Courses

The listing of a course description here does not guarantee a course’s being offered in a particular semester. Please refer to the published schedule of classes on the Student Link for confirmation a class is actually being taught and for specific course meeting dates and times.

  • COM CM 180: Understanding Media
    During the semester, Understanding Media course will trace the development, survey the literature, and explore the impact of media--whether traditional, interactive, social or mobile--examining conceptual, theoretical, and practical aspects of today's global media environment. The course will also review the factors that have shaped the nature of contemporary media, including their content, uses, functions, and audiences. Understanding Media provides students with a broad understanding of the social and psychological impact of mediated communication and empowers students to think originally and critically about how media technologies evolve, function, advance, and shape society, industry, and professional practices. It makes dynamic connections between theoretical frameworks, everyday life, and industry practices in a manner that can engage undergraduate students in Advertising, Media Science, and Public Relations and can inform them of the significance of using strategic approaches to constructing, disseminating, and evaluating media initiatives and media messages. (Formerly CM380, students should not take this if they have already taken CM380.)4 cr. Either sem.
  • COM CM 211: Professional Presentation
    Students will learn the essentials of effective presentation, from preparation, audience analysis, and content development to critical thinking when presenting. Students will incorporate theories and skills of effective communication in a variety of contexts (e.g., common business and social settings). Effective Fall 2018, this course fulfills a single unit in the following BU Hub area: Oral and/or Signed Communication. 4 cr. Either sem.
    • Oral and/or Signed Communication
  • COM CM 215: Principles and Practices of Public Relations
    An introduction to the field of public relations: its theoretical origins, scope, and principles. Discussion focuses on researching problems, setting objectives, identifying audiences, designing messages, choosing communication channels, and evaluating results for all types of organizations. Ethical decision making, on-line communication, and career opportunities are also analyzed case studies in the field. The format is a combination of informal lecture and small-group discussion, case analysis, and guest lecture. Open the freshmen. (Formerly CM301. Students cannot take this course for credit if they have already taken CM301.)4 cr. Either sem.
  • COM CM 217: Introduction to Advertising
    Explores the history, nature, function, and social and economic aspects of advertising: ethical responsibilities, psychological appeals, marketing, media research, product analysis, creative strategies, and agency operation. Students prepare comprehensive advertising plans, including marketing strategy and speculative advertising campaigns. Open to freshmen. (Formerly CM317. Students cannot take this for credit if they have already taken CM317.)4 cr. Either sem.
  • COM CM 280: Persuasion Theory
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 180.
    This course examines the role that communication--and especially mediated communication--play in the social influence process. This course is organized around theoretical persuasive approaches to the study of attitudinal and behavioral change. It uses these theories as a basis for teaching about persuasive strategies that can be implemented to lead to changes in others' attitudes and behaviors--whether in the areas of media campaigns, marketing communication, advertising, or public relations. The course includes discussion of the strategies that "professional persuaders" use when peddling their ideas, products, services, and philosophies. (This course replaces CM409 in the curriculum. You should not take CM280 in addition to CM409 without having received permission from the department.)4 cr. Either sem.
  • COM CM 313: Corporate Communication
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 301 or COM CM 215.
    Explores the trends and issues affecting corporations, crisis management, public affairs communication, consumer affairs, employee relations, environmental problems, and issues of multinationals. Uses case studies.
  • COM CM 321: Communication Research Methods
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM180
    CM321 Communication Research Methods is an introduction to the social scientific method of inquiry and the fundamental concepts and processes of social scientific methods that are used in media science, advertising, and public relations. Assorted research methods are covered, including both quantitative and qualitative. Also included are literature review, research design, research execution, quantitative and qualitative data analysis, and reporting of findings.
  • COM CM 331: Writing for Communication
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CO 201; First Year Writing Seminar (e.g., WR 100 or WR 120).
    Intensive exposure to some of the basic writing formats in the communications profession: news releases, letters, features, and profiles. Lead writing, editing, and techniques of interviewing. Extensive writing and rewriting. Develops basic writing skills for different audiences. Effective Fall 2018, this course fulfills a single unit in the following BU Hub area: Writing- Intensive Course.
    • Writing-Intensive Course
  • COM CM 334: Advertising in the U.K.
    Focuses on London's stellar reputation for creative and production excellence in advertising; examines how the advertising is shaped by the anti-sell, irony-modulated consumer culture, and emphasizes the way that deifying research risks diluting creative. Effective Fall 2019, this course fulfills a single unit in the following BU Hub areas: Philosophical Inquiry and Life's Meanings, Aesthetic Exploration.
    • Philosophical Inquiry and Life's Meanings
    • Aesthetic Exploration
  • COM CM 345: Public Relations in Non-Profit Settings
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 301 or COM CM 215.
    Students examine the role of managed communication and marketing in public relations problems unique to health, education, and human and public service organizations. Analysis of organizational structure, publics, public relations and communication programs, and fund-raising practices of these agencies.
  • COM CM 405: Media Strategies
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 217.
    This course examines media planning, buying, and sales as performed by advertising agencies, clients and the media. Students will discuss the essential principles, measurements, procedures and problems encountered in determining appropriate media in which to place specific kinds of advertising messages designed to reach closely defined target audiences. Students will learn to use research sources that provide data on media audiences and product usage. The advantages and disadvantages of various media will be discussed from an advertising perspective. The course will examine contemporary trends in communications media and their effects on advertisers.
  • COM CM 411: Art Direction
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 217 or COM CM 317.
    A course for students interested in pursuing a creative career as an art director. Through real-world assignments, creative critiques, lectures and case studies, students strengthen conceptual and visual decision-making skills required to create effective advertising communication. This is a hands-on, idea driven course. Assignment work product will include ideas executed in a range of media as well as package design and corporate identity. Experience using the industry graphics software will be helpful.
  • COM CM 412: Consumer Insight & Account Planning
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 317 or COM CM 217.
    Explores how to arrive at consumer insights that lead to better advertising and promotion. The course focuses on the set of skills necessary to create breakthrough advertising, including qualitative research, observation, interviewing skills, mapping, and presentation tools. Students learn to write effective, creative briefs.
  • COM CM 413: Problem Solving in British Public Relations
    This course explores the background, context, theories, practices and functions of PR in Britain, analysing the environment of British organisations and its impact on PR planning and strategy, including the corporate, governmental and non-profit sectors. Effective Fall 2019, this course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Social Inquiry I, Digital/Multimedia Expression, Creativity/Innovation.
    • Social Inquiry I
    • Digital/Multimedia Expression
    • Creativity/Innovation
  • COM CM 417: Fundamentals of Creative Development
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 217.
    Focus is on the strategic creative process in advertising including concept development, copywriting, visualization, and design. Assignments require conceiving solutions to client marketing challenges across a range of media. Teaches foundations for development of effective advertising: problem definition, strategic development, and conceptual idea generation through tangible executions.
  • COM CM 419: Advertising Management
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 317.
    Administration of a complete advertising program. Case-study method used to explore the marketing mix, budgeting, medial strategy, planning, coordinating advertising with promotion, working with client or agency, and the social responsibility of advertisers.
  • COM CM 420: Ad Lab
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 317 or COM CM 217.
    Experience in student-run, full-service advertising agency. Students organize, manage, and perform all functions: solicit business, perform market and consumer research, contact clients, write plans, create advertising campaigns, evaluate media, and prepare campaign evaluations for community service agencies. 2 cr. Effective Fall 2018, this course fulfills a single unit the following BU Hub area: Teamwork/Collaboration.
    • Teamwork/Collaboration
  • COM CM 421: AdLab E-Board
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 317 or COM CM 217; Consent of Instructor.
    This course represents the management function of the student-run AdLab. 2 or 4 cr.
  • COM CM 423: Portfolio Development
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 217 and COM CM 417.
    A course for students interested in the creative side of the advertising industry. Work in teams and individually to develop creative ideas, campaigns, and an entry-level portfolio of work (print, video, digital, mobile, experiential). A workshop-like environment, mirroring an advertising agency, is augmented with lectures and case studies.
  • COM CM 425: Copywriting
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM CM 217 and COM CM 417.
    This course builds on the concept development and copywriting foundations learned in prerequisite courses. Assignments will require the creation of copy for a range of audience segments and media channels. Students will learn to shape copy for video, digital, print, and social media.