2015-2016 Communication Courses

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COMM 210 Media Writing I (4)
Introduces students to the basics of newswriting in preparation for further study in journalism, public relations, marketing, and business and technical writing. The framework of the basic news story is used to help students process complex information and write about it clearly and concisely. The course also includes basic editing and consideration of legal and ethical questions.
COMM 211 Media Writing II (4)
Develops interviewing and other research skills essential to gathering relevant information and crafting original stories suitable for publication in various media. Prerequisite: COMM 210
COMM 240 Media and Society (4)
Analyzes the history, nature, effects, responsibilities, influence, and power of the mass media. Media history leads into instruction about ethical principles and legal accountability.
COMM 250 Introduction to Human Communication (4)
Helps students develop a more precise appreciation of the complexity of human communication and further develops their abilities and skills to communicate with competence in various situations. Students will develop their awareness of basic communication processes and skills and explore how these basic skills and processes work in different types and contexts of communication.
COMM 300 Selected Topics in Communication (1–4)
Presents selected topics not offered in the regular Communication curriculum. Prerequisites may vary with course content.
COMM 302 College Media: Forum (4)
Provides practical experience producing print and online content for the college newspaper. May be taken more than once for credit. Prerequisite: COMM 211, equivalent transfer course, or instructor consent.
COMM 305 Forum Photo Staff (1–2)
Enhances skills in photography. Class assignments include action, candid, creative, and descriptive photography for the school newspaper. Students work with the publication editor and publication advisor in receiving assignments and meeting deadlines. Prerequisite: ART 180 or permission of instructor. May be repeated for credit.
COMM 310 Business and Professional Writing I (4)
Strengthens professional writing skills in the workplace and in the community. Specifically, students will work on becoming adept at making critical writing decisions based on audience expectations, context and timing, organizational constraints, analysis of research, and the students’ professional values and objectives. Projects will include business letters and memos; proposals; reports; and educational, persuasive, and/or informative articles for publication (digital and traditional). Emphasis is on research, writing style, and the revision process. Prerequisite: COMM 211, equivalent transfer course, or instructor consent.
COMM 311 Business and Professional Writing II (4)
Focuses on writing with clarity and concision about technical subjects for various audiences, including nonprofit clients. Projects include technical descriptions, instructions, procedures, and/or documentation; usability testing reports; and large-scale collaborative reports. Emphasis is on project management and testing. Offered in even-numbered Fall semesters only. Prerequisites: COMM 310
COMM 312 Creative Non-Fiction (4)
Introduces students to the concept of creative non-fiction to produce long, in-depth pieces that require traditional research, interviews, and/or participant observation. Offered in odd-numbered Fall semesters only. Prerequisite: COMM 310 or consent of instructor
COMM 322 Multimedia Image Production (4)
Emphasizes the aesthetic and technical skills necessary to produce multimedia images. This course explores multimedia image creation within a variety of formats including digital photography, video, and animation. The course emphasizes the artistic tradition within multimedia imaging, but projects will be applicable to fields ranging from advertising to game design. Offered Spring only.
COMM 321 Digital Media Survey (4)
Introduces students to the possibilities for making art on a computer. It explores techniques in several popular software programs. Prerequisite: COMM 320. Same as ART 321.
COMM 322 Multimedia Image Production (4)
Emphasizes the aesthetic and technical skills necessary to produce multimedia images. This course explores multimedia image creation within a variety of formats including digital photography, video, and animation. The course emphasizes the artistic tradition within multimedia imaging, but projects will be applicable to fields ranging from advertising to game design. Offered Spring only.
COMM 326 Introduction to Web Writing and Design (4)
Prepares students to develop basic web design skills and to create an original website. Students are introduced to concepts such as web-design conventions and usability and learn the fundamentals of working with HTML, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), and Dreamweaver. Students create an original website that might be used as a digital portfolio or small organizational website. Offered Fall only.
COMM 327 Web Design and Content Management (4)
Expands on the core skills of web design by requiring students to learn how to develop working websites for community-based clients. Students work with content management systems to develop a website that can be easily edited and transferred to people with little or no web-design background. Students further learn how to develop and edit audience-appropriate written and visual content for the web, including the incorporation of search engine and social media optimization practices, on a site that they design and develop individually or in groups. Offered Spring only. Prerequisite: COMM 326.
COMM 336 Public Relations Principles (4)
Presents methods of establishing and maintaining two-way communication between an organization and its publics. The course covers strategic planning, writing and editing, small-group communication, research procedures, and legal-ethical considerations. Offered Fall only.
COMM 338 Principles of Advertising (4)
Explores the history, social impact, and mechanics of advertising. In addition to analyzing advertising as a medium of expression, the course focuses on the copywriting and designing of both print and multimedia advertising. Offered Spring only.
COMM 340 Communication Theory and Persuasion (4)
Introduces students to theories and strategies of persuasion in various communication situations. Students examine theories from ancient to contemporary eras and apply them to the analysis of written, visual, and electronic multimedia messages. Emphasis is on developing skills in persuasion and critical thinking. Offered in odd-numbered Spring semesters only. Prerequisite: COMM 211.
COMM 345 Introduction to Video Production (4)
Covers the basics of video production and editing. Topics include storyboarding, camera operation, sound, lighting and editing, as well as a wide variety of film and video genres including narrative, documentary, and experimental. Offered Fall only.
COMM 350 Organizational Communication (4)
Provides a broad introductory survey of communication-based perspectives on organizational communication topics such as structure, rationality, decision-making, culture, diversity, identity, leadership, networks, power, change, ethics, and conflict. Students will gain a basic understanding of the range of communication phenomena in and around contemporary organizations and will have some useful analytical tools for describing, critiquing, and improving organizational communication. Prerequisites: COMM 250
COMM 360 Race, Gender, Class, and the Media (4)
Focuses on analyzing the portrayals of race, gender, and class in the media. The class introduces students to theoretical concepts in contemporary media studies, surveys some of the most influential and interesting genres of contemporary media, and focuses on issues of race, gender and sexuality, and class from a critical perspective. Offered odd-numbered Spring semesters only.
COMM 365 Intercultural and Global Communication (4)
Focuses on the significance of culture in everyday life and how culture interrelates with and influences communication processes. Students will explore the ways in which attitudes, beliefs, values, and behaviors affect communication among people of different cultural backgrounds. This course will address topics that challenge intercultural interactions, ranging from issues of privilege and power in society and representation of cultures and identities in popular media to the relationship between language, power, and culture. Offered even-numbered Spring semesters only. Prerequisites: None
COMM 370 Design Foundations (4)
Introduces students to foundational principles of visual communication and design. Students learn theories related to typography, color, layout, organization, photography, iconography, visual rhetoric, and related concepts in information design. Students learn to evaluate and apply these theories in emergent media both in print and in digital formats.
COMM 371 Multimedia Tools and Production (4)
This course builds upon theories of design through the production of various projects that may combine text, photography, video, animation, audio, and interactivity. Students learn to apply theories in design by using emerging and industry-standard tools and procedures. Possible projects include print media, multimedia presentations, podcasts, videos, and websites. Prerequisites: COMM 370
COMM 372 Design and the User Experience (4)
This course applies principles of design and emergent media to the interface between the user and technology. Topics covered include interface design, usability, user experience design, emotional design, and interactive design.   Projects include analysis and development of various user interfaces including kiosks, websites, and physical environments. Prerequisites: COMM 371
COMM 401 Directed Studies (1–4)
Allows students to initiate proposals for intensive tutorial-based study of topics not otherwise offered in the Communication program. Prerequisite: consent of instructor and school dean.
COMM 425 Communication Law and Ethics (4)
Provides an in-depth study of legal and ethical issues in communication. The course focuses on developing a basic understanding of the American legal system and how it applies to the communication industries. Students also study principles and concepts of ethical theory to develop expertise in moral reasoning with regard to ethical problem solving. Prerequisite: COMM 310.
COMM 430 Administration of Non-profits (4)
Introduces management concepts as applied to the arts. Particular attention is paid to current events and challenges facing the arts. Major career paths and the skills needed to pursue them are also addressed. Prerequisites: COMM 201; COMM 310 or ARTAD 310.
COMM 440 Internship (2–6)
Offers students the opportunity to integrate classroom knowledge with practical experience. At least two separate internships are strongly recommended. Only two internships will count towards the communication major. Additional internships will count as general elective credit towards graduation. Prerequisites: junior or senior standing (for transfer students, at least 15 hours completed at Westminster), minimum 2.5 GPA, and consent of faculty supervisor and Career Center internship coordinator.
COMM 490 Portfolio Workshop (2)
Gives students an opportunity to create portfolios from samples of their work that reflects skills acquired in the Communication program. Students learn to produce professional-quality portfolios displaying artifacts completed in courses and internships, as well as through professional work experience. The course should be taken in one of the last two semesters before graduation.