Communication (COMM)

Ron Warren
Chair of the Department
525 Kimpel Hall
479-575-5957
Email: ronw@uark.edu

Communication Department Website

The Department of Communication offers a major leading to the Bachelor of Arts degree in communication as well as a minor in communication.

As a subject for academic study, communication bridges the humanities and the social sciences. It focuses on all forms and modes of communication and its consequences for individuals, groups, organizations, communities, and cultures. Our program of study applies communication theory and principles to a wide variety of settings, including interpersonal relationships, business and political systems, cultural interaction and communication technologies. 

Communication students may concern themselves with the dynamics of persuasion, media technologies, gender roles, the family, organizational structures, cultural myths, and rhetoric. Because the program offers many diverse interests, there is a place for anyone with a genuine curiosity about human communication and its effect upon society. 

The Department of Communication offers courses in five principal areas of study, though students can also choose to follow a broad range of courses across these areas:

  • Film studies
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Mediated communication
  • Organizations and communities
  • Rhetoric and public communication

Communication majors from recent graduating classes now hold positions in government and public affairs, business, public relations, non-profit organizations, education, and media. Many others successfully pursue further education in graduate and professional schools.

Courses

COMM 10003. Basic Course in the Arts: Film Lecture. 3 Hours.

Introduction to film as entertainment and art. How to look at film through a study of composition, lighting, editing, sound and acting. Lectures and viewing time. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer)

COMM 100H3. Honors Basic Course in the Arts: Film Lecture. 3 Hours.

Introduction of film as entertainment and art. How to look at a film through a study of composition, lighting, editing, sound and acting. Lectures and viewing time. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 10203. Communication in a Diverse World. 3 Hours.

Introductory course that focuses on the skills and understandings associated with competent communication in a diverse society within interpersonal, group, organizational and intercultural communication contexts. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 102H3. Honors Communication in a Diverse World. 3 Hours.

Introductory course that focuses on the skills and understandings associated with competent communication in a diverse society within interpersonal, group, organizational and intercultural communication contexts. Prerequisite: Honors standing. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 12303. Media, Community and Citizenship. 3 Hours.

Examines theory and research on how messages are processed, meanings constructed, communities formed and maintained through interaction with the media. Focus is on critical citizenship and media literacy in the context of the cognitive, social, cultural, political, and economic consequences of increasingly networked media systems. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 123H3. Honors Media, Community and Citizenship. 3 Hours.

Examines theory and research on how messages are processed, meanings constructed, communities formed and maintained through interaction with the media. Focus is on critical citizenship and media literacy in the context of the cognitive, social, cultural, political, and economic consequences of increasingly networked media systems. Prerequisite: Honors standing. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 21003. Interviewing. 3 Hours.

A study in the theory and practice of methods in selected interview settings, with an emphasis on interviewing through research, journalism, employment, and historical perspectives. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 23003. Advanced Public Speaking. 3 Hours.

Continuing study of the invention and adaptation or oral discourse to the needs of listeners. Consideration of the problems of communication in platform presentation. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer)

COMM 23203. Interpersonal Communication. 3 Hours.

Personal and interpersonal factors affecting communication in everyday life. Emphasis upon ways in which interpersonal perception, physical environment, semantic choices, and nonverbal cues affect communication primarily in the context of work, family, and other personal experiences. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer)

COMM 23303. Introduction to Communication Research. 3 Hours.

Introduction to the basic assumptions underlying communication inquiry; resources for and methods of data collection in communication research; and techniques for organization, interpretation, reporting, and evaluation of communication research. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 23403. Introduction to Small-Group Communication. 3 Hours.

An introduction to procedures used in exchanging information, solving problems, determining policies, and resolving differences in committees and other small groups. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer)

COMM 23503. Argumentation and Advocacy. 3 Hours.

An introduction to argumentation theory and practice, with concern for analyzing and producing logical, effective, and ethical public discourse. Examines contemporary models for analyzing argument, covers the common types of arguments and ways to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses, and introduces ways to test arguments for validity and fallacies. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 26103. Nonverbal Communication. 3 Hours.

Creates an understanding of the functions of nonverbal cues operating in human communication processes and develops familiarity with recent research in the field of nonverbal communication. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 28103. Introduction to Mediated Communication. 3 Hours.

Introduction to media and media industries, particularly the social and cultural impact of their economic and regulatory structures. Emphasis on the historical development of media, business practices of media organizations, critical analysis of media messages, and cultural functions of the media. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 2980V. Topics in Communication. 1-3 Hour.

Topics in communication not represented in other lower division courses. Prerequisite: Completion of at least 3 hours of COMM coursework. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for up to 9 hours of degree credit.

COMM 31503. Visual Communication. 3 Hours.

An examination of visual communication with emphasis on the understanding, manipulation, and effects of these messages on individuals and society. Explores visual messages in contexts such as film, television, advertising, social media, and the Internet by incorporating humanistic and social science theory and research. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 31703. Introduction to Linguistics. 3 Hours.

Introduction to language study with stress upon modern linguistic theory and analysis. Data drawn from various languages reveal linguistic universals as well as phonological, syntactic, and semantic systems of individual languages. Related topics: language history, dialectology, language and its relation to culture and society, and the history of linguistic scholarship. Prerequisite: Junior standing, SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 32503. The Latinx Image in Media. 3 Hours.

Exploration of the image and experience(s) of Latinx populations in the United States as represented in visual and print media, including film, television, news journalism, and art. Topics related to US Latinx history, culture, politics, and socioeconomics will be examined in the analyses of these mediated depictions. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 32603. African Americans in Film. 3 Hours.

A survey of the history of images of African Americans in film, especially as these images are examined in the context of stereotypical renditions and/or realistic representations of African American experiences. Issues of African American history, culture, and socio-political context will be addressed in the analyses of these films. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 32703. African Americans in Documentary Film. 3 Hours.

Exploration of the African-American image and experience in the context of time, historical record and varying production viewpoints from diverse documentarians. African-American history, culture and socio-political context are addressed in the analyses of these documentary films from the perspectives of mainstream media, independent filmmakers and minority documentarians Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 32803. U.S. Latinos and Latinas through Film. 3 Hours.

This course will examine the portrayal of U.S. Latinos and Latinas in Hollywood films and how those images have changed over time. While coverage will extend to the early years of the twentieth century, the chosen films will place particular emphasis on the century's second half, from the Cold War to the modern day. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 329H3. Honors Colloquium. 3 Hours.

Treats a special topic or issue, offered as part of the honors program. Prerequisite: Honors candidacy (not restricted to candidacy in communication). (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 33403. Contemporary Communication Theory. 3 Hours.

Study of the nature of the communication process as it is reflected in the individual, in interpersonal settings, in one-to-many situations, and in the mass media. Prerequisite: COMM 23203. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 33703. Leadership Communication. 3 Hours.

An analysis of leadership as a discursive process, focusing on how leadership emerges and is enacted on a daily basis through communication-related behaviors. Prerequisite: COMM 23403 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 33803. Persuasion. 3 Hours.

Introduction to theories of persuasion with emphasis on application and effect. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303, or instructor permission. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer)

COMM 34203. Science Fiction Film. 3 Hours.

This class concentrates on how science fiction in various communication media influences and is, in turn, influenced by broad features of cultural life. The class considers the impact of science fiction on science fact, the military, space travel, religion, race, gender, social class, education, politics, technology, and fashion styles. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 34303. Family Communication. 3 Hours.

Study of the nature, functions, and management of communication patterns in the family. Focus is on understanding routine interpersonal interactions, conflict patterns, authority structures, and decision-making processes within the context of the contemporary family. Prerequisite: COMM 23203. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 34403. Introduction to Rhetorical Theory. 3 Hours.

Interpretive-critical study of rhetoric in public contexts. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 35003. Popular Communication and Culture. 3 Hours.

This course is an introduction to basic theories and topics of Popular Communication and Culture studies. The course will emphasize understanding popular media communication forms. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Summer)

COMM 36703. Mediated Communication. 3 Hours.

Focuses on media messages and their social/cultural effects. Includes a critical examination of media institutions and the ways they vie for audiences. Other topics include the ways people construct meaning from messages, media's influence on attitudes, media's role in cultural life, and audiences as critical consumers of media. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 37003. Organizational Communication. 3 Hours.

An introduction to the theory, processes, and management of communication in organizations, with opportunities for simulated application. Prerequisite: COMM 23403. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 37603. Health Communication. 3 Hours.

Examines communication within health care organizations and teams. Issues may include patient-provider communication, communication among health care professionals, negative consequences of poor communication in health care delivery, and the use of technology in health-related information dissemination and campaigns. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 38003. Survey of Social Media. 3 Hours.

Surveys research on social media, focusing on the potential cognitive, social, cultural, political, and/or economic consequences of social media and on strategies for engaging with and through social media to promote personal, social and civic goals. Pre- or Corequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 38803. Rhetoric of Social Movements. 3 Hours.

Study of the functions of rhetoric as it appears in the context of social movements such as American independence, women's equality, civil rights, populism, and new conservatism. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 39303. Special Topics in Film Studies. 3 Hours.

Topics in film studies which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 39403. Special Topics in Interpersonal Communication. 3 Hours.

Topics in interpersonal communication which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: COMM 23203. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 39503. Special Topics in Mediated Communication. 3 Hours.

Topics in mediated communication which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 39603. Special Topics in Organizational Communication. 3 Hours.

Topics in organizational communication which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: COMM 23403. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 39703. Special Topics in Rhetoric and Public Communication. 3 Hours.

Topics in rhetoric and public communication which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 39803. Special Topics. 3 Hours.

Communication topics which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 398H3. Honors Special Topics. 3 Hours.

Communication topics which are not usually presented in depth in regular courses. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003, COMM 23303 and honors standing. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer) May be repeated for degree credit.

COMM 399H1. Honors Course in Communication Research. 1 Hour.

The Honors Course in Communication is the student's first step toward developing an honors thesis project. The course is designed to facilitate the exploration of potential thesis topics, selection of a viable study for the thesis, and the conceptualization of that study. Prerequisite: Honors candidacy. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 41003. Communicating Body Image. 3 Hours.

This course examines the hidden assumptions about body image as it relates to the intersections of race, class, gender, and other major identity markers. This course is designed a) to facilitate the acquisition of systematic knowledge by applying theories to critically analyze media images and messages, b) to stimulate student interest in feminist media studies as an academic discipline, and c) to promote body neutrality of self and diverse others in a media-saturated society. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 41103. Legal Communication. 3 Hours.

Examines communication processes in the legal environment and focuses on communication skills and behaviors among judges, attorneys, litigants, and jurors. Particular attention will be given to verbal strategies and nonverbal messages related to interviews, negotiation, mediation, and litigation and to the rhetorical functions of legal pleadings and judicial opinions. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 41403. American Film Survey. 3 Hours.

A survey of major American film genres, major directors and films that have influenced the development of motion pictures. Prerequisite: COMM 10003 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 42803. Communication in Contemporary Society. 3 Hours.

An examination of research and theory on the process and effects of communication in modern society. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 43203. Communication and Conflict. 3 Hours.

Study of the processes, effects, and managements of communicative conflict, including a consideration of conflict styles, power, goals, tactics, assessment, self-intervention and third-party intervention. Prerequisite: COMM 23203 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 43303. Communication and Gender. 3 Hours.

Study of the nature, construction, functions, and effects of gender and gender-role stereotypes related to verbal and nonverbal communication, small-group and organizational interaction, and mass mediated images in contemporary culture. Prerequisite: COMM 23203 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 43403. Intercultural Communication. 3 Hours.

Study of intercultural communication skills, intercultural issues and their impact at home and abroad, and cross-cultural comparisons of communication phenomena from a variety of theoretical perspectives. Prerequisite: COMM 23203. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 43503. American Public Address. 3 Hours.

Historical and critical study of the leading American speakers, their speeches, the issues with which they were identified. Lectures, discussion, reports, and critical papers. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503 or instructor permission. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 43603. Gender, Race and Power. 3 Hours.

Examines how communication shapes gender, race, sexuality, and power. Rather than focusing exclusively on interpersonal communication, this course looks at theories of power that shape institutional macro communication. Prerequisite: COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 43703. Political Communication. 3 Hours.

Study of the nature and function of the communication process as it operates in the political environment. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Spring Even Years)

COMM 43803. Rhetoric of the Modern American Presidency. 3 Hours.

A study of the increasing reliance of contemporary presidents on public persuasion through rhetorical discourse. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 43903. Freedom of Speech: Cases & Issues. 3 Hours.

Study of philosophy, cases, and issues relevant to the first amendment right to the free expression, with focus on issues relevant to internal security, obscenity, pornography, slander, and the regulation of communication. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 44203. Disaster and Risk Communication. 3 Hours.

Examines the role of public communication efforts across all phases of a disaster with an emphasis on the use of risk communication theory to inform disaster preparedness campaign message design and response to media inquiries immediately following disasters. Prerequisite: COMM 23403 or instructor consent. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring)

COMM 44303. Community Resilience. 3 Hours.

Explores communication systems, community relationships, and strategic communication processes that constitute community resilience. Introduces various methodological approaches to assessing community resilience in order to develop communication-based interventions that promote belonging, transformative potential, and social capital. Prerequisite: COMM 23403 or instructor permission. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 46103. Rhetoric of American Women. 3 Hours.

Examines the social and cultural assumptions that have limited the role of women in public communication. Focus is on the rhetorical biographies of selected women and their arguments on important social and political issues. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 or COMM 23503. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 46303. History and Development of International Film I. 3 Hours.

A critical survey of international film as a distinctive art form and as a medium of expression and communication with attention given to films and cinema from its origins to 1975. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 46403. Environmental Communication. 3 Hours.

Explores how communication is used by individuals, corporations, and governments to shape public debates about environmental issues. Topics include rhetorical strategies, the publics' right to information and input, dispute resolution techniques, advocacy campaigns, and green marketing. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303 or permission of instructor. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 46503. International Film II. 3 Hours.

A critical survey of international film as a distinctive art form as a medium of expression and communication with attention given to films and cinema from 1976 to the present. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 46803. Documentary Film. 3 Hours.

A study and analysis of the documentary film as a discrete film form and as an important contribution to the international cinematic scene. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 47303. Reel Women. 3 Hours.

An examination of films made for, about, and/or by women with the aim of better understanding and centralizing issues pertinent to women's daily lives. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 47403. Representational Issues in Film. 3 Hours.

An examination of the varying ways that race and ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, class, (dis)ability, and age are represented in and by film - both historically and culturally. Prerequisite: COMM 10003. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 47603. Health Communication Campaigns. 3 Hours.

Canvasses the theoretical frameworks used in the conceptualization of communication campaigns focused on health information dissemination and the purposes these campaigns serve. Students participate in a service learning project by defining campaign goals; identifying, segmenting, and assessing target audiences; and designing messages for multi-mediated health campaigns. (Typically offered: Spring Odd Years)

COMM 47703. Treatment of Native Americans in Film. 3 Hours.

This course compares the treatment of Native Americans in film with how representatives of this group identify themselves. Particular attention is paid to how motion pictures focusing on Native Americans produced by indigenous filmmakers compare to treatments of this people produced by Hollywood and others. Prerequisite: COMM 10003 or instructor consent. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 48003. Seminar in Social Media. 3 Hours.

This class encourages in depth examination of contemporary theory and research on the potential effects of social media on cognitive, social, cultural, political, affective, and economic structures. Focus is on critical thinking and contextualization of social media. Pre- or Corequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Spring Even Years)

COMM 48203. Children and Media. 3 Hours.

An in-depth examination of children's use of media and the effects of media content on child and adolescent development. Topics may include violence and sex in media, commercialism, and new media. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Spring Odd Years)

COMM 48403. Computer-Mediated Communication. 3 Hours.

Provides an in depth consideration of the nature of computer-mediated communication by examining its use and effects in interpersonal, work, educational, and societal contexts. Prerequisite: COMM 28103 or instructor permission. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 48603. Seminar in Media. 3 Hours.

Research/discussion of contemporary issues in media. Emphasis on the economic and social impact of advertising, news, censorship, programs directed toward children, portrayals of women and minorities, future trends in media technologies, and analysis of the changing media landscape. Prerequisite: COMM 28103 or instructor permission. (Typically offered: Spring)

COMM 48703. International Communication and Globalization. 3 Hours.

Examines aspects of international communication and the impact of globalization on the production, dissemination, and consumption of media technology and messages. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Irregular)

COMM 48803. Television and American Culture. 3 Hours.

Historical and critical study of how television shapes American culture and is shaped by it. Attention will be given to the study of television history, programs and audiences; particularly how race and gender shape content and reception of programming. Prerequisite: COMM 28103. (Typically offered: Fall)

COMM 4900V. Special Problems. 1-6 Hour.

Credit arranged. Prerequisite: COMM 23303 and at least 9 hours of COMM coursework. (Typically offered: Fall and Spring) May be repeated for up to 6 hours of degree credit.

COMM 49103. Internship in Communication. 3 Hours.

Internship in applied communication within public and private organizations. Prerequisite: SPCH 10003 and COMM 23303. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer) May be repeated for up to 6 hours of degree credit.

COMM 499HV. Honors Thesis. 1-3 Hour.

Honors thesis under the direction of a faculty member in the Department of Communication. Pre- or Corequisite: COMM 399H1. Prerequisite: Honors standing. (Typically offered: Fall, Spring and Summer) May be repeated for up to 6 hours of degree credit.