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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 413W The Mass Media and the Public (3) Social-level and political theories of the relationships between media and public; media influences on public opinion; social pressure on the media; political communications.

COMM 413W The Mass Media and the Public (3)

This course is designed to explore the complex and dynamic relationships among the media, public, and government. These relationships are examined through the lenses of sociological and political theories regarding the nature and process of mass communication. The central questions answered in the course are: "How do the media influence the public, its opinions, and social and political behavior?" and "How does the public - through social pressures, and political constraints - influence media performance and content?" Special attention is paid to modes of inquiry in communication research, social functions and control of the media, social construction of reality, political communication, and public opinion. The goals of the course are to introduce students majoring in professional areas of communications to theoretical frameworks that help explain media practices, advance the understanding of the communications research literature for Media Studies majors, and develop skills of all students to be informed and critical consumers of the media. The course is required of Media Studies majors and is a communications elective for the Journalism and Telecommunications majors, the Corporate Communications and Journalism options in Communications, and the Media Studies minor.

General Education: None
Diversity: None
Bachelor of Arts: Social and Behavioral Science
Effective: Spring 2011
Prerequisite: select 3 credits from the followingCOMM 100, COMM 118, COMM 150, COMM 180, COMM 251, COMM 260W, COMM 320 orCOMM 370 and select 3 credits from the following:COMM 304, COMM 420

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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Course descriptions are stored in LionPATH, the University-wide student information system. Please visit the LionPATH Course Catalog to access current course descriptions. At that point, you will be leaving the University Bulletin website.

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