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Undergraduate Communication Courses

Please click on the title for a SAMPLE syllabus

COMM 1851 – Introduction to Film
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Comprehensive study of the forms, functions and history of film art, emphasis on developing student's critical skills and aesthetic appreciation through analysis of complex formal, social, historical and critical dimensions of the art of film. (G)

COMM 2020 – TV/Video/Radio Production Lab
Credit Hours (1-3) Former: (1823)
Description: Experiences in production of broadcast quality television studio, radio station and remote productions. Students assume technical positions on a variety of assignments as production assistants. Repeatable, may be repeated for a maximum of 3 hours credit.

COMM 2100 – Communication Inquiry
Credit hours (3)
Description: History and development of the discipline of communication; emphasis on rhetoric, social science and media; theories and models of communication. Examine definitions and models of the communication process and focus on the development of major theories in the discipline with a particular emphasis on how these theories apply to everyday life.

COMM 2101 – Media and Info Literacy (No preview available)
Credit hours (3)
Description: Critical examination and analysis of media and information products, focus on mediated construction of meaning and assessment of credibility online and in traditional mass media; basic research skills necessary to complete academic projects successfully.

COMM 2381 – Oral Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Principles and practices of public speaking using live and mediated formats; emphasis on researching, analyzing, writing and delivering effective spoken messages with appropriate visual support in informative persuasive settings. (G)

COMM 3001 – Rhetoric/Civic Controversy
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Introduction to history and practice of rhetoric as the art of civic engagement in a democracy, focus on key terms, ethical assumptions and interpretative tools of rhetoric study; analysis of contemporary and historical cases in focal and national controversy.

COMM 3003 – Television and Culture
Credit Hours (3) Former: (3861)
Description: Social, political and aesthetic dimensions of television in contemporary culture. Understand television as a unique meaning-producing medium, develop televisual literacy, understand the changing roles of television in American and global cultures.

COMM 3012 – Health Communication
Credit Hours: (3) Former: (4012)
Description: Examination of the role of communication in health care; application theory and practice to the health care context from provider-patient interaction to cultural influences on health. In this course we will study the theory and practice of health communication within the context of personal, organizational and cultural factors. Designed to give you an overview of Health Communication, which is a sub-discipline of Communication, this course is applicable not only to communication students but also to those in the health-related fields of study. In each unit, we will explore health communication theory, practice and research from a narrative perspective. The assignments and readings throughout the course will help you academically and professionally, as well as help you understand your own healthcare story.

COMM 3100 – Communication Ethics
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Exploration of principles, theories, and philosophical approaches to ethics of human communication; emphasis on decision-making, critical thinking and awareness of personal responsibilities as a sender and receiver of messages.

COMM 3321 – Argumentation and Advocacy
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Theories of argumentation with an emphasis on developing skills in analyzing, reasoning and using evidence in political advocacy. Students will learn the role of advocacy, debate and deliberation in public decision making. PREREQUISITE: COMM 2301

COMM 3322 - Theories of Persuasion
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Principles underlying communication designed to influence attitudes or behavior; approaches to motivation, perception, message structure, attention, reasoning, audience analysis, persuasability, and attitude change; items for analysis drawn from speeches, advertising, radio, television, and film.

COMM 3330 - Communication Research Methods
Credit Hours (4)
Description: Examination and application of qualitative and quantitative methods of research. Three hours of lecture, one hour of laboratory per week. PREREQUISITE: COMM 2100 and COMM 2101.

COMM 3341 – Discussion
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Study and practice of principles and techniques of discussion, dealing with current problems of wide interest and significance. Educate students about various commercial, governmental, philanthropic, education, legal and health systems which contribute to a community. Meet with key leaders from a variety of fields to gain understanding of various facets that contribute to a community's function and let how these leaders successfully navigate their fields.

COMM 3342 – Communication and Leadership
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Relationship between communication variables and leadership styles and effectiveness in various organizational and group setting. Educate students about leadership issues, including self-understanding, working with others and employing a collaborative model of leadership. Students will be exposed to elements of leadership through assigned readings, discussions, research projects and informed presentations.

COMM 3360 – Rhetoric/Pop Culture
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Investigation of rhetorics of U.S. culture; focus on how constructions of class, gender, race and sexuality work in contemporary television, film, music and advertising. In the Rhetoric of Pop Culture, you will engage critically with the artifacts of our common cultural life, including movies, sports, television, musicals, graphic novels, music videos, online memes and video games. Through an understanding of rhetorical concepts, you will form a deeper sensibility and awareness of how rhetoric structures day-to-day life.

COMM 3361 – African American Rhetoric
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Speeches and rhetoric of African Americans; emphasis on spokespersons such as Walker, Turner, Douglass, Washington, DuBois, Malcom X, King, Davis and Jackson. To stimulate objective examination and analysis for the African Americans and their allies.

COMM 3561 Gender in Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: This class provides a foundation of gender theories used in communication research and applies these theories and concepts to the way gender becomes instituted within our culture. The class deals with institutions such as family, religion, work, education, media and government. Students will gain a better understanding of the role communication plays in the formation, navigation, maintenance and disruption of institutional gender expectations and norms.

COMM 3800 – Media Industries
Credit Hours (3)
Description Overview of economic structure of media industries, including role of regulation and impact of media organizations on society. Familiarize the student of broadcasting with the technology, history, programming, regulation, major organizations (stations, networks, advertising agencies, rating services and PBS) of, and alternatives to American Broadcasting.

COMM 3801 – TV Production Technique /JOUR
Credit Hours (3)
Description: For majors in the broadcast journalism sequence, basic principles and techniques of video production with production exercises. Discussion of composition, shot lists, equipment request forms, cameras, tripods, shoot LS, MS& CU of subject. PREREQUISITE: Permission of instructor.

COMM 3820 – Broadcast Prep and Performance
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Skills required for on-air performance in broadcasting and cable emphasizing use of voice and copy preparation; presentation of public affairs programming, talk show hosting, sportscasting, newscasting and general announcing. This course provides you with an opportunity to gain an understanding of certain basic performance and operational procedures in the field of radio and television broadcasting.

COMM 3821 – Audio Narratives
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Basic principles and practices in storytelling for radio, the Internet, and new media; lecture and laboratory course using digital audio workstations for producing, recording and editing. This course provides you with an opportunity to gain understanding of certain basic production techniques and to be able to apply these in a situation of hands-on creative application. Operational activities of a typical radio station will be presented and discussed in detail.

COMM 3823 – Motion Picture Prod I
Credit Hours (4)
Description: Basic production skills and theory; still and 16 mm motion picture photography, film editing.

COMM 3824 – Motion Picture Prod II
Credit hours (4)
Description: Continued production skills and theory utilizing digital cameras and digital post production; extensive production exercises. PREREQUISITE: minimum grade of "C: in COMM 3823 or permission of instructor.

COMM 3842 – TV Studio Production I
Credit Hours (4)
Description: Techniques of studio TV production, including staging and direction of programs. PREREQUISITE: minimum grade of "C" in COMM 3823 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4011 – Communication in Organizations
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Study of communication systems and problems in contemporary organizations with emphasis on the role of communication in corporate culture and organizational change. Surveys the communication process in complex organizations. Understand organizational communication theories, models and processes. Emphasizes teamwork.

COMM 4013 – Political Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Investigation of various forms of political communication; texts drawn primarily from current political disputes in the U.S.; focus on improving basic skills of critical thinking and writing about civic life.

COMM 4014 – Communication on the Internet
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Research and theories examining the role of internet and new technologies in everyday interaction; interpersonal and group communication, language change, online communities and social networks, identify and self-presentation online.

COMM 4015 – Health Literacy
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Development of health literacy as an area of concern in healthcare including patient/provider interactions, public health campaigns, health education, healthcare reform and health insurance.

COMM 4210 – 4219 – Special Topics in Communication Studies (No preview available)
Credit Hours (1-3)
Description: Topics are varied and announced in online class listings. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 hours credit when topic varies.

COMM 4220 - 4229 – Special Topics in Film (No preview available)
Credit Hours (1-3)
Description: Topics are varied and in online class listings. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 hours credit when topic varies.

COMM 4340 – Listening
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Exploration of communication theory and practice from perspective of listening, philosophical, practical, personal dimensions of listening as an art of being as well as a mode of doing. To enhance one's inner capacity to listen. This course requires rigorous thought and openness to reorienting one's perspective of communication as well as reawakens one's ability to wonder about ultimate indestructible questions of life.

COMM 4341 – Interpersonal Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Theory, research and practice regarding dyadic communication. Introductory course which focuses upon the dynamics of interaction interpersonal and small group settings. Introduce students to the basic concepts and theories of interpersonal and small group communication and to provide an opportunity for the application and criticism of these theories through class exercises and discussions.

COMM 4342 – Small Group Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Study of group communication theory emphasizing group membership, member perceptions, group development, group processes and group outcomes. Being a member of a group or responsible for leading a group can be a difficult experience yet we are often called up- whether at school, work or participating in some leisure activities – to fulfill one or more role. This course will focus on small groups and team interaction with the primary purpose of increasing your understanding of the principles of group communication so that you may learn to function more effectively in personal and professional setting. Practical application within the classroom should increase the likelihood of retention and use of the concepts outside of the classroom as part of a life-long process.

COMM 4360 – American Eloquence
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Examination of notable public discourse from before founding of the republic through twentieth century, religious and secular foundations of American rhetoric; tensions of inclusion and exclusion in development of national self-understanding. This course surveys the history of American public address from it's origin in the seventeenth century to the present. Since the subject is vast and our time is limited to only a single semester, the course can hardly be comprehensive and offers only a selection of texts and issues for study within a chronological pattern. The selection of materials is not based on any single criterion but reflects a number of different considerations, including rhetorical excellence, influence, representation of a rhetorical style or significance in respect to a specific issue or controversy.

COMM 4363 – Dialogue
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Theoretical, philosophical and practical exploration of dialogic communication and relations. Enhance awareness and appreciation of dialogic communication values as applicable to a wide range of communication contexts and goals. Convene and engage in dialogue practices.

COMM 4364 – Gendered Public Discourse
Credit Hours (3)
Description: History of gender topics in U.S. public discourse. The course covers gender and rhetorical theory analyzing the social and cultural significance gendered voices and topics have played and continue to play in U.S. history. Focus is given to various 19th, 20th and 21st century issues.

COMM 4365 – Place/Community/Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Exploration of interrelationships between human interaction, created places and natural world; emphasis on communication environment, broadly conceived and its effect on community. Develop a basic method, vocabulary and historical vantage.

COMM 4373 – Interracial Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Special problems encountered in communication among races; readings, discussion and field study of how prejudice, stereotypes and self-concepts can affect communication; exploration of methods to minimize these problems.

COMM 4374 – Studies in Communication Arts
Credit Hours (1-3)
Description: Independent research in areas of special interest of communication, broadcast and electronic media, and film and video. Synthesis and extension of knowledge in communication studies; demonstrated integration of learning and positioning to move on as individuals, citizens and/or professionals. PREREQUESTIE: permission of instructor.

COMM 4375 – Intercultural Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Special problems encountered in communication among people of different cultural backgrounds; focus on understanding communication between and among people with different national/cultural backgrounds and functioning ore effectively in multicultural settings.

COMM 4380 - Communication and Conflict
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Theories and methods of conflict management and resolution focusing on practical communication skills; concepts of perception, listening and peacemaking emphasized. This course will focus on interpersonal conflict emphasizing both communication theory and the experiential application of the course content. The course content will be explored through exercises and discussion designed to develop and/or enhance skills such as: listening, the effective presentation of ideas and emotions and conflict resolution.

COMM 4381 – Senior Capstone
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Synthesis and extension of knowledge in communication studies; demonstrated integration of learning and positioning to move on as individuals, citizens and/or professionals. Students will create a portfolio representing past course projects as well as carry out a capstone research project. PREREQUESITE: COMM 3330 and senior standing or permission of instructor.

COMM 4400 – Contemplative Communication
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Non-analytical approach to communication theory and practice; holistic-communal perspective of relational experience; benefits of silence, stillness and solitude are interrelated with the values of openness, receptiveness and responsiveness. This course approaches the study of communication from a contemplative perspective; from a deep consideration of the challenge to live deliberately. We will contemplate rather than analyze in deepening our thinking in relational terms. Instead of trying to adapt to the increasing acceleration of communication activities, we will attempt to deescalate communicative pressure in order to cultivate more reflection, care and thoughtfulness in our relations with other. Instead of breaking the world down, we will work on building it up, seeking wholeness beyond manipulation and control, increasing wonder over dullness. We will strive to contemplate communication in relation to living our lives as opposed to deadening them. Adopting such a contemplative approach to communication will entail working away from a separatist model of communicative relation, in which action pre-dominates, toward working with a more communal model in which contemplation liberates action.

COMM 4802 – Internship (No preview available)
Credit Hours (1-3)
Description: Field studies in communication. Supervised practical work with government institutions, nonprofit organizations, private business, film companies and broadcast and electronic media firm. Written analysis of experience required. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 hours credit. PREREQUISITE: permission of instructor. (S/U).

COMM 4811 – Media 2.0
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Examination of long tail phenomenon and other theories behind convergent media; people and organizations producing and distributing work on the Internet and other alternative channels; new distribution forms challenges and assumptions about how mass media should and does work. The emergence of digital media has radically changed our society. From the ways we spend money to the ways we socialize, and from how we travel to how we wage war, digital media have touched nearly every aspect of our lives. While keeping a critical eye on dangers and promise of the digital age, we will talk directly to people who are producing and distributing their work on the Internet and other alternative channels, and we will explore how these new distribution forms challenge assumptions about how media should/do work. Students in COMM 4811 will not only learn to think critically about the social impact of digital media, but will also learn to use media creatively in their everyday lives.

COMM 4822 Audio Production Film/Video
Credit Hours (3)
Description Intermediate principles and practices of audio (recording, editing, mixing and design) with emphasis on film and video production. This course is designed primarily for students in the film and video production sequence. Emphasizing practical applications of sound recording techniques, signal processing, structuring and design, the course requires extensive "hands-on" work. We will also be discussing various theories dealing with the relationship of sound to image. PREREQUISITE: A minimum grade of "C" in COMM 3824 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4824 – Cinematography
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Art of visual interpretation with strong concentration in theory and techniques of lighting. Experience with professional cameras and lighting equipment. This course is designed to expand your knowledge so that you will have a better understanding of the tools and procedures necessary for solving the multitude of problems, aesthetic and technical, that confront the image-maker. While I have incorporated a number of exercises and a final project to allow you the opportunity to apply these concepts, there is no provision made for the kind of day-to-day production work that is required in order to become truly skilled. Rather, the course attempts to lay a foundation upon which you can later build. PREREQUISITE: A minimum grade of "C" in COMM 3824 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4825 – Editing/Post Production
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Aesthetics of continuity development in a variety of editing styles; editing techniques and post-production procedures. PREREQUISITE: A minimum grade of "C" in COMM 3824 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4841 – Television Workshop
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Television Workshop (3). TV studio production. Students work together to produce broadcast quality television programs in which students will serve as crew and produce some content. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 semester hours; repetition will not result in a change of any grade previously given. PREREQUESITE: COMM 3842 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4842 – TV Studio Production II
Credit Hours (4)
Description: Advanced training in TV studio/multiple camera techniques; extensive production work. Students will have opportunities to exercise technical expertise in the production of broadcast quality television studio productions. Assume technical positions on a variety of production assignments as camera operator, sound engineer, technical director, floor director, talent and VTR operator among others. Study the dynamics of interpersonal communication, television aesthetics and various stages of project execution. PREREQUISITE: COMM 3842.

COMM 4850 – Film History I
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Historical survey of motion pictures from medium's pre-history to 1940; emphasis on narrative film.

COMM 4851 – Film History II
Credit (3)
Description: Historical survey of the major movements, genres and themes in narrative film from 1940-1980.

COMM 4853 – Documentary Form Film
Credit hours (3)
Description: Development of non-fiction film as rhetorical and expressive form; analysis of individual films, genres and filmmakers.

COMM 4854 Documentary Form Broadcasting
Credit Hours (3)
Description: History, theory and criticism of non-fiction broadcasting, including docudrama and television documentaries. The course will examine the history, methods and impact of documentary storytelling in radio, television and newer electronic media. Students will explore the special nature of documentary that distinguishes the form from other types of broadcast, cable and internet programs. Students will be expected to develop the standards they need to be critical viewers of documentaries and to understand the contributions of the form in an educated democracy. Although not a production course, it is hoped that members of the class will go on to conceive and create documentaries of their own.

COMM 4856 – Gender and Film
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Examines how gender, and consequently race and sexuality, are represented in film. Specific attention is given to feminist approaches in film studies.

COMM 4858 – Contemporary Cinema
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Major themes and styles in international and U.S. narrative film from 1980 to present.

COMM 4859 – Monster Films (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Survey of classic and contemporary monster films exploring monstrosity as a social and cultural category for organizing, classifying and managing change.

COMM 4860 – Reality TV
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Examine and critically evaluate the many facets of Reality TV; attempt to identify the roots of our increasingly voyeuristic society, understand the production values of reality-based programs and speculate as to what the future holds.

COMM 4861 – Science Fiction Film (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: This course will examine science fiction and styles of international and U. S. narrative film from 1960s to present. The course argues that science fiction has become one of the most important genres of contemporary cinema. The course asks how science fiction cinema has dealt with uncertainties of modern-day life, including, but not limited to, human extinction, technological advances and robotic and cyborg entities.

COMM 4891 – Directing for Film
Credit Hours (3) FORMER: (Producing/Directing Film/Video)
Description: This class deals with essential elements of directing dramatic action for film. Focus on scene analysis, blocking for the camera and working with actors. Coverage of important readings, intensive production work and extensive written preparation by students when directing and committed production by students when not directing. Fee Broadcast and Film. PREREQUISITE: Minimum grade of "C" in COMM 3824 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4892 – Film/Video Production
Credit Hours (1-3)
Description: Film and video production workshop. Class members write, produce, direct or assume crew responsibilities on productions. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 hours credit. See departmental guidelines for independent production requirements and procedures. PREREQUISITE: COMM 3824 and permission of instructor.

COMM 4893 – Producing for Film
Credit Hours (3)
Description: The goal of this course is to acquaint the student with the overall film/video making process through the lens of the producer – how to take a film idea from conception to completion. Examine in depth the world of the producer as s/he finds and sells a concept, budgets, schedules, assembles a crew, oversees post-production, and markets his/her project. Explore how the producer operates in the "Hollywood" system – from dealing with agents and managers to finding talent and developing screenplays. Hands-on approach the learning essential tools of an aspiring executive/producer in Hollywood. Fee Production course fee applies. PREREQISITE: COMM 3824 or permission of instructor. Cross listing: COMM 6893.

COMM 4894 – Corporate/Promotional Video (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Students will gain "hands-on" experience producing video content for clients, applying skills in writing, producing, directing, cinematography, sound design and editing. Practical application of video production skills will give students a working understanding of how to create video work for employers/clients in the future. The course requires extensive "hands-on" work, along with discussions of various concerns dealing the interaction of the various production components. The class structure is a blend of seminar and workshop style. Students are required to be actively involved and participate in the production of a series of video projects Fee Broadcast and Film. PREREQUISITE: COMM 3824 or permission of instructor.

COMM 4960 – Documentary Writing (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Writing for non-fiction media. This course will examine the theory, techniques and ethics of documentary storytelling in both moving picture media and audio. Students will explore and practice the special planning and writing that distinguishes documentary from fictional programs while also developing the skills and standards necessary to effective creators and critical observers of documentaries.

COMM 4970 – Screenwriting
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Writing for fiction film and television; basic dramatic theory, narrative structure, characterization, dialogue, adaptation and the unique demands of audio visual media.

COMM 4980 – Honors Studies (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Reserved for students enrolled in Communication Honors Program. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 15 hours credit. PREREQUISITE: permission of Director of Communication Honors Program.

COMM 4982 – Honors Seminar (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Intensive study of particular problems in communication. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 hours credit when semester topics vary. PREREQUISITES: permission of Director of Communication Honors Program.

COMM 4993 – Senior Practicum (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Independent work in radio, video or film production. Each student has complete creative control of a program rom conception through final product. See departmental guidelines for independent production requirements and procedures. PREREQUISITE: Permission of instructor.

COMM 4999 – Senior Honors Thesis (No preview available)
Credit Hours (3)
Description: Supervised independent research project. Open only to students enrolled in the Communication Honors Program. Repeatable. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 hours credit. PREREQUISITE: permission of Director of Communications Honors Program.