COM/310 Course Syllabus Essay

Course Syllabus
College of Humanities
COM/310 Version 3
Communication: Theories and Practice
Copyright © 2012, 2009, 2006 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

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Course Description

This course explores the various theories of communication that create the foundation for study of communications in the bachelor’s degree program at the University of Phoenix. Major communication areas examined in this course include intrapersonal, interpersonal, group and teamwork, organizational, intercultural, and mass media. Each area, along with others, will be studied in greater depth in subsequent courses in the degree program.

Policies

Faculty and students will be held responsible for understanding and adhering to all policies contained within the following two documents:

•University policies: You must be logged into the student website to view this document. •Instructor policies: This document is posted in the Course Materials forum.

University policies are subject to change. Be sure to read the policies at the beginning of each class. Policies may be slightly different depending on the modality in which you attend class. If you have recently changed modalities, read the policies governing your current class modality.

Course Materials

West, R. ; Turner, L. (2010). Introducing Communication Theory: Analysis and Application (4th ed.). Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill.

All electronic materials are available on the student website.

Week One: The Self and Communication Theories
DetailsDuePoints
Objectives1.1Analyze the Symbolic Interaction Theory.
1.2Explain Coordinated Management of Meaning.
1.3Evaluate the Cognitive Dissonance Theory.
1.4Assess the Expectancy Violations Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 1 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 2 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 3 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 4 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 5 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 6 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 7 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 8 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingReview this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.
ParticipationParticipate in class discussion.
Remember to participate in the class discussions 4 out of 7 days during the week.2 Discussion QuestionsRespond to weekly discussion questions. Discussion question responses will count towards the class participation requirement. Only posts in the Main classroom forum will count towards your class participation score. D1 – Day 3 DQ 2- Day- 43

Individual Identifying our Communication ExpectanciesComplete the University of Phoenix Material: Identifying our Communication Expectancies.Day 75 Learning Team Instructions
Learning Team CharterResource: Learning Team Toolkit
Complete the Learning Team Charter.Day 75
Individual
Communication Theories and Context Review Complete the Communication Theories and Context Review Worksheet.

Day 75
Individual
Weekly SummaryPost a 250-300 word summary of the course concepts that were
of the most interest to you in the Main forum by Monday, Day 7. Tell us about what things made sense, what things you were able to apply in your life, what things didn’t make sense, and your overall impression of the topics studied during the week.

Day 72

Week Two: Interpersonal Communication Theories
DetailsDuePoints
Objectives2.1Summarize the Uncertainty Reduction Theory.
2.2Analyze the Social Penetration Theory.
2.3Explain the Social Exchange Theory.
2.4Critique the Relational Dialectics Theory.
2.5Evaluate the Communication Privacy Management Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 9 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 10 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 11 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 12 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 13 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingReview this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.
ParticipationParticipate in class discussion.
Remember to participate in the class discussions 4 out of 7 days during the week.2 Discussion QuestionsRespond to weekly discussion questions. Discussion question responses will count towards the class participation requirement. Only posts in the Main classroom forum will count towards your class participation score. D1 – Day 3 DQ 2- Day- 43

Learning Team
Learning Team ExercisesComplete Identifying Communication Expectancies This activity assists you in identifying individual expectations for verbal and nonverbal communication behaviors in a variety of contexts or situations.

•Read the University of Phoenix Material: Identifying our Communication Expectancies worksheet. •Complete this worksheet individually, then answer the following questions as a group:

oWere there differences in the expectations that members of your group held for the various communication situations? oWhat factors do you believe influenced these different expectations? oWhat role do you think one’s culture plays in shaping expectations about appropriate and inappropriate communication behaviors?

Also complete the following as a team:

•Discuss any concept that a team member is having a difficult time understanding. •Examine the importance and applicability of this week’s concepts to each team member and to society in general.

Write a one-page summary of the team’s learnings following the discussions above. Include in your paper how your team managed the discussion i.e. UOPX Chat Function, Learning Team Forum, Conference Call, etc. Was this an effective method of communication?

Day 75
Learning Team
Script Project: Action PlanComplete the Action Plan section of the University of Phoenix Material: Final Learning Team Script Project.Day 710 Individual
Weekly SummaryPost a 250-300 word summary of the course concepts that were of the most interest to you in the Main forum by Monday, Day 7. Tell us about what things made sense, what things you were able to apply in your life, what things didn’t make sense, and your overall impression of the topics studied during the week.

Day 7 2

Week Three: Communication Theories for Groups, Teams, and Organization
DetailsDuePoints
Objectives3.1Analyze Groupthink.
3.2Explain the Adaptive Structuration Theory.
3.3Evaluate the Organizational Culture Theory.
3.4Assess the Organizational Information Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 14 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 15 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 16 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 17 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingReview this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.
ParticipationParticipate in class discussion.
Remember to participate in the class discussions 4 out of 7 days during the week.2 Discussion QuestionsRespond to weekly discussion questions. Discussion question responses will count towards the class participation requirement. Only posts in the Main classroom forum will count towards your class participation score. D1 – Day 3 DQ 2- Day- 43

Individual
Communication Theories PaperWrite a 1,750 to 2,100-word paper that applies three of the communication theories you have studied so far to your personal and/or professional life. For each theory you discuss, provide three examples of the theory at work in your life:

•How was the communication effective?
•How could it have been more effective?
•How might you communicate differently in the future?

Format your paper consistent with APA guidelines.Day 715
Individual
Weekly SummaryPost a 250-300 word summary of the course concepts that were of the most interest to you in the Main forum by Monday, Day 7. Tell us about what things made sense, what things you were able to apply in your life, what things didn’t make sense, and your overall impression of the topics studied during the week.

Day 7 2

Week Four: Communication Theories Regarding the Public and Media
DetailsDuePoints
Objectives4.1Compare and contrast Rhetoric, Dramatism, and the Narrative Paradigm. 4.2Summarize Cultivation Analysis.
4.3Illustrate the Use and Gratifications Theory.
4.4Critique the Spiral of Silence Theory.
4.5Assess the Medium Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 18 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 19 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 20 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 21 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 22 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 23 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 24 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 25 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingReview this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.
ParticipationParticipate in class discussion.

Remember to participate in the class discussions 4 out of 7 days during the week. Only posts in the Main classroom forum will count towards your class participation score.
2
Discussion QuestionsRespond to weekly discussion questions. Discussion question responses will count towards the class participation requirement.
D1 – Day 3
DQ 2- Day- 43
Individual
Assessing Your Organization’s Values PaperWrite a 1,750- to 2,100-word paper in which you analyze the values of the organization for which you work, or one with which you are familiar. Observe and analyze the corporate or business culture. Include the structure of the organization and information sharing practices. In the introduction to your paper, explain and provide the relevant background of your organization. Answer the following questions.

•How do structure and power relationships influence decision-making within your organization?

•What physical, behavioral, and verbal manifestation symbols affect the culture of your organization, such as décor, logos, ceremonies, rituals, jokes, jargon, and stories?

•How does your organization collect, manage, and use information?

Cite at least three peer-reviewed sources other than your textbook in your research for this paper.

Format your paper consistent with APA guidelines.Day 715
Learning Team
Learning Team Script Project: AppendicesComplete the Appendices section of the University of Phoenix Material: Final Learning Team Script Project.Day 710 Individual
Weekly SummaryPost a 250-300 word summary of the course concepts that were of the most interest to you in the Main forum by Monday, Day 7. Tell us about what things made sense, what things you were able to apply in your life, what things didn’t make sense, and your overall impression of the topics studied during the week.

Day 7 2

Week Five: Communication Theories for Diversity and Intercultural Communication
DetailsDuePoints
Objectives5.1Analyze the Face-Negotiation Theory.
5.2Explain the Standpoint Theory.
5.3Evaluate the Muted Group Theory.
5.4Assess the Communication Accommodation Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 26 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 27 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 28 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingRead Ch. 29 of Introducing Communication Theory.
ReadingReview this week’s Electronic Reserve Readings.
ParticipationParticipate in class discussion.
Remember to participate in the class discussions 4 out of 7 days during the week. Only posts in the Main classroom forum will count towards your class participation score. 2 Discussion QuestionsRespond to weekly discussion questions. Discussion question responses will count towards the class participation requirement.D1 – Day 3 DQ 2- Day- 43

Individual News Program AnalysisWatch television news coverage of the same story on three different TV networks to address the following three questions.

•What are the points of view of the segments? Are they objective or subjective? How do they demonstrate that point of view? What was included that should not have been? What was omitted? (Answer with approximately 700 words.)

•How are various social groups within the news segments represented? Answer with approximately 350 words.

•Are these news segments taken at face value or are they sensationalized for entertainment? How do these news segments affect your personal values? Why or why not? (Answer with approximately 700 words.)

Write an analysis of your findings in a 1,400- to 1,750-word paper.

Include how the three different forms of coverage of the same news story are portrayed and how the segments are framed with regard to presentation and bias.

Cite at least two peer-reviewed sources other than your textbook.Day 715 Individual Communications Theory and Application WorksheetComplete the University of Phoenix Material:Communications Theory and Application Worksheet. Day 710

Learning Team
Learning Team Script Project: Final ScriptsComplete the Week Five section of the University of Phoenix Material: Final Learning Team Script Project.Day 515 Individual
Weekly SummaryPost a 250-300 word summary of the course concepts that were of the most interest to you in the Main forum by Monday, Day 7. Tell us about what things made sense, what things you were able to apply in your life, what things didn’t make sense, and your overall impression of the topics studied during the week.

Day 7 2

Optional Discussion Questions

Week One Discussion Questions

•How does a person’s field of experience influence a communication event?

•Has there been a time in your life when your sense of self changed dramatically? If so, what contributed to the change, and did it have anything to do with others in your life?

•Suppose you want some friends to change their drinking and driving behaviors. What suggestions would you take from the Cognitive Dissonance Theory? How could you apply the theory in persuading your friends?

Week Two Discussion Questions

•Do you think relationships are better explained through staged theories or dialectics? Why? Provide examples.

•Apply the Communication Privacy Management Theory to online relationships.

•Choose a current relationship of yours and perform a cost-benefit analysis on it. Assess whether the relationship meets, fails to meet, or exceeds your comparison level. Do the same for your comparison level for alternatives.
Does applying this theory help you understand the relationship? Explain.

Week Three Discussion Questions

•Discuss the advantages and disadvantages associated with having a high level of cohesiveness among members of a group.

•Geertz applied the analogy of a spider web to explain organizational culture. Develop an original analogy that can be used to explain organizational culture. Be sure to discuss the reasoning behind your choice.

•Explain the three stages in the cycle of communication behaviors to reduce equity of information. Provide an example of each.

Week Four Discussion Questions

•Do you agree or disagree with Burke that guilt is the central motive for all communication? Why or why not?

•Do you agree with Fisher that humans are storytellers? What does that mean to you in a practical sense? If we are not storytellers, what metaphor could be used to describe us?

•Discuss reality TV shows, such as Survivor, Fear Factor, and the extent to which cultivation theorists would analyze these shows. What feature of reality television are opportunistic study? In your opinion what would Gerner say about this television programming?

Week Five Discussion Questions

•Apply the concept of face to a close relationship you have with a family member. Be sure to explain how face functions in various conflict situations with that family member.

•Discuss the role of in-groups in influencing your decision to engage in
communication accommodation. Describe a situation in which you either engaged in accommodation or witnessed another person who accommodated his or her speech.

•If all truths are understood as coming from some subjective standpoint, how is it possible for people to communicate? If there is no objective truth, how do we reach agreement among people with different standpoints?

Copyright

University of Phoenix® is a registered trademark of Apollo Group, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries.

Microsoft®, Windows®, and Windows NT® are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. All other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. Use of these marks is not intended to imply endorsement, sponsorship, or affiliation.

Edited in accordance with University of Phoenix® editorial standards and practices.

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