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Communication Studies

Course Listing

COMS 101: Foundations of Oral Communication, 3 credit hours
General education Course. Foundation in the principles of communication focusing on understanding the intrapersonal, interpersonal and group, organizational, cultural, and public communication climates within which the students interact daily. Provides students with the opportunity to study and practice effective communication and to prepare for real-life situations.

COMS 102: Honors Foundations of Oral Communication, 3 credit hours
General Education Course. Principles of foundations of communications for Honors Program students.

COMS 140: Principles of Public Speaking, 3 credit hours
Performance of several types of public speeches, with emphasis on subject matter and content, purpose, social context, and occasion. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 141: Interpersonal Communication, 3 credit hours
Study and practice of effective dyadic communication in family, social, and work environments. Explores such topics as the development of the self-concept, perception, language, nonverbal communication, and conflict management.

COMS 200: Introduction to Communication Research Methods, 3 credit hours
Study, application, and evaluation of quantitative and qualitative research methods employed in scholarly communication research. Includes experimental, survey, textual analysis, and ethnography. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 220: Introduction to Public Relations, 3 credit hours
An introduction to theories, practices, responsibilities and management functions in the field of public relations. Class format will include lecture, discussion, and team projects.

COMS 299: Career and Professional Development, 3 credit hours
This course is designed to provide career development orientation, with an emphasis on communication in the workplace. This course will also provide an in-depth overview of professional and academic standards expected of Communication Studies (COMS) majors. Topics covered will include: career assessment, job search strategies, résumé and interview skills, and career advancement. Required for all COMS majors. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 310: Social Media and Public Relations, 3 credit hours
This course will review current practices in the field for using communication to build personal/corporate brands and to engage customers using social media and web tools. Particular focus will be given to the application of social media strategies to current needs of organizations. Class format will include lecture, discussion, case-study analysis, and team projects. Prerequisite: COMS 220.

COMS 320: Communication Theory, 3 credit hours
In-depth exploration of communication theories as they relate to interpersonal, group, public, and other communication contexts. Emphasis on how theories are formulated and evaluated. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 330: Persuasion, 3 credit hours
A study and application of the theory and practice of persuasive strategies that constantly influence human behavior and attitudes. Includes performance opportunities. Prerequisite: COMS 140.

COMS 344: Organizational Communication, 3 credit hours
A study of the principles of group discussion, leadership, conflict, and communication patterns in businesses and organizations. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 350: Nonverbal Communication, 3 credit hours
Communication beyond the spoken or written word, including personal appearance, touch, space, eye contact, gestures, chronemics, olfaction, body adornment, and body language. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 355: Intercultural Communication, 3 credit hours
An introduction to communication between people from different cultures. Class format will include lecture, discussion, debate, and participation in intercultural events. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 360: Small Group Communication, 3 credit hours
Nature, uses, and types of group discussion, including leadership, group problem solving, and the individual’s role in a group. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 365: Family Communication, 3 credit hours
This course helps students gain an understanding of how communication functions to develop, maintain, enrich, or limit family relationships and develop an understanding of functional families across a wide range of structures and cultural backgrounds. Prerequisites: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 375: Gender Communication, 3 credit hours
Study of the development, usage, and effects of gendered communication interpersonally and in organizational settings. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 390: Communication, Leadership, and Society, 3 credit hours
This course explores the concept of leadership as a communication phenomenon. Students will review the history and development of various approaches to the study of leadership; explain specific communication strategies that will improve individual leadership behaviors; and apply communication leadership principles to a variety of contemporary social contexts. Particular attention will be given to individual reflection and application of course materials to personal followership and leadership activity. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 410: Environmental Communication, 3 credit hours
This course begins from the presumption that how we communicate about the environment powerfully affects our perceptions of both it and ourselves and how we define our relationship with the natural world. We will examine various contexts, styles, and strategies of communication about the environment focusing primarily on the rhetorical perspective. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 420: Interpersonal Conflict Management, 3 credit hours
The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the basic principles of effective communication and conflict engagement. Ideally, the course will enable students to develop greater capacity for perspective taking, to enhance awareness of the role of power and emotion in conflict, and to expand their understanding of the range of conflict strategies employed in interaction. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 430: Argumentation and Debate, 3 credit hours
A study of the development, techniques, and styles of argumentation to facilitate communication in social, political, and cultural settings. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 435: Social Movement Rhetoric, 3 credit hours
A survey and criticism of the rhetoric of social movements throughout U.S. history. The purpose of this course is to analyze the changing styles of rhetoric revealed in the public address of U.S. citizens as they respond(ed) to the historically and constantly changing cultural and social contexts such as abolition, women’s suffrage, and 20th century Civil Rights movements including the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, 2nd Wave Feminism, and the contemporary LGBT rights movement. Prerequisites: COMS 101 or 102, and ENG 102 or 104.

COMS 445: Communication Training and Development, 3 credit hours
Strategies and techniques for improving the communication skills of business personnel, classroom students, and clients. Prerequisite: COMS 101 or 102.

COMS 450: Rhetorical Criticism, 3 credit hours
A survey and practice of rhetorical methods and criticism through analysis of speeches, campaigns, and other rhetorical artifcats. Prerequisites: COMS 101 or 102, and ENG 102 or 104.

COMS 460: Seminar in Communication Studies, 3 credit hours
Special offerings on a Communication Studies topic not covered in the curriculum. May be repeated for credit as topics vary.

COMS 475: Internship in Communication Studies, 1-6 credit hours
Practical experience in a professional environment. Applications, including requirements, are available in departmental office. May be repeated for a total of 6 credit hours on a pass/fail basis. Open to juniors and seniors only with departmental and instructor consent.

COMS 491: Directed Studies in Communication Studies, 1-3 credit hours
Supervised, independent directed study in communication-related area. Faculty adviser must approve research topic.

COMS 495: Public Relations Campaigns, 3 credit hours
This course will review current practices in the field for the planning, proposing, implementing, and analysis phases of public-relations campaigns. Particular focus will be given to the application of theory and research strategies to current problems and needs of organization. The class format will be primarily discussion and team projects – to include case study analyses and service-learning projects. Prerequisite: COMS 220.

COMS 499: Senior Seminar in Communication Studies, 3 credit hours
This course will include a synthesizing of previous work in Communication Studies (COMS) and how that work has contributed to an understanding of the overall subject of COMS, culminating in the presentation of either a senior project or thesis. Must be taken during fall semester of senior year. Senior standing and consent of instructor is required.