Communication Program

Purpose Statement

The mission of the communication department is to prepare competent communicators by providing students a foundation in communication theory and practice that will enhance their personal, civic, and professional lives.

Students who complete the communication major can expect to develop

  • the ability to express audience-centered messages clearly in both speaking and writing.
  • confidence and competence in speaking encounters whether for public presentations or for building interpersonal and professional relationships.
  • strategies for overcoming communication barriers.
  • media literacy including knowledge about how media are created and how media affect how we communicate.

Students who complete the digital media major with the communication emphasis will develop competence in

  • the ability to express audience-centered messages clearly in both speaking and writing.
  • obtaining still images, audio, and video, and combining these media with text to tell stories effectively.
  • designing, laying out, and publishing content online and in print.
  • media literacy including knowledge about how media are created and how media affect how we communicate.

Communication Major

G-CM 120  Introduction to Human Communication (3 hours)
*G-CM 130 Interpersonal Communication (3 hours)
CM 135  Media Writing (3 hours) or CM 235 Magazine & Feature Writing (3 hours)
G-CM 140  Public Speaking (3 hours)
CM 210  Podcasting (3 hours)
G-AR 220  Graphic Design for non-art majors (3 hours)
*CM 220 Special Topics in Popular Culture (3 hours)
*G-CM 221  Intercultural Communication (3 hours)
G-MA 221  Elementary Applied Statistics (4 hours)
CM 240  Gender Communication (3 hours)
CM 305  Editing (3 hours)
CM 310  Public Relations and Social Media Campaigns (3 hours)
*EN 313  Advanced Expository Writing (3 hours)
CM 315  Media Production (2 hours)
CM 325  Conflict Communication (3 hours)
CM 330  Persuasion and Social Influence (3 hours)
CM 340  Web Design I (3 hours)
CM 375  Junior Seminar in Communication (1 hour)
*CM 475A  Senior Seminar in Service in the Community (2 hours)
*CM 475B Senior Seminar in Career Exploration (1 hour)

Total: 55 hours

Digital Media Major

All students completing the digital media major must complete the core courses (25 credit hours). They will then elect to complete the courses in either the communication or the visual design emphasis.

Core Courses (25 hours)

AR 130 Design Software (2 hours)
AR 205 Video Editing & Production (2 hours)
AR 230 Graphic Design I (3 hours)
CM 330 Persuasion and Social Influence (3 hours)
AR 335 Design Software II (3 hours)
CM 340/AR 340 Web Design I (3 hours)
CM 360 Videography I (3 hours)
CM 440/AR 440 Web Design II (3 hours)
CM 410 Videography II (3 hours)

Choose one area of emphasis:

Communication Emphasis (30 hours)

G-CM 120 Introduction to Human Communications (3 hours)
CM 135 Media Writing (3 hours) or CM 235 Magazine & Feature Writing (3 hours)
CM 210 Podcasting (3 hours)
CM 220 Special Topics in Popular Culture (3 hours)
*G-CM 221 Intercultural Communication (3 hours)
CM 305 Editing (3 hours)
EN 315 Expository Writing (3 hours)
CM 315 Media Production (2 hours)
CM 310 Public Relations and Social Media Campaign (3 hours)
CM 375 Junior Seminar (1 hour)
*CM 475A  Senior Seminar in Service in the Community (2 hours)
*CM 475B Senior Seminar in Career Exploration (1 hour)

Total: 55 hours


Visual Design Emphasis (28 hours)

AR 103 Elementary Design (3 hours)
AR 203 Photography I (2 hours)
AR 235 Graphic Design II (3 hours)
AR 260 UX/UI Prototyping (2 hours)
AR 265 UX/UI Application (2 hours)
AR 303 Photography II (3 hours)
AR 320 Typography/Logo Branding (2 hours)
AR 330 Graphic Design III (3 hours)
AR 333 Commercial Photography I (3 hours)
AR 475G Graphic Design IV (3 hours)
AR 470A Graphic Design Senior Show (1 hour)
AR 470B Graphic Design Senior Show (1 hour)

Total: 53 hours

Suggested Supporting Courses for either emphasis

BA 221 Marketing
BA 322 Advertising and Promotion
BA 327 Consumer Behavior
BA 427 Marketing Research
ET 101 Creativity and Innovation

Competency Exam

Students who plan to major in communication, or the communication emphasis of the digital media major, must pass a writing competency exam. This exam will be offered in the spring semester, before pre-enrollment for the fall. Transfer students will take the exam early in their first semester at the college. Students who fail the exam may re-take it after participating in guided study and practice of writing.


Purpose Statement

Students selecting the major in Social Justice and Advocacy are demonstrating their commitment to building stronger communities by learning how they can use communication and knowledge about social problems to help bring about social, cultural, environmental, and political changes. This is an interdisciplinary major which draws from courses that help a student learn about social issues and problems impacting those on the margins of society, and provide students with the communication tools necessary to address these issues. The major is designed to be partially completed through the general education curriculum, which allows a student to pursue additional studies through minors or another major.

Students who complete the Social Justice and Advocacy major can expect to

  • be an engaged and civic-minded member of their community.
  • identify social problems facing our communities.
  • advocate for the needs of those on the margins of society.

Social Justice and Advocacy Major

Foundation Course (3 hours)

Choose one:
   G-CM 120 Introduction to Human Communication (3 hours)
   G-SO 101 Introduction to Sociology (3 hours)

Communication and Advocacy Courses (20 hours)

*G-CM 130 Interpersonal Communication (3 hours)
G-CM 140
Public Speaking (3 hours)
CM 310 Public Relations & Social Media Campaigns (3 hours)
CM 325 Conflict Communication (3 hours)
CM 330 Persuasion and Social Influence (3 hours)
AR 345 Art as Community & Social Practice (2 hours)
Choose one:
     CM 135 Media Writing (3 hours)
     CM 235 Magazine and Feature Writing (3 hours)
    *EN 313 Expository Writing (3 hours)
      EN 420 Creative Writing (3 hours)

Social Issues Courses (12 hours)

SO 206 Social Problems (3 hours)
SO 260 Introduction to Human Services (3 hours
SO 275 Criminal Justice (3 hours)
SO 355 Juvenile Delinquency (3 hours)

Race/Ethnicity/Gender Literacy and Justice Courses (15 hours)

G-SO 202 Minorities in the U.S. (3 hours)
*G-PS 215 Global Peace Studies (3 hours)
*G-CM 221 Intercultural Communication (3 hours)
CM 240 Gender Communication (3 hours)
Choose one:
   G-EN 222 Native American Literature (3 hours)
   G-EN 225 African American Literature (3 hours)
   G-EN 235 Selected Topics in Literature: Latinx American Literature (3 hours)

Senior Capstone Courses (3 hours)

*CM 475A  Senior Seminar in Service in the Community (2 hours)
*CM 475B Senior Seminar in Career Exploration (1 hour)

Total: 53 hours

Recommended General Education Courses

G-AR 220 Graphic Design for Non-Art Majors (3 hours)
G-HI 237 Topics in Social History (3 hours)
G-HS 190 Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health (3 hours)
G-ML 108 Spanish I (3 hours)
G-NS 141 Environmental Science (4 hours)
G-PR 204 Peacemaking: Religious Perspectives (3 hours)
G-PS 125 International Relations (3 hours) or G-PS 102 United States Government (3 hours)


Communication Minor

A minor in communication consists of G-CM 120 Introduction to Human Communication (3 hours), and any other 17 hours of communication courses.  CM 315 Media Production may make up no more than four hours of coursework in the minor.

Storytelling Minor

Students selecting the minor in Storytelling are combining courses to be able to tell the stories of individuals, organizations, and communities. Storytelling is a skill that can enhance nearly any major as it will prepare students to share the information from their major with audiences in a meaningful way. This interdisciplinary minor draws upon courses in communication, English, theatre, and art.

Student Learning Objectives

A student who completes the minor in Storytelling should be able to

  1. tell stories—regardless of the content—with a clear beginning, middle, and end.
  2. tell stories in oral, written, and visual formats.
  3. tell the stories of individuals, organizations, and communities in engaging ways.

Required Classes (19 hours total)

G-CM 140 Public Speaking (3 hours)
G-TH 160 Acting I (3 hours)
AR 203 Photography I (2 hours)
AR 205 Video Editing & Production (2 hours)
CM 210 Podcasting (3 hours)
CM 235 Magazine & Feature Writing (3 hours)
*EN 313 Advanced Expository Writing (3 hours) or EN 420 Creative Writing (3 hours)

Elective Supporting Courses (not required)

G-AR 101 Drawing I (2 hours)
G-TH 125 Film and Culture (3 hours)
CM 305 Editing (3 hours)
CM 315 Media Production (1 hour)
CM 360 Videography I (3 hours)
TH 365 Stage and Technical Direction (2 hours)
TH 410 Theatre Seminar (2 hours)
CM 410 Videography II (3 hours)

2024|Catalog 24-25, Communication|

Communication Course Descriptions


Course Descriptions – Communication

G-CM 120 Introduction to Human Communication

3 hours
An introduction to the elements of the communication process in its personal and social aspects. Students will examine the breadth of the field of communication including intrapersonal, interpersonal, small group, mass media, intercultural, and public communication. Students will examine how humans use emerging media—websites, online channels, social media sites, etc.—to create a sense of self, express themselves to others, and to gain a fuller picture of the generalized other in society. Written communication skills will be emphasized through specific assignments. (Fall, Spring)

G-CM 130 Interpersonal Communication

3 hours (Language Intensive)
An oral communication course designed to acquaint students with the basic concepts of human communication as well as the more specialized skills needed to develop and maintain interpersonal relationships. Self-concept, self-disclosure, perception, relationship development, and mass media portrayals of interpersonal relationships are among the major units covered. (Fall)

CM 135 Media Writing

3 hours
A study of contemporary media emphasizing information media literacy and reporting and writing the news for various media including web, broadcast media, and social media. (Spring, even years)

G-CM 140 Public Speaking

3 hours
Study and practice of a wide range of formal and informal public speaking activities. Students will focus on developing an extemporaneous delivery of speeches based on experience with and research of topics. Students will practice multiple types of speeches including speeches to inform, to persuade, and for special occasions. (Fall, Interterm, Spring)

CM 210 Podcasting

3 hours
An introduction to the use of digital technology for audio podcast and video podcast production. Students will use journalistic principles for telling compelling stories that will be edited and hosted on the world wide web. Prior completion of CM135 Media Writing is strongly recommended but not required. (Fall)

G-CM 218 Business and Professional Communication

3 hours (Language Intensive)
This course is designed to expose students to strategies for effective communication in a business environment. Students will learn skills to improve both oral and written communication. Topics include using technology to enhance presentations, nonverbal communication in the workplace, and communicating about discrimination. (Fall, Spring)

CM 220 Special Topics in Popular Culture

3 hours (Language Intensive)
Students will learn about key theories, concepts, and communication research methods that will allow them to critically look at popular culture and understand how to read media at a deeper level. It will encourage students to consume media and understand the differing layers of different types of media: television, literature, video games, film photography, etc. Each course offering focuses on a different popular culture text. Students may repeat the course two times for credit. This course meets the requirements for a language intensive course. (Spring, even years)

G-CM 221 Intercultural Communication

3 hours (Language Intensive)
This course provides a broad overview of the study in communication both between and within nations, cultures, and subcultures. Students will investigate issues related to communication between people of different cultural orientations and also examine how cultural others are misperceived in interpersonal interactions and misrepresented in the media. Students will examine tensions between cultures and discuss ways to approach them by delving into specific cultural and communication rituals different from our own. Films will be used to study different cultural elements and concepts. (Spring)

CM 235 Magazine and Feature Writing

3 hours
This course is a study of contemporary journalism emphasizing information media literacy and writing long-form journalism for magazines and other types of publications. Students will learn to create content for print and online media outlets including podcasting. (Spring, odd years)

CM 240 Gender Communication

3 hours
This course examines the influence of gender on communication in interpersonal, instructional, organizational and mass mediated contexts. Topics of examination include interpersonal violence, discrimination, and other contemporary social problems. Focus will be given to understanding gender as a cultural group. (Spring, even years.)

CM 305 Editing

3 hours
An introduction to editing. Students learn how to correct, tighten and clarify texts and how to apply design principles to a variety of documents and publications. (Fall, odd years)

CM 310 Public Relations 

3 hours
A service-learning course that allows the study of the fundamental principles, strategies, and skills used in contemporary public relations. The course aims to give students practice in analyzing and responding ethically to PR issues and in researching, planning, writing, and designing a variety of PR materials. Students will examine how PR professionals use social media to send campaign messages to various publics. Students will work as a class on a PR campaign for a non-profit organization. Prerequisite of Junior standing or instructor permission. (Spring, odd years)

CM 315 Media Production

1 hour
Experience for students on the campus newspaper or other student media. Students will learn the process for creating publishable media and will participate in creating campus media. Students will attend weekly sessions to receive assignments and instruction and complete work as homework with guidance as needed. Students will negotiate with the instructor what emphasis they will take for the semester: reporting, photojournalism, editing, layout and design, advertising, multimedia, video, or audio. May be repeated each semester student is enrolled on campus. May take for zero or one credit. (Fall, spring)

CM 325 Conflict Communication

3 hours
This course examines issues related to sources of conflict in communication. Orientations to conflict and the management of conflict will be examined. A critique and synthesis of conceptual approaches and research is covered that pertains to conflict in interpersonal, organizational, and public communication settings. (Spring, odd years)

CM 330 Persuasion and Social Influence

3 hours
An examination of theories of persuasion, persuasion variables, principles of effective persuasion, and persuasion in interpersonal, small group, organizational and mediated contexts. In addition to studying verbal persuasion, students will examine the nature of visual persuasion in everyday life, discover how visual imagery influences behavior, develop strategies to protect themselves from the unwanted messages images convey, and learn how to use persuasion wisely in their own creations. (Fall)

CM 340 Web Design I (Cross-Listed with AR 340 Web Design I)

3 hours
An introduction to web design, web usability, and standards-compliant web sites built with HTML and CSS. Prerequisite: AR 130 Design Software. AR 230 Graphic Design I recommended but not required.  (Fall)

CM 360 Videography I

3 hours
Video production for promotional videos, title sequences, and commercials, with a duration up to 2 minutes. Students will practice shooting and editing video, and producing graphics, for creative sequences that promote different subjects. Prerequisite: AR 205 Video Editing and Production. (Spring, odd)

CM 375 Junior Seminar in Communication

1 hour
This course will cover an in-depth study of media theory and ethics. Students will consider how media impact their audiences. Case studies will be examined to enhance the understanding of ethical decision-making. (Fall)

CM 410 Videography II

3 hours
Short-form video production for news items, short films, and documentaries. Includes the use of photography, video, audio, and graphics for telling compelling video stories with a duration between 4 and 10 minutes. Students will practice shooting and editing video for various situations with a focus on creativity in film-making. Prerequisite: CM 210 Multimedia Storytelling. (Spring, even)

CM 440 Web Design II (Cross-Listed with AR 440)

3 hours
A recap of HTML and CSS and a more detailed exploration of responsive design. Students will utilize grids for layout and explore advanced styling for building dynamic web pages. Focuses on the skills students need to competently create and maintain their work, using best practices advocated by professional web designers. Prerequisite: CM 340 Web Design I. (Spring)

CM 475A Senior Seminar: Service in the Community

2 hours (Language Intensive)
Each student will complete a service-learning thesis project using communication skills learned throughout the program. Projects may be individual or group work in nature, depending on the semester enrolled. (Fall)

CM475B Senior Seminar: Career Exploration

1 hour (Language Intensive)
This course will be devoted to the exploration of post college plans including job searching, resume writing, cover letter creation, and interviewing practice. The goal of the course is to help students find a job placement prior to graduation. (Spring)

CM 388 Career Connections in Communication

4-8 hours
An internship in a career-related position. For communication majors and minors only.

Special Course Options
295/495 Field Experience (1-4 hours)
297  Study Abroad (12-16 hours)
299/499 Independent Study (1-4 hours)
388 Career Connections (3-10 hours)
445 Readings and Research (1-4 hours)


2024|Catalog 24-25, Communication|