Communication Courses

Communication Courses (COMM)

101  Introduction to Media Studies (4)
Introduces students to the role played by mass media in culture. Media institutions and technologies are examined in terms of their histories, economic and legal characteristics, and contemporary social influence. Offered every semester.

210  Audio Production Workshop (1)
Introduces students to fundamental aspects of a variety of audio applications, including field recording, studio recording, and multi-track production. Offered every spring.

221  Understanding Film (4)
A survey of film as an artistic and cultural medium. The course explores film historically and aesthetically, considering aspects of film technology, style, narrative, genre, and ideology. Emphasis is placed on historically important films, filmmakers, and film movements, but contemporary trends are also addressed. Offered every semester.

222  Public Speaking (4)
An individualized introduction to the theory and practice of informative and persuasive speech communication. Extemporaneous speaking is explored in depth while impromptu and group communication are also examined. The communication model is stressed, including sender, receiver, message (verbal and non-verbal) channel, noise, and feedback. Offered every semester.

250  Introductory Filmmaking (4)
Introduces students to the techniques and traditions of fictional narrative filmmaking. Emphasis is placed on principles of visual storytelling and conventions of continuity and composition, videography, lighting, editing, and production management. Students also learn the fundamentals of screenwriting. Offered every semester.

300  Media Law and Ethics (4)
Examines the legal principles and regulatory structures, primarily in the areas of First Amendment law and copyright, governing print and electronic media. Additional discussion concerns ethical standards and potential ethical dilemmas faced by working media professionals. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered spring of even-numbered years.

312  The Art of Animation (4)
An in-depth look at the history of animation as a developing art form. The course also looks at animation as a reflection of culture and as a business. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered intermittently.

320  Experimental Film and Video (4)
Explores the history and theory of experimental film and video through lecture, discussion, reading, and screenings and through creative action. Students produce their own avant-garde videos as they learn the form’s aesthetic heritage and contemporary developments. Offered in selected January Terms.

321  Theories of Mass Communication (4)
An overview of the major theories that characterize the study of mass communication. Addresses both humanities and social sciences approaches and explores theory as a lens for conducting research. Students majoring in communication will typically take COMM 321 (Theories) in the fall and COMM 331 (Mass Communication Research Methods) in the spring of their junior or senior year. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered every fall.

325  Organizational Communication (4)
Examines all forms of communication in any profit or non-profit organization. Combines theory and practice to understand intended and unintended messages. Topics include culture, networking, impact of technology, medium and channel, and rhetorical purpose. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered every spring and summer.

326  Persuasion and the Media (4)
An examination of the methods and techniques that advertisers use to persuade audiences. Prerequisites: junior/senior status or consent. Offered every fall.

327  Children, Teens and Media (4)
A study of children and teens as a media audience focusing on their usage and preferences. Attention is given to child development, generational media profiles and artifacts, and media effects, both prosocial and antisocial. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered every spring.

328  Public Relations (4)
An introduction to the public relations and advertising profession with an emphasis on writing. Students examine the role of public relations and advertising in a free society and the demands and constraints, including ethical ones, placed upon them. They write background or briefing papers, press releases, informational and persuasive copy, and find promotable elements in products and services. Identical to JOUR 328. Offered every fall.

331  Mass Communication Research Methods (4)
Introduces mass communication research methods and includes field, survey, and experimental methods as well as content analysis. Prerequisite: junior/senior status. Offered every spring.

333  Special Topics in Media Studies (4)
An investigation of selected themes, genres, directors, periods, or topics in mass media and cultural studies. Sample topics include “American Silent Film,” “The Movies of 1939,” “The Films of the Coen Brothers,” “Women and Film,” “The Documentary Tradition,” and “The Western.” May be repeated if the topic is different. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent.

335  Christian Theology and Film (4) W
Explores how the fields of theology and film studies cross-fertilize each other, with special attention given to the ways in
which film functions as religious discourse. Students investigate the historical evolution of film as a means of communicating theological doctrines or themes through its narrative patterns and analyze how religious and secular films can be constructed as cultural texts that advise not only how one should live, but what one should believe. Emphasizes the sermonic nature of film, various hermeneutics of film, and how audiences receive and appropriate both manifest and latent religious meanings. Prerequisite: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher, 3 semester hours in communication, English, history, philosophy, or religious studies. Identical to RELST 335. Offered fall of odd-numbered years.

350  Advanced Filmmaking (4)
Expands on the concepts introduced in Introductory Filmmaking with students developing more artistically and technically sophisticated work. Covers fundamental disciplines such as videography, lighting, editing, audio, and production management in significant depth using professional-grade equipment. Students demonstrate their mastery through various exercises and a primary short film production project. Prerequisite: COMM 250. Offered spring of odd-numbered years.

411  Senior Seminar in Communication Studies (4) I, W
In-depth investigation into the art, history, culture, and ethics of various media through the lens of a particular topic. For example, students may explore the construct of celebrity or friendship as formulated, manufactured, and disseminated through mediated channels. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered every fall.

450  Documentary Film Production (4)
A guided individual study with primary focus on the production of a documentary short film. The production work will be supplemented by guided study in the history and theory of documentary film. Course enrollment is limited to one student per semester. Prerequisite: COMM 250 and consent. Offered selected semesters.

481  Internship in Communication (4)
A significant, practical learning experience for the student of communication and, as such, a required component of the

program of studies. Students may complete one or two internships as part of the major. All internships must be approved by the Communication Internship Director. Offered every semester.

Journalism Courses (JOUR)

201  Writing for the Mass Media (4)
An introduction to the study of newsgathering, reporting, and writing across multiple media platforms, including ethical, legal, and stylistic concerns. Prerequisite: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher. Offered every semester.

210  Media Writing Workshop (2)
A practical workshop in which students discover and develop a specialty writing for The Marlin Chronicle, which includes print, online, and social media formats. The course may be repeated one time; however, the student must work on two different sections. Prerequisite: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher or consent. Offered every semester.

328  Public Relations (4)
An introduction to the public relations and advertising profession with an emphasis on writing. Students examine the role of public relations and advertising in a free society and the demands and constraints, including ethical ones, placed upon them. They write background or briefing papers, press releases, informational and persuasive copy, and find promotable elements in products and services. Identical to COMM 328. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered every semester.

333  Special Topics in Journalism (4)
An investigation of selected topics in journalism Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Prerequisite: Sophomore status or consent. Offered when circumstances permit.

385  Editors in the Workshop (2)
An opportunity for editors of The Marlin Chronicle to superintend the professional performance of their sections. Editors run weekly budget meetings; make assignments; encourage, assist, and evaluate staff; and produce a responsible, quality publication. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: consent. Offered every semester.

392  CMR Editorial Assistant (2)
Provides experience as an editorial assistant for the academic journal College Media Review. Responsibilities include reading, editing and formatting both juried and non-juried research manuscripts before publication in printed form and online. Prerequisite: Consent. Course can be repeated for credit. Offered every semester.

397  Feature Writing (4)
Students pursue the principles of researching, interviewing, and writing several different kinds of feature stories, including editorials, columns, and lifestyle pieces. Special topics include sports, travel, food and humor. Prerequisite: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher.

435  Advanced Newswriting (4) W
An advanced course in the collection and reporting of news in which students are expected to demonstrate independence and initiative in their work. Each student learns to develop a beat and make use of sources. Emphasis is placed on skepticism. Prerequisite: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher and JOUR 201.