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  Aug 18, 2017
 
 
    
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Undergraduate Catalog 2015-2017 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Communication and Media Studies


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Department of Communication and Media Studies, BA

Mission

 

The mission of the Department of Communication and Media Studies is to provide a program of study through classroom instruction and practical experience in research and application that prepares students to apply the principles of communication to the production, distribution and systematic analysis of messages. Overall, the curriculum seeks to integrate theoretical and applied knowledge in the field in a program model that facilitates curricular flexibility in order to better meet the challenges of a rapidly changing communication and media studies environment.

 

Departmental Goals
 

The primary goals of the department are to provide dynamic and robust: 1) Classroom instruction, 2) Practical experience through practicums and internships, and 3) Research in Communication. This foundation would be offered through a set of core courses that all students will take. Once the students have received this foundation, they would be able to take courses that represent some of the traditional and emergent areas of Communication and Media Studies. Depending on the combination of courses, students will be able to claim expertise in a specific area of specialization, or remain a generalist in Communication.

More specifically, the departmental goals of Communication and Media Studies is to enable students:

1. To engage in the interdisciplinary opportunities in combining the major with other areas of   

      study across the College and University.

 

2. To engage in the necessary theoretical and applied knowledge to critically understand     

      communication, media, media technology, and its influence on society in different cultural,

      historical, social, and political contexts.

 

3. To engage in the multiple influences of traditional, contemporary and emerging media and how

      media shapes and informs new conceptions of the world and human experience.

 

4. To engage in greater freedom and choice to successfully create academic pathways to pursue

      their intellectual interests while developing critical conceptual, methodological, and theoretical

      skills to engage the discipline for academic and professional purposes.

 

 

 

 

 

Major Requirements

 

Majors are required to take a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of departmental courses beyond the required 60 semester credit hours of WSSU General Education courses. Five core courses are included in the departmental 30 semester credit hours. The five required core courses are MCM 2325 – Introduction to Mass Communications, MCM 3301 – Law and Ethics of Mass Communications, MCM 3342 - Media, Communication and Culture, MCM 4321 – International Communications, and MCM 4325Communication Senior Seminar Capstone. Each of the five core courses equals 3 semester credits hours for a total of 15 semester credit hours once completed. The remaining 15 semester credit hours of departmental courses at the 3000 and 4000 level are required to satisfy the major. Free elective courses and possibly some major elective courses should be taken to fulfill the needed total of 120 semester credit hours required for graduation.

Students must achieve a grade of “C” or better in all departmental courses taken as part

of the major requirements.

 

Courses Offered by the Department

 

Core Required Courses (5)

MCM 2325 – Introduction to Mass Communications

MCM 3301 – Law and Ethics of Mass Communications

MCM 3342 – Media, Communication and Culture

MCM 4321 – International Communications

MCM 4325 – Communication Senior Seminar Capstone

 

Elective Courses (5 required at the 3000 and 4000 level)

MCM 1301 – Introduction to Human Communication Theory

MCM 2341 – Digital Convergence

MCM 3215 – Journalism Practicum

MCM 3308 – Journalism Language, Style and Literacy

MCM 3311 – Studio Production

MCM 3312 – Copy Editing

MCM 3321 – Media Presentation

MCM 3325 – Media Writing

MCM 3360 – Public Affairs Reporting

MCM 3366 – Advanced Video Directing

MCM 3367 – Advanced Video Editing

MCM 3368 – Advanced Video Production

MCM 3369 – General Internship

MCM 3370 – Field Production

MCM 4093 – Mass Communications Internship

MCM 4115 – Advanced Journalism Practicum

MCM 4309 – Feature Writing

MCM 4322 – Minorities and Media

MCM 4371 – Electronic Media Practicum

SPH 2141 –   Speech Project

SPH 2321 – Oral Interpretation of Literature

SPH 2341 – Fundamentals of Speech

SPH 2343 – Voice and Diction

SPH 2345 – Great African-American Speeches of the 20th and 21st Centuries

SPH 2346 – Professional Presentations

SPH 3320 – Intercultural Communication

SPH 3340 – Interpersonal Communication

SPH 3350 – Group Discussion

SPH 3360 – Argumentation and Debate

SPH 3370 – Phonetics

SPH 4345 – Advanced Public Speaking

 

Speech Communication Minor

 

Objectives

1. To provide experiences and training in public and interpersonal communication.

2. To provide an awareness of the impact of non-verbal communication on meaning and

    interpretation.

3. To contribute to the emotional and intellectual development of students by providing

    opportunities for creative self expression.

4. To provide experiential learning activities that allow for the composition and delivery of

    oral communication projects to enhance student expression and creativity.

 

Students who minor in Speech Communication must earn a grade of “C” or above in all courses taken for the minor requirements.

 

The minor in Speech Communication requires 18 hours beyond the courses taken to complete the General Education’s Oral Communication requirement. Courses should be chosen from among the following:

 

SPH 2321 – Oral Interpretation of Literature

SPH 2341 – Fundamentals of Speech*

SPH 2343 – Voice and Diction

SPH 3320 – Intercultural Communication

SPH 3340 – Interpersonal Communication

SPH 3350 – Group Discussion

SPH 3360 – Argumentation and Debate

SPH 3370 – Phonetics

SPH 4345 – Advanced Public Speaking

 

*All students minoring in Speech Communication must complete SPH 2341. It may be taken to fulfill the General Education’s Oral Communication requirement or counted as part of the minor program.

 

Speech Courses Offered by the Department of Communication and Media Studies

SPH 2141 – Speech Project

SPH 2321 – Oral Interpretation of Literature

SPH 2341 – Fundamentals of Speech

SPH 2343 – Voice and Diction

SPH 2345 - Great African-American Speeches of the 20th and 21st Centuries

SPH 2346 – Professional Presentations

SPH 3320 – Intercultural Communication Across Cultural Boundaries

SPH 3340 – Interpersonal Communication

SPH 3350 – Group Discussion

SPH 3360 – Argumentation and Debate

SPH 3370 – Phonetics

SPH 4345 – Advanced Public Speaking

 

Course Descriptions

MCM 1301 – Introduction to Human Communication Theory

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is designed to prepare students to analyze and interpret theories of human and mass communications and their applicability to the real world. The course is pragmatic and beneficial to students whose academic majors will require further educational study and self-directed learning. The course will blend theory and practical application to prepare students to think critically in an ever-changing communication climate and in a multicultural society and world. Students in all academic majors may enroll in this course.

 

MCM 2325 – Introduction to Mass Communications

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course provides an overview of the structure and functions of the mass media in contemporary society. It promotes awareness of the social, cultural, political, and technological aspects of mass communications. It also provides an introduction to basic communication theory and aesthetics. 

 

 

 

 

MCM 2341 – Digital Convergence

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students blend text, sounds, graphics and images to produce, edit and create new media projects. 

 

MCM 3215 – Journalism Practicum

Credits: 2 hrs.

A lecture and lab course in which students are given fundamental instructions to produce the print and online newspapers. Students are encouraged to assist the operations of the campus student operated newspaper, The News Argus.  Students are encouraged to submit their published work to collegiate journalism competitions. Prerequisite(s): MCM 3340

 

MCM 3301 – Law and Ethics of Mass Communications

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course offers an overview of legal limitations and privileges affecting the functions of print and electronic media including libel, obscenity, freedom of expression of expression and the right to privacy. Also considered are advertising and antitrust regulations, copyright, access to the press, and broadcast rules and regulations.

 

MCM 3305 – Mass Media Management

Credits: 3 hrs.

The course content includes organizational structure of print and electronic media organizations

as they relate to decision making for personnel, budget, and equipment, including adherence to laws and regulations. Roles of specific personnel are analyzed.

 

MCM 3308 – Journalism Language, Style, and Literacy

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course lays the foundation for the writing of news, feature, analysis, and opinion articles. 

It covers the elements and rules of English and mass media writing, as well as the analysis and critique of the content of news and information media.

 

MCM 3311 – Studio Production

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students develop and create studio video productions. They are responsible for all tasks, including presentation, directing, graphics, audio, and camera operation. 

Prerequisite(s): MCM 2341 and MCM 3325

 

MCM 3312 – Copy Editing

Credits: 3 hrs.

A lecture-laboratory focusing on editing copy and designing newspapers and similar publications. Students are taught how to identify simple solutions for common grammar and news style errors. Instruction will also provide fundamentals of headline writing, typography, desktop publishing, and basic Webpage design. Prerequisite(s): MCM 3340

 

 

 

MCM 3321 – Media Presentation

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course addresses the principles, theory, and practice in camera presence and audio microphone use for traditional and new media with special attention to the development of presentation skills.

 

MCM 3325 – Media Writing

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course introduces students to writing across media platforms. Platforms include news and feature stories for print and broadcast; advertising and public relations copy; and digital electronic media scriptwriting. The course also surveys news styles, policy, ethics and legal issues associated with delivering news and entertainment in diverse forms.

 

MCM 3340 – News Reporting and Writing

Credits: 3 hrs.

This lecture course is designed to teach students with little or no practical journalism experience the processes of gathering, reporting and writing news, for print and online media. It introduces how reporters perform their jobs, to produce newsworthy stories. Students learn how to report, interview, write and revise news stories to become a more discerning consumer of news. Students are encouraged to pitch/submit their writings to WSSU student media for publication and/or broadcast consideration.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3308

 

MCM 3342 – Media, Communication and Culture

Credits: 3 hrs.

This is a General Education course which satisfies Information Literacy student learning outcome. Media, Communication and Culture will provide an overview of the structure and functions of mass media in contemporary society.  The course will also promote awareness of the social, economic, cultural, political and technological aspects of mass communications along with an introduction to basic theory, business strategies and aesthetics. This course is designed to provide the student with an understanding of media and audience relationships and the role of the media shaping the public.  

 

MCM 3360 – Public Affairs Reporting

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is designed to improve students’ writing and reporting skills and acquaint them with government agencies and other public institutions. It encompasses the institutions and issues that involve public life (e.g., religion, business, the arts, environment, medicine) and will increase student confidence in dealing with public officials. Students are encouraged to submit their stories (stories broadly defined to include the traditional text article, as well as photography, audio, video, graphics, links) to WSSU student media for publication, broadcast, and/or new media consideration.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3340 and MCM 4316

 

MCM 3366 – Advanced Video Directing

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students focus on understanding all elements involved in creating a director’s vision. Students will develop skills in lighting, storyboarding, framing, using depth of field, and editing to create a vision.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3311 and MCM 3370.

 

MCM 3367 – Advanced Video Editing

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students focus on non-linear digital editing, with an emphasis in DVD production, creating files for the Internet, and creating special effects. Prerequisite(s): MCM 3311 and MCM 3370

 

MCM 3368 – Advanced Video Production

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course focuses on electronic media management with an emphasis on organizational skills.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3311 and MCM 3370

 

MCM 3369 – Mass Communications General Internship

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is an elective. It is designed to help students combine curriculum with on-the-job learning experiences.  The course provides an opportunity to explore media options for career choices for undecided communication and media students. Interns are required to work 90 hours at the site for a minimum of seven weeks. Prerequisite(s): Permission of Instructor Required

 

MCM 3370 – Field Production

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students develop, shoot and edit field productions. They are responsible for all tasks, including image and sound acquisition, presentation, and editing. Prerequisite(s): MCM 2341 and

MCM 3325

 

MCM 3380 – News Editing and Design

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course focuses on the visual presentation of information in newspapers and on websites.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3312

 

 

 

 

MCM 4093 – Mass Communications Internship

Credits: 3 hrs.

The internship is a field-based course in which departmental majors have an opportunity to apply, demonstrate, learn, and improve their media skills in “real media-related” settings where they can meet and network with professionals. Students/Interns are required to work at least 150 hours during 10 consecutive weeks at the site. Students/Interns must be supervised as they engage in meaningful tasks and assignments that contribute to their understanding of how media organizations operate. Students find their own placements. However, the department will assist students. Prerequisite(s): Permission of Instructor Required

 

MCM 4115 – Advanced Journalism Practicum

Credit: 1

This advanced seminar and lab course provides more practical experience in producing the print and online editions of the student-run university newspaper, The News Argus. Students are encouraged to assume senior staff duties and responsibilities which include devoting a minimum of four hours per issue. Areas of experience include feature and opinion writing, news reporting, design, graphics, and Web design and photography. Emphasis is placed on beat reporting, spot news reporting, interviewing techniques and multimedia reporting. Classroom seminars include news coverage guidelines and self-critiques. Students are encouraged to submit their published work to collegiate journalism competitions. Students are required to develop an e-portfolio.

 

MCM 4309 – Feature Writing

Credits: 3 hrs.

In this course students write news stories without using the inverted pyramid. Feature writing offers students the chance to explore subjects more creatively and more in-depth. It requires students/writers to take risks and be imaginative and unique, while adhering to the rules of grammar and journalism style.  Students are required to use good research and information gathering techniques so they can pitch and develop provocative story ideas – necessary for all features. Students are encouraged to pitch/submit feature ideas and stories to WSSU student media for publication, broadcast, and/or new media consideration. Prerequisite(s): MCM 3340

 

MCM 4312 – Mass Media Criticism

Credits: 3 hrs.

Media content is analyzed and critiqued from various perspectives and using different methodologies including semiotics and psychoanalytical and sociological approaches. Media content is also analyzed in light of new developments in digital technology, advertising, audience formation, dissemination channels and effects research findings.

 

 

 

 

MCM 4316 – Critical and Persuasive Writing

Credits: 3 hrs.

In this seminar-lecture course, students apply the foundations of news gathering and writing to learn and practice the fundamentals of opinion (critical and persuasive) writing for print and electronic media. The course covers a variety of opinion pieces including personal columns, editorials and reviews. Students will be trained to use legitimate sources to justify personal opinions and present them in a credible and newsworthy manner. Students will learn these aspects of journalism through participating in weekly classroom seminars, practical writing assignments and social media activities. Students are encouraged to pitch/submit their writings to WSSU student media for publication, broadcast, and/or new media consideration. Prerequisite(s) MCM 3340

 

MCM 4321 – International Communications

Credits: 3 hrs.

The course surveys different media systems across the globe and examines diverse issues, theories, concepts, history and research in international communications. Students learn about global communication concepts like the free flow of information, cultural homogenization, cultural hybridization, public diplomacy, propaganda, the CNN-effect, media bias and framing that affect communications between nations in this age of rapid globalization and digital convergence. 

 

MCM 4322 – Minorities and Media

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course focuses on the role of the mass media in depicting, promoting, and influencing the lives of minorities in their various communities.

 

MCM 4325 – Communication Senior Seminar Capstone

Credits: 3 hrs.

In this course graduating seniors will synthesize their communication and media experience by reflecting on courses related to their field of work and scholarly focus. This capstone experience will allow students to explore substantive areas of scholarship and creative work within their major. Students will be given the opportunity to demonstrate and create knowledge within their discipline through research and production. The capstone course will also provide students with the opportunity to integrate, assimilate and compare knowledge gained from their major area with those in the liberal arts program. In this conclusive course, students will create a final project of their own design or a research paper under the guidance of a faculty member.

Prerequisite: Senior status, majors only.

 

 

 

 

 

MCM 4346 – Independent Study

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students complete a project or a research paper in consultation with supervising faculty. This course cannot be used to replace required courses in the program. Prerequisite(s): Permission of the Instructor

 

MCM 4351 – Broadcast Marketing

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students learn strategies and tactics of marketing, selling, and promoting media organizations and their products and services. They apply proper research methods in targeting demographic groups. 

 

MCM 4371 – Electronic Media Practicum

Credits: 3 hrs.

Students gain advanced practical experience in producing a digital media portfolio.

Prerequisite(s): MCM 3311 and MCM 3370

 

SPH 2141 – Speech Project

Credit: 1 hr.

This course offers a summary review of the fundamentals of speech communication and practical application of these principles in a variety of speaking exercises. Prerequisites: ENG 1305

 

SPH 2321 – Oral Interpretation of Literature

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course introduces the student to the basic principles of oral communication through a study of the production of speech sounds, followed by a study of the principles of selection, analysis, and preparation of poetry, prose, and drama for oral presentation before an audience. General Education Course that Satisfies SLO: Oral Communication; AK: Literature

 

SPH 2341 – Fundamentals of Speech

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is a study and application of basic elements and processes essential to effective speech. Emphasis is on practical speaking experiences, American phonetics and speech improvement. General Education Course that Satisfies SLO: Oral Communication; AK: Literature

 

SPH 2343 – Voice and Diction

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is a study of the basic principles and practices of effective spoken English. It is also a study of English sounds, stress, and intonation.

 

SPH 2345 – Great African-American Speeches of the 20th and 21st Centuries

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course focuses on the study and application of basic elements, techniques, and processes essential to effective speaking. Attention is devoted to understanding the use of rhetorical and oratorical strategies in 20th and 21st century speeches given by prominent African-Americans. This course focuses on the discourse of African-American orators in American society, particularly as they speak about issues pertaining to race, gender, civil rights, and social activism. Emphasis is

placed on the analysis and evaluation of political, social, and entertainment speeches. The goal of this course is to give students the tools needed to think creatively and speak clearly in a variety of situations.

 

SPH 2346 – Professional Presentations

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course in oral communication focuses on public speaking methodologies that prepare students for professional presentations in small groups and large audiences. Students are taught

to become efficient workshop facilitators and to present information at professional conferences. Students will study professional presentation methods and current professional workshop formats. Emphasis is placed on visual technologies that enhance the effectiveness of professional presentations. Upon completion of this course, students will demonstrate effective oral communication skills.

 

 

 

SPH 3320 – Intercultural Communication: Oral Communication Across Cultural Boundaries

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course serves as an introduction to the field of intercultural communication by examining the practical application of theory and research. The goal of this course is for students to develop an understanding of the communication process across cultural boundaries in a variety of contexts. The course focuses on challenges and issues important to the understanding of people of different racial, ethnic, national, and other cultural backgrounds in the US and abroad. This course is the study of the relationship between culture and communication and includes problems in the practice of intercultural communication. Satisfies Oral Communication for General Education.

 

SPH 3340 – Interpersonal Communication

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course focuses on the dynamics of human communication, on the relationship of language to human communication and self-concept, on the development of personal skills and attitudes in one-to-one relationships and small groups, and development of positive communication styles.

 

SPH 3350 – Group Discussion

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is a study of the values of group discussion as a method of learning and instructing. Emphasis is placed on leadership in problem-solving discussions, and roundtable discussions, and basic procedures in conference groups.

 

SPH 3360 – Argumentation and Debate

Credits: 3 hrs.

This is a study of the principles and methods of argumentation and debate. Analysis, briefing, evidence, and refutation are stressed. Students participate in various types of debate.

 

SPH 3370 – Phonetics

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course is a study of the International Phonetic Alphabet and the production, description, and classification of speech sounds. Standards of sounds, stress and intonation, and transcription are emphasized. Prerequisite(s): SPH 2321 or SPH 2341

 

SPH 4345 – Advanced Public Speaking

Credits: 3 hrs.

This course provides intensive practice in the process of composing and delivering various types of speeches. Original thinking, effective organization, and direct communication of ideas are emphasized.

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