COMM ST 10 - Introduction to Communication Studies

Why is it so important that we are self-reflective creatures who can communication with ourselves? How is it possible that we can all see the same things, yet perceive very different things? For example, why is it that two people who viewed the same potentially criminal act might have very different stories to tell in a court of law? How do our needs affect the ways we communicate? How do we get our sense of self and what role does it play in communication? Words are very powerful tools of communication, but what are their shortcomings? What does the evolution of profanity tell us about American society? What types of words are most taboo today and why? What is intimacy? Why do we choose to get involved in intimate relationships with some people as opposed to others? How does communication in intimate relationships change over time? To whom do we self-disclose and why? What are the many ways in which we communicate without using words? How can we listen more effectively? Why do we lie as much as we do? How does communication work in small groups? What functions do the mass media play in our lives? How have the mass media (books, newspapers, magazines, music, film, radio, television, and the digital media) evolved and how to they function in the contemporary world? How do the mass media function as businesses? What is news and how is news content determined? What ethical standards govern the mass media and what happens when these are violated? How does freedom of speech/press work in American society? Is there anything that we cannot say or print? What role does advertising play in contemporary American society? What advertising strategies are most effective? Learn all this and much more in Communication Studies 10, Introduction to Interpersonal and Mass Communication.

Michael Suman studies mass media effects, media and culture, and new communications technologies. Prior to working for our department, he lectured at various locations and universities throughout Asia, and was the Project Coordinator for UCLA’s Television Violence Monitoring Project and Research Director for UCLA’s Center for Communication Policy. Since 2004, he has also served as Research Director of the USC Annenberg Center for the Digital Future. He has authored and edited numerous publications related to the impact of computers and the Internet on society. He has also published work on television violence, religion and the media, and advocacy groups and the media.