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OUR CURRICULUM

A glance at our courses

The School of Communications offers more than 50 courses for students. Most are offered at least once a year, and many are scheduled every semester.

A few are special electives offered on an occasional basis or special international courses; these intriguing and often time-sensitive courses are not on this more permanent list.

A broad university education prepares students to be knowledgeable people in a complicated world, and the SchoolÕs curriculum provides the concepts and skills to succeed in a chosen career. About half of the SchoolÕs graduates go directly into media and communications careers. The other half find that having communications expertise prepares them well for graduate school, law school, business opportunities and public service.

Following is a list of the Journalism and Communications courses in Elon's Academic Catalog ("4 sh" indicates the course offers 4 semester hours of academic credit):

JCM 200. COMMUNICATIONS
IN A GLOBAL SOCIETY
4 sh
Contemporary mass media play a vital role in society, both locally and globally. In this course, students study the importance of books, magazines, newspapers, recordings, movies, radio, television and the internet, and the messages carried through news, public relations and advertising. The course emphasizes the relationship of media and democracy, theories related to media effects, the diversity of audiences, and the global impact of communications.

JCM 210. PUBLIC SPEAKING 2 sh
Students learn principles for speaking in public settings, with significant in-class presentation and out-of-class topical research. The course focuses on the structure and effective delivery of ideas, use of language, supporting evidence, reasoning and emotional appeals, diction, pronunciation and nonverbal communication. Credit not given in the major for both JCM 210 and 211.

JCM 211. PROFESSIONAL SPEAKING
AND RHETORIC
4 sh
Students learn principles for speaking in both public and organizational settings, with significant in-class presentation and out-of-class topical research and rhetorical analysis. The course focuses on the structure and effective delivery of ideas, use of language, supporting evidence, reasoning and emotional appeals, diction, pronunciation and nonverbal communication. Introduces ancient Greek and modern American rhetorical examples. Credit not given in the major for both JCM 210 and 211.

JCM 218. MEDIA WRITING 4 sh
Clear, logical writing is necessary to communicate effectively to an audience. This course focuses on background research, interviews, accuracy, attribution and styles of writing (print, broadcast, online, news releases). Superior grammar and language skills are expected, and Associated Press style is introduced. Students also write a research paper on a communications topic. Prerequisite: C- or better in ENG 110.

JCM 220. DIGITAL
MEDIA CONVERGENCE
4 sh
Convergence is the blending of text, sounds and images in the media environment to create new media. This course features units on visual literacy, photo editing, audio processing, video editing and web publishing. Students learn theories of aural and visual aesthetics and produce individual web pages. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200.

JCM 235. INTERPERSONAL
COMMUNICATION
2 sh
Interpersonal relationships can be enhanced through the acquisition and development of communication skills. Topics include self-concept, perception, conversation skills and conflict resolution.

JCM 237. SMALL-GROUP
COMMUNICATIONS
2 sh
The effectiveness of small-group communications can be enhanced through the acquisition and development of skills related to committee, team and work-group processes.

JCM 251. COMMUNICATIONS
STUDIES ABROAD
4 sh
Students who study abroad can earn credit for specialized study on a communications topic.

JCM 300. REPORTING
FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD
4 sh
Students focus on gathering and writing news that is accurate, logical and compelling. This course analyzes good writing by professional journalists and teaches the importance of the sound and sense of words. Students discuss concepts such as civic journalism, the watchdog function of the news media, ethical practice, and journalism's role in serving the public good in a democracy. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

JCM 302. BROADCASTING
IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST
4 sh
Broadcasting was conceived and is regulated to serve the public interest. This course provides a philosophical, historical, technological and social overview of the broadcast and electronic media industries. It focuses on broadcast economics, management, audience analysis, programming, media effects, governmental policy and FCC regulation in the public interest. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

JCM 304. PUBLIC RELATIONS
AND CORPORATE CITIZENSHIP
4 sh
Public relations is the bridge between an organization and its many publics. This course emphasizes the theories, strategies and techniques in organizational environments (corporate, not-for-profit, associations, agencies, government) and studies historical roots, formation of public opinion, crisis management, marketing, and the ethical requirements to be a responsible corporate citizen. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

JCM 306. DEVELOPMENT AND
SOCIAL INFLUENCE OF CINEMA
4 sh
The cinema has a rich history as an art form, from silent films to today. This course explores the social influence of cinema, both American and international. Students will analyze cinema as a business enterprise and entertainment medium as well as an art form.

JCM 310. ADVERTISING: PRINCIPLES
AND PRACTICE 4 sh
Advertising is a creative communications process between messenger and consumer. This course studies the research foundation and the techniques used in creating advertising for print, electronic and online media. Topics include history, ethics, social dynamics, economic implications for society and the global spread of advertising.


JCM 311. INTERNATIONAL
COMMUNICATIONS
4 sh
Media systems differ substantially in the Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa and the rest of the world. In this course, students examine the media systems of many countries, stressing the chief problems of communications across cultural, economic, sociological and political barriers. Prerequisite: junior standing.

JCM 315. MEDIA AND CULTURE 4 sh
The media shape American culture, and culture in turn shapes the media. This course considers media as a ritual of every-day culture and maps the uneasy and parallel developments of consumer culture and democratic society.

JCM 316. POLITICS IN MASS MEDIA 4 sh
The media have a tremendous effect on the American political system in terms of news coverage, candidate visibility, political messages, and the creation of public opinion. This course traces the evolution of media impact to the present day.

JCM 317. RELIGION AND MEDIA 4 sh
Religion and media are two powerful influences in society. This course analyzes how they intersect through news coverage of religious issues and the presentation of religious themes in the entertainment media. Topics include the history of religious communication, covering religion as news, religion's use of television and the internet, religious messages in movies, and media portrayal of religious people and traditions. Prerequisite: REL 121 or 134.

JCM 318. ORGANIZATIONAL
COMMUNICATIONS
4 sh
Every organization has its own internal patterns and practices of communication. This course addresses the theories and workplace issues related to culture, teams, interpersonal relations and organizational strategy. Students analyze global, technological and ethical dimensions of communication in organizations.

JCM 320. PHOTOJOURNALISM 4 sh
Photojournalism is the visual reporting of news. Students produce visual photojournalism by translating ideas and newsworthy information into visual form. The course emphasizes composition, lighting, storytelling and editing, along with the history of photojournalism and its legal and ethical frameworks. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 322. WRITING FOR
ELECTRONIC MEDIA
4 sh
Writing for radio, television and other electronic media has its own style, form and content approaches. Students focus on writing news, commercials, public service announcements and other copy for the ear. This course teaches the importance of the sound and sense of words, and students discuss contemporary issues. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

324. STRATEGIC WRITING
AND PRESENTATIO
N 4 sh
This course emphasizes the preparation and delivery of messages applicable to public relations, advertising and media relations. Informative and persuasive methods include news releases, backgrounders, speech writing, employee publications, annual reports, news conferences, multimedia, public service announcements and oral presentations to a variety of audiences. Prerequisite: JCM 304.

JCM 325. EDITING AND DESIGN 4 sh
Precision in word usage and style and an aesthetic sense of design are valuable in publications. Students practice crafting content, editing copy, writing headlines, using photos and graphics, writing captions and designing pages. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

JCM 326. FEATURE WRITING 4 sh
Students in this course study writing styles and write feature articles for newspapers and magazines. The course applies techniques of fiction such as narrative, characterization, dialogue and scenes to nonfiction writing. Prerequisite: C- or better in JCM 218.

JCM 327. CORPORATE PUBLISHING
AND WRITING
4 sh
Print and web media (publications, public relations, advertising and the internet) are used to communicate with internal and external publics. This course emphasizes effective writing for corporate purposes and effective visual design. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 330. BROADCAST JOURNALISM 4 sh
Students report, write, edit and produce local news, commentary and sports coverage. They also analyze good broadcast journalism, audience research, effects research, and production. Prerequisite: JCM 220 and either 300 or 322.

JCM 334. COMMUNICATIONS RESEARCH
4 sh
Theoretical and methodological knowledge is necessary to properly conduct and apply mass communication research. This course explores public opinion polling, marketing research and qualitative methods, and highlights surveys, content analysis, focus groups and audience analysis. Prerequisite: JCM 300, 302, 304 or 306.

JCM 338. MAGAZINE PUBLISHING 4 sh
This course examines the magazine publishing industry from its origins to today. Students explore industry trends toward specialization and magazine publishing processes including concept, planning, writing, editing, advertising, production, promotion and distribution of a finished product.

JCM 340. AUDIO PRODUCTION
4 sh
Sound is an important element in media communications. This course analyzes production techniques applicable in radio, television, cinema and online (editing, music and sound effects, signal processing and multi-channel production). Students learn studio operation, producing, writing and performing. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 342. FILM THEORY
AND ANALYSIS
4 sh
This course surveys classical and contemporary film theory. Students study critical approaches to the study of film including formalism, realism and expressionism. This is an intensive writing course in film theory and criticism, including film reviews. Prerequisite: C- or better in both JCM 200 and 218.

JCM 344. SCREENWRITING 4 sh
Writing for the cinema requires plot development, narrative, characterization, dialogue and scenes. This course explores film formats such as drama, comedy and documentary. Students write scripts of varied lengths. Prerequisite: C- or better in ENG 110.

JCM 345. THE ART OF FILM
AND VIDEO EDITING 4 sh
Students study film and video editing with an emphasis on the art of montage. The course examines the historical and theoretical evolution of editing, and students complete projects using computer-based editing systems. Prerequisite: JCM 220
.
JCM 346. AFRICAN FILM 4 sh
Students examine films produced in Africa and study the "language" created by African cinema. The course concentrates on the history of the continent and the problems of tradition versus modernity as expressed in African film.

JCM 349. THE SOUTH IN FILM 4 sh
The American South has been a focal point of film through the years. Each work is studied from two viewpoints: the time of the film (historical setting) and the time of the filming (historical context). The course shows how the South and its historical stereotypes have been portrayed to the world and to Southerners themselves.

JCM 350. BROADCAST PERFORMANCE 4 sh
This course emphasizes effective presentation of ideas and information on radio and television. Students focus on vocal and visual presentation, voice and diction, pronunciation, appearance, gestures and movement. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 352. CORPORATE VIDEO
4 sh
Broadcast media are used to communicate with internal and external publics. This course emphasizes achieving an organization's goals through informing, persuading and entertaining. Students focus on research, writing, and both studio and remote video production. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 358. FILM PRODUCTION 4 sh
Students in this course explore concepts of film-style cinematography and editing. Students are responsible for writing, shooting and editing their own productions using video and computer-based editing systems. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 360. MEDIA HISTORY 4 sh
This course examines the development, growth and impact of media in America. It studies the major trends, important personalities, technological advancements and societal impact ranging from colonial newspapers in the 1600s to today's print and electronic media.

JCM 364. WEB PUBLISHING
AND DESIGN
4 sh
In this advanced study of online publishing, students analyze the effective use of the internet as a publication tool and its impact on society. Students experiment with diverse ways of using media such as text, graphics, sound and video to effectively transmit information and data and to interact with users. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 365. INTERACTIVE
AND NEW MEDIA
4 sh
Students analyze the history and structure of interactive and newer media forms (such as DVD, CD-ROM and the internet) and explore their potential uses. This course experiments with interactive presentations and emerging media, using a media theory framework and models drawn from the fields of cognition and graphic design. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 366. TELEVISION PRODUCTION 4 sh
Students explore the principles and techniques in television broadcasting and other video media. Studio and field assignments emphasize the aesthetics of teleproduction and the centrality of effective audio. Students research, write and produce news, commercials and public service announcements. Prerequisite: JCM 220.

JCM 367. FILM AESTHETICS AND DESIGN
4 sh
This course provides a conceptual framework for designing and creating cinema and television programs. It focuses on applied visual aesthetics including production design, camera composition, color, motion, editing, sound effects and music. The course highlights the relationship between story content and artistic form. Prerequisite: JCM 220 and 306.

JCM 368. THE DOCUMENTARY 4 sh
Students trace the origins of the documentary and its status today, ranging from news documentaries to nature and travel films to major artistic documentaries. Students produce documentary projects outside of class. Prerequisite: JCM 220 and 306.

JCM 369. THE AUTEUR DIRECTOR 4 sh
The auteur theory proposes that the greatest movies are dominated by the personal vision of one person - the director. This course examines the career of a specific director, emphasizing that director's auteur characteristics. Students view selected films from the director's filmography and write about particular auteur characteristics Prerequisite: JCM 306.

JCM 371. SEMINAR: SPECIAL TOPICS 1-4 sh
Recent examples include Media Management, Global Press Freedom and Ethics, Philanthropy and Corporate Communications, Magazine Writing, The Pulitzer Prizes, and Advertising Copywriting.

JCM 380. MEDIA WORKSHOP 1 sh
An on-campus practicum with student media, featuring weekly instruction from a faculty adviser. Prerequisite: approval of dean's office. Maximum of 4 credit hours applied toward major.

JCM 381. COMMUNICATIONS INTERNSHIP 1-4 sh
An off-campus, professionally supervised internship in journalism, broadcast and new media, corporate communications, or cinema. Students secure an internship with guidance from the School's internship office and enroll for 1, 2, 3 or 4 credit hours, based on at least 80 work-hours per credit hour. An internship involves creation of a student portfolio, reflection assignments and supervisor evaluations. Prerequisite: approval of School's internship director.

JCM 395. MEDIA LAW AND ETHICS 4 sh
The First Amendment is the philosophical foundation for freedom of speech and press in America. This course distinguishes between forms of communication that have constitutional protection and those with limitations (libel, privacy, copyright, censorship, commercial speech, broadcast licensing, access to information). Students explore the foundations of moral reasoning and apply ethical responsibilities to communications cases. Prerequisite: junior status.

JCM 404. CORPORATE CAMPAIGNS 4 sh
This course provides for the application of public relations strategies and techniques through the creation of a communications campaign for real clients. Students engage in audience analysis, budget preparation and development of a strategic for corporate, nonprofit, association and/or government clients. Prerequisite: JCM 304, 324 and 334.

JCM 420. DESIGN AND INFORMATION GRAPHICS
4 sh In this advanced course, students focus on effective design, information graphics and photo editing for newspapers, magazines and other publications. Students apply that knowledge to design projects. The course analyzes use of type, images and color. Prerequisite: JCM 325 or 327.

JCM 425. SPECIALIZED REPORTING 4 sh
Advanced students investigate the techniques used to research and report complex political, social and economic issues related to specialized areas of news coverage such as business writing, sports writing and opinion writing. Strategies are developed for individual reporting projects, and students explore story topics, sources and pitfalls. Prerequisite: JCM 300.

JCM 430. TELEVISION NEWS REPORTING
4 sh
In this advanced study of electronic news gathering, students analyze current examples of news and public affairs programming as well as research, write, edit and produce television news packages. Prerequisite: JCM 330.

JCM 491. INDEPENDENT STUDY 1-4 sh
Students work with a faculty member on a rigorous project outside the domain of traditional coursework. Prerequisite: approval of dean's office. Maximum of 4 credit hours applied toward major.


JCM 495. GREAT IDEAS: CAPSTONE
IN
COMMUNICATIONS 4 sh
Students examine the importance of free expression in a democracy and other great ideas, and trends such as media convergence, global communications, media consolidation and the impact of new technologies. The course assesses student learning of professional values and competencies, and students create a capstone project. Prerequisite: senior status. Students must pass this course with a grade of C- or better.

JCM 499. RESEARCH 1-4 sh
This course offers students the opportunity to create an undergraduate original research project guided by a faculty mentor. A research proposal form completed by the student and faculty mentor is required for registration. Prerequisite: approval of the dean's office.






Journalism
Broadcast and New Media
Corporate Communications
Cinema
Academic minors
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Course descriptions
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School of Communications 
2850 Campus Box 
Elon, NC 27244-2010   (336) 278-5724 
E-mail: communications@elon.edu
Last Modified:  8/15/05
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