Communication and media technologies, MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
Survey of Media Technologies
Communication Theories
This course focuses on theories of communication as they relate to mass media and other forms of human interaction. Theories based in both the humanities and in the social sciences that explain or predict the effects of interaction and communication technology on audiences will be examined.
Research Methods in Communication
An introduction to and overview of the methods and ethics of scientific, scholarly communication research including quantitative and qualitative approaches. The course focuses on methods of locating, critically analyzing and conducting communication research, and leads to the development of a research proposal suitable for a thesis or project.
Media Law and Ethics
This course examines major principles and trends in communication law. The course analyzes a broad range of issues related to the First Amendment, intellectual property, and media regulation. Special attention is paid to discussing the major ethical perspectives and issues surrounding contemporary communication behavior.
Thesis Preparation Seminar
Communication Electives
Professional Core
Choose one of the following:
Communication Thesis/Project
A guided research project that focuses on designing, conducting and completing a research project. The project culminates in a public presentation and defense.
Comprehensive Exam, plus two additional courses*
Total Semester Credit Hours

Communication electives

Students select three of the following communication electives:

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
Technology-Mediated Communication
An inquiry into interactive media and how they exert a powerful influence on communicative practices and society. Positioned at the intersection of technology, identity, and culture, interactive media are altering the ways in which people communicate in a wide range of contexts, including education, marketing, civic discourse, politics and popular culture. Applying theories about the relationship between communication technology and culture, this course will explore the current and potential future impact of interactive electronic communication and the social changes that are occurring.
Crafting the Message
This course will focus on the creation of written and visual messages appropriate to a targeted audience and specific medium including print, broadcast, interactive, digital and online technologies. Case studies of both effective and unsuccessful messages from, for example, advertising, public service, education, and entertainment will be examined. Students will create and execute a variety of messages using different writing styles with images that are directed toward specific target audiences.
International Media
Evaluation of media technology use in the international setting and in various countries and regions of the world. Major theories about media, current trends in media, journalism practices, and governmental challenges and restrictions are considered. Special attention is paid to the uses and effects of media technologies within various countries, focusing on global implications of the Internet and digital technologies on international cooperation, trade, and culture.
Communication Education
An analysis of and practicum in teaching communication in higher education. Students explore teaching and learning styles, the role of technology in higher education, and teaching assessment methods. Students create teaching resources and gain teaching experience in a college classroom.
Online Advertising
A review of the theory and practice of interactive advertising. Topics include digital interactive media used for advertising purposes, interactive advertising theories and models, and the strategies and tactics for developing effective ad campaigns using interactive media, including the Internet, virtual communities, video games and mobile phones.
Visual Communication
This course explores visual communication, the process through which individuals -- in relationships, organizations, and societies -- create and interpret visual messages. A variety of theories from the disciplines of art history, psychology, communication theory, and graphic design will be discussed to develop methods for analyzing mediated messages. Students analyze visual messages from the following media: print photography, video, film and the Internet.
Persuasion in a Digital Age
Digital communication technologies blur the lines of distinction between mass persuaders, various publics, personal networks, and individuals. This course combines traditional theories and research in media, rhetoric, and persuasion within the context of new and dynamic channels of communication. This course will investigate the prevalence of persuasive communication in various facets of our society with particular attention to the impact of digital communication channels on the persuasion process.
Classic Media
Required of students without an undergraduate degree in communication. To introduce students to a broad range of important texts. Students will gain an understanding of how theory and research developed in the study of mass media and communication. The course is historical but focuses on the literature and media of the twentieth century. Key research studies and media productions are analyzed. Students learn to write in American Psychological Association style and conduct secondary research.
Special Topics in Communication

Applied professional or technical courses

Students select three of the following applied professional or technical courses:

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
Print Media
Cross Media Workflow I
This course is designed to expose students to all the elements needed to master a cross media publishing project. Students will learn concepts and laws around copyright as it applies to cross media publishing. Concepts and tools necessary for the implementation of a cross media workflow will be discussed and reinforced with hands-on exercises. Additionally, ways companies create and utilize cross media workflows will be studied. Emerging industry and ISO standards as well as best practices for each of the fields discussed in the course will be presented.
Digital Printing and Publishing
Printing Industry Trends and Issues
Perspectives on Contemporary Publishing
An examination of how various contemporary publishing entities are responding to changes in technology and social habits with an emphasis on editorial, production, circulation/distribution, and marketing issues and concerns. The course will begin with a brief review of historic book models and practices with respect to their continued influence on today's formats and designs. The advantages and disadvantages of the various kinds of publishing dissemination mechanisms are discussed, together with an exploration of the divisions now occurring between print-, web- and digital device-based delivery of content. The degree to which the intellectual content of books is changing in response to technology will also be covered.
Organizational Behavior and Leadership
This course examines why people behave as they do in organizations and what managers can do to improve organizational performance by influencing people's behavior. Students will learn a number of frameworks for diagnosing and dealing with managerial challenges dynamics at the individual, group and organizational level. Topics include leadership, motivation, team building, conflict, organizational change, cultures, decision making and ethical leadership.
Managing Organizational Change
This course addresses the importance of organizational change in maintaining a flexible, dynamic, and responsive organization, by examining various theories and approaches currently used to assist organizations in achieving planned change. The role of the leader in achieving organizational change is emphasized. The features of successful change in organizations will be discussed, including the structural, motivational, interpersonal, and social aspects of organizational change.
Introduction to Technology Management
This course is an introduction to the technological process in organizations and the factors, both internal and external, which influence the rate, timing and success of industrial innovations. The interrelationship between science and technology and the importance of these two disciplines to the process of technological innovation is examined. Also discussed is the process of R&D management, the strategic management of technology, the dynamics of technology life cycles and organizational influences on engineering and manufacturing processes.
Marketing Concepts
An introduction to contemporary principles and practices of marketing. The course is structured around the process of marketing planning leading to the development of successful marketing strategies, including the commercialization of products and services in domestic and international environments. Focus is on environmental scanning techniques, setting and evaluating measurable objectives, innovating and controlling the interrelated components of product/service offering, planning and executing the marketing mix (channels of distribution, price, and promotion), and enhancing customer relationships through the delivery of customer value.
Marketing in Global Business
Advertising and Marketing Communications
An in-depth view of tools of advertising, sales promotion, public relations, personal selling, direct marketing and Internet Marketing. Basic concepts of advertising using print, broadcast, Internet and outdoor media are studied. Planning, budgeting and the roles of advertising agencies are also covered. Students develop a comprehensive promotion plan beginning with the marketing strategy and ending with implementation and evaluation. The project, in which the student plans and prepares a promotion/advertising campaign for a product or service in consultation with the instructor is an integral part of the course.
Marketing on the Internet
This course examines the impact that the Internet has on traditional and contemporary business-to-consumer marketing activities. It explores these implications in both strategic and tactical terms to enhance organizations' levels of competitiveness. The course identifies the use of the Internet in enhancing value for consumers and considers the leverage of: the latest technologies, trends, e-culture and innovation through the medium of the Internet.
Commercializing and Marketing of New Products
This course emphasizes the marketing and product strategy-related activities required to create, develop, and launch successful new products. Topics covered include identifying the market opportunity for new products, defining the product strategy, understanding customer requirements, developing and updating the product business plan, marketing's role in the firm's product development process, developing the marketing plan for launching new products, and managing the product life cycle. The course emphasizes best practices in marketing-related activities required for successful new product commercialization.
Health Systems Administration
Research Methods and Data Analysis
This is an introductory graduate-level survey course on research design/ methods and analysis. The course provides a broad overview of the process and practices of social research in service-related contexts. Content includes principles and techniques of research design, sampling, data collection, and analysis including the nature of evidence, types of research, defining research questions, sampling techniques, data collection, data analysis, issues concerning human subjects and research ethics, and challenges associated with conducting research in real-world contexts. The analysis component of the course provides an understanding of statistical methodology used to collect and interpret data found in research as well as how to read and interpret data collection instruments.
Health Governance and Economics
This course will review how health care law is created and promulgated from policy to regulations. Examination of specific laws that govern all health care in the USA will be reviewed as well as discussion of regulatory dynamics, the legislative process and regulatory trends in the United States. Emphasis will be placed on strategy development to respond to regulations including advocacy as a response to regulation interpretation and enforcement. Health economics overview will include an explanation of how health care economics are unique in the world of economics and who the major stakeholders are within health care economics including their motivation and reward systems. Given this knowledge strategies will be developed to deal with real and hypothetical challenges facing health care today from a legal and economic perspective.
This course will provide students with an ethical framework consisting of knowledge of the principle theories and moral philosophers and their methods to approach decision making. Ethics will be further explored giving consideration of cultural norms and how this influences societal ethical decision making; a review of the ethics of the professions of health care; information about gaining access to the organizations ethical principles and an understanding of personal ethics. Using these as a foundation personal and professional ethics will be explored, developed and a decision making rationale developed through a sequence of exercises requiring ethical decision making related to finance, human resources, clinical issues and personal morality.
Health Systems Planning
Marketing Within Health Care
The ability to differentiate a health care facility within the market place provides a challenge to leadership. The government is pursing publication of quality results as the venue to differentiate quality providers for consumers. Health care facilities compete with each other yet lack the ability to focus on what differentiates their products and services from competitors including the mandated data reporting requirements.
Breakthrough Thinking, Creativity, and Innovation
This is an introductory survey course on the dynamics of innovation. The course focuses on individual, team and organization-level human and systems dynamics that impact organizational innovation. Students gain awareness of, understanding and important skills in fostering multi-level organizational human ecologies conducive to the creation of innovation. Issues and challenges important to leaders and team leaders at all levels in an organization, entrepreneurs and talent management practitioners will be examined and explored. There is a required fee for this class to pay for the administration of the ISPI and IDNA evaluation instruments.
Public Policy 
Readings in Public Policy
An in-depth inquiry into key contemporary public policy issues. Students will be exposed to a wide range of important public policy texts from a range of disciplines. Through these readings and class discussion, students will gain an understanding of public administration, the policy process, and policy analysis. Students will also learn how to write a literature review in a policy area of their choosing.
Technological Innovation and Public Policy
Technological innovation, the incremental and revolutionary improvements in technology, has been a major driver in economic, social, military, and political change. This course will introduce generic models of innovation that span multiple sectors including: energy, environment, health, and bio- and information-technologies. The course will then analyze how governments choose policies, such as patents, to spur and shape innovation and its impacts on the economy and society. Students will be introduced to a global perspective on innovation policy including economic competitiveness, technology transfer and appropriate technology.
Public Administration and Management
This course provides an in-depth look at the evolution of public administration theory and practice. Starting with the basic structure of the U.S. Constitution, the course examines how the key tensions facing local, state, and federal public administrators changed over time with both changes in social science and changes in public administration practice. Topics include public organization theory, public budgeting, citizen engagement, e-government, public-private partnerships, and recent innovations in management practice.
Information and Communication Policy
This course examines how federal and international policies are developed to influence innovation in, and regulation of, information, computer and telecommunications technologies. In particular the course will examine such topics as privacy, freedom of speech, cybersecurity, intellectual property rights, access to information technology, and regulation of the Internet.