About Speech Communication

student speaking on stage with screen behind him

Student presenting on stage at Ignite as part of a course final assignment.

The central aim of the Speech Communication program is to explore the significance of making meaning.

In concert with disciplinary approaches to communication studies, the program understands communication as a constitutive process through which individuals and institutions negotiate power in ways that have significance for all of social life. Meaning making occurs in a variety of settings, including interpersonal, organizational, and public; through a range of channels and forums (textual, visual, digital, etc.); and in relation to both micro-level and macro-level interactions (such as within the family and workplace; in regard to large structures; and through social norms).

Students in the Speech Communication program study the dynamics of making meaning in four areas of concentration: Intercultural Communication, Interpersonal and Organizational Communication, Performance Studies, and Public and Digital Communication. Coursework within each of the plans emphasizes theoretically-informed practice and experiential learning. Students have the opportunity to strengthen abilities in leadership, teamwork, critical and ethical thinking, public expression, conflict management, cross-cultural communication, workplace communication, and relationship building. Our program is the only one of its kind in Canada to offer a specific university degree in Speech Communication.

The Speech Communication program weighs in heavily for my career successes thus far. It gave me interpersonal and presentation skills which are essential in my line of work. Also, the program gave me the confidence to network with colleagues in my organization as well as with external folks in the industry."

- Jimmy Huynh (BA, Speech Communication), HR Coordinator, PepsiCo

Speech Communication is an exceptional program that helps you prepare for various situations in the working world.  I've used the skills I learned in my work in public relations, fundraising and even teaching English abroad.   I'd highly recommend it to anyone interested in the field of communication, relations of all types and business management." 

- Micaela Buchnea-Chew (BA, Speech Communication), Junior Campaigner, Friends of the Earth Canada

Employment Opportunity for Sessional Instructors

The Speech Communication program at the University of Waterloo is searching for several new sessional instructors to teach core communication courses.  Based in a liberal arts faculty with high national and international standards, the Speech Communication program currently serves approximately 150 majors, 50 minors, and delivers many sections of communication courses to four Faculties from across the University.

Sessional instructors could teach up to three sections per academic term of the following courses: Public Speaking, Interpersonal Communication, Science Communication, or Communication in the Engineering Professions. Each of these courses include emphases on foundational communication competencies and are designed to align with the Speech Communication program objectives. More information on the Speech Communication program can be found here:


Interested instructors should have a PhD or be working toward completing a PhD, and should send a CV and a brief letter of interest that addresses qualifications and teaching philosophy to:

Dr. Robert Danisch

Chair, Department of Drama and Speech Communication

University of Waterloo

200 University Avenue West

Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1