Fall 2022 Course Offerings

COMM 002: Intro to Media and Cultural Studies

MWF, 9:15-10:20am: Scott Schonfeldt-Aultman
MWF, 11:45-12:50pm: David Benin
T/Th, 9:45-11:20am: Jason Jakaitis

Introduces how we critically assess the everyday communication practices and texts (spoken, visual, and mediated) that construct and transmit social knowledge. This course satisfies Artistic Understanding (Analysis & Creative Practice) of the Core Curriculum.

COMM 003: Introduction to Human Communication

T/Th, 8:00-9:35am: Veronica Hefner

Introduction to Human Communication is designed to give students an overview of the basic concepts and theories of human communication as a meaning making process, involving both verbal and nonverbal symbols, that constructs social meaning across various contexts such as relational, intercultural, small group, and workplace. In order to understand human communication in these contexts, students will learn to examine, analyze, and interpret identities, perceptions, group dynamic and power, and technology and media in everyday life through the social scientific, interpretive, and critical lenses of the field of Communication Studies. This course will prepare students to develop fundamental knowledge on the study of communication as well as communication competence as a practical outcome. This course satisfies both the Social, Cultural, and Historical Understanding and American Diversity requirements of the Core Curriculum.

COMM 010: Rhetoric & Public Discourse

MWF, 9:15-10:20am: Neeley Silberman

Focuses on the general principles of argument and advocacy as they relate to creating change in different spheres of social life through discourse and public speaking.

COMM 100: Communication Theory

MWF, 8:00-9:05am: STAFF

Surveys the major theories of communication with an emphasis on interpersonal, social, psychological, historical, semiotic, and technological approaches to human interaction. This course satisfies the Writing In the Disciplines requirement of the Core Curriculum.

COMM 104: Digital Culture

MWF, 1:00-2:40pm: STAFF

Students will explore key concepts and theories through a close reading of fundamental texts, study of representative examples of digital work (e.g. websites, gaming, networked and immersive environments, media art), and will engage in basic digital design and production assignments.

COMM 106: Intercultural Communication *

MWF, 10:30-11:35: Scott Schonfeldt-Aultman

Explores communication within various national contexts (primarily U.S.-based). Topics: identity, history, power, language, values, nonverbal communication, migration, cultural space, popular culture, and relationships. This course satisfies American Diversity for Core Curriculum.

COMM 110: Quantitative Methods

T/Th, 9:45-11:20am: Veronica Hefner

Introduces quantitative research approaches using surveys, experimental research design, and statistical data analysis such as correlation, t-test, and ANOVA. Prerequisite: COMM 002, 003, 010; or permission of the chair.

COMM 116: Advertising & Civic Engagement

T/Th, 9:45-11:20am: Samantha Joyce

Designed to give students an understanding of both the theory and practice of advertising through the medium of civic engagement projects.

Application Course.

COMM 122: American Journalism

MWF, 2:45-3:50pm, Nolan Higdon

Introduction to the craft of news writing and reporting in print and electronic news media; emphasis on journalism as a profession and ethical conduct. 

Application Course.

COMM 125: Media Technologies & Culture

MWF, 9:15-10:20am: David Benin
MWF, 10:30-11:35am: David Benin
T/Th, 11:30-1:05pm: STAFF

Focuses on the critical and technical concepts and skills necessary for understanding media and culture in the 21st century. Emphasis on digital, information, and visual literacy. This course satisfies both Artistic Understanding (Analysis and Creative Practice) requirements for the Core Curriculum.

Application Course.

COMM 132: Audio Production 1 *

T/Th, 1:15-2:50pm: Jason Jakaitis

Introduces the sonic arts through basic acoustical theory, musical concepts, and media production, sound design, field recording, and nonlinear editing and post-production techniques. Prerequisite: COMM 125 or equivalent.

Application course.

COMM 133: Video Production

T/Th, 3:00-4:35pm: Jason Jakaitis

Introduces students to the basics of digital video production, including film language and sound design, video camera basics, cinematography and lighting, non-linear video editing, and post-production techniques. Prerequisite: COMM 125 or equivalent..

Application Course.

COMM 163: Special Topics - Rhetoric: Privacy/Surveillance *

MWF, 11:45-12:50pm: Ellen Rigsby

Can we preserve dignity and privacy in the age of Facebook, Uber, and in the face of local and global terrorism? This upper division elective will consider the history of law and the current applications of technologies and cultures of surveillance. How and why did we get to the point where almost all of our activities leave an electronic trace? What is our level of tolerance for mass surveillance? Are we willing to let the state into our bedrooms? Are we more comfortable letting our stores and shopping services into our homes? What sorts of laws and policies do we need to protect our sense of personal integrity? And does privacy matter at all these days, anyway? This course will allow students to survey a broad range of approaches and issues, both within the U.S. and globally. We will read the latest work, as well as some classic contributions, concerning the definitions of privacy. Prerequisite: COMM 111 or 125.

COMM 190: Student Media Practicum (.25)

It is possible to earn a .25 academic credit for hosting a weekly radio show on KSMC; or for contributing weekly articles to The Collegian, the SMC student-run campus newspaper. Independent studies in other areas of media are also available at the request of students. Please contact Communication Dept chair Ellen Rigsby (erigsbu@stmarys-ca.edu) if you are interested in doing this.

COMM 195: Internship

Remote:
Independent contract, Ginny Prior

Students work in an appropriate internship position in the field of communication, under the supervision of the faculty internship coordinator. Students will read relevant texts that will help them apply communication theories and concepts to the context of their internship. Students will conduct ongoing reflection on their internship experience through synthesis with course texts. PrerequisiteCOMM 002, 003, 010, and 100, with C or better; and permission of the faculty internship coordinator.

COMM 196: Capstone - Senior Thesis

Mon/Fri, 1:00-2:40pm: Scott Schonfeldt-Aultman

The Capstone Project you produce in Comm 196 represents the culmination of your experience  studying Communication with our department. The Capstone course requires you to make a scholarly or creative contribution to the field of Communication Studies and should draw upon the work you have accomplished in your major courses.

Because the course is research-driven and requires students to be self-motivated, the Communication Department expects you to prepare for your Capstone experience by producing a short proposal detailing the topic, method, and theories that you will use in your research or creative project. Permission of instructor required. Note: You cannot register for Capstone on Gael Xpress. You submit your proposal; the Capstone team decides if changes are needed (and lets you know; and you resubmit the proposal); the Capstone team places you in one of the classes; the Communication Department then registers you.

Required for the Communication major.

* Juniors and Seniors can take this class at the 500 level as a Master's Class for graduate credit, including the Master of Art in Communication at Saint Mary's. 

 

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For our Master of Arts in Communication degree:

COMM 300: Theories of Communication

Monday, 6:00-9:10pm: Ellen Rigsby

This course investigates the relationship between theories of communication and culture. Students will use case studies to apply a range of communication theories to analyze problems that typically arise in “real world” settings. Students are expected to make a clear connection between a communication phenomenon (e.g., current social issues) and  communication theories as they work toward critical engagement with professional communication competencies.

COMM 305: Applied Research Design

T/Th, 11:30-1:05pm: Veronica Hefner

This course is designed to focus on methods of data gathering. In this course, students will learn designs of quantitative and qualitative research, such as experiment, survey, interview, participant observation, and ethnography. Students gain research design experience by designing a project to address a particular intercultural communication phenomenon, and the importance of proper research design for professional applications, including project or training assessment and evaluation. Each student’s proposed research project will be executed in Applied Research Methods course. This is an on-campus course, offered during the regular work week. Students must take this course in the Fall semester in the +1 year. This is the first course of the Applied Research Certificate sequence.

COMM 332: Audio Production

T/Th, 1:15-2:50pm: Jason Jakaitis

Introduces the sonic arts through basic acoustical theory, musical concepts, and media production, sound design, field recording, and nonlinear editing and post-production techniques. Prerequisite: COMM 125 or equivalent.

Application course.

COMM 334: Understanding Digital Culture

M/F, 1:00-2:40pm: STAFF

This course is a humanities-based exploration of the fundamental concepts of digital culture. The “digital” will be examined as technology, as communicational and expressive medium, as philosophical precept and paradigm, and as political, social, economic, and psychological force. Students will explore key concepts and theories through the close reading of fundamental texts, study of representative examples of digital work (e.g. websites, gaming, networked and immersive environments, media art), and engage in complementary design and production assignments. As a significant force shaping life in the contemporary world, it is important that students learn how to examine the effect of the digital. 

COMM 336: Intercultural Communication

MWF, 10:30-11:35am: Scott Schonfeldt-Aultman

Description coming soon.

COMM 363: Rhetoric of Privacy & Survelliance

MWF, 11:45-12:50pm: Ellen Rigsby

Can we preserve dignity and privacy in the age of Facebook, Uber, and in the face of local and global terrorism? This upper division elective will consider the history of law and the current applications of technologies and cultures of surveillance. How and why did we get to the point where almost all of our activities leave an electronic trace? What is our level of tolerance for mass surveillance? Are we willing to let the state into our bedrooms? Are we more comfortable letting our stores and shopping services into our homes? What sorts of laws and policies do we need to protect our sense of personal integrity? And does privacy matter at all these days, anyway? This course will allow students to survey a broad range of approaches and issues, both within the U.S. and globally. We will read the latest work, as well as some classic contributions, concerning the definitions of privacy. Prerequisite: COMM 111 or 125.