Curriculum and Requirements

Professional Communication Core Courses

PCM 101 Introduction to Professional Communication (3 credits)
This course introduces the student to the foundations of communication and facilitates conscious, meaningful use of communication. She develops a broad grasp of communication theories, processes, and contexts. specific areas of study include nonverbal, perceptual, organizational, mass media, and intercultural communication.

PCM 120 (also MGT 120) Interpersonal and Group Communication (3 credits)
In this course, the student is introduced to the underlying assumptions, theories, and applications of communication theory and social psychology to interpersonal and group research and behavior. She has the opportunity to learn and improve her individual interaction skills, using both interpersonal and task-oriented models, and to develop the ability to analyze her own and others' behavior.

PCM 130 Writing: The Editing Process (3 credits)
The student refines her ability to write for specific purposes and specific audiences in situations involving the translation of new and /or technical information. She also learns to edit her writing and that of others to meet the demands of varied formats, functions, and audiences. With a preliminary investigation of readability research, she focuses on clarity of presentations.

PCM 170 Visual Communication (3 credits)
The course emphasizes the principles of design as they relate to the visual presentation of information. The student learns to use desktop publishing software and computer systems to design print media layouts. She also learns to apply compositional and technical criteria in photography projects and develops a repertory of skills for critically viewing, selecting, and/or producing visual media.

PCM 200 Public Speaking (3 credits)
In this course, the student learns to apply theoretical frameworks that help her become an effective public communicator. Drawing on the Integrated Communication Seminars, she links prior learning to the discipline of communication, focusing on informative, persuasive, and multipurpose presentations. She uses frameworks that include classical rhetorical principles, discourse analysis, psychological and sociological theories of audience analysis, and mediated message reception to prepare and present her ideas effectively. She collaborates with peers to research, organize, and deliver group presentations.

PCM 230 Influence and General Semantics (3 credits)

PCM 300 Advanced Writing: Professional Applications (3 credits)
Building on communication theory and demonstrated effective writing strategies, the student expands her ability to write in various areas of professional writing, including creative, news, media, technical, and public relations. She learns and applies guidelines for publications. In addition to developing a refined awareness of and sensitivity to various audiences and purposes, she begins to create her own professional writing portfolio.

PCM 320 Advanced Media Studies and Multimedia Production (3 credits)
Media analysis, public performance, and digital video production projects form the learning core of this advanced-level course. The student works with media theory and cultural studies to investigate media's social impact. Within professional and personal contexts, she refines critical and creative skills to design, produce, and evaluate multimedia messages that support a sophisticated level of presentation work. She also draws upon her knowledge of media and production to create a final digital video project.

PCM 486 Communication Theory and Research (3 credits)
Deeper understandings of major theoretical perspectives and research methods in the communication discipline and profession are emphasized in this upper-level course. The student examines how communication theory and research informs professional practice and how professional practice informs communication theory. She employs a systematic approach to prepare an extensive proposal for problem-base communication research. Her work supports and prepares her for such contexts as graduate school and grant writing.

PCM 499 Professional Practice Seminar (3 credits)
In this capstone course, the student chooses a final, semester-long project in which she synthesizes her learning. In completing the project, she demonstrates proficiency in her chosen mode of communication, examines and applies professional standards and communication codes of ethics in complex professional situations, gives evidence of applied research, and shows refined presentation skills. The student prepares a professional resume and portfolio.