Communication Course Descriptions

100 Level Courses:
COMM 141, 142, 143, 144: Radio Activities
COMM 161, 162, 163, 164: Public Relations Activities
COMM 171, 172, 173, 174: TV Activities
COMM 181, 182, 183, 184: Journalism Activities

200 Level Courses:
COMM 202: Oral Interpretation
COMM 208: Introduction to Argumentation and Debate
COMM 211: Presentational Speaking
COMM 215: Foundations of Communication Theory
COMM 221: Multimedia Writing
COMM 226: Multimedia Production I
COMM 231: Principles of Advertising and Public Relations
COMM 245: Studio Production
COMM 265: Photojournalism
COMM 285: Communication and Ethics
COMM 290: Selected Topics
COMM 291, 292: Research

300 Level Courses:
COMM 306: Interactive Stories for the Web
COMM 322: Media Law
COMM 324: Feature Writing
COMM 325: Broadcast Writing and Announcing
COMM 332: Intercultural Communication
COMM 340: Advertising & Public Relations Research & Strategy
COMM 342: Interpersonal Communication Theory
COMM 351: Principles of Persuasion & Influence
COMM 353: Mass Media and Society
COMM 358, 359: Advanced Journalism Activities I & II
COMM 369: Investigative Reporting
COMM 373: Advanced Electronic Media TV Activities
COMM 375: Principles of Multimedia Production II
COMM 380: Data Visualization
COMM 386: Web Communication
COMM 387: Organizational Communication
COMM 390: Selected Topics
COMM 391, 392: Research
COMM 393, 394: Advanced Speech Activities
COMM 397, 398: Internship

400 Level Courses:
COMM 412: Advertising Campaigns/Ad Team
COMM 421: Strategic Media
COMM 422: Argumentation and Advocacy
COMM 433: Strategic Writing for Advertising and Public Relations
COMM 441: Advertising/PR Campaigns
COMM 442: Rhetorical Criticism
COMM 490: Selected Topics
COMM 491, 492: Research
COMM 493: Senior Seminar
COMM 497, 498: Internship

COMM 141, 142, 143, 144: Radio Activities. 1 hour each.
Activities associated with KDRU, the student radio station, as well as Internet and web-based projects.

COMM 161, 162, 163, 164: Public Relations Activities. 1 hour each.
This activities class gives students the chance to develop creative solutions in the event planning process.  Hands-on projects will allow students to develop public relations skills as they use their imagination to solve the challenges of promoting organizations as well as planning and hosting events. 

COMM 171, 172, 173, 174: TV Activities. 1 hour each.
Prerequisite: COMM 226.
Students work with instructor to identify relevant multimedia projects for Drury University, the Springfield community, and/or DUTV. Students will coordinate studio productions and take story content into post production to generate programming for broadcast. This applied learning environment allows students to oversee video production projects from start to finish.

COMM 181, 182, 183, 184: Journalism Activities. 1 hour each.
Practical activities associated with The Mirror (student newspaper).

COMM 202: Oral Interpretation I. 3 hours.
Oral interpretation is the emotive performance of the printed page. Through in-class projects, this class explores the tenets of recitation and dramatic delivery as well as the assessment of literary aesthetics and performative form. The evaluation of interpretive personae and historical merit also are explored. 

COMM 208: Introduction to Argumentation and Debate. 3 hours.
This course helps students develop the foundational knowledge and skills needed to become effective critical thinkers and communicators. Students will examine different types of argument structures and logical fallacies, learn how to evaluate and use evidence in constructing persuasive cases, and develop skill in refuting claims orally and in writing. Readings, discussions, and case studies will explore the interconnectedness between argumentation strategies and communication context. This course prepares students for participation in competitive debate experiences and other public advocacy roles.

COMM 211: Presentational Speaking. 3 hours.
Principles and practice of effective oral communication. This course focuses on researching, composing and delivering formal and informal presentations. Topics include ethics and public speaking, listening, research, analyzing and adapting to audiences, message construction, outlining, delivery of message, effective use of visual aids and critically evaluating public address. The course emphasizes informative and persuasive speaking. Designed for students who seek speaking and critical thinking skills.

COMM 215: Foundations of Communication. 3 hours.
Introduction to the fundamental questions, methods and theories that define the communication discipline and communication professions.  Students also will survey approaches to the study of interpersonal relationships, organizational dynamics, public discourse, mass media and cultural criticism as well as the history and development of the communication field. This introduction will help students make informed decisions about the focus and trajectory of their study and career.

COMM 221: Multimedia Writing. 3 hours.
Provides a writing foundation for multiple disciplines, including print journalism, broadcasting, web and public relations.  Students will learn about compiling information effectively for audiences and presenting content through social media.

COMM 226: Multimedia Production I. 3 hours.
Provides students with the basic understanding of shooting and editing digital video.  Using their own digital cameras, students will write, shoot and edit videos under the direction of the instructor.  Upon course completion, students should be equipped with basic understanding of storytelling, camera strategies, the importance of sound and editing terms, as well as the skills necessary to produce good amateur videos.

COMM 231: Principles of Advertising and Public Relations. 3 hours.
Introduction to the fundamental principles of message development in integrated marketing communication campaigns. Students will learn to analyze brand messages as well as articulate the role of media buying, creative strategy, promotional techniques and community relations in campaign design. This is a foundational course for students completing the advertising and public relations major. 

COMM 245: Studio Production. 3 hours.
Exposes students to the principles of multi-camera video production as the basis for in studio or remote, live programs.  Students will perform all aspects of studio production including live camera, switching, audio, lighting and floor management.

COMM 265: Photojournalism. 3 hours.
An introduction to photojournalism, the concepts and thought processes used in shooting for a newspaper or other journalistic publication.  Students will also develop writing for publication skills, as cutlines will be required for each photograph.   

COMM 285: Communication and Ethics. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 215
Introduction to ethics in communication studies. Students examine conceptual perspectives for understanding and evaluating communication ethics in interpersonal relationships, small groups, organizations and intercultural contexts. This course is designed to stimulate the moral imagination, reveal ethical issues inherent in communication and provide resources for making and defending choices on ethical grounds.

COMM 306: Interactive Stories for the Web. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 226 or permission of the instructor.
This is a course designed to give communication and journalism students practical, real world experience conceptualizing and producing interactive stories (news or feature) for the web.  Students will need to demonstrate their ability to distil an idea down to its essential story element.  From audio to slideshow to video, interactive stories are commonplace on news-based websites.  This course will give students an opportunity to gain experience and hone skills that many employers are looking for from today’s graduates. 

COMM 322: Media Law. 3 hours.
A survey of federal, state and municipal laws governing freedom of speech and commerce in journalism, public relations and advertising, with an exploration of ethical guidelines for professional behavior. 

COMM 324: Feature Writing. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 215, COMM 221.
Builds upon news writing fundamentals and journalistic principles presented in COMM 221, venturing beyond the reporting of routine events and into the realm of feature stories that illuminate, explain and entertain. 

COMM 325: Broadcast Writing and Announcing. 3 hours.
Course allows students to develop on-camera skills as talent. Students will learn to prepare scripts, read from a Teleprompter and basic interview and production techniques.

COMM 332: Intercultural Communication. 3 hours.
A survey of critical and qualitative inquiry into intercultural communication. This course provides an introduction to the tenets of intercultural research as well as in-depth analysis of intercultural communication competency and cultural criticism. Topics include introductory readings in ethnography, social anthropology and communication studies, and numerous case studies across various cultures. Theories include nonverbal communication analysis and facework across cultures. Diversity issues and identity politics are explored.

COMM 340: Advertising and Public Relations Research & Strategy. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 215, COMM 231, or permission of instructor.
Focuses on strategic thinking and research skills in the development of advertising and public relations messages and campaigns. Students will learn how to gather and interpret primary research that supports an understanding of audience attitudes, behaviors, knowledge and media consumption habits.  Students will draw on research and theory to develop integrated communication proposals that solve the needs of businesses and/or nonprofit organizations.  

COMM 342: Interpersonal Communication Theory. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 215.
Interpersonal communication is the process of interacting with someone on a one-to-one basis. This class will provide a survey of theories and research that define the field of interpersonal communication within specific relationships and contexts. Topics include social support, rituals, relational maintenance and termination, compliance gaining, sex and gender differences, relational intrusion, face management, and conflict.

COMM 351: Principles of Persuasion & Influence. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 211, COMM 215 or permission of instructor. 
A study of the persuasive process in contemporary culture. Students study basic theories of persuasion and public speaking in an effort to become responsible consumers and creators of public persuasion. Practical applications are made by presenting persuasive speeches and critical projects.

COMM 353: Mass Media and Society. 3 hours.
The history and current status of mass media in America, including newspapers, magazines, books, motion pictures, the recording industry, radio and television.  Students will also explore theories and research examining the effect media have upon society. 

COMM 358, 359: Advanced Journalism Activities I & II. 2 hours each.
Practical activities associated with student or college publications. Reserved for students holding editorial or other advanced positions on publications. 

COMM 369: Investigative Reporting. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 221
A seminar to deepen research skills by exposing students to public records, freedom of information laws and computer-assisted reporting using databases and spreadsheets.  Students will develop the ability to evaluate information critically for journalism projects. 

COMM 373: Advanced Electronic Media TV Activities I & II. 3 hours each.
Prerequisite:  COMM 375.
The capstone course for future broadcasting professionals.  Students will work together as DUTV staff members meeting weekly deadlines for on-air and web-based projects.  Using skills acquired in Principles of Multimedia Production II, students will produce a significant amount of material and therefore increase those skills at or near the professional level.  Several projects from this class should be resume quality.

COMM 375: Principles of Multimedia Production II. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 226.
Provides students with the opportunity to advance skills learned in Principles of Multimedia Production I. In this course students will be challenged to think beyond the basics and inject creativity into their video projects. By completion of course students will be able to produce videos for broadcast.

COMM 380: Data Visualization. 3 hours.
This course focuses on the theory and practice of analyzing and presenting information for a variety of audiences. Students will learn how to gather data from public and private sources, and tell stories with visual representations of data, both in print and online.

COMM 386: Web Communication. 3 hours.
Explores audience engagement on the Internet, teaching students basic web-design and social media skills. Using media-usage theory as a guide, students will develop an overall online communication strategy and web presence that incorporates interactivity and new ways to tell stories. Serves as the capstone experience for the Web Communication and Design minor.

COMM 387 Organizational Communication. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 215.
Analysis of how organizations are produced and affected by communication.  This course provides an in-depth examination and application of theories, contemporary perspectives and research in fields of organizational communication.  Topics include organizational structures, culture, socialization, decision making, diversity, stress, burnout, technology processes and leadership.

COMM 393, 394: Advanced Speech Activities. 2 hours each.
Competitive and practical activities associated with Drury’s Debate and Forensics program. Students will continue to practice skills for advanced public speaking, interpretation of literature and debate in a competitive, intercollegiate forum. Skills involved in these activities include the use of evidence, character/plot development in narrative activities, and the structuring and assessment of arguments. The advanced class also will require students to peer coach and run a collegiate tournament.

COMM 412: Advertising Campaigns/Ad Team. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 441 or permission of instructor.
This is the second half of the two semester AAF competition effort. A team will be selected from the fall Advertising Campaigns class to compete in the American Advertising Federation's National Student Advertising Competition.

COMM 421: Strategic Media. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 231 or permission of instructor.
Strategic media choices make it possible to connect messages and audiences.  In this course students will learn how to create effective media plans by developing their knowledge of media research tools, media buying, audience segmentation and audience measurement.  The roles of traditional and new media will be examined, with particular attention given to the opportunities and metrics associated with social media.

COMM 422: Argumentation and Advocacy. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 211.
The First Amendment coupled with our marketplace of ideas mentality requires that competent communicators get and practice critical-thinking skills. Argumentation and Advocacy explores these skills in tandem with the public discourse vehicle. Students are required to examine and deploy various approaches in making and evaluating arguments in a public setting. Theories explored include transmission models of communication, Stephen Toulmin’s model of argumentation and critical theory as it is applied to communication studies and the professions.

COMM 433: Strategic Writing for Advertising and Public Relations. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 221 or permission of instructor.
A writing-intensive course where students learn to produce highly targeted messages for key publics including media representatives, customers, donors and other organization stakeholders.  Students will develop skills in information gathering, editing, critical thinking and audience analysis through the production of advertising copy, news releases, direct mail packages, public service announcements and other strategic communication tools.

COMM 441: Advertising/PR Campaigns. 3 hours.
Prerequisite:  COMM 340, COMM 433, or permission of instructor.
Campaigns is the culminating professional experience for the advertising and public relations major. Using a case study created by a real-world client, the course gives students the opportunity to integrate previously acquired knowledge and skills in the area of integrated marketing communications. Student teams model an agency setting to develop a comprehensive campaign to be presented both orally and in plans book form.

COMM 442: Rhetorical Criticism. 3 hours.
Recommended prerequisite:  COMM 215, COMM 351.
Rhetorical Criticism is a writing-intensive course that teaches students how to critically analyze and evaluate public discourse. Attention is given to the logical, aesthetic, political and controversial components of public discourse designed to influence belief, affect social change and craft cultural identities. Topics include the scope and function of rhetoric in contemporary culture, various approaches to rhetorical criticism and contexts for criticism including politics, religion and social movements. 

COMM 493: Senior Seminar. 3 hours.
A capstone experience for students majoring in advertising and public relations, communication studies, and multimedia production and journalism.  Over the course of the semester, students will develop, execute and present projects that reflect the highest performance standards of their major area of study.  Additionally, the course will prepare students for the transition from student to working professional (or graduate student) through the creation of career planning and development tools.  Students will develop portfolios that serve as an integrated and documented album of knowledge and skills in communication and liberal arts studies.

COMM 290, 390, 490: Selected Topics. 1-3 hours.

COMM 291, 292, 391, 392, 491, 492: Research.

COMM 397, 398, 497, 498: Internship.