Communication (COMM)

COMM 103  Introduction to Communication  (3)  

Students develop an increased competency in communicating with precision and style, and also have the opportunity to think critically and creatively about the process of communication. Major topics in communication theory and practice are surveyed in addition to a focus on public speaking.

COMM 200  Interpersonal Communication  (3)  

A study of interpersonal communication theories and concepts. Focus on the role of communication in understanding and constructing interpersonal relationships in various social contexts. Prerequisite: COMM 103.

COMM 202  Introduction to Rhetoric Through Pop Culture  (3)  

This class will provide an introductory overview of rhetoric through popular culture. The class will introduce various approaches to the study of rhetoric including: classical, narrative, dramatistic, crosscultural, Marxist, feminist, music, visual, and media- centered. In this class we will work from the modern perspective of rhetoric as the study of how we use discourse and other symbolic means to alter, shape, and create our understanding of self, each other, and the world we share. Our study of rhetoric will blend class analysis of popular culture artifacts, personal analysis of popular culture artifacts that are part of your life, and larger, indepth analysis. Prerequisite: COMM 103.

COMM 203  Small Group Communication  (3)  

A study of the process and theories of communication in small groups. The focus is on improving individual communication in groups. Prerequisite: COMM 103.

COMM 204  Social Media  (3)  

This survey course is designed to critically explore the ever-evolving communication phenomenon of social media. In this class, we will address the development of the industry, examine social media from interpersonal, cultural and societal perspectives, and explore the intersections of social media with ethics, law, and organizations.

COMM 210  Mass Media and Society  (3)  

This course is designed to sensitize the student to the emergence, current status, and future direction of American media systems. Emphasis is placed on the political/economic pressures that shape media systems and how the media shape and influence mass culture.

COMM 255  Magazine Writing  (3)  

The rich field of periodical publications is the object of this course, which offers students the opportunity to try their hands at subject matters and voices both suitable to different magazine readerships and reflective of their own interests and opinions.

COMM 257  Journalism  (3)  

Techniques of news writing, editing, copy editing, feature writing and newspaper makeup and publication. Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing or permission of instructor.

COMM 260  Film and Video Production  (3)  

The course focuses on the video production process by introducing students to the use of video cameras and microphones, the basic principles of lighting for video, the use of non-linear editing software, the mechanics of delivering video content to social media and online platforms. The emphasis of the course is on visual storytelling techniques and elements of contemporary communication theory that are useful for crafting and conveying messages to well-defined audiences over the medium of video.

COMM 266  Introduction to New Media  (3)  

An introduction to the new visual technologies and basic concepts (mechanical, visual, and aesthetic) for their creative use in the visual arts. Those fields involved may include photography, film, video, computer imagery and holography and other contemporary media. Students will be introduced to these media through lectures, direct laboratory experience, discussion sessions and creative problem-solving projects. No prerequisite: ART 103 desirable (also listed as ART 266).

COMM 290  Special Topics  (1-3)  

Topics of special interest in communication not covered in the regular department offerings. May be repeated with different topic.

COMM 303  Advertising in Consumer Society  (3)  

The study of the role of advertising in contemporary society. Topics include the history and sociology of advertising and the analysis of advertising and marketing efforts from a communication perspective.

COMM 304  Public Relations  (3)  

The course provides both theoretical knowledge and practical experience in the skills and techniques that cover several closely associated areas: writing for public relations, media use and tactic design ranging across internal and external media, print, electronic and digital media.

COMM 307  Organizational Communication  (3)  

This course examines communication processes that shape diverse organizational settings. Topics include the study of organizational culture, managerial communication, the construction of gender roles within organizational settings, and the role of communication in designing progressive work environments.

COMM 308  Persuasion  (3)  

Assessment of research and theory as they illuminate persuasion in interpersonal, public, and mediated communication contexts. Topics include motivation, attitude formation and change, social and cultural influences, credibility and non-verbal aspects of communication. Special attention is given to persuasive appeals.

COMM 312  Argumentation  (3)  

This course examines the processes and practices of argumentation as an art of peace. The goal of the course is to approach argumentation as a way to achieve community, dialogue, and change. Through embracing conflict and difference as a way to bring groups together. Topics will include logic, dialogue, fallacies, ethics of interdependence, and mindfullness. Prerequisites: COMM 103.

COMM 330  Critical Issues in Mass Communication  (3)  

This course is designed to introduce students to: the political economy of media institutions in a global environment; the media effects research tradition; and ethical issues associated with mass communication in culture. Special attention is focused on information control, the impact of computer technology on social and community life, and privacy issues. Prerequisites: COMM 103 and 210.

COMM 350  Intercultural Communication  (3)  

This course introduces students to the role communication plays in shaping interactions between members of differing cultural groups. Topics include the role of media as vehicles of cultural expression, tourism as a characteristic type of encounter between people, and the ways in which maps construct the identity of social groups. Prerequisite: COMM 103.

COMM 360  Oral Interpretation  (3)  

The study and analysis of literature through performance. Students will gain experience in the epic, lyric, and dramatic modes of solo performance in addition to a beginning exploration of ensemble work in a performance study (also listed as THTR 360).

COMM 369  Public Communication  (3)  

This class will study the role of public speaking in society through putting theory into practice. An experiential education course, class time is divided between studying theories of communication and the practice of public communication through the act of teaching communication studies to guests at a local service agency. Prerequisite: COMM 103.

COMM 370  Political Communication  (3)  

This course studies politics through a communication perspective. The goal is to deepen students’ understanding of and critical thinking about communication’s role in political processes. Students will apply communication and media theories to political cartoons, speechwriting, advertising, debates, journalism, new media technology, and entertainment. Recurring themes include the perception of political communication as a problem in our political system, the role of women as political communicators, and ideas for reforming political communication.

COMM 383  Art and Entertainment Law  (3)  

A study of intellectual property as it applies to art and entertainment. Topics include: moral and economic rights, contracts, copyright, unfair competition, privacy, publicity, and censorship.

COMM 384  Mass Communication Law  (3)  

Exploration of governmental regulations of electronic and print media in America. Historical and contemporary analysis of law in such areas as defamation privacy, state secrets, obscenity, copyright, regulation of advertising, access to government information, free press/fair trial and regulation of broadcasting, cable, and the internet. Prerequisite: COMM 210 or permission of instructor.

COMM 385  Research in Communication  (3)  

Introduction to modes of scholarly inquiry in communication studies. Students are introduced to quantitative research methods such as content analysis, experimental design, and surveys, or qualitative methods, such as: historical, participant-observation, focus groups, and extended interviews. Prerequisite: 12 hours of COMM or permission of instructor.

COMM 386  Research in Rhetoric  (3)  

A survey of the principles of human public communication. Topics include theories of public speaking, political and social movement communication, and beginning rhetorical criticism. Special attention is given to the communicative efforts of women in the public arena. Prerequisite: 12 hours of COMM and junior standing or permission of instructor.

COMM 404  Non-Profit Public Relations Campaigns and Theory  (3)  

In this course, you will learn about the driving theories of public relations, the particular nature and characteristics of non-profit organizations, and the practical element of designing a potentially working campaign for a local non-profit organization. Prerequisite: COMM 304.

COMM 406  Marketing Communication  (3)  

The course explores the principles of consumer behavior and mass communication as a theoretical basis as well as practical aspects of the field, such as strategies for media selection, message execution, branding, and marketing mix tools.

COMM 418  Seminar on Women, Leadership, and Communication  (3)  

American women today are surrounded by a history of cultural practices that dictate how we should behave and appear. We are supposed to be quiet and dainty at the same time we are strong and confident. These expectations are embodied in a number of discourses and are communicated in a variety of forms. These then are the assumptions on which this course is based: that women have had and still do have far less access to leadership roles than men; that the reasons for this diminished access are numerous and complex; that as a simple matter of equity women should have greater access to positions of leadership in the future than they did in the past; and that so far as leadership is concerned, women have challenges that uniquely are theirs. This course examines the role of intersectionality in how we “do” identity and how all that we do is influenced by various identity factors. Students will complete a leadership self-assessment in order to determine strengths and weaknesses as a leader. We will exam historical perspectives of women in the workplace. Other topics covered throughout the course will include stereotypes, diversity, leadership, work-family interface, inclusion, and current trends/issues. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

COMM 422  Masculinities in the United States Media  (3)  

This course serves as a broad introduction to masculinities and theories of masculinity, providing students with the opportunity to research a topic related to masculinity or masculinities in depth. The course addresses how masculinity is understood, defined, and socially constructed. By thinking through various representations of manhood as they appear in American magazines, films, television shows, and advertising, students consider how “manliness” is produced, articulated, enforced, and subverted, particularly as concepts of masculinity intersect with other identities like race, class, and sexuality. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

COMM 454  Communication Ethics  (3)  

Survey of ethical theories focusing on their application to communication. Interpersonal, small group, persuasion and mass media situations will be considered. Prerequisite: 12 hours of COMM.

COMM 477  Adulting 101  (1)  

In this class, we will discuss the various issues, obstacles, and basic life skills needed to “adult” successfully. Each week we will focus on a specific meta topic area with specific topics to be determined by the class. Assignments will include class participation in person and through contribution to a class blog, creation of a portfolio, and regular personal journaling. Prerequisite: Senior standing

COMM 486  Practicum/Production  (3)  

This course allows students to gain hands-on experience with contemporary video and multimedia technology. Students produce individual or group projects that require them to design and create video or multimedia content. May be repeated one time with a different topic.

COMM 490  Special Topics  (1-3)  

Topics of special interest in communication not covered in the regular department offerings. May be repeated with different topic.

COMM 495  Seminar in Rhetoric and Criticism  (3)  

A seminar critically examining both written and oral rhetoric. Topics include the varieties of rhetorical critical methods and frames. The major component of this course is the design, execution, and presentation of a critical essay. This course satisfies the Senior Comprehensive requirement. Prerequisite: COMM 386

COMM 496  Seminar in Advanced Research Methods  (3)  

A seminar in which students design, execute, and present an original research project from a quantitative or qualitative perspective. This course satisfies the Senior Comprehensive requirement. Prerequisite: COMM 385.

COMM 497  Independent Study  (1-3)  

Research for the advanced student. Prerequisite: Permission of the independent study committee. May be repeated for a maximum of six hours of credit.

COMM 499  Internship  (1-3)  

Placement of the advanced student in internship opportunities, generally off-campus. A typical internship might be at a television or radio station, advertising or public relations firms, or in the marketing or public communication division of an area business. Offered each semester. Graded S/U. Prerequisite: 18 hours of COMM. May be repeated.