Academic Catalog

Communication (COM)


An introduction to the purposes, theory and practice of human communication. Students will develop knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to communicate confidently, effectively and charitably as wise citizens in interpersonal, small group, public speaking and mediated contexts.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-201  NEWSWRITING  (3 Credits)  

Practice in information gathering, interviewing, developing news judgment and writing news, sports and feature stories for various platforms. Prepares students for many jobs that require credible journalistic writing, including print, broadcast, public relations and publishing.

Prerequisite: None  

Study of the theory and practice of interpersonal communication. This course emphasizes the cultural, social, psychological, semantic, developmental and practical variables which influence communication in significant relationships. Students develop competence through a variety of learning experiences.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-215  PUBLIC RELATIONS  (3 Credits)  

A study of the major theories, concepts and principles of public relations. Covered topics include the functions of public relations, the impact of contextual influences and the major skills and activities associated with its practice. Students will develop skills in public relations planning, research, writing and campaigns.

Prerequisite: None  

This course prepares students for a career in broadcasting, sportscasting, motivational speaking, audio book production, acting for film and teaching by developing vocal skills, poise and confidence. Individual coaching is provided to improve articulation, tone, pronunciation and breath support, combined with professional instruction in on-camera performance teleprompter reading, interviewing and hosting programs.

Prerequisite: None  

An investigation into the many variables extant among people and groups with different cultural backgrounds, including the study of similarities and differences across cultures.

Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status required  
COM-312  PERSUASION  (3 Credits)  

A study of the major theories, principles and strategies associated with persuasion and social influence. The course examines how a variety of factors impact attitudes, beliefs and behaviors with a focus on applying the understanding of those factors to the design of persuasive messages.

Prerequisite: None  

Examination and evaluation of general, thematic, and contextual theories of communication. The course includes philosophical assumptions that impact the theoretical development of a Christian perspective for communication studies.

Prerequisite: None  

The study of general and specific group communication theories and their relationship to communication in a variety of group settings. Topics include group formation, cohesiveness, groupthink, norms, leadership, decision-making and conflict. Students become better leaders and participants through a variety of experiential learning opportunities.

Prerequisite: None  

Advanced training in the effective and appropriate design and oral presentation of ideas. While the course focuses on oral presentation, its emphasis on innovative message design extends to many communication contexts.

Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status required  

A study of the theory and practice of communication within organizations. Topics include communication and organizational structure, organizational climate and culture, communication networks and information flow, organizational communication competence (including leadership, conflict management, relationships with peers, etc) and effective oral and written communication in organizational contexts.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-335  GREATEST SPEECHES  (3 Credits)  

A study of speeches that made a difference. This may include historical speeches, contemporary speeches and business presentations that had a great impact on the audience. Speeches examined include those of Martin Luther King, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Sojourner Truth, Michael Eisner and others.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-339  SOCIAL MEDIA  (3 Credits)  

The course aims to provide students majoring in communication and other fields with knowledge about finding and distributing information in conversations over social media. Students will be introduced to common platforms, techniques and ethical considerations.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-354  ANNOUNCING & REPORTING  (3 Credits)  

Advanced training in voice and on-camera performace for commercials, news and voice-over narration. Students report on sports, news, and feature story topics that specifically interest them. This course is designed to polish and prepare students going into broadcast communication.

Prerequisite: MDA-271  

Examines the elements of the event planning process, creative brainstorming, budgeting, overcoming obstacles, attracting sponsorships, soliciting volunteers, and evaluating success. Practical field experiences include meeting professional meeting planners, visiting venues and assisting with real events.

Prerequisite: None  
COM-369  COM RESEARCH METHODS  (3 Credits)  

Students learn qualitative and quantitative approaches in conducting and analyzing research in communication. Students gain "hands-on" research experience and analytical, scientific writing, and oral presentation skills. They become familiar with public opinion polling, survey techniques, focus groups, external research services and consultants, media and clipping analysis, and other research methods, including the ethical considerations in conducting research with human subjects. Course focuses are results-based decision making, measuring program effectiveness, measuring staff and counselor performance, and evaluation and reporting on results. This course will prepare students for graduate work as well as many job options in communication and business involving research, analysis, and documentation.

Prerequisite: COM-315, Junior or Senior status required  
COM-380  INTERNSHIP  (1-6 Credits)  

Practical work experience using communication theory and skills in an appropriate setting relevant to the student's area of emphasis.

Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status required  

This course is the senior capstone for student majoring in Communication, Broadcast Communication and Strategic Communication. The course addresses the intersection of Christian worldview and communication theory and practice as well as ethical issues in the field of Communication Studies. Attention is also given to key issues related to the transition from university to employment or graduate education in communication. Students engage in the process of vocational self-evaluation and produce a capstone project (portfolio, sample reel, etc) that reflects the knowledge, values and skills developed through their coursework.

Prerequisite: Senior status required  

This course focuses on the cultural, social, psychological and practical variables relating to nonverbal communication. Students will become familiar with the classic and contemporary research and scholarship of nonverbal communication. In addition, students will understand the impact of nonverbal behavior in professional and personal contexts and will develop their own nonverbal competence through a variety of practical learning experiences.

Prerequisite: COM-112  

A study of the research and theories on various negative, destructive and harmful aspects of communication. Topics such as aggression, coercion, revenge and transgressions are discussed in a seminar format.

Prerequisite: Junior or Senior status required  
COM-490  INDEPENDENT STUDY  (1-3 Credits)  

An independent project-related course. Students work closely with a professor in the choosing of a topic, its design, and in the developing of a plan for its completion.

Prerequisite: COM-112