Communication Minor

Communication skills are highly valued in today’s workplace. The communication minor is designed for individuals who seek leadership roles in for-profit or nonprofit organizations. 

Students completing this minor will develop presentation, written, group and electronic communication skills. The communication minor is not available for students majoring in organizational and leadership communication, strategic communication, or multimedia production and journalism.


The communication minor requires 18 hours of coursework, nine of which are electives.

All prerequisites must be completed prior to enrollment in the following courses.

COMM 211: Presentational Speaking
3 credit 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 Theory
3 credit 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 351: Principles of Persuasion & Influence
3 credit hours

Prerequisite: COMM 211, COMM 215.
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.

Choose three courses from the following (9 hrs.): 

COMM 208: Introduction to Argumentation and Debate
3 credit 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 226: Multimedia Production I
3 credit 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: Integrated Brand Management
3 credit hours

This course will highlight the changes taking place in the world of integrated marketing communications – the process of communicating to promote products, services, and ideas. No longer is it just print or broadcast images connecting with audiences; skilled marketers must understand the importance of social media and the power of the audience. COMM 231 will introduce you to the communication tools, techniques, and media that practitioners use to design strategies to connect with audiences.

COMM 322: Media Law
3 credit 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 332: Intercultural Communication
3 credit 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 342: Interpersonal Communication Theory
3 credit 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 353: Mass Media and Society
3 credit 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 356: Photojournalism
3 credit 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 386: Web Communication
3 credit hours

Prerequisite: COMM 221.
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 credit 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 422: Argumentation and Advocacy
3 credit 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.