Syllabus for workshops and seminars:
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This class analyzes the “interpersonal divide,” a concept that illustrates what happens at work and at home when we communicate electronically with each other, instead of face to face. The seminar will investigate whether information technology has blurred boundaries of home and work, affecting our value systems. We also will study mass media’s effect on society and relationships from the 19th Century to the present day, documenting how corporate ecosystems have changed the nature of communication, undermining our sense of community.
Content of Lectures
Major topics will be analysis of theories and research associated with mass communication and interpersonal communication, corporate journalism practices, overconsumption of media and technology, the impact of marketing, diffusion of media and technology in society from historical and current-day perspectives, displacement; and moral, cultural, and social upheavals associated with media ethics.
Interpersonal Divide: The Search for Community in a Technological Age by Michael Bugeja (Oxford, 2005).
Readings: There are an introductory chapter and nine chapters in this text book. You are to read one chapter per week, beginning with the introduction, and pay close attention to the end-of-the-chapter assignments, especially journal assignments, discussion and paper ideas, and suggested readings. You are expected to complete the reading prior to the first class period of each week. Completion of readings is essential to understanding the lecture and effectively participating in classroom discussion and assignments.
Assignments and Grading
Note: Deadlines for journal assignments:
Scale: 95-100 A, 90-94 A-, 87-89 B+, 84-86 B, 80-83 B-, 77-79 C+, 74-76 C, 70-73 C-, 67-69 D+, 64-66 D, 60-63 D-, 0-59 F.
Remarks on Journal Assignments
Your journal assignments should be associated with your research idea for your final paper. During seminar sessions we will discuss the group’s journal assignments and research ideas in a collaborative manner to enhance hypotheses and methodologies.
Remarks on Paper Assignment
Essentially you will have three deadlines associated with your paper:
1. A one-page ungraded description of your research idea (deadline: mm/dd/yr).
2. A first draft of your research paper (deadline: mm/dd/yr).
3. A final draft of your research paper (deadline: mm/dd/yr).
Note: During seminar we will discuss first drafts in a collaborative manner to enhance your paper’s effectiveness. Students completing papers in this class will be encouraged to send them into paper competitions sponsored by the National Communication Association, the International Communication Association, and/or the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. The instructor will work individually with students on papers deemed publishable in academic journals.
Email Notifications from the Instructor
Be advised that you will be sent email messages via your university account pertaining to this class, including but not limited to extra credit opportunities, exam schedules and results, and more. However, if you are using another email system such as hotmail or yahoo, for instance, be sure to forward your university messages to your active email account, to ensure that you receive email notification about this class.
Cheating, plagiarism, class disruptions are serious offences. You may not cheat or plagiarize or disturb the class with outbursts or other inappropriate behaviors. If you do, you may receive a failing grade and/or be reported to the appropriate academic authorities.
Use of Technology During Class
Especially in this course investigating the impact of media and technology on interpersonal communication, you may not use during class any electronic device, including by not limited to cell phones, laptop computers, and personal digital assistants.
Disabilities: Students with disabilities are encouraged to contact the instructor if special consideration is needed to complete any assignment or to attend any class.
Attendance is vital in a seminar class that emphasizes collaborative learning. Unexcused absences will result in a lowering of your grade by one-half mark for each occurrence. It is especially important not to miss workshops when paper ideas and research will be discussed because these will not be made up at a later date. Deadlines must be met (see above schedules). No late assignments accepted when absences are unexcused.
Email Notification Policy on Class Absences:
Notify me via email if you must miss class, citing the reason. If it is a bonafide excuse according to policies listed in the Student Handbook, you will be excused from seminar.
Because of the attendance policy, unexcused absences must be dealt with seriously. Final grades will be lowered by one-half letter for each unexcused absence.