Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2-27-2019

Abstract

This course is intended to replace the existing COMM 301 course in the Common Core, and makes two significant changes to the COMM sequence. One change is to move the second required COMM class from the 300-level to the 200-level. The other change is to shift the content of the course away from CUE preparation and instruction to a focus on comparative rhetoric. These changes are desirable for several reasons. The existing COMM 301’s focus on the CUE doesn’t best serve students, as many 301 students are not ready to think seriously about their thesis projects. At the same time, the course’s placement at the 300-level and required Junior standing means that there’s often a significant gap between the two COMM courses, and because COMM 301 isn’t a prerequisite for upper-level electives, students may or may not have received this additional writing instruction before taking those courses. Finally, with the possibility that the traditional thesis will become optional, a thesis-focused course may not be needed by all students. The addition of COMM 201 would mean that students get additional writing instruction earlier, reinforcing skills learned in COMM 101 and LS 201, and better preparing them to succeed in upper-level electives. Moreover, COMM 201’s comparative rhetoric approach supports students in their other courses and in the workplace, helping them become more effective and ethical scholars and professionals by asking them to consider how communication strategies differ across audience, discipline, and genre.

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