Graduate Course Bulletin

The following is a description of all J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication graduate level courses in communication (COMM), followed by courses in ADPR, CMST, DGMD and JOUR.

COMMUNICATION (COMM)

COMM 6010. Humanistic Theories and Methods in Communication
3 cr. hrs., Introduction to common humanistic theories and research methods relevant to media and communication studies. Students learn a variety of approaches, practical methodologies and tools to help prepare them to conduct research in various professional and academic contexts.

COMM 6020. Social Science Theories and Methods in Communication 3 sem. hrs. Introduction to the major social scientific theories about the roles and effects of communication among individuals, in groups, organizations and society, and related quantitative research methods.

COMM 6100. Qualitative Research Methods in Communication 3 sem. hrs. Study of theory-based qualitative research applied to professional and scholarly problems and the effective communication of research results. Based on the fundamentals of theory and research methods offered in COMM 6000 and 6050.Offered fall term. Prereq: COMM 6000 or equiv. and COMM 6050 or equiv.; or cons. of instr. 

COMM 6150. Quantitative Research Methods in Communication 3 sem. hrs. Study of theory-based quantitative research applied to professional and scholarly problems and the effective communication of research results. Based on the fundamentals of theory and research methods offered in COMM 6000 and 6050.Offered fall term. Prereq: COMM 6000 or equiv. and COMM 6050 or equiv.; or cons. of instr.

COMM 6200. Rhetorical Criticism 3 sem. hrs.
Explores the nature, function, principles and methods of contemporary rhetorical criticism. Interrogates a variety of critical approaches useful
in describing, analyzing, interpreting, and evaluating a variety of persuasive messages and contexts. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6250. Ethics in Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Explores the role of ethics in professional and scholarly life. Students will learn ethical theories, how to analyze a communication related ethics problem, derive and answer a normative-question related to the problem and learn to critically analyze and evaluate texts from a variety of communicative settings. Offered spring term.

COMM 6300. International Communication 3 sem. hrs. Development of international communication systems; flow of information, including news, entertainment and advertising. Influence of media systems upon international relations and national development. Comparison of media systems. Offered once every two years.

COMM 6350. Communication Analysis and Design 3 sem. hrs.
Study of human and mass communication content, audience analysis, public opinion formation, effects, message design and related topics. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6400. Intercultural Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Examines the influence of culture on communication in international transactions and cross-cultural encounters within the United States. Explains the dynamics of intercultural communication between people from different societies as well as the interpersonal patterns of selected ethnic groups and races within the United States. Provides an analytical framework for analyzing intercultural exchanges. Offered once
every two years.

COMM 6450. Theories of Persuasion 3 sem. hrs. Identification and examination of the role and influence of communication variables central to the process of persuasion in human and mass communication. Offered once every two years.

COMM 6500. Media Law 3 sem. hrs.
Constitutional and administrative law principles affecting freedom of expression and mass communication. Laws and regulations which pertain
to media management and business practices explicitly and exclusively applied to mass communication. May be taken in place of JOUR 203. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6550. Communication History 3 sem. hrs.
Analysis of the origins and development of human and mass communication. Social, technological, political and economic influences of the growth and development of communication. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6600. Media Economics and Management 3 sem. hrs.
Examines problems and issues in media economics and management. Emphasis on finance, personnel, advertising, audience promotion
and research. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6650. Sociology of Communication 3 sem. hrs.
The nature and function of human and mass communication as a function of sociological concepts. The role of social institutions and systems
in forming the human response to communication. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6700. Psychology of Communication 3 sem. hrs.
The nature and function of human and mass communication as a function of psychological concepts. Perception, cognition, comprehension, dynamics, semantics and symbols as related to human response. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6750. Media and the Information Society 3 sem. hrs.
Media as cultural forces associated with the diffusion of technological development and their economic, political and social consequences. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6964: Proseminar and Practicum in Digital Journalism 3 sem. hrs.
Consists of a proseminar which requires students to read and respond to texts on program recommended reading list and hands-on
training in all aspects of media editing and production (e.g. print and Web page construction, audio production, video production). Offered fall term.

COMM 6850. Craft of Digital Storytelling 3 sem. hrs.
Introduces student to the use of technology in storytelling in various forms, including persuasion, history, and entertainment. The course includes hands-on practice in constructing multimedia messages. Students create stories about different aspects of a given topic and select media that best tell the story. Stories are then integrated into a website.

COMM 6900. Storytelling in Public Life. 3 sem. hrs.
Explores the basic narrative structure of storytelling to provide a theoretical basis for ways of gaining effectiveness. The course covers different forms of storytelling, such as journalism, fundraising, advertising, public relations; and different means for doing so through documentaries, blogs, web sites, print media, etc.

COMM 6931. Topics in Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Directed individual/group investigation of a selected topic or problem in communication. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally.

COMM 6961. Special Institute/Workshop/Project1-3 sem. hrs.

COMM 6995. Independent Study 1-3 sem. hrs. Offered every term.
Prereq: Cons. of dept. ch.; cons. of the associate dean for graduate studies.

COMM 6997. Capstone in Digital Storytelling. 3 sem. hrs.
Explores storytelling in greater depth. Each student creates a micro site on a subject relevant to their personal or career goals and presents
it to the class.

COMM 6998. Professional Project 1-3 sem. hrs.
Offered every term. S/U grade assessment. Prereq: Cons. of dept. ch., approved project proposal, and cons. of the associate dean for graduate studies. 

COMM 6999. Master’s Thesis 1-6 sem. hrs.
Offered every term. S/U grade assessment. Prereq: Cons. of dept. ch.; approved thesis outline and cons. of the associate dean for graduate studies.

Advertising and Public Relations (ADPR)

ADPR 6400. Advertising and Public Relations Management 3 sem. hrs.
Intensive analysis of advertising and public relations theory and the factors affecting their management. Study of issues and situations in advertising and public relations decision-making, such as defining objectives, planning and strategy, budgeting, media selection, and agency/client relations. Offered fall term.

ADPR 6500. Advertising and Public Relations in Society
Study of the origin and development of advertising and public relations. Analysis of their social, economic, and political influences. Special attention given to ethical issues. Offered spring term.

ADPR 6600. Integrated Marketing Communication Campaigns 3 sem. hrs.
Clarifies the fundamentals of integrating advertising and public relations into a marketing communications program. Integrates professional skills with theory through readings, professional speakers and the completion of an integrated marketing communications plan for a real client. Offered fall term.

ADPR 6931. Special Topics in Advertising and Public Relations 3 sem. hrs.
Directed individual/group investigation of a selected topic or problem in advertising and/or public relations. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally.

Digital Media (DGMD)

DGMD 6220. Media and Public Policy 3 sem. hrs.
Analysis of the public policy process and its impact on the development of telecommunication systems. Examination of current policy issues relating to content, structure, economics, and technological change. Offered once every three years.

DGMD 6250. Multimedia Communication. 3 sem. hrs.
Surveys the technology, role and management of digital media in education, business and industry. Emphasizes design and evaluation of purposive communication through electronic media. Offered once every three years.

DGMD 6931. Topics in Digital Media 1-3 sem. hrs.
Topics of current interest in digital media. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally. Prereq: Enrolled in Graduate School.

DGMD 6955. Seminar in Digital Media 3 sem. hrs. Directed individual/group investigation of a selected topic or problem in digital media. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally.

DGMD 6995. Independent Projects in Digital Media
Student projects in designated areas of special interest. Offered every term. Prereq: Cons. of dept. ch.; cons. of the associate dean for graduate studies.

Communication Studies (CMST)

CMST 6100. Seminar in Interpersonal Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Explores new directions in research in interpersonal communication. Focuses on communication in the following relationships: friendships, dating, and marriage. Emphasizes the theoretical perspectives and the methodological approaches that enable us to understand how communication processes and relationship development inform each other. Offered once every two years.

CMST 6200. Seminar in Organizational Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Explores historical, contemporary and ideological approaches to the study and practice of organizational communication. Topics include: organizational culture, workplace relationships, participation and decision making, organizational change, organizational justice, and organizational communication consulting. Offered once every two years.

CMST 6931. Topics in Communication Studies 3 sem. hrs.
Directed individual/group investigation of a selected topic or problem in communication and rhetorical studies. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally.

Journalism (JOUR)

JOUR 6959. Seminar on Mass Media in Contemporary Society 3 sem. hrs.
Advanced study of issues and problems in the major media as social forces. Cultural origins and influence on culture. Responsibility, media organization, influence on social process. Media as a social institution. Offered once every three years.

JOUR 6500. Journalism as Literature 3 sem. hrs.
Study of major British and American literary works which have been produced by journalists. Contribution of journalists to literary developments in U.S. and Britain. Offered once every three years.

JOUR 6600. Religious Communication 3 sem. hrs.
Relationship between mass mediated religious content and audience; methods for developing communication within religious institutions and communities and between religious institutions and society; small group, print, electronic, and public information systems; structure of church communication systems at local, regional, and national levels. Communication of religious concepts through media to different audiences and age groups. Offered once every three years.

JOUR 6700. Political Analysis 3 sem. hrs.
Principles which enable the observer and commentator to distinguish between public debate and underlying trends and to identify issues moving society as opposed to those that are only being discussed. Analysis of levels of political activity, federal, state, and local; effective patterns of relation between layers of government. Social forces which tend to convert political debate into ritual observances with no apparent connection to the forces moving the electorate. Offered once every three years.

JOUR 6800. Public Affairs Reporting 3 sem. hrs.
Application of the processes and strategies in public affairs reporting. Offered spring term. Prereq: COMM 6800.

JOUR 6850. Specialized Reporting 3 sem. hrs.
Overview of various reporting areas (health/science/ environment, business/economic, religion) with required application in each of the areas. Five weeks are devoted to each area. The end of each section requires a final news project. Students have the ability to work/write across media. Offered fall term. Prereq: COMM 6800.

JOUR 6931. Special Topic in Journalism 1-3 sem. hrs.
Directed individual/group investigation of a selected topic or problem in journalism. May be taken more than once when topics vary. Offered occasionally.