Department of Communication
College of Arts and Sciences
Ralph Hanson, Ph.D., Interim Chair (308) 865-8737 firstname.lastname@example.org
Master of Arts in Public Communication
Public Communication - Master of Arts
JMC 801 – Social and Emerging Media 3 credit hoursHistory of media leading to the development of web based social media. Includes focus on critical analysis of new media technologies and strategies for using social media for public relations for corporate, social, or nonprofit purposes.
JMC 802 – Media Technology and Narrative 3 credit hoursStorytellers and media professionals in the digital age have more tools at their disposal than ever before to create and distribute content. Today's professional communicators, whether involved in news/editorial, public relations, advertising, or related fields, need to tell stories in many ways, use many different media technologies, and engage with many different audiences. With emphasis on content, students in this course will create and maintain a blog about a specific topic and produce stories and supplemental content using the qualities of reflective thinking, analysis, and organization of ideas to best communicate with an audience from many perspectives.
JMC 825P – Public Policy and the Media 3 credit hoursThis course provides students with a systematic framework for ethical decision-making in mass communications. Ethics theory is examined in combination with the practice of ethics commonly applied by media professionals including print and broadcast news practitioners as well as those involved in the fields of public relations and advertising.
JMC 831 – Critical Approaches to Media 3 credit hoursThis advanced course provides an exhaustive survey of the major concepts, methods, theories, scholars, debates, and changes in critical media studies. Students will work on developing questions that can provide insight into media texts, foregrounding an agenda that does the following: (1) fosters an understanding of contemporary media theory; and (2) allows students to think critically about the power and influence of the media as well as the construction and negotiation of social meanings therein. Students will produce a conference-ready paper that questions how a mediated phenomenon of their choice comes to make sense in a particular context at a given time.
JMC 835 – International Media and Society 3 credit hoursThis course is focused on helping students understand how global media functions in our world today. Around the globe media is used as both a source of resistance and an ideological tool of regimes. By understanding media as an artifact, we can often learn about a culture by studying its popular media. Also, as our world becomes more connected, global media becomes more accessible. This often leads to cultural influence across borders. Global media literacy will only become increasingly more important for communication professionals in the future. This class will train students in the skills necessary to gain that literacy.
JMC 860P – Mass Media & Society 3 credit hoursAn examination of the theories, issues and controversies surrounding the mass media. Particular emphasis will be given to press ethics, freedom, and media effects.
JMC 899P – Topics 3 credit hoursSelected topics and problems of current interest considered in-depth. Classroom or on-line discussions, course projects or research problems. Topics vary each semester depending on instructor; however, the purpose of the course is to offer an opportunity for students to study either fresh topics of particular timeliness or standard topics in more theoretical depth than appropriate in other existing courses.
Total Credits Allowed: 6.00
SPCH 800 – Philosophy of Communication 3 credit hoursA consideration and analysis of the nature of speech as an activity of daily life. An in-depth investigation of the traditional speech disciplines from historical, critical, and theoretical perspectives.
Prerequisite: SPCH 890P or SPCH 899P or permission
SPCH 801P – Special Topics in Speech Communications 1-3 credit hoursCourse work on a specific topic of communication designed by the instructor. Topics vary per offering.
Total Credits Allowed: 3.00
SPCH 802 – Introduction to Graduate Study in Speech 3 credit hoursIntroduction to the graduate program and principles and standards of research in communication. Critical consideration of the literature of the discipline, and an introduction to major research methods: empirical, creative, analytical, and historical.
SPCH 803 – Strategic Communication 3 credit hoursThis course will analyze and explore the multifaceted world of public relations and strategic communication. It will focus on the general characteristics and functions of the industry along with the specific responsibilities of PR and Communication professionals.
SPCH 804 – Health Communication 3 credit hoursThis course will give students a foundation in health communication research, exposing them to the breadth of the field. Through course readings and assignments students will explore health communication based on the five levels of the Social Ecological Model (Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, Organizational, Community, and Societal).
SPCH 805 – Administration and Direction of Forensic Programs 3 credit hoursOrganization and administration of forensic programs in high schools and colleges, management of inter-school contests and tournaments, coaching of debate, discussion and individual events, and principles of judging.
SPCH 826 – Social Movements and International Media 3 credit hoursAn exploration of theories and principles essential to understanding the communicative function and process of social movements. Special attention will be paid to understanding and learning how to construct persuasive messages intended to produce social change.
SPCH 830 – The Teaching of Speech/Theatre 3 credit hoursConsideration of problems and techniques in the teaching of speech and theatre on the high school and college level. Construction of courses of study, evaluation of textbooks, and analysis of developments in various areas of speech/theatre.
SPCH 841 – Science Communication 3 credit hoursCourse examines science communication from multiple perspectives, including the exchange of ideas by science professionals; cross-disciplinary approaches for communicating science to broad audiences; perceptions of science as conveyed by mass media; and roles of science communication in society.
SPCH 845P – Diffusion of Innovations 3 credit hoursDiffusion of Innovations examines the adoption of innovations by individuals in a social system from the perspective of a communication based model. Examples of innovations include fashion trends, campaign slogans, communication technologies, hygiene practices, birth control, farming practices, hybrid powered automobiles, types of government rule (democracy) and genetically engineered foods. The diffusion phenomenon is examined emphasizing social and individual points of view. Class sessions are mostly based on lecture, with some discussion. Assessment tools include exams, case studies, and a final semester project. The final project will be presented to the class.
SPCH 850P – Language, Thought & Action 3 credit hoursStudents will study how people use language to exchange meaning, influence one another, and accomplish goals as a fundamental aspect of social interaction in any context. The focus of the course is on different theoretical perspectives used to understand language and different methods of examining social interaction.
SPCH 851P – Leadership Communication 3 credit hoursA study of the characteristics, styles, roles, and motivation of successful leaders. Includes study and practice in parliamentary process.
SPCH 852P – Advanced Organizational Communication 3 credit hoursStudents in this course will investigate a variety of significant organizational communication issues that contribute to the development and maintenance of the organizational workplace. Students will apply theories through case studies and projects.
SPCH 853P – Interviewing 3 credit hoursTheories and techniques of interviewing, including information gathering, employment, appraisal, and persuasive interviewing.
SPCH 854P – Intercultural Communication 3 credit hoursStudy of communication across cultures.
SPCH 855P – Communication Training and Consulting 3 credit hoursA study of how to plan, conduct, and evaluate communication training and development programs within the organization.
SPCH 856 – Quantitative Research Methods 3 credit hoursIntroductory statistics course for entering graduate students. Includes data presentation and normalization, types of variables and levels of measurement, descriptive statistics, and hypothesis testing using both nonparametric and parametric procedures. Introduction to statistical computer software.
SPCH 856P – Rhetorical Theory 3 credit hoursA study of theories of persuasion in Greek, Roman, continental, and modern periods. Special emphasis on the works of Aristotle, Campbell, and Burke.
SPCH 857P – Contemporary Rhetorical Theory 3 credit hoursA study of modern rhetorical theories of intervention, human knowing, ethics of communication, and media effects.
SPCH 860 – Directed Studies 1-4 credit hoursIndependent research or special assignment in the student's major field.
Total Credits Allowed: 4.00
SPCH 875 – Public Communication Practicum 1-6 credit hoursStudents will connect their graduate curriculum to professional experience in an effort to demonstrate an ability to apply coursework within an organization. Students will develop a completion paper that explains accomplishments in the practicum experience and connects these accomplishments to the graduate curriculum. Students will present their practicum findings to faculty.
Total Credits Allowed: 6.00
Prerequisite: SPCH 899P and SPCH 883 or SPCH 881.
SPCH 875P – Internship 1-6 credit hoursTotal Credits Allowed: 6.00
SPCH 876 – Public Communication Thesis 1-6 credit hoursIn conjunction with their advisor, students will prepare a research project based on graduate coursework. The student's advisor and two additional graduate faculty will serve as the student's thesis committee. The committee will assemble for an oral defense of the thesis.
Total Credits Allowed: 6.00
Prerequisite: SPCH 899 and SPCH 882 or SPCH 856.
SPCH 881 – Quantitative Research 3 credit hoursThis class focuses on the introductory statistical techniques used in social science research. Students will be introduced to concepts such as reliability, validity, measures of central tendency, variability, probability, and statistical techniques including: t-tests (independent & dependent samples), Analysis of variance, Chi-square, correlation, and regression. Students are expected to take the material/concepts presented in class and apply them through a series of homework assignments and quizzes. The overall goal of the course is to help students understand the mathematical/statistical concepts presented and to assist in the application of these procedures.
SPCH 882 – Rhetorical Criticism 3 credit hoursAn examination and study of the principles of rhetorical criticism from Aristotle to contemporary critics. Application of critical principles in analysis of speakers, speeches and social movements.
Prerequisite: SPCH 856P or permission
SPCH 883 – Qualitative Research Methodology 3 credit hoursThis course is focused on teaching students how to understand and conduct qualitative communication research. Special attention will be given to the philosophical assumptions behind qualitative research as well as the tools necessary to conduct. The class will also focus not only on the tools necessary to conduct research, but also on the epistemological questions of how knowledge is generated through research.
SPCH 890P – Theories of Interpersonal Communication 3 credit hoursA survey of major theories and research in interpersonal communication.
SPCH 892 – Seminar in Speech 3 credit hoursConcentrated study of selected topics in speech communication. (May be repeated for a total of 6 hours.)
SPCH 896 – Thesis 3-6 credit hoursTotal Credits Allowed: 6.00
SPCH 899 – Communication Theory 3 credit hoursThis course is a survey of influential communication theories in the recent decades. This course examines the often taken for granted aspects of human experience. By exploring different theories of communication, students are encouraged to reflect theory our own communication practices as well as the role that theory plays in understanding the world. Special focus is given to understanding how communication theory is formed and how theories are tested.
SPCH 899P – Communication Theory 3 credit hoursA study of social and scientific theories of interpersonal, group, organizational, and mass communication.