Academic Catalog and Handbooks

2023-2024 Edition

Communication (COMM)

COMM 102  Public Speaking and the Public Sphere  (4 Credits)  
This course introduces students to the basic skills needed to present information to an audience clearly, effectively, and eloquently. The class will study, analyze, and construct public speeches from a rhetorical perspective. Students will ground their study of speechmaking in fundamental questions about the habits and skills of civic participation and the ethics of speech.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Encounter1/2-Justice  
COMM 103  Media and Society  (4 Credits)  
Our digital world—like water to fish—is generally invisible to us because it surrounds all aspects of our daily lives. In this class we look at the ‘truths’ media creates, maintains, and distorts by examining the factors that drive the media and us. We also will work to develop critical thinking around our relationship to media by analyzing media messages and their impacts on us as individuals, on our relationships, and on the choices we make.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Encounter1/2 - Truth  
COMM 105  Introduction to Human Communication  (4 Credits)  
This course provides students with a general overview of communication theory and research, particularly as it relates to their everyday interactions. The course covers theories related to interpersonal, gender, group, organizational, and intercultural contexts.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: HONR 220B  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter1/2 - Truth  
COMM 110  Voices Unheard: Gender, Race, and Power in America  (4 Credits)  
This course challenges students to critically examine how intersectional identities shape access to power, influence cultural expectations, and impact our lives. Students will gain insights into the structural barriers that have historically excluded marginalized communities. In the course, students will study key terms associated with intersectional notions of gender and race, investigate significant social movements and influential voices for change, and analyze the dynamic systems of power that dictate access to public spaces.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: CSD: Identity (CI)  
COMM 205  Interpersonal Communication  (4 Credits)  
Gives students a practical and theoretical understanding of one-on-one communication. Topics may include relationship development, perception, self- image, language, nonverbal communication, listening, conflict, gender roles, family communication, culture, communication competence, and the impact of technology on communication. In addition, this class uses the lens of the Truth theme to explore many of these topics.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter1/2 - Truth  
COMM 220  Debate & Democracy  (4 Credits)  
Public debate is essential in a democratic society. In this course, students will participate in debates on public issues to empower them to be skillful, informed, and ethical advocates. Students will work collaboratively to research and evaluate sources and evidence, assess the truthfulness and quality of claims by applying analytical and reasoning skills to public issues, listen thoughtfully to opposing viewpoints and learn to formulate creative counterarguments, develop presentation skills by constructing, questioning, and refuting arguments delivered to audiences, and explore the role of debate in promoting democratic political and social change. Students will participate in interactive classroom debates on contemporary issues, but no previous debate training is required.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Benedictine Raven (BN), Thematic Encounter1/2 - Truth  
COMM 225  Argumentation and Advocacy  (4 Credits)  
This course equips students with the skills and theory necessary to interpret, analyze, research, and construct arguments about matters of public concern. By learning about, practicing, and participating in argument, students understand, evaluate, and appreciate the communicative practices that constitute shared civic life.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Encounter1/2 - Truth  
COMM 240  Digital Video Communication  (4 Credits)  
Point, shoot, edit, post does not guarantee effective digital video communication any more than scribbling thoughts or talking “off the cuff” means you’ve created effective written or spoken messages. In this class, students will learn the principles of effective digital video communication so they might be able to identify important aesthetic concepts and analyze the effectiveness of messages. Students will construct their own digital video messages by learning to conceptualize, script/storyboard, and pitch messages to a client.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 245  Introduction to Media Writing  (4 Credits)  
Students will learn to collect and analyze information to be used in message design; to construct clear and accurate messages that are appropriate to the purpose, audience, context, and media platform, under deadline pressure, and will be introduced to different types of media writing, including journalistic storytelling, blogging, brand communication, and public relations.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Writing Requirement (WR)  
COMM 248  Media & Youth  (4 Credits)  
Analyze the relationship between mediated communication and youth culture by examining issues such as privacy, gender bias, cultural stereotypes, sexuality, civic engagement, and violence. Explore cognitive development, as well as social, emotional, and psychological effects of media on youth’s everyday lives, knowledge, and relationships. Develop media literacy by applying these theories and concepts to your own experiences with popular media, including social media, television, music, film, and print. Finally, analyze how mediated messages have influenced the human experience by communicating movement of beliefs, norms, and expectations over time. The knowledge gained in this course will serve you in your personal and professional lives in the years to come. Course includes an optional experiential learning component (EL/EX).
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: COMM 348  
Attributes: Cmnty Engaged Learning Opt, Human Experience (HE), Thematic Encounter1/2-Movement, Writing Requirement (WR)  
COMM 250  Effective Listening  (4 Credits)  
Introduces students to basic principles and theories of listening. Approaches listening as a critical component in the communication process. Readings, discussion, and exercises facilitate understanding of effective listening and development of individual listening skills. Topics include intrapersonal (mindfulness) discriminative, comprehensive, empathic/compassionate, critical and appreciative listening.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: COMM 277A  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE)  
COMM 251  Communication and Conflict  (4 Credits)  
Introduces students to principles and theories of conflict. Examines causes of conflict and a variety of approaches to managing conflict. Emphasizes conflict in various interpersonal contexts.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 253  Nonverbal Communication  (2 Credits)  
Provides students with a general overview of the theoretical and practical application of primary areas of nonverbal communication research. The course examines theories and empirical studies in selected areas of nonverbal communication such as personal appearance, touch, space, body language, gestures, eye contact, use of time, facial expressions, olfaction, and body adornment/alteration.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 265  Group Communication  (4 Credits)  
Gives students a practical and theoretical understanding of how groups communicate. Includes such topics as group dynamics, leadership, feedback, decision-making, power, norms and roles, conflict, groupthink and communication theory. This class has a Justice designation, and students will examine the impact that group communication can have on Justice as well as create projects that explore questions of Justice in everyday situations and conflicts.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter1/2-Justice  
COMM 271  Individual Learning Project  (1-4 Credits)  
Supervised reading or research at the lower-division level. The proposed project must be grounded in previous relevant coursework in the discipline. ILPs may not substitute for a regularly offered course and must be student-designed. Permission of department chair required. Consult department for applicability toward major or minor requirements. Not available to first-year students.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 277A  Listening for Justice  (4 Credits)  
What role does listening play in Social Justice transformation? We are currently redefining our government, relationships with each other, and our connection to the global community. This course invites students to be brave even when listening becomes uncomfortable. Readings, discussion, and exercises facilitate understanding of effective listening and development of individual listening skills. Students will study and practice an awareness of self-listening and Benedictine perspective to determine how the mission applies to our current culture. Students learn to respond rather than react to social situations with mindfulness, empathy, and cultivated compassion. Compassion is action.
Prerequisites: COMM 277A is a Thematic Focus-Justice Course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 250  
Attributes: Benedictine Raven (BN), Human Experience (HE), Thematic Focus - Justice  
COMM 278A  Rhetoric of Social Change  (4 Credits)  
Social movements and social protest have played a pivotal role in challenging power and shaping culture, society, and politics. This course examines the role of language, music, images, and other symbolic actions in bringing about social change. The course also teaches students the art of rhetorical criticism – the intentional, methodical study of how rhetoric works and impacts communities from the local to the global. The course is writing intensive and students will develop research in the course that can be developed and shared in other venues.
Prerequisites: COMM 278A is a Thematic Focus - Movement course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 201  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Focus - Movement, Writing Requirement (WR)  
COMM 282  Special Topics in Message Design  (4 Credits)  
A study of a special topic in message design not ordinarily treated in standard courses. May be repeated as the topics change. Prerequisites vary according to the topic. See description in registration bulletin.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 282A  Public Relations  (4 Credits)  
A theoretical approach to the principles of the field of public relations in non-profit, corporate and agency applications. This course will cover the building blocks of the profession.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 283A  Public Relations Branding  (2 Credits)  
Public Relations Branding is a deep dive into public relations content creation and its intersection with brand. This course will introduce students to the overarching objectives of public relations: building and maintaining relationships, including creating awareness, instilling positive perceptions, generating support for organizational goals and overcoming negative perceptions. In addition, it will educate students about brand, brand adjective and key messages and their roles in guiding public relations messaging and content development. Students will gain experience planning and executing core public relations tactics such as generating earned media through press releases and social media, engaging audiences on social media, creating strategic email and developing content for effective web homepages and landing pages. Instruction and editing will focus on helping students develop the key skill of writing clear, concise, active and compelling messages that are appropriate for the organization/client, audience, objective and specific media platforms.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 283B  Advertising Branding  (2 Credits)  
Advertising Branding focuses on advertising strategy and message development in a digital environment. This course will introduce students to the overarching objectives of advertising: to promote products and services, differentiate them from other, similar products and services and convey consistent, benefit-oriented brand messaging, largely through paid communications. It will teach students the basics of advertising content creation such as the creative strategy and brief and then delve into the inner workings of the creative process and the critical skills of copy writing and multimedia content development for advertising across media platforms. Students also will develop an understanding of the importance of a strong, tightly curated brand that defines and differentiates a company and informs every aspect of advertising strategy and tactics, with a focus on the emotion and authentic truth at the heart of the brand.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 303  Social Movements  (4 Credits)  
This course examines how rhetoric enables groups of people to come together in order to influence public policies. Students will study a variety of historical movements to understand how public arguments can represent social groups and motivate collective action.
Prerequisites: COMM 201  
COMM 304  Political Communication  (4 Credits)  
This class examines how political symbols and discourse mobilize society, stimulate social action and create national identity. The course will explores how political language reinforces, interprets, challenges and manipulates popular beliefs, attitudes and values. Topics may include presidential rhetoric, campaign discourse and legislative appeals.
Prerequisites: COMM 201 or COMM 278A  
COMM 305  Gender, Voice, and Power  (4 Credits)  
Students will apply both theory and historical precedent to our current cultural conversations about race and gender as it relates to public voice, law, and social order. Contemporary issues that might be discussed are things like the bias that exists for women and racial/ethnic minorities when seeking political roles, the challenges faced in the workplace, the cultural expectations of gendered relationship, rape culture, inequality in Hollywood, strategies in gender activism, etc. This course centers around conversations of justice, equality, and access.
Prerequisites: Before taking a Cultural and Social Difference: Systems Courses (CS) you first must complete the following Integrations requirements; Learning Foundations (LF), Theological Encounter (TE), and Cultural and Social Difference: identity (CI).   
Attributes: CSD: Systems (CS)  
COMM 310  Black Civil Rights Rhetoric  (4 Credits)  
The course explores how public expressions about race have impacted the history of United States democracy. More specifically, students will study the political issues, moral complexities, and rhetorical strategies of speeches, essays, and public art by people of African descent who have argued about the nature and scope of "America."
Prerequisites: COMM 201 or COMM 102 or COMM 278A  
COMM 311  Rhetoric and Religion  (4 Credits)  
This course will examine the complex relationship between religion and politics and the role that discourse and symbols play in that relationship. The course will explore both how the United States uses public discourse to navigate the proper role between church and state, as well as the ways in which public figures and movements draw upon religion for moral authority. The course will cover such topics as the founding discussions about the role of religion in public life and contemporary debates about the church/state relationship.
Prerequisites: COMM 201  
COMM 312  Rhetorical Dimensions of Sport  (4 Credits)  
This course will explore the ways in which sports are used as a part of public discourse and debate. The course will use rhetorical theories and concepts to examine how athletes, games, competitions and controversies are incorporated into larger social discussions about gender, race and national identity.
Prerequisites: Before taking a Cultural and Social Difference: Systems Courses (CS) you first must complete the following Integrations requirements; Learning Foundations (LF), Theological Encounter (TE), and Cultural and Social Difference: identity (CI).   
Equivalent courses: COMM 381H  
Attributes: CSD: Systems (CS)  
COMM 314  Public Health Marketing  (4 Credits)  
Interested in a health-related career? Would you like to work in health communication, health promotion or heath education? Because of the increasingly health savvy world, understanding health marketing is becoming essential. The primary goal of this course is to help students understand how to apply marketing principles and theories of health promotion to enhance community health. In this course, students will learn the basics of planning, implementing, and evaluating health communication programs and strategies to improve individual, community, and population health, including the use of social marketing practices and strategies of audience research, creative message development, health communication research, and more. In addition, students will study the fundamentals of marketing and learn what drives consumers’ needs and choices. Competencies: conducting focus group interviews and creating and evaluating effective health campaigns. Course will include an experiential learning project that enables students to gain experience in research in support of different health communications interventions and in planning a social marketing campaign. This may be with a community-based organization or “client.”
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Social World (SW)  
COMM 330  Apology and Crisis Communication  (4 Credits)  
An advanced course in rhetoric studying the genres of apology, image repair, and crisis communication. Students will analyze speeches and statements of apology and self-defense and assess the effectiveness, ethics, and meaning of such appeals in several case studies. In addition to other requirements, students will generate a critical essay for public presentation.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 331  Capstone: Rhetoric and Citizenship  (4 Credits)  
The Communication discipline has been built around educating students on the practice and performance of eloquent, productive, and ethical citizenship. Drawing from a vast array of interdisciplinary scholarship and public argument, this course engages this notion of citizenship and its role in civic life. This Capstone course will examine these ideas through debates about the rights of citizenship itself. We will look at the legality of citizenship rights such as suffrage and marriage. We will also look at citizenship through the lens of belonging and identity, in categories such as gender, race, class, sexuality, and ethnicity. This will be done through examining both historical and contemporary examples of people enacting their rights as citizens through social movements, social media, public campaigns, etc. Overall, we will try to understand what duties and obligations we might have as citizens and how we can directly engage our community.
Prerequisites: COMM 102 and COMM 103 and COMM 105 and (COMM 201 or COMM 278A)  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior. Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Communication.  
COMM 335  Political Campaign Communication  (4 Credits)  
This course examines and analyzes the use of communication strategies by political candidates in campaigns for elected office. Students will study a variety of political campaign communication formats and tactics, including advertising, debates, direct voter contact, and the use of social media and new communication technologies in political campaigns. Students will also study the role of communication in shaping political attitudes and the impact of campaign discourse on voter participation. The primary goal of the course is to understand how communication and media shape public understanding of candidates, issues and events, in American political campaigns, and the implications this has for citizens in a participatory democracy. This course has an experiential learning component that requires students to volunteer for a local political campaign of their choice.
Prerequisites: None  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior.   
COMM 336  Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations Campaign Design  (4 Credits)  
Learn how effective strategic campaigns in marketing, advertising and public relations are designed. Master the tools necessary to analyze and create effective strategic communication campaigns. The primary purpose of this course is to develop students’ analytical skills and to enable students to understand the role of persuasive theory in strategic communication campaign development, implementation, and evaluation. This course provides a framework for students to understand the appropriate use of theory and components of strategic communication campaigns, as relevant to marketing, public relations, public service, health campaigns, sports promotion, and much more. Students will learn to be more discerning creators and consumers of persuasive messages.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter3 - Truth  
COMM 338  Strategic Social Media Marketing and Communication  (4 Credits)  
Strategic online branding, engagement, and experiences need more than your personal social media accounts require. In this course, you’ll learn strategies for creating an effective, ethical social media campaign or plan through research, analysis, and hands-on experience.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: COMM 384A  
COMM 341  News and Democracy  (4 Credits)  
The role of the news industry in a democracy is to inform and socialize the citizenry for participation within the democracy. Today we must ask: How do we uncover “truth” in an era of “Fake News,” Artificial Intelligence, and extreme partisanship? What are the consequences for the quality of news coverage when the funding model for news organization has collapsed causing mass layoffs and news deserts across the United States? This course will examine the pressures and constraints on journalists and journalism; teach you to identify quality journalism regardless of political perspective; identify the influence of social media, advertising, and public relations on the content of news; examine the nature of news coverage for local, national, and international issues; and, most importantly, teach you to become well-informed, news literate citizens.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Encounter3 - Truth  
COMM 342  Communication in an AI Era  (4 Credits)  
The use of new media and social media in our society, locally and globally, has altered traditional boundaries that once defined communication, identity, and relationships. This course examines how new forms of mediated communication affect interpersonal and mass communication, social identities, our understanding of privacy, and reality. Participants will investigate theoretical questions raised by on-line communication and social media and analyze movement of ideas, beliefs, and communication over time.
Prerequisites: COMM 103 or COMM 105  
Attributes: Thematic Encounter3 - Movement  
COMM 346  Capstone: Strategic Communication Campaigns  (4 Credits)  
This course provides an opportunity for majors to apply what they have learned about strategic communication campaigns, persuasive theory, oral and written communication, message analysis, and community, by creating strategic communication campaigns for a client. Additional prerequisite includes at least one course in each department learning goal area.
Prerequisites: COMM 102 and COMM 103 and COMM 105 and COMM 336  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior.   
Attributes: Experiential Engagement (EX)  
COMM 347  Capstone: Media Effects  (4 Credits)  
Given the centrality of media in our lives, it is important to understand how it may influence us. This course provides advanced study in the effects of media on young adults by exploring major theories of media effects. Through analyzing quantitative research, we will gain a deeper understanding of media representations and how they impact diverse audiences. A range of topics will be covered including media and mental health, racial and gender stereotypes, violent and sexual content, advertising, and social media and political polarization. Additional prerequisite includes at least one course in each department learning goal area.
Prerequisites: COMM 102 and COMM 103 and (COMM 105 or HONR 220B)  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Senior. Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Communication.  
Attributes: Quantitative Reasoning (QR), Social World (SW)  
COMM 350  Intercultural Communication  (4 Credits)  
Examines the relationship between communication and culture. Communication theory is used to identify and explore barriers and opportunities in communicating with individuals from different cultures and co-cultures. Skills necessary for communication across cultures are identified and developed. Note: Some sections of this course may carry an experiential learning component. See registration booklet for details.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: HONR 325B  
Attributes: Global Engagement (GL)  
COMM 350A  Intercultural Communication  (4 Credits)  
Examines the relationship between communication and culture. Communication theory is used to identify and explore barriers and opportunities in communicating with individuals from different cultures and co-cultures. Skills necessary for communication across cultures are identified and developed. Special attention is placed on communicating cross culturally within the U.S.A., including across race, socio-economic class, etc. In addition, the course also explores communicating internationally.
Prerequisites: None  
Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major, minor, or concentration in Communication, Elementary Education or Secondary Education.   
Equivalent courses: HONR 325B  
COMM 351  Gender and Communication.  (4 Credits)  
Examines the impact of socialization on gender identity and the influence of gender roles on communication. Looks at the connections between communication and gender, racial identity, sexuality and other social identity factors in a variety of relational and social contexts. Introduces students to current theories of gender communication that highlight evolving understandings of gender identity.
Prerequisites: None  
Restrictions: Students with a class of First Year may not enroll.   
Equivalent courses: HONR 325A  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter3 - Justice  
COMM 352  Health Communication  (4 Credits)  
Provides students with a broad introduction to the study and application of health communication theories, principles, and practices. Examines how narratives, media, interpersonal communication, group communication, intercultural communication, gender communication, organizational communication and promotional campaigns function within health contexts. The relevance of communication to health is examined as a means for improving communication in the health care setting, improving personal health, and influencing public health.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: COMM 385B  
Attributes: Social World (SW), Thematic Encounter3 - Truth  
COMM 353A  Intercultural Health Communication  (4 Credits)  
This course explores the communication about cultural health beliefs and practices, particularly within the U.S. biomedical system. In addition, the course examines health disparities in the U.S. and how communication contributes to, but also may help alleviate, them. Some topics include: traditional health beliefs among Latinx, Asian, African, and Native American cultures; and relationship between health disparities and race/ethnicity, socioeconomic class, obesity, and differing abilities. Students will complete a variety of analysis papers related to the course topics.
Prerequisites: You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 353  
Attributes: Thematic Focus - Justice  
COMM 360  Capstone: Language, Gender and Culture  (4 Credits)  
This course examines the relationship between language, gender, and culture in a variety of contexts and cultures. The mutual influences of language and culture, and their role in the creation of gendered roles and identities within and across cultures will be explored. Additional prerequisite at least one course in each department learning goal area.
Prerequisites: COMM 102 and COMM 103 and (COMM 105 or HONR 220B) and (COMM 205 or COMM 350 or COMM 350A or COMM 351)  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior. Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Communication.  
Equivalent courses: COMM 385D  
COMM 361  Fat Studies  (4 Credits)  
This course examines the ways in which fatness has come to be socially constructed as a means for discrimination and oppression in American culture. We will explore fat stigma within a variety of contexts including employment, education, interpersonal relationships, and fashion, as well as how that stigma intersects with gender, race, class, age, ability, and sexual orientation. We will also study fat activism enacted to counter systemic weight bias.
Prerequisites: Before taking a Cultural and Social Difference: Systems Courses (CS) you first must complete the following Integrations requirements; Learning Foundations (LF), Theological Encounter (TE), and Cultural and Social Difference: identity (CI).   
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 387C, GEND 360R, GEND 361  
Attributes: CSD: Systems (CS)  
COMM 367  Organizational Communication  (4 Credits)  
Theories and concepts of organizational communication are discussed. Includes such topics as communication approaches to organizational theory, power, corporate culture, conflict, organizational metaphors, organizational processes, management styles and organizational change. Some sections of this course may carry an experiential learning requirement. See registration booklet for details. Prerequisite: 105.
Prerequisites: COMM 105 or HONR 220B  
COMM 370CA  LATIN AMERICA ON FILM (HM,HE)  (4 Credits)  
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 42  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE)  
COMM 370FA  French [R]evolutions/Film - France  (3 Credits)  
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 52  
Attributes: Artistic Expression (AE)  
COMM 370GA  COMM ACROSS CULTURES  (3 Credits)  
“Communicating Across Cultures” is about the human element of an increasingly integrated global economy. As entrepreneurship continues to boost its international character, people become travelers across different sociocultural and economic environments. The goal of business strategies and executives alike is to make things work in diverse cultural contexts, having to deal with local rules and particularities, habits and processes. Approaching the field is a multi-disciplinary task. Therefore, “Communicating Across Cultures” course borrows elements from various fields: communications, culture, management and business. It adopts a multi-dimensional approach to the subject matter, introducing topics such as cross-cultural communication, cultural intelligence, negotiations across cultures, workplace social communication, culture in virtual teaming etc. Management and communication systems and techniques can provide solutions and point the way forward. However, the starting point lies within people themselves.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 370LA  Media in Britain  (4 Credits)  
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 43  
COMM 370LB  Contemporary British Broadcasting  (4 Credits)  
ABC, NBC, and Fox may all sound familiar but did you know the British Broadcasting Corporation is the largest is broadcasting organisation in the world? What impact does this public service media giant play in the U.K. and around the world? What about radio broadcasting? Where does the radio format fit in a modern society? What role do digital technologies play in modern broadcast? Students in this course will explore the history of British radio and television broadcasting, its role in British society and culture, its global impact, and its place in today’s digital world.
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 43  
COMM 370PA  Communication & Global Competence  (3 Credits)  
With the rise of global mobility and communication, encounters between people of diverse and multiple cultural identities are increasingly common. Less obvious are the reasons why these encounters can be challenging and, more importantly, the knowledge and skills necessary for overcoming communication barriers that arise from differences in communication styles and patterns. The study of intercultural communication requires not only grappling with broad concepts such as "culture", "communication", and "identity", but also learning how communication styles are patterned within cultural groups. This course thus explores the interaction between culture and communication and introduces students to the knowledge and skills requisite to building intercultural competence. More specifically, this course invites students to analyze and evaluate how their own cultural identity influences communication with others; encourages interaction with the host culture; and prepares students with knowledge and skills to be effective and ethical intercultural communicators.
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 67  
Attributes: Social World (SW)  
COMM 370R  Communication in Cork  (3 Credits)  
Prerequisites: None  
Corequisites: XXXX 63  
COMM 371  Individual Learning Project  (1-4 Credits)  
Supervised reading or research at the upper-division level. The proposed project must be grounded in previous relevant coursework in the discipline. ILPs may not substitute for a regularly offered course and must be student-designed. Permission of department chair and completion of 12 credits within the department required. Four credits maximum will count toward the major. ILP credits may not be applied to fulfill the four 300-level courses in Communication for the major. Not available to first-year students.
Prerequisites: COMM 371 is a Thematic Focus - Truth course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
COMM 378A  Environmental Rhetoric  (4 Credits)  
This course examines how people use communication to articulate viewpoints about the natural environment in the public sphere. Students study an array of environmental discourse, including speeches, advocacy campaigns, advertisements, image events, environmental reporting and news, film and media, to see how these messages convey meaning and shape audience attitudes and behavior about the environment. T
Prerequisites: COMM 378A is a Thematic Focus - Movement course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior, Sophomore or Senior.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 309  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Focus - Movement  
COMM 379A  Freedom of Speech  (4 Credits)  
This course explores the historical development of laws and cultural assumptions that regulate the freedom of expression in the United States. Whether or not a citizen has a right to speak freely is a determining factor in the health of human progress and democracy. Students will study the communicative behaviors that have inspired free speech controversies and analyze the arguments made in favor of and in opposition to laws regulating speech. As a Thematic Focus – Truth course, students are asked to consider how the right of free expression has been integral to the discovery of knowledge and progress. The creation of and dissemination of knowledge is power. We cover topics such as free speech and democracy, the freedom of the press, sedition, protest, obscenity, threatening speech, intellectual property, and the regulation of speech in cyberspace. JN/SR standing recommended but not required.
Prerequisites: COMM 379A is a Thematic Focus - Truth course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior, Sophomore or Senior.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 307  
Attributes: Benedictine Raven (BN), Human Experience (HE), Thematic Focus - Truth, Writing Requirement (WR)  
COMM 379B  Rhetoric of Advertising  (4 Credits)  
This course analyzes the persuasive features of advertisements and examines how commercial messages generate social meaning. Students will use rhetorical theory to render deep readings of product advertisements as political, social and ideological messages. Students will also discuss the ethical and social consequences of advertising in society.
Prerequisites: COMM 379B is a Thematic Focus - Truth course. You must take INTG 100 or 205 prior to taking a Thematic Focus Course. You must take a Cultural and Social Difference: Identity (CI) course prior to or at the same time as Thematic Focus Courses.   
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior, Sophomore or Senior.   
Equivalent courses: COMM 308  
Attributes: Human Experience (HE), Thematic Focus - Truth  
COMM 384B  Rhetoric and Popular Music  (4 Credits)  
This course assumes that we use music as a soundtrack for our lives, to encode memories, to express the way we feel, to annoy or influence others. So we will not study the history of popular music nor will we practice its appreciation; rather, we will study the rhetoric of popular music, or how people use music to do stuff. In particular, we will explore how music helps people shape and maintain their identities.
Prerequisites: None  
Equivalent courses: COMM 381L  
COMM 384C  Women, Rhetoric and Politics  (4 Credits)  
The elections of 2016 and 2020 have seen an unprecedented amount of female candidates for office, leading to an explosion of literature and public conversation about women in political roles. Although we did not elect the first female Speaker of the House until 2006, women have been involved in campaign politics since the beginning of the nation. This specialty course will provide an introduction to the complex issues of identity, rhetorical power, and cultural norms surrounding gender in U.S. political culture. We will take a look at the roles that women have played historically and today in shaping national political discourse. The course will include discussions about the role of “politics” in our society, the gendered implications of political party culture, public political personae, media framing of women in politics, and the role of women in U.S. Political culture as both voters and candidates.
Prerequisites: COMM 201  
Equivalent courses: GEND 360S  
COMM 387A  Harlem Renaissance  (4 Credits)  
This course studies the art of the Harlem Renaissance from a rhetorical perspective. This means that we will analyze a diverse body of texts from the 1920s and 20s – literature and poetry, film, the blues, painting and photography – to gain insight into the social truths they establish and contest. Ultimately, our study of this period will help us discuss fundamental questions about the relationship between public expression and public life, art and language, politics and identity.
Prerequisites: COMM 201 or COMM 278A  
Equivalent courses: HONR 350R  
COMM 387D  Media, Law and Society  (4 Credits)  
Malcolm X once said, “The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses.” New media technologies offer the potential for great civic engagement and social learning. They also, however, provide a space of potential harm to information sharing, public cognizance, and privacy. Using media has become an inherent part of everyday life, and as such, understanding both its potentials and limitations is integral to enacting citizenship. This course seeks to educate students on the regulations, principles, and ethical obligations involved in media use and dissemination. We will relate our rights under the First Amendment to issues such as privacy, defamation, obscenity, hate speech, intellectual property, and communication online. In doing so, we will attempt to understand how laws and politics work within those ever-changing laws. This course includes a strong emphasis on public ethics, because virtually all of the issues discussed involve such questions as “What is publicly ethical communication?” “What are the boundaries of socially acceptable speech?” and “What values do we expect the freedom of speech to protect?” Finally, students are asked to examine their own personal communication experiences and attempt to understand how ethical communication should be practiced.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 387E  Monsters  (4 Credits)  
What is a Monster? This course uses monsters – real and imaginary – to explore rhetorical issues and ways of thinking. Throughout the semester we will consider three interrelated questions: What is a monster?; Where do monsters come from?; and, How should we confront our monsters? These questions are all inherently rhetorical and as we consider them, we will grapple with the implied ethical questions of representation – what is at stake in how Otherness is represented? In how difference is deployed? In how fear or passivity is martialed?
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 387H  Media, Culture, and Power  (4 Credits)  
This course will examine the social, political, and economic motivations and consequences of the “reality” found in media content, such as film, television, and advertising. We will explore the “constructed reality” of media content to uncover the ways in which particular views of reality reflected in that content might help to maintain a status quo understanding of the world that benefits some members of society more than others. In the spirit of social justice and in hopes of creating a just and equitable world, students will learn to unmask existing power dynamics in media content. Through this process, students will develop a hearty resilience to ideologically troubling mediated messages and an appreciation for ones that forge a more inclusive, equitable, and just public discourse. Students will study and practice five different critical approaches to analyzing media texts (rhetorical, cultural, psychoanalytic, feminist, and queer). After reading, discussing, and trying out the five approaches over the course of the semester, students will select one approach for their final analysis project. In an effort to actively make the world a more just and equitable place, students will then publicize the findings of their analysis projects through a mass medium.
Prerequisites: None  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior, Sophomore or Senior.   
COMM 392  Communication Practicum  (1 Credit)  
Under the supervision of an approved faculty moderator, a student who participates in a practical communication-related activity may receive credit. Evidence of work completed (e.g. portfolio, audio tapes) letters of evaluation by supervisors, regular conferences with the faculty moderator, a structured self-evaluation, and a minimum number of hours (30 per term) and projects completed are required. Students present a proposal to a faculty moderator and obtain approval prior to registering for this credit. Course is repeatable for total of 4 credits. It may not be applied toward completion of the communication major or minor.
Prerequisites: None  
COMM 395  Capstone: Research Paper  (4 Credits)  
Student proposed research project not ordinarily available in standard courses. Additional prerequisite at least one course in each department learning goal area.
Prerequisites: COMM 102 and COMM 103 and COMM 105 and (COMM 201 or COMM 278A)  
Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior.   
COMM 397  Internship  (1-16 Credits)  
Practical work experience for juniors and seniors. Experience is arranged by the student with the advice and approval of the internship director and the departmental faculty moderator prior to registering for the course. Credit will be earned by demonstrating knowledge gained as a result of the work experience. Additionally, students must demonstrate the ability to apply this knowledge to past communication department concepts and courses. Departmental moderator supervises and evaluates the experience. Internship credits may not be applied toward completion of the minor. Faculty in the department are limited to a maximum of three internship supervisions each term. Consequently it is not guaranteed that all students who desire to complete an internship for credit will be accommodated. Completed Application for Internship Form required; see XPD webpage. Fall, Spring, and Summer.
Prerequisites: None  
Attributes: Experiential Engagement (EX)