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Communication Studies

Instruction and practice in applying the principles of invention, organization, language, and delivery with a focus on the development of skill and confidence in formal public communication.


COM 112 Interpersonal Communication (3)
Practical, theoretically-grounded approaches to developing relational communication skills in a variety of contexts ranging from romantic relationships to friendships to on-the-job communication.


COM 199 Special Studies (1-15)
Terms and hours to be arranged.


COM 211 Introduction to Mass Communication (3)
Introduction to the study of mass communication through the critical engagement and examination of issues relating to the mass communication industry, media production, content, and effects.


COM 236 Contemporary Issues in Media (3)
Developing critical awareness of recent issues in the fast-changing world of media creation, organizations and audience use. This course especially focuses on the impact of media on individual decisions, social organizations and government operations.


COM 270 Principles of Forensics (1-6)
Training and participation in debate, oratory and extemporaneous speaking. Limit of 1 hour credit per term, except with consent of instructor. Prerequisite: COM 111 or consent of instructor


COM 271 Communication Studies Projects (1-3)
Training and participation in communication studies activities in the public setting. Terms and hours arranged with consent of instructor.


COM 312 Public Relations Communication (3)
Instruction and practice in the role of communications in American institutions and writing and editing internal and external communications such as news releases, broadcast actualities, electronic communication, brochures, newsletters, annual reports, and speeches. Discussion of the relationship between public relations, advertising and marketing and the role of law and ethics in public relations communications.


COM 321 Influence Through Argument (3)
Concepts and processes of argumentation, cogency in oral communication, systems of logic, critical analysis of contemporary efforts to convince, construction and presentation of cases. Prerequisite: COM 111


COM 323 Group Discussion and Leadership (3)
Dynamics of discussion; group thinking and decision making; interpersonal relations; types of leadership and the application of discussion techniques in the classroom and society.


COM 324 Business and Professional Communication (3)
Investigates the role of communication in business and the professions. Areas of study and performance include developing better listening skills, conducting meetings, preparing and presenting reports, improving interpersonal skills in business, and conducting interviews.


COM 325 Intercultural Communication (3)
Examination of the connections between culture and communication. Exploration of the diversity among U.S. American cultural patterns as well as other cultures from around the world. Development of critical, analytical, verbal, and nonverbal skills necessary for effective intercultural communication.


COM 326 Communication and Controversy: Freedom of Speech in United States (3)
Study and critical assessment of major First Amendment issues and cases.


COM 327 Communication in the Legal Field (3)
Examines communication principles in the legal setting. These include cross-exam techniques, strategies in opening and closing arguments, interpersonal factors affecting trial participant credibility, and persuasive factors in judicial opinions.


COM 330 Advanced Forensics (1-3)
Intensive training in competitive speaking. Limit of 1 hour credit per term, except with consent of instructor. Prerequisites: COM 270 and/or consent of instructor


COM 331 Nonverbal Communication (3)
Examination of human nonverbal behaviors that have communicative potential. We study current knowledge and perspectives on nonverbal communication, using them to complete both formal and informal research projects, applying and testing contemporary theory and research on nonverbal communication.


COM 335 Communication and Gender (3)
An exploration of the intersection of gender and communication examining documented similarities and differences in communication patterns and styles and investigating gender as a communicative enactment.


COM 340 Conflict Management (3)
Using conflict simulations and popular media to present conflict management theory, this course gives students the tools to develop effective, ethical conflict management strategies and techniques.


COM 342 Media Literacy (3)
Encourages the development of media literacy by examining the complexity of media industries in the areas of production, economics, audience development, media effects, and institutional effects. Specific topics include the analysis of media products such as news, entertainment and advertising according to their purposes, message parameters and audience reception.


COM 343 Communication in the Information Age (3)
Study of the information age in its impacts on personal communication and social institutions. Emphasizing application of principles to personal experience and encouraging critical analysis of “information society” claims.


COM 380 Environmental Communication (3)
An overview of the rhetorical, mass mediated, organizational, interpersonal, and political communication dimensions of environmental studies. Critical analysis and practical application of environmental communication concepts and strategies.


COM 399 Special Studies (1-3)


COM 406 Special Individual Studies (1-3)
Terms and hours to be arranged.


COM 407 Seminar (1-6)
Terms and hours to be arranged. Six hours maximum apply to degree.


COM 408 Workshop (1-3)


COM 409 Internship (1-6)
This is an internship students design and carry out with a supervisor in a job setting. Must be taken pass-no credit (P/NC).


COM 410 Communication & Event Planning
Working with a school or non-profit community organization liaison, students will develop, plan, coordinate, and carry out a major event for the designated organization. Examples of past events include planning and running the Northwest Communication Association Conference, a charity golf tournament for Victim/Offender Restitution Program of Dallas, Ore., and a dance for the Boys and Girls Club of Albany. Assignments include readings, lectures, group work, and extensive outside of class work tailored to the organization’s needs and the planned event. Students will turn in a portfolio at the end of the term that demonstrates tasks they have accomplished.


COM 412 The Criticism of Public Discourse (3)
Analysis and evaluation of speeches in their social settings; critical studies of invention, arrangement and style.


COM 416 Communication and Politics (3)
An examination of the relationship between communication and politics and how their interaction affects American society. Emphasis is on the communication of political issues, the ways in which social institutions help create, advance, and reinforce public opinion and the political systems. Topics may include Presidential rhetoric, political debates, local and national campaigns, and media/politics interactions.


COM 420 Communication in Organizations (3)
The study of communication processes that occur within the context of organizational life. Traditional and contemporary theories of organization are presented and assessed from a communication perspective. Practical, real life examples of daily organizational life are considered.


COM 422 Persuasion (3)
Approaches to changing audience attitudes, beliefs, behaviors and/or values strongly grounded in communication ethics and social scientific research, leading to message preparation and analysis.


COM 426 Language of the Mass Media (3)
Uses of verbal and visual language in the popular media—motion pictures, television, radio, newspapers, and magazines—both by direct study and analysis of the various media and by the study of the relevant scholarship and criticism.


COM 432 Rhetoric In the Western Tradition (3)
Survey of major rhetorical ideas, theories, and figures from the classical period to the present. Emphasis on the ways in which rhetoric was understood and used in western historical contexts.


COM 435 Rhetoric of the Women’s Movement (3)
Examination of the works of the major speakers of the women’s movement from the 18th century to the present.


COM 439 Contemporary U.S. Public Address (3)
Survey of several major U.S. speakers and speeches since the mid-twentieth century in their historical contexts. Analysis and evaluation of the rhetorical features of contemporary oratory grounded in critical and theoretical approaches to speaker, audience, text, and context.


COM 440 Relational Communication (3)
In-depth examination of everyday relational communication issues as behavioral outcomes of theoretically explained communication behaviors, from relationship initiation to relationship termination, including factors such as attraction, relational development and maintenance, critical relational events, and other topics in relational communication.


COM 442 Communication and Social Change (3)
Examination of communication in the context of historical or contemporary social issues or movements. Focus on critical thinking, dialogue, and praxis through application of communication theories and methodologies.


COM 450 Crisis Communication Management (3)
Practical experience to effectively manage and overcome a crisis. Students are introduced to sound research and the best practices in the field of crisis communication. Course is based in using case examples to explore a series of crisis communication management problems and strategies. Cases involve managing victims, reducing litigation, recovering reputation, healing corporate wounds, dealing with organizational opposition, engaging the media, and influencing employee, community, and public attitude. Prerequisite: COM 312



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