COMM Course Listing

Military Communication and Writing (COMM 200, 3 Credits)

(Fulfills the general education requirement in communications.) A study of business communication management in a military context. The objective is to develop appropriate and effective communication products for military audiences and within military environments through the application of accepted business communication practices. Topics include communication theories; research methods; organization of information; formats; writing and editing strategies; and techniques for guiding subordinate communication, conducting interviews, and managing meetings. Assignments may include making speech presentations; instructing a class; conducting interviews; managing meetings; and writing and editing reports, letters, e-mails, proposals, and personnel evaluations.

Media and Society (COMM 202, 3 Credits)

(Fulfills the general education requirement in communications but is not a writing course.) Prerequisite: WRTG 101 or 101S. An overview designed to identify complex components and relationships involved in today's media. The goal is to understand the technical, political, economic, cultural, and organizational influences on mediated messages. Topics include visual rhetoric, legal and ethical issues, social media, transactional model, advertising, security and privacy concerns.

Understanding Visual Communication (COMM 207, 3 Credits)

A study of the creation and interpretation of visual language. The aim is to understand how images are used to effectively communicate ideas in a variety of channels, including news, advertising, and public relations. Topics include aesthetics, principles of composition, color systems, content awareness, and historical and cultural perspectives. Emphasis is on critical thinking and analysis of images from both theoretical and practical perspectives.

Communication Theory (COMM 300, 3 Credits)

(Fulfills the general education requirement in communications but is not a writing course.) Prerequisite: WRTG 101 or WRTG 101S. An introduction to communication theory. The objective is to apply communication theory and evaluate communication situations. The basic theories of human communication, mass communication, and new media and technology are explored. Focus is on the relationships among communication theory, research, and practice. Topics include intra- and interpersonal communication, public communication, mass media, and contemporary issues associated with mediated communication.

Mass Communication and Media Studies (COMM 302, 3 Credits)

(Formerly COMM 379A. Fulfills the general education requirement in communications but is not a writing course.) Prerequisite: WRTG 101 or WRTG 101S. A survey of mass communication designed to enhance media literacy. The goal is to interpret, evaluate, and produce media messages. Topics include media industries and the impact of the media, as well as regulation, policy, and ethical issues. Emphasis is on critical thinking and analysis of vital aspects of pervasive elements of popular culture, such as news, advertising, children's entertainment, and a free press. Students may receive credit for only one of the following courses: COMM 302 or COMM 379A.

Mass Media Law (COMM 400, 3 Credits)

(No previous study of law required. Fulfills the general education requirement in communications but is not a writing course.) Prerequisite: WRTG 101 or WRTG 101S. Recommended: WRTG 391, WRTG 393, or WRTG 394. An examination of important legal issues that affect mass media and communications professionals. The objective is to analyze mass media law, its evolution, and its relationship with society, culture, and politics. Topics include copyright, intellectual property, fair use, defamation, privacy, freedom of information, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press, as well as issues raised by the growth of the Internet. Discussion also covers ethics in mass media, digital technologies, and the creation of media content. Students may receive credit for only one of the following courses: COMM 400 or JOUR 400.

Special Topics in Communication (COMM 459, 1 Credits)

An exploration of special topics in communication. The objective is to attain specialized knowledge and skills in a particular area of communication, journalism, speech, or professional writing. Focus is on demonstrating new knowledge through an extended applied project. May be repeated to a maximum of 6 credits when topics differ.

Research Methods in Communication Studies (COMM 480, 3 Credits)

Prerequisites: COMM 300 and 302 and an upper-level writing course. A review of qualitative and quantitative research methods in communication studies. The objective is to define and explain research methods, concepts, and tools; apply research design, data collection, analysis, and reporting skills; and critically evaluate research in terms of rigor, relevance, and explanatory value. Practice is provided in finding, consuming, and analyzing research studies. Discussion covers the steps of the research process: articulating a question, developing a methodology, conducting a study, and reporting on findings.

Senior Seminar in Communication Studies (COMM 495, 3 Credits)

Prerequisites: COMM 300 and either WRTG 391, WRTG 393, or WRTG 394. A project-based capstone study of communication. The aim is to integrate knowledge gained through previous coursework and experience and build on that conceptual foundation through integrative analysis, practical application, and critical thinking. Tasks include assembling and analyzing a portfolio and completing a final project (such as a research based report and presentation, feasibility study, feature article, or career strategic plan) that requires conducting research and exploring ethical issues.