The department’s curriculum consists of courses in three broad areas:
Interpersonal Communication examines interactions with others. Interpersonal Communication is fundamental to managing marriages, friendships, and superior/subordinate relationships. Conflict mediation and the study of social influence are central to this specialty. Intercultural Communication is another area within this specialty, which examines communication relationships across cultures and nations and among diverse groups within a single culture.
Rhetoric and Public Communication
Rhetoric and Public Communication analyzes communication’s operation in public fora, including politics, popular culture, social movements, and the courts. Its theoretical and critical perspectives range from classically-grounded argumentation, persuasion, and traditional public address to postmodern and post-postmodern approaches consistent with recent developments in media technology as well as in feminism, cultural, and critical theories.
Intercultural Communication studies cultural impacts on various aspects of human communication including social influence, interpersonal relationship, conflicts, and issues of diversity. Cross-cultural communication and Intercultural communication comprise two major sub-divisions of this area of study. Cross-cultural communication analyses the causes and effects of cultural differences in recognition of the self and the society. Intercultural communication investigates the patterns of human interactions within ethnically diverse communities.
Technology and Communication
Technology and Communication investigates how technological devices and practices impact how humans express themselves, across a broad spectrum of situations. Multiple methodologies and theoretical perspectives are employed to address a wide variety of communication questions and concerns, from material interactions with technological devices to more conceptual explorations of digital life.