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Sophomore Inquiry and Cluster Courses in Communication

A wide variety of Sophomore Inquiry (SINQ) and Upper Division Cluster courses are offered every term, focusing on a variety of different subject areas. All students who began University Studies with Freshman Inquiry are required to take three SINQ courses. Transfer students are required to take one, two, or three SINQ courses, depending on the number of transfer credits they have the term they are admitted.

Once SINQ courses have been completed, students choose classes from among the Upper Division Cluster offerings that correspond to the SINQ the student found of most interest. Students will select three (3) classes from the same Upper Division Cluster to complete this portion of the University Studies requirement. Cluster courses are identified with a "U" in the Schedule of Classes.  These courses do not need to be taken in any specific order.

A listing of Cluster sections, with their corresponding SINQ and Cluster Communication course options, are listed here. However, not all courses are offered each term or each year, so refer to the online course schedule, or the course planning guide in the back of the Schedule of Classes, to find out which cluster courses will be offered during specific terms.

Healthy People/Healthy Places

Comm 329 
Introduction to Health Communication
Introduces students to the breadth of health communication theory and research. Course topics include provider-patient communication, social support, uncertainty management, health advocacy, and health campaigns.

Family Studies

Comm 318 
Family Communication
Focuses on the study of families from a communication perspective; that is, how families create, maintain and reinforce patterns of interaction through daily living, story-telling and other habitual forms of communication. Course applies theoretical frameworks such as family systems theory, social construction theory and dialectical theory to issues of courtship and relational development, the changes in the life of families, and family roles.

Comm 337 
Communication and Gender
Study and practice of the skills involved in competent communication (primarily comprehensive listening and reading, and speaking and writing) in order to separate myths, assumptions and notions from the facts, realities and truths about communication and about women and men. Examination of communication and gender topics will include: the role of anger in communicating about gender issues; the impact of the type of information on discussions about gender; gender difference as a “catch all” explanation for gender problems; the facts of differences being confused with attitudes about differences; perception of women and men as speaking different languages and communicator behaviors as choices.

Freedom, Privacy, and Technology

Comm 312 
Media Literacy
Focuses on building critical skills for evaluating mass media, going beyond the ways that messages represent the world to the ways that messages and the institutions that produce them actually constitute the social world. Primary issues include cultural domination and empowerment; public opinion and the legitimizing role of the media; mass culture and ideology; cultural opposition; the political-economy of news media; and the general role of media in political socialization. Extensive in-class and small-group media analysis.

Leading Social Change (formerly Leadership for Change)

Comm 313 
Communication in Groups
Focuses on communication processes in small, decision-making groups. Students examine the relation between actual communicative behaviors of group members and group structure, functions, and outcomes. Topics include leadership emergence and enactment, quality of problem solving strategies utilized, the impact of socio-cultural and institutional features on small group communicative practices. Theoretical application in the critical analysis of various group settings and effective communication in ongoing group projects.

Comm 323
Introduction to Organizational Communication
The goal of this course is to introduce lower-division students to theories that examine how communication works in business contexts. Students will study organizational management and culture and examine applications to businesses.

Popular Culture

Comm 312 
Media Literacy
Focuses on building critical skills for evaluating mass media, going beyond the ways that messages represent the world to the ways that messages and the institutions that produce them actually constitute the social world. Primary issues include cultural domination and empowerment; public opinion and the legitimizing role of the media; mass culture and ideology; cultural opposition; the political-economy of news media; and the general role of media in political socialization. Extensive in-class and small-group media analysis.

Comm 314 
Persuasion
A consideration of concepts, principles, and theories related to persuasion, and a consideration of the role of persuasive communication in public discourse. Opportunity for practical application of principles in student projects. Comm 100 or Comm 220 recommended.

Comm 337 
Communication and Gender
Study and practice of the skills involved in competent communication (primarily comprehensive listening and reading, and speaking and writing) in order to separate myths, assumptions and notions from the facts, realities and truths about communication and about women and men. Examination of communication and gender topics will include: the role of anger in communicating about gender issues; the impact of the type of information on discussions about gender; gender difference as a “catch all” explanation for gender problems; the facts of differences being confused with attitudes about differences; perception of women and men as speaking different languages and communicator behaviors as choices..

Introduction to Women's Studies

Comm 337 
Communication and Gender
Study and practice of the skills involved in competent communication (primarily comprehensive listening and reading, and speaking and writing) in order to separate myths, assumptions and notions from the facts, realities and truths about communication and about women and men. Examination of communication and gender topics will include: the role of anger in communicating about gender issues; the impact of the type of information on discussions about gender; gender difference as a “catch all” explanation for gender problems; the facts of differences being confused with attitudes about differences; perception of women and men as speaking different languages and communicator behaviors as choices.

A complete listing of Cluster sections, with their corresponding Sophomore Inquiry (SINQ) and Cluster course options, are listed here.

Please note that some courses are not offered every year.