The communication minor offers students a foundation in human communication theories, research, and skills. Students select courses in mass media analysis, communication in professional and organizational contexts, communication skills, and critical reflection of and on communication in society.
Notes about this minor:
This minor is closed to students majoring in communication.
Posting of the minor on the student's academic transcript requires a minimum GPA of 2.0 in the minor.
The program code for Communication Minor is COMM-MN.
An introduction to the theoretical and conceptual underpinnings of oral, visual, and written communication. Introduces basic communication models, the role of language in communication, symbols and symbol making, issues of audience analysis, and the development of different modes of discourse. Also explores the history of communication and introduces students to basic principles and research in communication studies.
Choose four of the following:
Introduction to Technical Communication
This course introduces students to current best practices in written and visual technical communication including writing effective email, short and long technical reports and presentations, developing instructional material, and learning the principles and practices of ethical technical communication. Course activities focus on engineering and scientific technical documents.
The public speaking course is designed to equip the student with knowledge of the theories and principles necessary for formal public speaking. Informative and persuasive speeches are the focus with emphasis on organization, evidence, language use, strategy, delivery, and effective use of media aids. Public speaking is generally offered each semester.
The history and development of U.S. media, theoretical aspects of mass communications, the composition of media audiences, law and regulation of mass communications and how the media affect and are affected by society are presented.
Digital Design In Communication
In an increasingly visual culture, and culture of online user-created content, non-designers are called upon in the professional realm to illustrate their ideas. Graduates entering the workforce will encounter situations where they will benefit from possessing a visual communication sensibility and vocabulary to communicate effectively with a broad range of audiences, including professional designers. Creative approaches to challenges, such as visual thinking, are also shown to improve students’ comprehension and problem-solving abilities. Digital Design in Communication is an opportunity for undergraduates to receive an introduction to principles of visual message design from a critical rhetorical perspective. They will also get the opportunity to apply these principles to a variety of visual products such as advertisements, logos, brochures, resumes, etc. A variety of computer software applications are available to support the research, writing, visualization, and design of messages.
Reporting and Writing l
This course introduces students to the principles and practices of gathering, evaluating, investigating, and presenting information to general audiences. Rights and responsibilities of the press will be analyzed. Although special emphasis will be given to writing and reporting for print publications, other media will be addressed. Special attention will be given to the qualities of writing, especially organization, accuracy, completeness, brevity, and readability. Assignments must conform to Associated Press style.
Interpersonal communication provides analysis and application of the major theories of interpersonal communication in various situations. The course focuses on perception of self and others, language use, nonverbal communication, and symbolic interaction in the communication of shared meanings in face-to-face and mediated interpersonal relationships. There is a strong focus on both conflict management and intercultural interactions.
Small Group Communication
This course provides students with opportunities to engage in small group decision making and problem solving. Students will analyze and evaluate their own experiences and relate them to theories and research from the field of small group communication.
Intercultural communication provides an examination of the role of culture in face-to-face interaction. Students may find a basic background in communication, anthropology, or psychology useful.
An in-depth study of the theories, practices, effects, and ethics of persuasion. Persuasion is defined as human communication designed to influence one’s beliefs, values, attitudes, and actions. This course examines persuasion from a receiver-oriented perspective with interpersonal, small group, organizational, and mediated perspectives.
This course is an introduction to the study of visual communication. The iconic and symbolic demonstration of visual images used in a variety of media is stressed. The major goal of the course is to examine visual messages as a form of intentional communication that seeks to inform, persuade, and entertain specific target audiences.
Communication 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.
Technology-mediated communication (TMC) was originally defined as a form of electronic written communication. As networking tools advanced, TMC expanded to include new software developments, such as instant messenger and the web. Today, the term technology-mediated communication is used to refer to a wide range of technologies that facilitate both human communication and the interactive sharing of information through computer networks. Through readings, discussions, and observations of online behavior, students will be introduced to TMC terms and theories to further develop their TMC communication and critical thinking skills.
An introduction to the subject of communication in health care delivery and in public health campaigns, with an emphasis on interpersonal, organizational, and mass communication approaches. Also covered is the interrelationship of health behavior and communication.
Ethics in Technical Communication
Ethics is the study of morals, of what is right and good, especially regarding specific moral choices. In a given situation, a system of ethics helps us answer the question: What should I do? Ethics in technical communication explores the ways in which ethical conduct is important in the communication of technical information, particularly among professional technical communicators; establishes principles, based on the history of ethical studies, for making ethical choices as technical communicators; and provides opportunities to apply ethical principles to case studies, in order to better understand the often problematical nature of ethical choices in technical-or any-communication.
Advanced Public Speaking
Further development of knowledge and skills learned in public speaking. This course emphasizes language, delivery, and speech organization, requiring students to develop and deliver speeches for various occasions, using a variety of delivery methods. Students will present out-of-the-classroom speeches as well as practice ghostwriting.
* At least two courses must be taken at the 300-level or higher.