Course Descriptions

MLDC ClassroomCore Courses

CM 501 Media, Communication, & Culture
CM 501 is an advanced survey of media history, theory, and analysis that examines the impact of communication technologies on U.S. society and global media culture. It also offers an overview of the development of the major media industries and professions, with a particular focus on journalism and public relations.

CM 503 Media Ethics in a Professional Context
CM 503 will examine ethical issues in both journalism and public relations through the use of guidelines established by the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) and the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA). Students will become familiar with ethical foundations and perspectives and apply those principles using case studies.

CM 541 Media Literacy: Concepts and Controversies
This course explores the theoretical and pragmatic foundations of media literacy. This class will provide an overview of the interventionist and cultural studies frameworks that underlie existing approaches to media literacy. Students will examine these approaches for sites of convergence, divergence, agreement, and controversy. The aim of the course is to provide students in the MLDC program with background knowledge on the key fundamental issues related to media education in the twenty-first century.

CM 542 Media Literacy: Design and Implementation
In CM 542 students will be introduced to the key components of designing and implementing media literacy initiatives.  Students will interrogate case studies in terms of population, curricular goals, and measurement.  Throughout the course students will be designing and revising their own media literacy initiative and preparing it for implementation.

CM 692 Capstone 1
This course is a faculty supervised placement in a school, nonprofit, or media organization to implement a media literacy initiative.

CM 693 Capstone 2
This course is a faculty supervised placement in a school, nonprofit, or media organization to implement a media literacy initiative.

Children, Health and Media Concentration Courses

CM 543 Children & Media
CM 543 will explore media consumption by children.  This course will examine children as vulnerable audiences, media effects on children, and children’s multiplatform use of media.  Overall, this course will interrogate the media’s impact on the individual and the culture.

CM 544 Teens & Media
In CM 544, students will explore teens and their use of media.  Throughout the course we will examine teenagers as a unique audience with a distinctive relationship to media culture. The course will provide an overview of teen media usage, habits, and media effects as well as impact on identity and culture.

CM 545 Health & Media
From advertisers marketing a variety of “healthy” lifestyles to the impact media usage can have on our physical and mental health, CM 545 explores the relationship between health and media.  In addition to examining key concepts in media and health, students will analyze the ethical implications of media health messages.

Media and Social Justice Concentration Courses 

CM 546 Race & Representation
While race itself is a mythic social construction, the effects of our racial imaginings are all too real. In this course we will explore the history of racial representation in the U.S., ranging from the colonial period to the age of Obama in order to engage in critical analysis of the production, content, and impact of racial representations in media.

CM 547 Gender, Identity & Media
This course introduces students to the intersections between gender, sexuality, and identity.  In particular, students will explore how gender and sexuality are portrayed in the media and how these media representations impact the individual and society. 

CM 548 Media and Social Movements
CM 548 introduces students to social movement theory with special attention given to how media has played a role in social change.  Students will explore the representation of social justice initiatives in the media as well as how media technologies are used to foster change.

Political Action and Media Production Track Courses

Students in this track will take the three Media and Social Justice concentration courses above, as well as the four courses listed below:

CM 519 Multimedia Communications I

CM 520 Multimedia Communications II

CM 563 Social Media and Journalism

CM 698 Digital Portfolio and Mentorship I: News Reporting and Producing
Offers qualified students a supervised mentorship experience with a working professional or faculty member in the student’s area of interest.  Students are required to deliver public presentations of their completed portfolios.

Special Topics Courses

CM 551 Sports, Culture, and Media
Sporting culture impacts the American public through economic and ideological institutions that structure our perceptions of the world. In contemporary society, sport is both big business and personal recreation, and yet, despite its influence on American culture, sport remains a relatively unexplored segment of popular culture. In this class we will pay particular attention to the images and narratives of sporting media that construct representations of class, masculinity, gender and nation in and around everyday mass-mediated athletic activities. CM 551 is an examination of sports and media in our everyday lives.

CM 640 Social Media and Culture
Social media has altered how we communicate with each other on the individual and cultural level. This course explores the micro and macro impact of social media on health, identity, consumerism, and democracy.

CM 641 Media Industries
In CM 641 students will interrogate the role of political economy in media literacy.  Throughout the course students will review the foundations of media economics such as growth, globalization, integration, and concentration and explore how these factors impact media content.  Students will also learn the historical context and cultural impact on media regulation and ownership.

CM 642 Visual Literacy
CM 642 focuses on the skills necessary to create and interpret visual images and the key ethical questions facing both producers and consumers of visual messages in the new media age. This course looks back at the rise of modern visual culture and forward to emergent trends. We will explore theories that address how visual images work along with their impact.

CM 643 Media Aesthetics
This course is an introduction to the formal elements of composition and structure in visual media. In this class students will develop a language to help you articulate what films, videos, photographs, or advertisements look like, what formal or stylistic choices were made in their production, and what distinguishes one media artifact from another.

CM 644 Media and Violence
CM 644 invites students to explore the complexities of how violence is represented in the media.  Throughout the course students will interrogate the intersections between gender, race, and violence, with special attention given to cultivation theory.

CM 645 Media & Body Image
We are constantly bombarded by images of beauty and idealized bodies in the media. Students will be introduced to communication, feminist, psychological, and sociological theory in order to deconstruct these images and explore how they contribute to the complex concepts of body image and body satisfaction.

CM 646 Advertising and Consumer Culture
We live in a world where we are surrounded by advertising and commercial messages. In this course, students will turn a critical eye to the persuasion industries in order to examine their impact on individuals and society.

CM 647 Multimedia Health Promotion
CM 647 introduces to the key components of health promotion. Students will explore the socio-cultural factors surrounding health issues and the need for public health initiatives. Throughout the course students will analyze health promotion strategies and create their own multimedia health campaigns.