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Communication and Media Studies Curriculum

The Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Media Studies is a broad program of study that prepares students to become competent communication professionals and engaged citizens. The program develops students’ abilities to engage in critical reflection and analysis of communication from multiple perspectives. In accord with the Barry University Mission, students learn about transformative and ethical approaches to communication. Topics explored in the program’s multifaceted curriculum include race, gender, and the interpersonal, intercultural, and organizational contexts of human communication. The media’s institutional, cultural, and economic effects on society are also examined, as well as the role they can play in promoting social change and creating a more inclusive society. Graduates leave the program with a broad, liberal arts-based education that emphasizes today’s highly sought after communication skills. The minimum grade of C is required in all major and minor courses.

The communication and media studies curriculum is designed so that you will be able to:

  • Assess how human communication and media institutions shape key aspects of social life, including interpersonal relationships, gender relations, and culture.
  • Apply various communication theories in the analysis of texts, relationships, messages, and social settings.
  • Design communication strategies that meet ethical and professional standards in multiple contexts.
  • Demonstrate communication practices that pursue social justice and bring about social change.

Degree Requirements (42 Credits)

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM104INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION
Study of self-concept, perception, language, listening, emotions, and conflict as they relate to person-to-person communication. Prerequisite: Eligible for ENG 111.
COM200INTRODUCTION TO MASS MEDIA
Processes, systems, and effects of the printed and electronic media; the role of newspapers, magazines, movies, radio, and television. Prerequisite: Eligible for ENG 111.
COM201INTRODUCTION TO COMMUNICATION
This course provides an overview of the human communication discipline. Students will be introduced to various topics within Communication, including the rudiments of communication theory and a survey of communication contexts (e.g., interpersonal, small group, organizational, public, mass, and intercultural). Prerequisite: Eligible for ENG 111.
COM304INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION
An introduction to the factors which influence communication among individuals of different subcultures. Both theoretical and practical problems of intercultural communication are analyzed. Prerequisites: Eligible for ENG 111 and SPE 101 or COM 104.
COM311COMMUNICATION AND GENDER
This course provides an overview of the role of communication in the construction of gender. Students will be introduced to various theories, including standpoint theory, grounded theory, queer theory, and performance theory, as they explore the process of identity formation from a communication perspective. Prerequisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM343PERSPECTIVES IN CONFLICT AND TRANSFORMATION
This course introduces students to the field of conflict analysis, resolution, and transformation. It examines our interdependent world and nature of conflict in interpersonal, group, organizational, and international situations. This course focuses on fundamental principles and communication skills for resolving conflict with respect, fairness, and empowerment. Prerequisite: ENG 111.
COM349SOCIAL MEDIA AND IDENTITY
This course focuses on the establishment of identity at the intersection of physical and virtual community dynamics. Students will examine contemporary theories that relate to the key aspects of this establishment, including the distinction between public and private spheres, performativity, and phenomenological principles of being and embodiment. Students will apply the key concepts of the course to specific ethical, cultural and social variables at play in the digital arena, such as simulation, cyber bullying, privacy, virtual relationships, and issues related to race, ethnicity and gender. Prerequisites: COM 104 and COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM409ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION
This course focuses on the nature and functions of communication in organizational settings. The course seeks to provide students with an understanding of the concepts and methods needed to assess and improve the nature of communication processes in organizations. Prerequisites: Com 201 and Junior or Senior standing.
COM412PERSUASION
Beginning with Aristotle, this course provides an historical perspective on how persuasion has evolved to modern times. Emphasis on factors such as attention, perception, needs, values, and credibility. Practice in presentation of persuasive oral and written communication. Emphasis given to persuasive campaigns. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior standing.
COM484COMMUNICATION RESEARCH
Introduction to research methodology for public relations and advertising. Includes planning, measurement, evaluation, and reporting of results. Prerequisites: Senior standing.
ADV442ADVERTISING AND SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Critical examination of the impact of advertising on society and culture. Advertising’s role in the formation of trends, social habits, and other patterns of behavior as they pertain to multiple groups within society. Prosocial uses of advertising will also be discussed. Prerequisite: Junior and Senior standing.

Global Context Electives - Choose one:

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM323COMMUNICATION, RACE, AND ETHNICITY
This course explores the history and constructs of race and ethnicity from an interpersonal and intercultural communication point of view. It also examines the intersections of race and ethnicity within the contexts of globalization, media, and popular culture. Prerequisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM 331HEALTH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMUNICATION
This course takes a critical approach toward understanding the role of communication and communication technologies in the creation and dissemination of health messages in international development contexts. Pre-requisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.

Social Interaction Electives - Choose one:

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM326SMALL GROUP COMMUNICATION
Theory and practice in leading and participating in small groups. Special focus on problem solving and the management of conflict. Prerequisites: COM 201 and SPE 101 or COM 104.
COM 308RELATIONAL COMMUNICATION
Focus on the nature and functions of communication within relationships. The purpose of this course is to provide a survey of some of the major theoretical perspectives and historical and contemporary research on relational communication. Topics include relationship stages, attraction, dating, relational communication dysfunction, and family communication. Prerequisites: COM 201 and SPE 101 or COM 104.

Capstone/Integrative experience

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM470SENIOR SEMINAR
A senior seminar in the identification and examination of selected topic(s) in communication. Limited to Department of Communication majors with 90+ credit hours and approved minors. Serves a Department of Communication integrative experience and includes service learning, comprehensive examination and senior thesis. Prerequisite: Senior standing.

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS (51 - 52 Credits)

MINOR (21 Credits)

GENERAL ELECTIVES (5-6 credits)

DEGREE TOTAL (120 credits)

Minor in Communication and Media Studies (21 credits)

Communication and Media Studies Requirements (9 credits)

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM104INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION
Study of self-concept, perception, language, listening, emotions, and conflict as they relate to person-to-person communication. Prerequisite: Eligible for ENG 111.
COM 201INTRODUCTION TO COMMUNICATION
This course provides an overview of the human communication discipline. Students will be introduced to various topics within Communication, including the rudiments of communication theory and a survey of communication contexts (e.g., interpersonal, small group, organizational, public, mass, and intercultural). Prerequisite: Eligible for ENG 111.
COM304INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION
An introduction to the factors which influence communication among individuals of different subcultures. Both theoretical and practical problems of intercultural communication are analyzed. Prerequisites: Eligible for ENG 111 and SPE 101 or COM 104.

Electives (12 credits)

PRENUMCOURSE TITLE
COM308RELATIONAL COMMUNICATION
Focus on the nature and functions of communication within relationships. The purpose of this course is to provide a survey of some of the major theoretical perspectives and historical and contemporary research on relational communication. Topics include relationship stages, attraction, dating, relational communication dysfunction, and family communication. Prerequisites: COM 201 and SPE 101 or COM 104.
COM 311COMMUNICATION AND GENDER
This course provides an overview of the role of communication in the construction of gender. Students will be introduced to various theories, including standpoint theory, grounded theory, queer theory, and performance theory, as they explore the process of identity formation from a communication perspective. Prerequisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM323COMMUNICATION, RACE, AND ETHNICITY
This course explores the history and constructs of race and ethnicity from an interpersonal and intercultural communication point of view. It also examines the intersections of race and ethnicity within the contexts of globalization, media, and popular culture. Prerequisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM326SMALL GROUP COMMUNICATION
Theory and practice in leading and participating in small groups. Special focus on problem solving and the management of conflict. Prerequisites: COM 201 and SPE 101 or COM 104.
COM331HEALTH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMUNICATION
This course takes a critical approach toward understanding the role of communication and communication technologies in the creation and dissemination of health messages in international development contexts. Pre-requisite: COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM343PERSPECTIVES IN CONFLICT AND TRANSFORMATION
This course introduces students to the field of conflict analysis, resolution, and transformation. It examines our interdependent world and nature of conflict in interpersonal, group, organizational, and international situations. This course focuses on fundamental principles and communication skills for resolving conflict with respect, fairness, and empowerment. Prerequisite: ENG 111.
COM349SOCIAL MEDIA AND IDENTITY
This course focuses on the establishment of identity at the intersection of physical and virtual community dynamics. Students will examine contemporary theories that relate to the key aspects of this establishment, including the distinction between public and private spheres, performativity, and phenomenological principles of being and embodiment. Students will apply the key concepts of the course to specific ethical, cultural and social variables at play in the digital arena, such as simulation, cyber bullying, privacy, virtual relationships, and issues related to race, ethnicity and gender. Prerequisites: COM 104 and COM 201 or Instructor’s Permission.
COM409ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION
This course focuses on the nature and functions of communication in organizational settings. The course seeks to provide students with an understanding of the concepts and methods needed to assess and improve the nature of communication processes in organizations. Prerequisites: Com 201 and Junior or Senior standing.
COM412PERSUASION
Beginning with Aristotle, this course provides an historical perspective on how persuasion has evolved to modern times. Emphasis on factors such as attention, perception, needs, values, and credibility. Practice in presentation of persuasive oral and written communication. Emphasis given to persuasive campaigns. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior standing.

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