Communication Studies, BA

Program Description

The mission of the Department of Communication & Media is to develop students who are effective and ethical communicators with the creative, critical, and collaborative skills necessary to succeed in a diverse global environment. The focus of the program is to enhance students' knowledge and practical skills in various areas of human communication including organizational leadership, public relations, and relational communication. Communication Studies majors select an emphasis in either Communication Studies or Public Relations to fulfill their coursework. It is critical for all Communication majors to meet with their academic advisor prior to registering each semester.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Gather, evaluate, and synthesize information to build and defend arguments.
  • Demonstrate communication competence in varied contexts.
  • Employ discipline specific knowledge in applied communication situations.

General Requirements

Requirements Credit Hours
Core Curriculum Program 42
First-Year Seminars (when applicable)1 0-2
Communication Studies Major Requirements 39
Electives 31-33
Foreign Language Requirements 6
Total Credit Hours 118-122

Program Requirements

Full-time, First-year Students
UNIV 1101First-Year Seminar I *1
UNIV 1102First-Year Seminar II *1
Core Curriculum Program
University Core Curriculum42
Communication Core Courses
COMM 1318Interpersonal Communication *,^3
COMM 2330Introduction to Public Relations3
COMM 2335Presentational Communication3
COMM 3326Research Methods3
COMM 4345Intercultural Communication3
Communication Emphasis
Select one of the following emphasis:24
Communication Studies Emphasis
Public Relations Emphasis
Total Hours83

Communication Studies Emphasis

Major Requirements
COMM 2333Small Group Communication3
COMM 3310Communication Theory3
COMM 4380Senior Seminar in Communication Studies3
Prescribed Electives
Students will select 15 hours of major electives from the courses that appear below. No more than 6 hours of MEDA courses may be taken to fulfill these elective hours.15
Business and Professional Communication
Nonverbal Communication
Relational Communication
Persuasion
Leadership
Gender Communication
Communication and Sexuality
Public Relations Campaigns
Crisis Communication
Organizational Communication
International Leadership
Topics in Communication Studies
Communication Internship 1
Media and Society
Introduction to Media Production
Media Performance
New Media and Communication *,^
Total Hours24

Public Relations Emphasis

Major Requirements
COMM 3331Public Relations Writing and Design3
COMM 4331Public Relations Campaigns3
COMM 4335Crisis Communication3
COMM 4394Professional PR Portfolio3
Prescribed Electives
Students will select 12 hours of major electives from the courses that appear below.12
Nonverbal Communication
Persuasion
Organizational Communication
Topics in Communication Studies
Communication Internship 1
Grants and Proposals
Media and Society
Media Performance
Editing & Layout
Photojournalism
Sports Writing
New Media and Communication *,^
Advertising Criticism
First Amendment and Ethical Issues in the Media
Global Media and International Communication
News Publication
Basic Advertising
Total Hours24

Courses

COMM 1311  Foundation of Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE EXAMINES A BREADTH OF TOPICS FUNDAMENTAL TO THE STUDY OF COMMUNICATION AND WORKS TO IMPROVE STUDENTS' COMMUNICATION SKILLS IN THREE PRIMARY CONTEXTS:  INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS, GROUP/TEAMWORK, AND PRESENTATIONAL SPEAKING.

TCCNS: SPCH 1311  
COMM 1315  Public Speaking  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

RESEARCH, COMPOSITION, ORGANIZATION, AND DELIVERY OF SPEECHES FOR VARIOUS PURPOSES AND OCCASIONS, WITH EMPHASIS ON LISTENER ANALYSIS AND ON INFORMATIVE AND PERSUASIVE TECHNIQUES.

TCCNS: SPCH 1315  
COMM 1318  Interpersonal Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

PREDOMINANT ISSUES RELATED TO VERBAL AND NONVERBAL COMMUNICATION WITH A FOCUS ON INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS.

TCCNS: SPCH 1318  
COMM 1321  Business and Professional Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

INTRODUCES STUDENTS TO BASIC SKILLS, PRINCIPLES, AND CONTEXTS OF COMMUNICATION IN BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONAL SETTINGS BY COMBINING PUBLIC SPEAKING WITH ASPECTS OF COMMUNICATION ETHICS AND ORGANIZATIONAL, SMALL GROUP, AND INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION. STUDENTS WILL LEARN PRACTICAL SKILLS VIA PRESENTATIONS, RESEARCH, RESUMES, INTERVIEWS, MEETINGS, AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING GROUNDED IN COMMUNICATION THEORY.

COMM 1342  Voice and Diction  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

BASIC VOICE TRAINING, INCLUDING TECHNIQUES FOR VOCAL PRODUCTION, MANIPULATION, AND CONTROL. PRACTICAL APPLICATION OF THE VOCAL APPARATUS WILL BE EMPHASIZED, INCLUDING TECHNIQUES OF ENUNCIATION, PROJECTION, ARTICULATION, AND THE USE OF DIALECTS. (CREDIT MAY NOT BE GIVEN FOR BOTH THIS COURSE AND THEA 1342.)

TCCNS: SPCH 1342  
COMM 2330  Introduction to Public Relations  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

AN EXPLORATION OF THE HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT OF PUBLIC RELATIONS INCLUDING THE THEORY AND PROCESS OF PUBLIC RELATIONS, AND THE VARIOUS PUBLICS AND CAREERS ASSOCIATED WITH THE PUBLIC RELATIONS INDUSTRY.

TCCNS: COMM 2330  
COMM 2333  Small Group Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

APPLICATION OF SMALL GROUP THEORIES AND TECHNIQUES AS THEY RELATE TO GROUP PROCESS AND INTERACTION.

TCCNS: SPCH 2333  
COMM 2335  Presentational Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

ADVANCED STUDY OF THE PRINCIPLES AND METHODS OF FORMAL PRESENTATIONS FOR VARIOUS PURPOSES AND AUDIENCES TO FURTHER DEVELOP STUDENTS INTO EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATORS. COURSE ASSIGNMENTS WILL INCLUDE VARIOUS SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES, DYNAMIC INSTRUCTIONAL SPEECHES, EXTEMPORANEOUS SPEAKING, CREATION OF EFFECTIVE VISUAL AIDS, AND A GROUP COMMUNITY ACTION PRESENTATION.

COMM 3302  FILM CRITICISM  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

Exploration of the critical approaches to the study of film from a variety of historical and theoretical perspectives, with an emphasis on narrative film and some consideration of experimental cinema. Includes a laboratory for screening assigned films.

COMM 3310  Communication Theory  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THE FOUNDATIONS, PROCESSES, AND EFFECTS OF HUMAN COMMUNICATION. A SURVEY OF CONTEMPORARY THEORY AND RESEARCH, INCLUDING LANGUAGE THEORY, NONVERBAL AND SMALL GROUP COMMUNICATION, PERSUASION, AND MASS COMMUNICATION.

COMM 3311  Nonverbal Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THE STUDY OF BODY MOVEMENT, TOUCH, PARALANGUAGE, SPACE, ENVIRONMENT, AND OTHER NONVERBAL FACTORS IN THE COMMUNICATION PROCESS.

COMM 3325  Relational Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE IS AN ADVANCED INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION COURSE THAT FOCUSES ON COMMUNICATION WITHIN RELATIONSHIPS, SUCH AS FAMILY, ROMANTIC, FRIENDSHIP, AND WORKPLACE RELATIONSHIPS.

Prerequisite: COMM 1318.

COMM 3326  Research Methods  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THE PURPOSE OF THIS COURSE IS TO INCREASE STUDENT'S KNOWLEDGE OF THE RESEARCH PROCESS USED IN THE COMMUNICATION STUDIES DISCIPLINE. SPECIFICALLY, THE COURSE WILL ALLOW STUDENTS THE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN THE GOALS OF COMMUNICATION RESEARCH AND SCRUTINIZE VARIOUS TECHNIQUES FOR CREATING ACADEMIC RESEARCH AND ASSESSING ACADEMIC KNOWLEDGE.

COMM 3330  Persuasion  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

VARIOUS THEORIES AND FORMS OF RHETORICAL PERSUASION. TOPICS INCLUDE PRACTICAL REASONING SKILLS, PSYCHOLOGICAL THEORIES OF PERSUASION, AND CRITICAL RESPONSES TO PERSUASIVE MESSAGES.

COMM 3331  Public Relations Writing and Design  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL INTRODUCE STUDENTS TO THE BASIC PRINCIPLES AND FORMATTING REQUIREMENTS FOR PUBLIC RELATIONS WRITING. STUDENTS WILL GAIN THEORETICAL AND PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE IN DEVELOPING CONTENT FOR SPECIFIC AUDIENCES.

COMM 3335  UIL Debate and Speech  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

UNDERSTANDING THE UNIVERSITY INTERSCHOLASTIC LEAGUE DEBATE AND SPEECH EVENTS. STUDENTS EXPLORE APPROACHES TO ANALYTICAL REASONING, RESEARCH DELIVERY, AND THE CONCEPTUAL BASIS FOR DEBATE AND GAIN PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE IN UNDERSTANDING AND JUDGING UIL IN THE HIGH SCHOOL SETTING.

COMM 3350  Leadership  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

LEADERSHIP FOCUSES ON THE COMMUNICATION OF INFLUENCE THAT TAKES PLACE TO ACHIEVE GOALS OR ENCOURAGE CHANGE. SPECIFIC ATTENTION WILL BE DEVOTED TO A VARIETY OF APPROACHES, PROCESSES, AND THEORIES THAT WILL PROVIDE STUDENTS GENERAL KNOWLEDGE OF LEADERSHIP.

COMM 4314  Gender Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

EXAMINATION OF COMMUNICATION ABOUT WOMEN AND MEN, AS WELL AS COMMUNICATION BETWEEN THEM. SPECIAL COURSE EMPHASIS ON EXPLANATIONS OF GENDER, SEXIST LANGUAGE, MEDIA DEPICTION OF THE SEXES, AND GENDER COMMUNICATION IN THE FORMATION OF SOCIAL AND WORK RELATIONSHIPS.

COMM 4315  Communication and Sexuality  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL FOCUS ON COMMUNICATION AND SEXUALITY, SPECIFICALLY EXPLORING SEX AND GENDER IDENTITY DEVELOPMENT AND EXPRESSION, INTERSECTIONS OF RACE/ETHNICITY AND SEX/GENDER, HOW COMMUNICATION IMPACTS VARIOUS TYPES OF RELATIONSHIPS, THE ROLE OF COMMUNICATION IN SEXUAL ACTIVITY, AND POWER ABUSES RELATED TO SEXUAL ACTIVITY, WITH SPECIFIC FOCUS ON CONSENT AND SEXUAL SAFETY.

COMM 4331  Public Relations Campaigns  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

AN APPLICATION OF THE PUBLIC RELATIONS PROCESS (INCLUDING PRIMARY AND SECONDARY RESEARCH, GOALS AND OBJECTIVE DEVELOPMENT, THE SELECTION OF PROPER STRATEGIES AND TACTICS FOR IMPLEMENTATION, AND AN EVALUATION OF CAMPAIGN EFFECTIVENESS) THROUGH THE PRODUCTION AND PRESENTATION OF A PUBLIC RELATIONS CAMPAIGN FOR A LOCAL ORGANIZATION.

Prerequisite: COMM 2330.

COMM 4335  Crisis Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

AN APPLICATION OF CRISIS COMMUNICATION (INCLUDING ORGANIZATIONAL RESEARCH, RISK AND VULNERABILITY ASSESSMENT, STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION, AND PERFORMANCE AND DAMAGE EVALUTATION) THROUGH THE DEVELOPMENT AND PRESENTATION OF A CRISIS COMMUNICATION PLAN FOR A LOCAL ORGANIZATION.

COMM 4345  Intercultural Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

AN INVESTIGATION OF THE PROCESS BY WHICH PERSONS AND GROUPS OF DIFFERENT CULTURAL BACKGROUNDS CREATE UNDERSTANDING. TYPES OF KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND SENSITIVITY NECESSARY FOR INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION ARE DEVELOPED.

COMM 4350  Organizational Communication  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

EXAMINATION AND EXPLORATION OF REALISTIC APPLICATIONS OF COMMUNICATION THEORIES WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF AN ORGANIZATION. PARTICULAR ATTENTION WILL BE GIVEN TO TECHNIQUES FOR DIAGNOSING COMMUNICATION PROBLEMS, AS WELL AS STRATEGIES FOR EFFECTING CHANGE IN COMMUNICATION.

COMM 4360  International Leadership  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

STUDY OF INTERNATIONAL LEADERSHIP IN THE CONTEXT OF COMMUNICATION AND IN MULTI-CULTURAL AND DIVERSE SETTINGS. INFLUENCE OF GLOBAL ECONOMY, POLITICS, SOCIAL VALUES IN INTERNATIONAL LEADERSHIP.

COMM 4380  Senior Seminar in Communication Studies  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE SERVES AS THE CAPSTONE FOR THE COMMUNICATION STUDIES DEGREE. IT OFFERS STUDENTS OPPORTUNITIES TO SYNTHESIZE INFORMATION LEARNED IN OTHER COMMUNICATION COURSES AND DEMONSTRATE ABILITIES TO THINK CRITICALLY, CONDUCT INDEPENDENT RESEARCH LINKED TO APPROPRIATE COMMUNICATION THEORIES, CREATE INDIVIDUAL AND COLLABORATIVE PROJECTS THAT DEMONSTRATE EFFECTIVE USE OF COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES, AND PRESENT WRITTEN AND ORAL WORK AT AN ADVANCED LEVEL.

Prerequisite: (COMM 2335, 3310 and 4325).

COMM 4390  Topics in Communication Studies  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

STUDY OF SPECIALIZED TOPICS AND THEMES IN COMMUNICATION STUDIES. MAY BE REPEATED WHEN TOPICS VARY.

COMM 4394  Professional PR Portfolio  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

STUDENTS PREPARE DOCUMENTS, EXPLORE STRATEGIES FOR ENHANCING THEIR MARKETABILITY, AND ASSEMBLE A PROFESSIONAL PORTFOLIO OF PUBLIC RELATIONS WORK.

Prerequisite: COMM 2330, MEDA 2350, COMM 4331 and 4335.

COMM 4396  Directed Individual Study  
1-3 Semester Credit Hours  

SEE COLLEGE DESCRIPTION. BY APPLICATION. ONLY 3 SEMESTER HOURS OF DIRECTED INDIVIDUAL STUDY CREDIT MAY BE COUNTED TOWARD THE MAJOR.

COMM 4399  Communication Internship  
3 Semester Credit Hours  

PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE IN THE FIELD THROUGH PLACEMENT IN A COMMUNICATION INTERNSHIP POSITION. STUDENTS INTERESTED IN APPLYING FOR THE INTERNSHIP COURSE MUST HAVE A MINIMUM CUMULATIVE GPA OF 3.0; HAVE AT LEAST JUNIOR STANDING AT THE UNIVERSITY; BE A COMMUNICATION STUDIES MAJOR OR MINOR, OR PUBLIC RELATIONS MINOR; HAVE COMPLETED AT LEAST 12 HOURS OF COURSEWORK IN THE MAJOR OR MINOR AT TAMU-CC. PREFERRED APPLICANTS WILL HAVE A MINIMUM COMMUNICATION OR PUBLIC RELATIONS GPA OF 3.25. ALL APPLICANTS MUST SOLICIT A RECOMMENDATION FROM FROM A DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA FACULTY MEMBER. COURSE MAY BE TAKEN THREE TIMES FOR CREDIT; HOWEVER ONLY 3 SEMESTER HOURS OF INTERNSHIP CREDIT MAY BE COUNTED TOWARD THE MAJOR. A SECOND INTERNSHIP MAY APPLY TO THE COMMUNICATION STUDIES MINOR OR PUBLIC RELATIONS MINOR; A THIRD INTERNSHIP MAY BE USED AS A FREE ELECTIVE. AUTHORIZATION TO REPEAT THE INTERNSHIP COURSE IS CONTINGENT ON THE STUDENTS' SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF THE PREVIOUS INTERNSHIP EXPERIENCE. THIS COURSE IS GRADED CREDIT/NO CREDIT.