFM te Molder
Examiner(s)prof. dr. HFM te Molder

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

CPT-12306 Introduction to Strategic Communication or CPT-23804 Introduction to Communication and Innovation Studies.


Starting point for this course is the idea that processes of change presume a thorough insight into people's everyday communication strategies. The course is particularly concerned with recent developments in the study of everyday talk (discursive psychology) and the application of these ideas to current communication practices, varying from public debates on vaccination and healthy food to online discussions on new (bio)technologies. The focus will be on the different ways in which people influence each other as part of their daily routine as well as on how practitioners can learn from these methods. We shall look into a range of strategies for constructing credibility in negotiations and public debates, for example by adopting particular identities ('layman' vs. 'expert') or resisting the ascription of (self-)interests. Another key issue is the range of devices that people draw on in order to build facts, such as the use of detailed narratives and the construction of independent witnesses. Finally, attention will be paid to the subtle strategies by which people request or provide information, advice or support and the communication dilemmas that they solve by using these strategies.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- identify and explain the core theoretical concepts in the field of discursive psychology (study of everyday communication strategies);
- analyse everyday communication strategies, for example between 'expert' and 'lay' participants, in a systematic and theoretically grounded way;
- apply these insights to the communication domain so as to help solve communication problems, for example in the fields of nutrition and health communication;
- assess the merit and value of communication activities according to the insights of discursive psychology.


- Part of the course is devoted to class teaching during which there will be ample opportunity for interaction.
- The assignment will be done in couples; students are expected to present and discuss their assignment in the last session.


The final grade for the course will be based on a written exam and an assignment. The assignment is to be carried out in couples under supervision of the teacher and is to conclude with a short paper. The paper counts for 1/3 of the final grade, the exam for the other 2/3. The written exam and assignment should be 5.0 at least.


Literature will be announced through MyPortal.

Restricted Optional for: MMEManagement, Economics and Consumer StudiesMScB: Consumer Studies5AF
MCHCommunication, Health and Life SciencesMScA: Communication and Innovation5AF