Courses in Communication Studies
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Courses numbered X37; X97; 300, 400; 417, 445 are described on Page 34 of the WWU Bulletin (catalog).
101 FUNDAMENTALS OF SPEECH (4)
Functional approach to effective communication. Emphasizes the application of principles to practical problems in speech for persons with little or no previous public speaking experience. Students with prior public speaking experience are advised to take COMM 235 to satisfy GUR requirements or communication major application requirements.
220 COMMUNICATION THEORY (5)
Survey of human communication focuses on communication theories, concepts and principles ranging from intrapersonal to interpersonal, group, organizational, rhetorical, intercultural, international and mass communication.
224 SMALL GROUP PROCESSES (4)
Explores the dynamics of human interaction in small group settings. Group tasks include the development of problem-solving skills, utilizing topics of current interest.
225 COMMUNICATION, DIVERSITY AND CONTROVERSY (4)
This course is designed to foster the skills necessary for civil engagement and effective dialogue on controversial issues. Students will learn to appreciate, integrate, and effectively challenge diverse perspectives on a number of traditionally divisive topics.
230 RHETORICAL THEORY AND CRITICISM (5)
Survey of major rhetorical scholarship from ancient Greek through the present. Introduces students to both rhetorical theories and modes of criticism that guide the field. Emphasis on the important role rhetoric plays in contemporary public discourse and democratic citizenship.
235 EXPOSITION AND ARGUMENTATION (4)
Theory and practice of principles of reasoned discourse as applied to public discussion of controversial issues. Students with prior background or experience in public speaking should consider COMM 235 as an alternative to COMM 101.
236 INTERCOLLEGIATE FORENSICS (2)
Debate, extemporaneous and impromptu speaking, and interpretive reading and other phases of forensics. Repeatable to a maximum of 6 credits. S/U grading.
238 HIGH SCHOOL FORENSIC INSTITUTE: EXPOSITION AND
Intensive study in perfecting forensic skills through seminars on argumentation theory, debate strategy, individual events classes and practice rounds. Limited to participants in the High School Forensic Institute.
240 MEDIA STUDIES (5)
This course develops students’ ability to think critically about mass media. Media messages and images are examined, as well as the social, political, and historical significance of media.
244 ADVOCACY THROUGH MEDIA (4)
Introduction to nonprofit information campaigns, social issues marketing, and other forms of advocacy through contemporary mass media. Students will learn basic theory and then engage in applied exercises as well as service learning assignments.
318 PROFESSIONAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: junior status. This course integrates business writing, public speaking, collaborative problem solving, and diversity training in a professional development context. Includes theory application and skill development. Students will work in collaboration with organizations on or off campus.
322 CIVIL DISCOURSE AS LEARNING INTERACTION (4)
Explores the nature of public civil discourse and provides instruction and practice in writing and speaking across differences for a range of public audiences in an effort to enhance the collective good. By focusing on the theory and practice of civil discourse as a means for accomplishing effective dialogue, students will develop concepts, attitudes, and skills — both oral and written — needed to be engaged learners and citizens in the campus community and beyond. Requires participation in Western's Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA), which includes students, faculty and staff who are working collectively to enhance the University learning environment.
325 INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION
Prereq: four credits from Comparative Gender and Multicultural Studies block of the GUR or COMM 220. Introduction to intercultural communication. Principles, concepts and various topics in this rapidly growing, important field. Covers the needed skills in communicating effectively with people of diverse cultural backgrounds.
327 INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: junior status. Focuses on theory and practice in work, family, and social settings. Emphasizes observation, analysis, and skills training in relationship development. Topics include language use, listening, nonverbal behavior and conflict management.
331 ADVANCED PUBLIC SPEAKING (3)
Prereq: Comm 101 or 235. Theory and practice in the art of public discourse.
339 PRACTICUM IN APPLIED COMMUNICATION (1-3)
Students function in a variety of directed studies and contexts in which they apply their communication skills. Covers putting theory into practice in such areas as small group communication, interpersonal communication, organizational communication, intercultural communication and applied public information strategies. S/U grading. Repeatable to a maximum of 12 credits.
350 EMERGING COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES (5)
Primary course objective is technological literacy — gaining skills and experience for working with emerging communication technologies. Students will engage in a range of experiential and service learning assignments using various emerging technologies. Secondary objective is technology critique and the study of theories of technology.
398 RESEARCH METHODS IN COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: departmental majors only. Course should be taken as soon as possible after admission to the major as it is a prerequisite for most 400-level communication courses. Survey of qualitative and quantitative research methods utilized in the field of communication.
416 TOPICS IN COMMUNICATION (3-5)
Prereq: senior status; COMM 398 or permission of instructor. In-depth coverage of special topics in communication, rhetoric and mass media. The subject of each individual course and its prerequisite is announced in the Timetable of Classes. Repeatable with different topics to a maximum of 12 credits.
420 ISSUES IN COMMUNICATION THEORY (5)
Prereq: COMM 398 or permission of instructor. In-depth examination of advanced theories in human communication. Emphasis on theory development.
425 ISSUES IN INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: Comm 325 and 398 or permission of instructor. Introduction to dynamic forces that enhance effective communication between persons with various cultural backgrounds. Covers topics such as differences, similarities, values, pride and prejudice, cultural barriers in communication settings, and effectiveness of intercultural communication.
427 ISSUES IN INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: Comm 327 and 398 or permission of instructor; junior status; departmental majors only. In-depth examination of theory and practice in interpersonal communication. Normally offered alternate years.
428 ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: Permission of instructor. Emphasizes the role of communication as central in human organizing. Describes the relationships among communication theories and other theories of organizational behavior. Applies theories to varied organizational settings.
430 VISUAL RHETORIC (5)
Prereq: Comm 230, 398, 444 or JOUR 305, or permission of instructor. This course aims to interrogate the relationship between rhetoric and the image. By devoting attention to theories that explore the symbolic and performative dimensions of visual culture, introduces advanced students to theories of perception and visual interpretation as they relate to visual communication, media and film studies, cultural studies, art, literature, memory, and the public spectacle.
435 PRINCIPLES OF PERSUASION (4)
Prereq: Comm 235 and 398 or permission of instructor. Study of principles that influence attitudes and opinions in persuasive situations. Normally offered alternate years.
436 ADVANCED FORENSICS AND DEBATE (2)
Prereq: 6 credits in Comm 235 and/or 236. EmSupervised independent research on an advanced topic, leading to a substantial research paper. Two quarters prior, student should seek out a supervising faculty member to begin preparation and planning. One quarter prior, student should complete a preparatory independent study (Comm 400) that includes a literature review, an outline of methods and, if needed, a Human Subjects Review form.phasis on intercollegiate debate with opportunity for experience in extemporaneous, impromptu and persuasive speaking. A maximum of 6 credits may be earned in COMM 436; a combined total of 6 credits from COMM 236 and COMM 436 may be applied to the major. S/U grading.
440 CRITICAL MEDIA LITERACY (5)
Prereq: COMM 240 or JOUR 190, COMM 398 or permission of instructor. Examination of advanced theories in440 mass communication and media literacy. Examines social, political and economic forces that shape media; influences of media on society; and issues of media policy, media advocacy, and media reform.
442 VIDEO WORKSHOP (2)
Prereq: written permission of instructor. Recommended prior to registration: Jour 190, Comm 350 or have previous video experience. Production of the University's cable television show, Western View. Course includes practical application of techniques used in video production. Utilizes digital technology, graphic materials, design and staging. Students will learn the role of producer and director. Repeatable to a maximum of 6 credits. S/U grading.
450 COMMUNICATION PEDAGOGY I (3)
Prereq: recommendation; written permission of instructor. Serve as undergraduate tutor for students taking communication courses. Learn instructional methods and gain further mastery of course content. Conduct supervised tutoring and feedback for students enrolled in communication courses. S/U grading.
451 COMMUNICATION PEDAGOGY II (3)
Prereq: Comm 450; recommendation; written permission of instructor. Help supervise teams of undergraduate tutors. Develop leadership, organizational and pedagogical skills. S/U grading.
454 INSTRUCTIONAL COMMUNICATION (5)
Prereq: Comm 398 or permission of the instructor. This course is designed for prospective elementary, secondary and college teachers and communication trainers/consultants. Communication theories, principles, and skills applicable to the classroom context are addressed as they apply to teaching in general and communication specifically.
456a,b,c HIGH SCHOOL DEBATE COACH WORKSHOPS (1-2
Prereq: one year of teaching experience, graduate student status or admission to education program. Intensive lecture and seminar workshops related to teaching argumentation/forensics and using various computer applications for online research. Purpose is improvement of instruction. Summer only.
459a,b,c,d FIELD INTERNSHIP IN COMMUNICATION (3,
6, 9, 12)
Prereq: senior status; written permission of advisor; departmental majors only. Supervised work in communication with an educational institution, public agency, private enterprise, broadcast station or other appropriate business. Meetings, written reports and a paper related to the internship are required. For students applying for media internships, plan to complete all academic course work before the internship, as this is the usual career pattern for those in that area. Repeatable to 12 credits. A maximum of 6 credits may be applied to the communication major. S/U grading.
492 SENIOR THESIS (5)
Prereq: COMM 398; departmental majors only; permission of a supervising professor. Supervised independent research on an advanced topic, leading to a substantial research paper. Two quarters prior, student should seek out a supervising faculty member to begin preparation and planning. One quarter prior, student should complete a preparatory independent study (Comm 400) that includes a literature review, an outline of methods and, if needed, a Human Subjects Review form.
Prereq: Comm 398 or permission of instructor. This capstone course examines diverse ethical theories and perspectives pertaining to communication in contexts ranging from the local to the global. Students will have opportunities to reflect on and clarify their own ethical commitments, and to understand these in relation to ethical theories and perspectives in the field of communication studies.