2010-2011 Undergraduate Catalog

Communication

Interim Chairperson: Dr. Peter Jorgenson
Office: Sallee Hall 221
Telephone: (309) 298-1507
Fax: (309) 298-2369
E-mail: PF-Jorgenson@wiu.edu
Website: wiu.edu/comm

Faculty: Bailey, Bochantin, Crossman, Dallinger, Hawkinson, Hogg, Jorgensen, Lauer, Macchi, Mathison, McEwan, Menken, L. Miczo, N. Miczo, Miller, Pfafman, Ridle, Yun, Zanolla.

Academic Adviser: Grimm.

Communication as a discipline is dynamic and varied, offering majors a broad range of career opportunities and pursuits. The major focuses on the primary areas of organizational communication, persuasive communication, interpersonal communication, and rhetorical communication to ground students in theoretical and applied knowledge of the key role that communication plays in all aspects of human interaction. The discipline routinely prepares students to enter any number of diverse professions from event planner to sales, college recruiter to business management, training and development to politics. Students of communication receive fundamental training in and exposure to the infinite number of contexts in which humans interact with and influence one another. This knowledge base then provides them with an understanding of message processes that will serve them on an ongoing basis, both professionally and personally.

The Department of Communication offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication. Students select two areas of emphases from course sequences in interpersonal communication, organizational communication, persuasion, and rhetoric. A Minor in Communication is also available. A full-time academic adviser assists students in planning their programs of study.

GradTrac is available to Communication majors.  See more information about GradTrac

Honors Curriculum - Academically qualified students in this department are welcome to complete an honors curriculum in University Honors, Upper Division Honors, or Lower Division Honors. All Honors students must complete the one-hour honors colloquium (G H 299). Lower Division Honors includes General Honors coursework. Upper Division Honors includes honors work in the major. University Honors combines Upper and Lower Division Honors. For more information about honors curricula visit the Centennial Honors College website at www.wiu.edu/Honors

Degree Programs

Bachelor of Arts - Communication

All students seeking the Bachelor of Arts in Communication must complete I, II, III, IV, V, and VI. The minimum semester hour requirement for the baccalaureate degree is 120 s.h. Current WIU students must be in good standing (2.0 GPA or higher) to declare a major in Communication.

  1. University General Education Curriculum:  43 s.h.
  2. Core Courses: 12 s.h.
    COMM 130, 247, 311; BC 323
  3. Directed Electives
    1. Students must choose two emphases (a, b, c, d):  12 s.h.
      1. Organizational Communication: COMM 343 and 413†
      2. Interpersonal Communication: COMM 344 and 410†
      3. Persuasion: COMM 356 and 456†
      4. Rhetoric: COMM 312 and 441†
    2. Communication Electives:  9 s.h.
      To be selected from Communication  courses with a minimum of 6 s.h. at the upper division level.
  4. Directed Electives in University General Education Humanities:  6 s.h.
  5. Any Approved Minor:  16–20 s.h.
  6. Open Electives:  18–22 s.h.

†Completion of two of the following courses fulfills the Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) graduation requirement: COMM 410, 413, 441, 456.

Minors

Minor in Communication:  18 s.h.

  1. COMM 130 and 247:  6 s.h. 
  2. Select three of the following: COMM 312, 343, 344, 356:  9 s.h. 
  3. COMM Electives from courses numbered 300 or higher:  3 s.h. 

Course Descriptions

COMMUNICATION (COMM)

130  Introduction to Human Communication. (3)  (General Education/Humanities)  Introduction to the various approaches and sub-fields which comprise speech communication, with focus on theoretical foundations of contemporary human communication theory.

170  Fundamentals of Oral Interpretation. (3)  Study of basic oral interpretation techniques which develop sensitivity and responsiveness to literature, enabling the student to communicate the re-creation of this literary experience to an audience.

230  Communication Theory. (3)  A survey of communication theories. This course will also address the process of theory building and the role of communication theory across major paradigms guiding communication research. Prerequisite: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher.

241  Introduction to Public Speaking. (3)  (General Education/Communication Skills)  Preparation and delivery of informative and persuasive speeches. Students apply concepts of critical listening, audience adaptation, organization/support of ideas, appropriate style, and effective delivery. Not open to students with credit for COMM 242. Accelerated section available.
 IAI: C2 900.

242  Fundamentals of Public Speaking. (3)  (General Education/Communication Skills)  Preparation and delivery of informative and persuasive speeches. Students apply concepts of critical listening, audience adaptation, organization/support of ideas, appropriate style, and effective delivery completed in an online format. Not open to students with credit for COMM 241.

247  Argumentation. (3)  A theoretical and practical course investigating source, structure, and nature of argument, reasoning, critical thinking, and validation of evidence. Prerequisite: COMM 241 or consent of instructor.

254  Great Speeches. (3)  (General Education/Humanities)  An analysis of representative speeches that have significantly influenced the course of human events.

305  Interviewing. (3)  Theory of interviewing and its purposes in various communication settings. Practical applications of the principles of interviewing.

310  Qualitative Research Methods in Communication. (3)  A survey of the qualitative research methods used in communication studies. Qualitative research design, data collection, analysis, and interpretation are addressed. Prerequisites: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher; ENG 180 and 280.

311  Research Design in Communication. (3)  An introduction to designing and evaluating communication research. Prerequisites: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher; ENG 180 and 280.

312  Rhetorical Theory and Criticism. (3)  Study of critical standards in rhetoric and the application of theories and methods of criticism. Prerequisite: COMM 130.

315  (cross-listed with WS 316) Gender and Communication. (3)  This course examines gender and gender-role differences and similarities in verbal and non-verbal communication and surveys several contexts in which sex differences in human communication occur. Not open to students with credit in WS 316. Prerequisite: COMM 130.

330  Language and Communication. (3)  This survey course explores the historical and contemporary functions of language in communication. The course will examine theories of language, meaning and communication, with emphasis on contemporary language research and controversies surrounding language and meaning in society. Prerequisite: COMM 130.

341  Problem Solving in Groups. (3)  Examination of significant factors which affect the behavior and effectiveness of social and task groups. Study of group behavior research. Practical experience in analyzing and participating in group decision-making.

343  Organizational Communication. (3)  Survey of the major communication functions in organizations and their relationship to personnel, administrative, technological, and social factors. Prerequisites: COMM 130; ENG 180 and 280.

344  Interpersonal Communication. (3)  Theory and concepts relevant to face-to-face interaction. Focus on the content of talk in relationships and the role of talk in creating and defining relationships. Prerequisites: COMM 130; ENG 180 and 280.

356  Introduction to Persuasion. (3)  Introduction to the study of the elements affecting people's opinions and decisions. Focuses on three general categories of variables: source, message, and audience characteristics. Prerequisite: COMM 130.

360  Communication Practicum. (1–8, repeatable to 8)  Provides practicum experience for the student in communication. Prerequisites: consent of instructor and department chairperson.

377  Nonverbal Communication. (3)  Introduces basic codes, properties, and principles of nonverbal communication. Multidisciplinary content approached from scientific perspective rather than intuitive and experiential judgments. Designed to improve communication effectiveness and understanding of the communication process. Prerequisites: COMM 130.

400  Senior Honors Thesis Research. (3)  Bibliographic and other preliminary work in preparation for a senior honors thesis (see COMM 401). Students will produce a final, graded project for this course. This course may not be taken concurrently with COMM 401. Prerequisites: ENG 180 and 280; students must be in good standing in the Centennial Honors College and must be juniors or first-semester seniors majoring in communication.

401  Honors Thesis. (3)  Students will write a senior honors thesis. This course may not be taken concurrently with COMM 400. Prerequisites: COMM 400; ENG 180 and 280; students must be in good standing in the Centennial Honors College and must be seniors majoring in communication.

409  Communication and Conflict Management. (3)  Study of the role of communication in conflict. Consideration of major theories of conflict management. Prerequisites: COMM 311; ENG 180 and 280.

410  Theory and Methodology in Interpersonal Communication. (3)  Study of theory, concepts, and methodology relevant to dyadic interaction. Examination of and participation in field, survey, and experimental studies of interpersonal behavior. Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) course. Prerequisites: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 311 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 344; ENG 180 and 280.

413  Advanced Organizational Communication. (3) Study of communication failure in small groups and organizational settings. Examination of field, survey, and experimental studies contributing to the understanding and improvement of group and organizational communication. Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) course. Prerequisites: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 311 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 343; ENG 180 and 280.

414  Communication Technologies in Professional Speaking. (3)  Preparation and delivery of longer speeches and presentations in professional settings utilizing advanced rhetorical principles and advanced communication technologies. Prerequisites: ENG 180 and 280; COMM 241.

418  Independent Research in Communication. (1–6, repeatable to 6)  Individual reading or research under supervision of the faculty. Open to juniors and seniors who have demonstrated competence in broadcasting, communication, rhetoric, public address, or the speech-language-hearing sciences. Prerequisites: ENG 180 and 280; consent of instructor and department chairperson.

419  Propaganda. (3)  Study of the nature and history of propaganda. Students will analyze one or more propaganda campaigns. Prerequisite: COMM 130.

425  Health Communication. (3)  This course will survey a number of topics relevant to both the institutional settings of medicine (e.g., doctor-patient interaction, media campaigns) as well as the interpersonal ramifications of illness (e.g., social support). Prerequisite: COMM 130 or permission of instructor.

428  Family Communication. (3)  This course will investigate communication processes in the context of the family environment. Specifically, it will examine communication’s role in and its influence on family relational processes. Prerequisite: COMM 130 or permission of instructor.

430  Communication Training and Development. (3)  This course explores the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in effective communication training and development in organizations and/or consulting in the field of communication. Prerequisite: COMM 311.

441  Rhetorical Processes in Politics. (3)  Examination of modern theories and practices of speech communication through their application to political rhetoric. Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) course. Prerequisite: COMM 241 and 312; ENG 180 and 280.

456  Persuasive Campaigns. (3)  Study of the design and execution of persuasive campaigns. Writing Instruction in the Discipline (WID) course. Prerequisites: COMM 130 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 311 with a grade of C or higher; COMM 241 and 356; ENG 180 and 280.

480  Special Topics in Communication. (1-3, repeatable to 6, for different topics, with permission of department chair)  This course deals with selected topics of interest in communication such as nonverbal communication, intercultural communication, and family communication. Prerequisites: ENG 180 and 280; completion of at least 12 s.h. in communication.

496  Communication Internship. (1–12, repeatable to 12)  Directed work assignments in private or public sectors in communication areas. Students may count up to 3 s.h. of COMM 496 toward the communication major. Prerequisites: ENG 180 and 280; permission of internship coordinator and department chairperson; a GPA of 2.50 in major courses taken as well as an overall GPA of 2.25 required. Graded S/U only.