Course Descriptions

Communication Courses
Department Code: COMM

COMM101 Survey of Mass Communications 

A course designed to develop the student’s ability to appreciate and evaluate the aesthetic, societal, and cultural functions of newspapers, magazines, advertising, film, radio and television. It will examine the nature, development, contemporary structure and influence of the mass media. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM102 Elements of Oral Communication 

An introduction to the theoretical and practical performance of effective oral communication skills. Students will learn rhetorical strategies and opportunities to aid them in improving their interpersonal, intercultural, public, and group communication skills. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM105 Introduction to Communication Theory 

Introduction to the major theories, paradigms, and histories that are the foundation of the discipline of communication. Such study provides a framework for understanding the role of theory in human communication. Students will engage with communication theory as it relates to cultural, historical, and academic perspectives. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM110 Media Writing 

Examines contemporary writing techniques across various forms of media including: television, film, social media, news, and public relations. Along with studying function and forms across industry, students will be exposed to the various roles of writing and writers in media contexts. Students will write scripts, outlines, news, social media content, and professional communication. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM107 UI/UX Design 

This is a course on the principles and practice of User Interface and User Experience design. It will address relevant design traditions, historical and contemporary research, and the practical skills for creating effective original designs. Credit 3 hours. 


COMM204 Introduction to Digital Media Studies 

Explores the critical theoretical frameworks, methods, and aims of various approaches to the role of media in society. Students will investigate media and its relation to power and bias while cultivating a critical awareness of media's role in politics, public culture, and everyday life. Topics covered include but are not limited to privacy and surveillance, accessibility, race, labor and industry, gender and sexuality. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM207 Social Media 

Explores social media practices, impact, and design from theoretical and practical approaches. Students will cultivate a broad understanding of social media's role in contemporary society, its uses, and place within various contexts such as art, education, business, sports, personal use, and culture. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM209 Video Production 

A study of the principles of producing, directing, and editing video. Students will complete multiple projects to develop skills in capturing and editing video to tell complete narratives. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM218 Media Development 

Focuses on the experience of working through pre-production processes. Students will work together to bring an idea to life through brainstorming, research, scripting, storyboarding, location scouting, pitching, media planning, and other pre-production elements. Prerequisite: COM110. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM202 Oral Storytelling 

A course designed for students in disciplines where they are required to regularly read material (prose, poetry or non-fiction) before individuals, groups or the mass media. It is ideal for broadcasting majors, writers and teachers. Students will learn the basics of textual analysis (understanding that almost everything written contains a story) and how they can best communicate that experience to an audience. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM203 Interpersonal Communication 

Introductory study of communication between people and in relationships. Stresses awareness of how one’s communication behavior influences and is influenced by others and provides methods of improving interpersonal interactions. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM205 Introduction to Photography 

A study of camera, photo composition, and photo editing. Students will learn how to shoot and edit photos through practical assignments and instruction in post-production software. The culmination of this course is a portfolio demonstrating various photography techniques and competencies. Cross-listed with Art. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM208 Critical Thinking and Argumentation 

Students enrolled in this course will learn the theoretical principles of critical thinking and argument as they apply to interpersonal, organizational, public and political concerns. Students will be guided in subject analysis, data gathering, evidence building, and evaluation of critical arguments. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM211 Introduction to the Cinema 

A study of the five technical elements that are involved in film: cinematography and visual editing, sound acquisition and music insertion, scriptwriting, performance, and the role of the director in pulling all this together. The course examines motion picture themes as a rhetorical communication medium, artistic expression, as well as a reflection of social and cultural thought. In each area of study, students will practice and improve their skills in creative and critical viewing. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM215 Intercultural Communication 

An investigation of the similarities and differences of communication patterns of various cultures. Examination of the values and cultural norms that inform and influence a culture’s communication. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM216 Composing With Paint & Draw Programs 1 

The application of art, illustration and graphic design principles using paint and draw programs such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and Macromedia Flash. Focus on art work for screen-based and print-based media. Cross-listed with Art. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM246 History of Television 

An examination of social issues as explored through various television genres. Course may also explore news coverage of events and contemporary problems with television programming. Intended for non-majors as well as Communication majors. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM248 History of the Cinema 

The history of visual storytelling. This course examines the development of cinematography technology (camera, film, lighting, editing, sound) with an emphasis on techniques of video-only storytelling by such masters as the Lumiere Brothers (cinematography), Georges Melies (special effects), Sergei Eisenstein (montage), D.W. Griffith, Charles Chaplin, and Buster Keaton. The course also examines early attempts at sound acquisition and editing. It will culminate in a comprehensive analysis of what is critically considered to be the greatest American film: Citizen Kane. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM250 Media Law and Ethics 

This course will introduce students to the major legal, ethical, and policy issues related to the mass media. This will be done by exposing students to primary documents and cases as well as to methods of analysis. Upon completion, students should be able to explain in broad context existing media law and policy and be able to critique and analyze future laws and policies. Students should also be able to articulate the ethical issues that are relevant to media conduct. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM262 Science Fiction Television 

Examines the history of the genre to see how programming has dealt with significant political and social issues in a way unexplored in most dramatic television. It will also explore theories of Carl Jung to see how archetypes help to unify character and theme in Science Fiction TV. An additional focus will be on attempts of futuristic series to create a modern mythic construct for a society devoid of a unified native mythos. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM294 Public Relations 

Students will explore the major concepts and strategies of public relations for business and other organizations. Credit 3 hours. 


COMM304 Advanced Topics in Media 

An in-depth analysis of a particular topic related to media production or media theory. The topics are dependent on the interests of the faculty instructor and include, but are not limited to specific topics in: social media, society, race, class, gender, accessibility, sexuality, labor, surveillance, privacy, video games, tv, film, and music. Prerequisite: COMM204 Introduction to Digital Media Studies. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM305 Advanced Topics in Communication Studies 

An in- depth analysis of a particular topic in the field of communication. The topics are dependent on the interests of the communication faculty and include, but are not limited to specific topics in interpersonal, intrapersonal, group, presentational communication, and discourse. Prerequisite: COMM105 Intro to Communication Theory. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM313 Digital Storytelling 

In this team-based course, students will work together to create a compelling digital narrative using content creation technology such as smartphones, social media platforms, and the Adobe Creative Suite. Students will work together to plan, produce, and deliver a project related to one of the following areas: advocacy campaigns, marketing campaigns, documentary, news, fundraising, or entertainment. Prerequisite: COMM209 Video Production or COMM218 Media Development. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM315 Persuasion 

A study of persuasive communication and the techniques that motivate persons to act or believe in a particular way. A variety of persuasive rhetorical theories will be discussed as tools for persuasion. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM317 Advanced Presentational Speaking 

This is an advanced course in the theory and application of public speaking in a variety of contexts and situations. Students will demonstrate an advanced level of understanding of how to engage audiences more effectively by using critical thinking, audience analysis, organization, technological and delivery skills. Prerequisite: COMM102. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM320 Advanced Website Design: Graphic Techniques 

This course builds upon the planning and design principles in CPTR 211, extending site effectiveness through the use of advanced graphic techniques. Prerequisite: CPTR 211. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM348 International Cinema: Western Culture 

An examination of the foreign film from traditional western cultures to include, among others, France, Spain, Mexico, Scandinavia, Italy, Greece, Germany, Russia, Australia, and New Zealand. Students will study the major trends and styles of cinema and how national identity and customs are reflected in those films. Course is designed to give global perspective to non-majors as well as majors. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM349 International Cinema: Asian Culture 

An examination of the foreign film from traditional eastern cultures to include, among others, Japan, China, Hong Kong, India, Korea, Vietnam, and Taiwan. Students will study the major trends and styles of cinema and how national identity and customs are reflected in those films. Course is designed to give global perspective to non-majors as well as majors. Credit 3 hours. 


COMM401 Debate Question Analysis and Case Construction 

This course is designed to acquaint students with critical analysis and case construction of debate questions including high school and intercollegiate organizations. Special emphasis is placed on case construction and analysis in a workshop setting. Prerequisite: COMM 102 and COMM208. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM410 Theories of Human Communication 

The focus of this course includes an overview of current and historical theories and research in the major sub- fields of human communication. Prerequisite: COMM 102. Credit 3 hours. 

COMM411 Social Media Production and Theory 

A seminar and production lab interested in the creation of social media content informed by theories of communication and digital culture. Students will engage in the critical analysis of social media platforms, products, and content in relation to their social, economic, and political impact. Students will develop practical skills in content strategy and social media analytics. Prerequisite: COMM207 Social Media and COMM205 Introduction to Photography or COMM209 Video Production or COMM218 Media Development. Credit 3 Hours. 

COMM497 Communication Capstone

Working with a faculty advisor, the student will design, execute, and manage a creative project, internship, or research paper involving communication research, media studies, and/or working experience. This course will provide students with preparation for graduate school and/or working in a professional Communication field. Credit 3 Hours. 


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