COM - Communication Arts Course Descriptions

COM 121 Introduction to Mass Media

Is designed to help students understand the critical process of mass communication in modern life. A survey is presented of the history, functions, and responsibilities of newspapers, radio, television, and interactive media.

3

COM 122 Media and Society

Investigates issues related to the economic, technological, political, and social determinants of the character and content of mass communications and their effect on society.

3

COM 123 Catholic Worldview of Media

Challenges students to think critically about traditional and modern media. Students analyze TV, film, video games, graphic novels/comics, apps, and other media using a Catholic media framework grounded in Scripture and the magisterial documents. This course seeks to address the Church's call to engage media as channels to communicate truth, goodness, and beauty, to proclaim the media component of the Catholic heart, and contribute to the greater whole of Catholic thought and formation. It is also founded on the richness of the Franciscan themes of the incarnation (physicality and creation-awe, beauty, wonder-as pointing to the Creator), personal and communal (development of the whole human person created in the image and likeness of God), transformative (inspires toward the true, good, and beautiful), and engagement of the heart [simplicity at a profound level; God as ultimate fulfillment of our desires; Jesus Christ revealing man to himself (Gaudium et Spes 22)].

3

COM 221 Church and the Media

Examines both religious and mainstream media and their relationship to the Catholic Church. This course studies the role of the media in the world and in the Church; the Catholic Church's teachings and pastoral guidelines for both communicators and consumers of the media; and the Church's use of media in evangelization, education, and pastoral communication.

3

COM 222 Critical TV Viewing

Surveys contemporary methods of critical analysis of television in a social media environment. Using a model of criticism based on Aristotle's Rhetoric, four general areas are examined: programming genres, cultural significance of content, social viewing habits, and visual literacy. This course helps the individual develop "active viewing skills" that can be used by media producers, critics, or consumers.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 222

COM 223 Newsgathering

Focuses on the collecting of information for news stories. Content includes evaluating and using interviews, surveys, government and other documents, participant observation, field experiments, and the Internet as means of gathering information.

3

COM 242 Radio/Television Performance

Focuses on the development of performance skills for the electronic media. Students explore various broadcast and non-broadcast performance situations (radio and television commercials, news, interviews), analyze the techniques used, and then practice those techniques. Class work includes studio performance assignments with regular evaluations. Lab fee.

3

COM 243 Broadcast and Electronic Media

Explores the function and structure of radio, television, and digital communication technologies in the United States. The course includes individual and group projects designed to introduce students to digital production and distribution processes.

3

COM 254 Radio/Television Scriptwriting

Provides practical scriptwriting experience for radio and television. The process of developing scripts for a variety of broadcast applications is presented. It also covers format rules for a variety of genres including public affairs, drama, and commercials.

3

COM 261 News Reporting

Provides instruction and practice in writing basic news stories using proper language skills and news judgment. The course addresses news values, elements of a news story, and duties and responsibilities of a journalist. Students receive practice in writing various types of news stories. Lab fee.

3

COM 263 Public Affairs Reporting

Trains students to research and write about the social, political, and economic subjects that constitute public affairs. In this advanced news reporting course, students write stories about local issues and events.

3

Prerequisites

COM 261 or permission of instructor

COM 281 Graphic Design

Does the old saying "a picture speaks a thousand words" hold true? How often do you encounter images in your day? How prevalent are visual presentations in media today? How do you interpret what you see? How do others? This course addresses these and other related design issues. The premise is that visual messages have great power to communicate, inform, educate, and persuade both individuals and culture. Through hands-on exercises, research, group critiques, and discourses, students learn industry-standard graphic design applications while creating a capstone project that serves as a foundation to a personal employment portfolio.

3

Prerequisites

COM majors or permission of instructor

COM 321 Public Relations

Is an introduction to public relations as a profession of applied communications. The course analyzes public relations in its place, purpose, processes, tools, and the many publics to which it applies. Print and electronic releases, features, and graphic design are all considered.

3

COM 322 Advertising

Covers basic principles of the advertising field from various viewpoints: methods, management, and media. Research, planning, and the creative aspects of advertising are examined through class lectures, discussions, and small group and individual projects.

3

COM 325 Cinema Studies

Traces the historical development of the modern cinema. This survey course focuses on significant directors, movements, influences films and terminology. Special attention is paid to the tension between film as art and/or commerce. The course will help students identify important moral and philosophical issues raised by serious as well as entertainment films. It will also help students develop an appreciation of the artistry involved in film production. This course includes weekly screenings of significant films. 2 credits lecture; 1 credit lab.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 325

COM 326 Global Media

Examines globalization's impact on the means of communication found in countries around the world. Special emphasis is placed on European and Asian communication systems. This course addresses international regulations, technology, and issues. The effects of communication in developing countries and international religious broadcasting are also examined.

3

COM 327 Internet Communication and Web Design

It is an understatement to say that the Internet is commonplace in our age and culture. Yet, what precisely is Internet communication? How do we communicate with others through the medium and tools of the Internet? How important is web design in Internet communication? What constitutes web design? Students examine these and other related questions in this practical, hands-on course by critically thinking through, discussing, and creating media projects that communicate online.

3

Prerequisites

COM 281 or permission of the instructor

COM 328 Film Analysis and Theory

Surveys the major theories and tools utilized in the analysis of narrative, experimental, and documentary cinema, including formal analysis, semiotics, phenomenology, genre studies and related approaches. Includes screenings of significant films and application of analytical techniques.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 328

COM 329 Cinema of India

Covers the historical development of the world's largest film industry from 1896 to the present, focusing on significant directors, movements, films, terminology, and the influence of socio-cultural factors. The course highlights the tension between popular (musical) and artistic (non-musical) film. It also assists students in developing a deeper understanding of non-western modes of cinematic storytelling and culture. Includes weekly screenings. All lectures, readings, and discussions are in English. 2 credits lecture; 1 credit lab.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 329

COM 331 Mysteries in Film

Compares and contrasts filmic and literary versions of major mystery stories written by various authors, focusing on how they approach a popular fiction genre from various perspectives. Representative works, critical analysis and biographical information will all be included in the course. Other mystery genre short stories and films will be compared and contrasted. 2 credits lecture; 1 credit lab.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 331

COM 332 Science Fiction Cinema

Covers the historical development of the most innovative and influential genres of world cinema-science fiction-from 1902 to present, focusing on significant directors, movements, films, terminology, and the influence of socio-cultural factors. The course assists students in developing a deeper understanding of how sci-fi cinema has been used to forecast and promote social change, as well as warn about negative social consequences. While the best of world sci-fi cinema will be screened, all lectures, readings, and discussions are in English. 2 hour lecture; 2 hours lab

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 332

COM 341 Radio and Audio Production I

Trains students in the skills of digital radio and audio production and recording. Writing and producing radio programs, news features, dramas, and commercials are carried out through group and individual projects. Lab fee.

3

COM 342 Video Production I

Introduces studio and remote video production techniques. Cameras, audio and visual equipment, directing, scriptwriting, and graphics are also included. Work is completed through group and individual projects. Lab fee.

3

COM 343 Video Editing

Focuses on the theory and processes of digital video editing for broadcast, professional, and multimedia productions. Both aesthetic and technical principles are applied through small group and individual projects. Lab fee.

3

COM 345 Independent Digital Filmmaking

Focuses on the skills needed to create short independent digital films in both 2D and 3D-stereoscopic formats, including budgeting, scripting, location scouting, rehearsing, lighting, filming, editing, scoring, mixing, and marketing. Students will explore the relationship between cinema, culture, and society by producing a short film that makes an important statement about our world today. Students will also explore opportunities to market their films via digital technologies, contests, and the like.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 345

COM 346 Podcasting and Social Media Production

Introduces students to effective design and production of audio and video content for social media audiences. Course discussions and hands-on projects include audio and video podcasting, on-demand streaming media, and media production for mobile devices. The course provides students with the perspective and introductory skills needed to produce effective audio and video content for a range of social media applications and user environments.

3

COM 352 Radio/Television News

Explores techniques of writing, reporting, and editing news for radio and television; rewriting wire copy; shooting; and editing. Students are also introduced to ENG (Electronic News Gathering). Individual and small group projects are included. Lab fee.

3

COM 353 Television News

Focuses on the role of television news and techniques used in reporting and production. This course first examines the political, economic, and professional factors used to determine the content of local and network news programs. Students then produce, report, and edit television news stories on location and work as teams to plan, produce, and participate in full-length television news programs. Lab fee.

3

Prerequisites

COM 352 or permission of the instructor.

COM 362 Editorial Writing

Instructs students in the theory and practice of writing editorials and columns about issues facing society. The course emphasizes the important function of a free press in a democracy. Works of prominent newspaper columnists and editorial writers are also studied.

3

COM 365 Publication Design

Covers the theories and practice of graphic design, typography and page layout using electronic publishing techniques. Although newspaper design is emphasized, the skills acquired in this course can be adapted for the production of newsletters, magazines, and other forms of publication. Lab fee.

3

COM 366 Desktop Publishing

Provides instruction in the production of camera-ready graphic material on a computer. It introduces students to elementary graphic design, basic typography, and various computer resources. The course also serves as an introduction to using the layout, drawing, and image-manipulation software used by newspapers, magazines, and other publications created on computers. Lab fee.

3

COM 367 Review and Criticism Writing

Is designed to teach students to write well-researched articles about American popular culture. In this course, students apply media analysis techniques to produce opinion essays of publishable quality. To this end, students also read and assess the work of noteworthy journalists

3

COM 368 Feature Writing

Instructs students to create literary feature stories suitable for publication in newspapers and magazines. Students also will analyze a magazine and write a query letter in an attempt to publish their work.

3

COM 369 News Editing

Concentrates on the principles and practice of copy editing, newspaper style, headline writing, cutline writing, and coaching writers.

3

COM 370 Journalism Convergence

Is a course designed to introduce the student to a variety of technologies and skills needed to be a journalist of the future. Current industry practices call upon journalists to gather information, write stories and prepare/edit stories for print, online and broadcast media. This course is designed to provide students with the perspective and introductory skills of a backpack journalist, one who gathers and produces news for a variety of media.

3

COM 381 Writing for Interactive Media

How does one write non-sequentially to accommodate user-selected pathways in interactive media such as websites, educational multimedia, and video games? This course teaches students how to design interactive media proposals and scripts that involve multi-path structures and elements. Students practice industry-standard scriptwriting techniques, including storyboarding, flow-charting, multi-column formatting, and basic HTML tagging. Students also focus on creating immersive, compelling, and emotional content for presentations that change depending on which link or option a user selects.

3

COM 384 Digital Photography and Fine Art

Introduces students to the elements used by digital photographers, multimedia designers, compositors, and digital matte artists. Class/studio time comprises a combination of lectures, discussions, demonstrations, presentations, critiques, and hands-on use of multimedia hardware and software.

3

COM 400 Internship

Is a work-experience opportunity with the purpose of expanding education by applying accumulated knowledge in communication arts-journalism, radio/television, multi-media. The availability of internships is limited to upper-level students, normally juniors and seniors with a 2.5 quality point average. Students are approved individually by the academic department. A contract can be obtained from the Career Services Office in Starvaggi Hall. Internships count as general electives.

1-6

Prerequisites

Communications Major, senior standing, and permission of the department chair; COM 121, COM 122, COM 243 or COM 261 and 3 more upper level elective (equivalent to a minor). Internships must be preapproved.

COM 422 Media Ethics

Is an overview of how media personnel make difficult decisions when confronted with ethical dilemmas. The course examines case studies of ethical situations in the context of classical philosophers as well as contemporary media practitioners.

3

COM 423 Mass Media Law

Focuses on laws and regulations that affect media personnel in the performance of their everyday duties. This course addresses how the law, interpretations of the law, and court rulings have changed over the years. Topics covered include the First Amendment, libel, privacy, Freedom of Information Act, free press vs. fair trial, obscenity, copyright, and regulation of broadcast and electronic media.

3

COM 432 Practicum

Provides practical experience in producing a major publication, audio, video, or multimedia project from pre-production planning through final broadcast or production. Individual and group activities are included. Lab fee.

3

COM 434 Senior Thesis

Consists of independent research on a selected topic or problem in mass communications approved by the student's advisor.

1

Prerequisites

Senior standing

COM 441 Video Production II

Emphasizes and utilizes advanced single and multiple-camera production and editing techniques. The course includes individual and small-group projects. Lab fee.

3

Prerequisites

COM 342

COM 442 Digital Multitrack Audio Production II

Emphasizes advanced techniques of digital audio production and effects, including audio post-production for video, MIDI production, live recording and reinforcement, high definition musical multitrack recording, looping, stereo and surround-sound mixing, and CD/ DVD mastering. Small group and individual projects are included. Lab fee.

3

Prerequisites

COM 341.

COM 443 Telecommunications Management

Is an overview of the electronic media from a managerial perspective. Media covered include broadcast radio/ TV, cable TV, private/corporate television, and new online and mobile technologies. The course includes organization, planning, budgeting, marketing, influence of technology, and outside factors.

3

COM 444 Advanced Digital Media Production

Provides practical experience in producing a major digital project from pre-production planning through post production. It is designed for students seeking to review, apply, and refine production skills at an advanced level. Individual and group activities are included. Lab fee.

3

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 444

COM 463 Publication Management

Looks at the print media as a business from a managerial point of view. This course considers the impact of organizational, budgeting, marketing, and technological influences.

3

COM 464 Newspaper Production

Is an advanced course integrating skills learned in other journalism courses, simulating actual work on a newspaper, and providing a variety of reportorial experiences. Lab fee.

3

Prerequisites

COM 261, COM 365, and COM 369

COM 482 Designing Interactive Media and Animation

An overview of the field, this course provides the "big picture" for designing multimedia projects. Principles of interactive and video game development are introduced along with design documents and project proposals. Technical discussions about media technologies complement current principles covering visual design, formats, audio, video, and animation. Students create multimedia and video game graphics and an interactive project as a means of integrating course concepts.

3

Prerequisites

COM 281 or permission of the instructor

COM 484 Digital Compositing and Special Effects

The processes and considerations for creating animations, special effects, 2D, and 3D compositions are covered in this course. Students utilize industry-standard applications as they study and explore the methods for integrating images from multiple sources into a seamless whole, and practice various techniques for visual effects post-production.

3

Prerequisites

COM 243 and COM 281, or permission of the instructor

Cross Listed Courses

FLM 484