Communication Courses

CO 100
Introduction to Mass Communication
This course explores mass communication in its myriad forms: newspapers, magazines, publishing, advertising, radio, television, cable, the recording industry, film, and newer forms of electronic communication. Group: IV.

CO 101
Public Speaking
Students improve their ability to communicate through the composition and delivery of seven original speeches. Special attention is given to stage fright, audience analysis, organizing and developing content, and delivery. Group: IV.

CO 120
Introduction to Media Production
This is an introductory, hands-on course in making Media. It covers program planning and basic production techniques. Students learn to use cameras, microphones, lighting, character generators, recorders, and a wide range of other equipment to create their own productions. Course participants build their skills by engaging in exercises done outside of class. Group: IV.

CO 201
Persuasive Speaking
This course prepares students for speaking situations that demand persuasive speech: arguing solutions to problems, defending policies and procedures under attack, seeking changes in attitudes, beliefs, or behavior. We explore psychological, ethical, and logical appeals; evidence; and effective delivery through the preparation, presentation, and analysis of six major speeches. Group: IV.

CO 220
Concepts of Media Literacy
Concepts of Media Literacy provides a broad introduction to theories and research describing the effectiveness and ethics of mainstream media messages, and what might be gained by a more nuanced understanding of how messages are created. Classes examine topics such as the psychology of visual interpretation, the uses and effects of various production variables (camera angle, montage, editing, etc.), genre functions and conventions in entertainment media, tools and processes of creating film and digital media, and viewers’ “resistance” to media effects. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Recommended for students who expect to take video production, photography, or visual design courses later. Group: IV.

CO 240
Media Writing
This course is an introduction to the variety of writing styles and formats currently used in print and electronic media today, including newspapers, magazines, advertising, public relations, radio, and TV. Students will analyze print and electronic media writing and create a portfolio of their own writing that meets industry standards. Special emphasis will be given to print and electronic journalism, advertising, and public relations copywriting, and writing for the World Wide Web. This is a required course for all Communication majors and is also recommended for English majors, Business majors, and students in other majors who would like to improve their writing skills and learn about the media industry. Prerequisite: CC 110, completed or taken concurrently. Group: IV.

CO 250
Behind the Scenes in Radio/TV
This is a course for majors and non-majors who want to know more about how TV and radio news is produced. Students examine the gathering of information and its dissemination through the electronic media. Students gather news, write radio and TV news stories and programs, and take field trips to study the operation of radio and TV news organizations. Satisfies the Production elective requirement.
Offered selectively. Prerequisite: CC 110 or permission. Group: IV.

CO 255/355
Special Topics: New Media
Special Topics in New Media explores specific issues connected in emerging communication technologies. The focus of the course will change depending on the semester offered, though sample topics of study may include social networking, game studies, or the open source and free culture movements. Materials include critical study of media products, professional practices, and the cultural and economic contexts of technological change. This course can be taken for credit multiple times as long as it features a different focus each time, and can be taken at the 300 level with instructor permission, requiring an additional project or projects.. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Offered selectively. Prerequisites: For 200-level: CC 112 or permission. For 300-level: CC 112 and CO 100, or permission. Group: IV.

CO 257/357
Special Topics: Journalism
Special Topics in Journalism addresses topics that reflect the constantly evolving nature of this industry. The subject matter of the course will change from semester to semester based on what is happening in journalism at that time. Some sample areas of study include blogging, Web journalism, the death of newspapers and ethical issues facing electronic media journalists. Classes will involve lectures, group presentations, in-class writing assignments, and class discussions of case studies and issues currently facing journalists. This course can be taken for credit multiple times as long as it features a different focus each time, and can be taken at the 300 level with instructor permission, requiring an additional project or projects. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Offered selectively. Prerequisites: For 200-level: CC 112 or permission. For 300-level: CC 112 & CO 100, or permission. Recommended, but not required: EN209. Group: IV.

CO 258/358
Special Topics: Advertising & PR
Topics in Advertising & PR focuses on topics that relate directly to current industry practices and tackles issues such as marketing in a media-driven world, writing the right pitch, and coming up with copy that sells. The course will include case studies, hands-on experience and the production of a professional project. Classes will involve lectures, group presentations, in-class writing assignments, and class discussions of case studies and issues facing the advertising and public relations industry. This course can be taken for credit multiple times as long as it features a different focus each time, and can be taken at the 300 level with instructor permission, requiring an additional project or projects. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Prerequisites: For 200-level: CC 112 or permission. For 300-level: CC 112 & CO 100, or permission. One of the following is recommended, but not required: MK 221 Marketing Principles; MK 324 Advertising; CO 310 Public Relations; CO/EN350 Advertising Copywriting and Design Seminar. Group: IV.

CO 259/359
Special Topics: Entertainment
Special Topics in Entertainment Media features rotating topics on the forms and industries of entertainment media and popular art. Topics may touch upon developments in popular music, serial television, Hollywood film, or studies of specific creative/aesthetic movements and genres (such as film noir, the graphic novel, hip hop, etc.). Materials include critical study of content as well as production and distribution processes. This course can be taken for credit multiple times as long as it features a different focus each time, and can be taken at the 300 level with instructor permission, requiring an additional project or projects. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Prerequisites: For 200-level: CC 112 or permission. For 300-level: CC 112 & CO 100, or permission. Group: IV.

CO 265
Multicultural Images in the Media
This course examines how people of African, Latino, Asian, Native American and Arab descent are portrayed in the American entertainment and news media. Students will critically examine films, television shows and news broadcasts to identify ways that the media “constructs” race in society and how and why these portrayals have changed over time. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Offered selectively. Group: IV.

CO 280
Images of Women in the Media
How are women portrayed in the media? Is there a connection between a woman’s self-image and the way females are portrayed in advertising, film, television, and the news? CO 280 attempts to answer these and other questions through analysis of past and current media. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Offered selectively. Group: IV.

CO/ED 285
Children and the Media
Research findings, industry practices, and content of children’s media are examined to determine their impact on children. Students examine how media designed for adults affects children. The focus is on videotapes, cable and broadcast television, and film as the largest producers of children’s media. Audio recordings and children’s magazines—fast-growing segments in the children’s media marketplace—are also considered. Students read, listen, view, and discuss children’s media; develop content analysis skills; and write about the issues. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Offered selectively. Group: IV.

CO 310
Public Relations
CO 310 is an introduction to public relations that combines history and theory with practical, hands-on writing and media-related experience. We study public relations from four perspectives: campaign planning, media targeting and media relations, writing for public relations, and editing and designing public relations print materials. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Prerequisite: CO 100 or a writing course beyond CC 112. Group: IV.

CO 320
Advanced Media Writing
This course builds on the writing skills and knowledge of the different forms of media writing developed in Media Writing I. Students will further strengthen their skills in writing news stories, TV and radio scripts and press releases. They will be required to write more complex news stories and scripts and do assignments on strict deadlines that are similar to the daily deadlines they would experience in a real TV or radio newsroom. The course will include lectures, discussions and in-class writing exercises. Throughout the semester, students will also participate in news-story meetings so they get a better understanding of how a real newsroom works. By semester’s end, students will have produced several written assignments of professional quality that they could use when interviewing for a job in the Communications industry. Prerequisites: CC112 and CO 240. Group: IV.

CO 340
Digital Moviemaking
Building on skills acquired in CO 120, students produce and direct “electronic movies” in the field with state-of-the-art, broadcast-quality equipment. Students learn to edit their work using both linear and digital editing technology. Music, sound effects and graphics are added to create a finished program. Satisfies the Production elective requirement. Prerequisite: CO 120 or permission. Group: IV.

CO/EN 350
Advertising Copywriting and Design Seminar
This is an interdisciplinary course shared with the English Program and is the capstone course for the joint Advertising and Public Relations concentration. Students work as part of an advertising and public relations team to create ad campaigns and public relations projects for on-campus clients and selected clients in the community. This course is highly recommended for Communications majors who want to pursue a creative advertising, marketing, or public relations campaign for their senior project. The work produced in this seminar will be helpful for senior portfolios. Satisfies the Production elective requirement. Offered selectively. Prerequisites: Junior/Senior status and any of the following: CO 310, MK 324, VA 150, or VA 355. Group: IV.

CO 360
Electronic Media Industry
This class looks at contemporary industry standards, organization, ownership, and regulation in the electronic media. Students examine programming philosophies and practices of radio, television, cable networks, and local stations, and emerging World Wide Web technologies. Field trips are taken to radio and TV stations. Satisfies the Industry & Culture elective requirement. Prerequisite: CO 100. Group: IV.

CO 420
Advanced Video Production
This course gives students the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of “electronic moviemaking” and video documentary production. Students apply knowledge and skills gained in CO 120 and CO 340 to the critical analysis of advanced production techniques and hands-on experience in writing, producing, shooting, and editing “electronic movies.” Students use state-of-the-art digital video cameras and postproduction equipment to create professional-quality work. This course is highly recommended for students who want to produce a narrative-film-style senior project. Satisfies the Production elective requirement. Offered selectively. Prerequisite: CO 340 or permission. Group: IV.

CO 490
Legal and Ethical Issues
Current issues and research in mass communication are studied through critical readings and class discussions. Emphasis is on critical analyses of case studies of legal and ethical issues in the mass media, as well as the media in social, political, and economic contexts. Students draw upon knowledge gained in this and previous Communication courses to conduct presentations of case studies. Prerequisite: Junior or senior status.

CO 495
Senior Internship Seminar (6 credits)
The Senior Internship provides the student with specialized, practical experience in a mass media working environment: radio or TV stations, cable TV companies, audio and/or production houses, newspapers, magazines, advertising agencies, or public relations firms. Students work in the field and meet once per week to discuss and analyze their experiences. Prerequisite: Senior status.

CO 497
Senior Project
This is the capstone course for Communication majors. Working with instructor students develop a research project around a specific communication problems or issue. Students will identify a topic of interest and will conduct library research about the topic. Working with the instructor, students will explore the important literature in the area. The final project will be a substantial literature review which identifies the problem/issue, presents the pertinent literature and suggest appropriate methodologies for exploring the issue in future research. Projects produced in this seminar can be used as part of the senior portfolio presentation and also as a professional portfolio to be used after graduation