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University Bulletin
Undergraduate Degree Programs

These course descriptions are not being updated as of August 1, 2016. Current course descriptions are maintained in LionPATH.

Communications (COMM)

COMM 118 (GS) Introduction to Media Effects (3) Examination of individuals' selection, uses and perceptions of media and the effects of media on individuals' attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.

COMM 118 Introduction to Media Effects (3)

Aside from working and sleeping, individuals in the United States spend more time consuming media than any other single activity. By the time the average person reaches the age of 65, he or she will have spent over six full years of life watching television - not to mention the additional time spent reading newspapers and magazines, listening to the radio, using the Internet, and playing videogames. Given the centrality of media in the lives of most people, it is imperative that we understand and critically explore the variety of ways in which we perceived and are influenced by media messages. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the study of the effects of media on individuals and on society. This course will overview a broad range of media theories that have examined media as a social force, that have explored factors that affect individuals' selection of and perceptions of media messages, and that have studied how media affect viewers' attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. These theories will be used to examine a variety of different types of content, including media violence, portrayals of race and gender, politics, advertising, and entertainment, among others. Students will be assessed by exams on these theories and topics, by group-based writing assignments, and by an assignment requiring students to locate, identify, and critically evaluate media content that illustrates the theories and issues covered in class.

General Education: GS
Diversity: None
Bachelor of Arts: None
Effective: Spring 2007

Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.


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