2011-2013 Undergraduate Catalog

The Department of Communication and Theatre

Curriculum includes COMX, FILM, JRNL, and THTR courses

Dr. Sarah Keller, Chairperson
LA 600, (406) 657-2178
skeller@msubillings.edu

Professors:  Balter-Reitz, S. Coffman, Gross
Associate Professor:  Keller
Assistant Professor:  Boerboom
Lecturers:  Pugh, Tilton
Professors Emeritus:  Boden, V. Coffman, Held

Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees and Majors

In order to make student-advising meetings more effective, students are encouraged to review the Undergraduate Catalogue/Bulletin on the MSU Billings website, the Communication & Theatre links to majors and degree programs on the department website, and review the Plan of Study for the major of their choice.

Bachelor of Arts Degree
Major:  Communication Arts
Options:  Mass Communication Ñ, Organizational Communication Ñ, Theatre
Students with a Communication and Theatre Major are not required to have a minor.

Bachelor of Science Degree
Major:  Public Relations Ñ

Minor:  Communication Arts
Options:  Mass Communication, Organizational Communication, Theatre

Teaching Minors:  Speech Communication, Theatre

The Department of Communication and Theatre offers exciting options for students interested in the communication discipline as it relates to secondary education.

Master of Science Degree in Public Relations
Please see the Graduate Catalog for details.

Ñ This program is also offered in an online format.

Advising Information

Students are strongly encouraged to meet with their advisor early each semester or prior to the semester they are planning to attend to confirm that their Plan of Study is accurate and complete.  If necessary, changes and updates should be made in order to ensure that program requirements can be completed in a timely manner.  Faculty advisors work with students to explore appropriate internships, cooperative education placements, and/or experiential learning opportunities that will enhance the student’s academic program.  In addition, advisors provide assistance in selecting elective courses that support the student’s interests, career plans, and Plan of Study.

Academic advising services for all freshman Arts and Sciences majors are provided through the Advising Center on McMullen Hall first floor west.  Upon declaring a specific major, Arts and Sciences majors will be assigned to a faculty advisor in their department for upper-division advising.  Advising files for all upper-division students are maintained in the departmental office of the program in which the student is majoring.  Although advisors are available to assist students in designing their Plans of Study, students are ultimately responsible for meeting degree requirements.

Degree Language Requirement

Bachelor of Arts Majors in Communication & Theatre are encouraged to consider taking two years of a foreign language.

The Department of Communication and Theatre offers the following four options for the foreign language requirement:

  1. Complete the standard language requirement for a Bachelor of Arts for a total of 14 credits.
  2. Complete the 101-102 active skills sequence in one foreign language plus six credits of cultural studies courses selected from List One (below) for a total of 14 credits.
  3. Complete 101-102 active skills sequence in one foreign language and six credits in statistical and research method selected from List Two (below) for a total of 14 credits.
  4. Complete six credits in statistical and research methods selected from List Two (below) along with nine credits selected from List One for a total of 15 credits.

List One

*SPNS 150 The Hispanic Tradition
*ANTY 220 Culture and Society
*PHL 271 Philosophy and Religion of India
*PHL 272 Philosophy and Religion of China, Tibet, and Japan
RLST 303 Classical Mythology
HSTR 330 History of Mexico
NASX Select from offerings
Other Cultural Studies in consultation with Advisor

List Two

SOCI 318 Sociological Research Methods
*STAT 141 Introduction to Statistical Concepts
*STAT 216 Introduction to Statistics
STAT 340 Probability
Other statistical and methods courses in consultation with Advisor

*May satisfy General Education requirements.

Bachelor of Arts Degree
Major in Communication Arts Ñ

The Mass Communication Option is designed to examine the nature of the mass media through theoretical grounding and applied knowledge with a concentration in (1) the construction and delivery of media messages and (2) the effects of mediated messages and the structures and practices of the media industries on culture, society, politics, the economy, and individual attitudes and behavior.  This approach prepares students for careers as trained media professionals as well as to be critical consumers of media messages.  The study of message construction and analysis is offered in a variety of contexts including news gathering and reporting, public relations, video production, and advertising.  In each context theoretical perspectives are combined with skills training related to print and electronic media.  Career options in the field of Mass Communication include public relations, marketing, broadcast news, corporate communications, and advertising.

The Organizational Communication Option is designed to educate students entering the fields of business and social service as managers, trainers, human resource officers, and corporate communication staff.  This option also provides excellent preparation for graduate study in communication as well as law.  The programs in Organizational Communication enable the student (1) to acquire a mature understanding of interaction and other communication issues in organizational situations; (2) to improve the ability to contribute to productive organizational performance; (3) to increase personal effectiveness related to technical communication concerns; and (4) to apply learning to real-life organizational settings.

The Theatre Option provides a general knowledge of the various components of the art of the theatre and a foundation for further study or training.  The program offers exposure to acting, directing, play reading, and theatre history.  Students are given opportunities to perform in the classroom, on the stage, and in the community.

Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts Program Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, students will be able to demonstrate:

  1. writing skills
  2. speaking skills
  3. critical thinking skills
  4. and theoretical approaches to the practice of communication arts.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Public RelationsÑ

The Public Relations degree is designed to prepare students to serve as public communicators in a variety of settings including (but not limited to) corporate, non-profit, government, healthcare, and education.  The program curriculum is devised to provide students with significant communication training and internship opportunities.  Students will learn essential writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills.  Additionally, students will be exposed to a variety of theoretical approaches to the practice of public relations.  The curriculum is modeled on the Public Relations Society of America’s Undergraduate Education recommendations.

Certain courses in these programs have prerequisites; students should check the course descriptions for required prerequisites.

Bachelor of Science in Public Relations Program Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, students will be able to demonstrate

  1. writing skills
  2. speaking skills
  3. critical thinking skills
  4. and theoretical approaches to the practice of public relations. 

Ñ This program is also offered in an online format.

NEXT: Bachelor of Arts Degree Major in Communication Arts - Mass Communication Option


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