Department of Communication Studies

FACULTY

JEFFREY WELLS, Chair, Department of Communication Studies, Associate Professor of Communication Studies, 2016—

BS, Trevecca Nazarene University, 1989; MA, Auburn University, 1992; MA, Roosevelt University, 2000; PhD, Texas Tech University, 2010.

SETH CONLEY, Associate Professor of Communication, 2015—

BS, Indiana Wesleyan University, 2003; MA, Ball State University, 2013.

JEFFREY D. FRAME, Professor of Drama and Communication, 1990—

BA, Eastern Nazarene College, 1985; MA, Emerson College, 1988; PhD, Middle Tennessee State University, 2012.

LENA HEGI WELCH, Dean of Arts and Sciences, Professor of Communication, 1988—

BA, Trevecca Nazarene University, 1981; MA, Auburn University, 1983; EdD, Trevecca Nazarene University, 2005.

JO ELLEN WERKING-WEEDMAN, Assistant Professor of Journalism, 2017—

BS, Milligan College, 1999; MS, University of Illinois, 2003.

Department of Communication Studies General Information

The Department of Communication Studies offers broad training in the general area of human communication. The curriculum provides considerable flexibility and is designed to fit a variety of student needs and career interests. There are seven specialized majors that lead to the Bachelor’s degree: 1) Dramatic Arts, 2) Theatre Education, 3) Interpersonal Communication, 4) Organizational Communication, 5) Media Arts and Studies, 6) Multimedia Journalism, and 7) Speech Communication Education. The teaching majors are approved by the Tennessee Board of Education and are part of the unit accredited by NCATE. The Department also offers a Bachelor’s degree in the general “Communication Studies” major consisting of courses selected from the specialized programs listed above. This Communication Studies major allows students to tailor their study to individual career goals. Additionally, the Department offers an Associate of Science in Professional Communication.

In addition to classroom course offerings, practical experience can be achieved through internships and individualized instruction.

Mission Statements and Student Learning Outcomes for Department Academic Majors

Communication Studies (BA or BS)

Mission Statement

The Communication Studies major seeks to provide graduates with a general yet comprehensive academic foundation in the study of human communication. The major is a hybrid departmental curriculum which allows students to selectively choose the most suitable courses from across the department’s program offerings to meet their individualized educational objectives.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a Communication Studies major will be able to:

  1. Possess knowledge suitable for employment in a career requiring communication skills.
  2. Design a primary research project demonstrating either qualitative or quantitative research skills.
  3. Demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge necessary for admission into graduate school in communication or a related field.

Dramatic Arts (BA)

Mission Statement

The Dramatic Arts major seeks to prepare graduates with a broad understanding of theatre to succeed professionally in educational, community, and/or professional theatre venues and/or to succeed in graduate theatre programs.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a Dramatic Arts major will be able to:

  1. Begin graduate studies or a career in or directly related to professional theatre.
  2. Critically assess a theatre production’s relative merits and weaknesses within the global contexts of artistic expression and spiritual significance.
  3. Satisfy proficiently at least ONE of the basic collaborative roles for the production of a play that is at least one-act in length, or longer. The roles graduates may choose from are: director of the play, performer in a major character role of the play; author of the script; lighting designer of the play; scene designer of the play; costume designer of the play; or stage manager of the play.

Theatre Education (BA)

The Theatre Education major is described in the Teacher Education Program section of the Catalog.

Interpersonal Communication (BS)

Mission Statement

Graduates in Interpersonal Communication will understand the role and nature of communication in interpersonal relationships and will demonstrate skills such as listening, empathy, trust, and conflict management that are critical to effective leadership and service.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with an Interpersonal Communication major will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate skills necessary for employment in a career requiring interpersonal communication skills.
  2. Demonstrate skills in oral and written communication.
  3. Possess knowledge necessary for admission into a graduate program in communication or a related field.

Organizational Communication (BS)

Mission Statement

The Organizational Communication major seeks to prepare graduates with strong relational communication, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. Graduates will understand the role of messages, meanings, and information flow in and between organizations and are prepared for employment in corporations and non-profit organizations.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with an Organizational Communication major will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate skills necessary for employment in a career requiring organizational communication skills.
  2. Identify a major theorist in the discipline of organizational communication.
  3. Demonstrate skills in oral and written communication.
  4. Possess knowledge required for admission into graduate study in communication or a related field.

Media Arts and Studies (BS)

Mission Statement

The Media Arts and Studies major seeks to prepare graduates who have a broad-based understanding of mediated communication. The curriculum emphasizes media convergence in that students are exposed to both traditional and new media, and students learn to develop content and skills which are transferrable to virtually any medium. Two concentrations are available in the Media Arts and Studies major: The TV/Film Production concentration offers students practical, "hands on" experience in media. The Media Studies concentration offers students a theoretical foundation that particularly equips them for graduate study in media.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a Media Arts and Studies major will be able to:

  1. Write, edit, and produce media products, such as feature films, documentaries, training videos, short films, audio productions, and webcasts.
  2. Demonstrate skills necessary for a variety of jobs in mass media fields.
  3. Demonstrate skills in critical thinking, clear and thoughtful communication, and open inquiry through research and creative activity.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge necessary for admissions into a graduate program in mass communication, communication studies, journalism, film studies, or related fields.

Multimedia Journalism (BS)

Mission Statement

The Multimedia Journalism major seeks to prepare graduates to identify and communicate news, ideas, and information. Through academic study and hands-on experience, students will understand the role of news and information in society and be able to research, report, and deliver information across several media.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a Multimedia Journalism major will be able to:

  1. Identify newsworthy events, ideas, and information and effectively report and organize information into compelling stories for multiple audiences.
  2. Write compelling stories about events, issues, trends, and people.
  3. Communicate information effectively to particular audiences through text, audio, video, and other media.
  4. Exhibit skills necessary for employment in the field of journalism and/or succeed in graduate/professional programs.

Speech Communication Education (BA)

The Speech Communication Education major is described in the Teacher Education Program section of the Catalog.

Professional Communication (AS)

Mission Statement

The Professional Communication major addresses organizational needs for employees who are knowledgeable in the use of communication strategies and technologies. The coursework equips students with skills in written, oral, visual, and digital communication necessary for a workplace. The program also provides enough flexibility for students to be able to tailor their coursework according to their areas of interest.

Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a Professional Communication major will be able to:

  1. Develop and effectively deliver a clear and well-researched argument.
  2. Deliver an effective oral and written presentation using digital technology.
  3. Work productively on an assigned project both as an individual and as a cooperative team member.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge necessary for further study in a related chosen field.