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Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne Department of Communication
COM 30000 – Introduction to Communication Research Methods – Fall 2014 – 3 credits
Section 01 –
Course Reference Number 12175
ondays and Wednesdays, 3:00-4:15 p.m. – Neff Hall 141

Instructor: Professor Irwin Mallin – Office: Neff Hall 230J
Office Hours: Mondays and Wednesdays, 1:30-2:30 pm and 4:30-5:30 pm
Please check the course website for exceptions.   Other times by appointment.

 Phone: 481-6553 – E- Mail: mallini@ipfw.edu  
Course Web Site: http://users.ipfw.edu/mallini

I. Course Description: An introduction to the development and application of the various traditions of research methods pertinent to communication scholarship.
II. Prerequisite: COM 114 or consent of instructor.

III. Course Goals: Upon completing this course, you should be able to:
1) compare and contrast some of the methods used in communication scholarship;
2) use the concepts and vocabulary of those methods;
3) use the library and computer-based resources to find relevant communication research;
4) develop and present arguments grounded in scholarship-based knowledge; and
5) read, understand, explain, and critically evaluate communication research;

IV. Portfolio Requirement for Communication Majors: If you major in either or both of Interpersonal and Organizational Communication or Media and Public Communication via the 2009-2010 bulletin or a later bulletin, you will be required to create a portfolio as part of the new sequence of required one-credit classes: COM 12000, COM 30800, and COM 48000.  In COM 30000 you will create work product that can be used as evidence for some of the student learning objectives for that portfolio.  Parts of your Article Critique and Research Proposal assignments can be used as evidence for the following student learning objectives:

If you're on a bulletin between 2009-2010 and 2013-2014:

- Be able to articulate the historical traditions of the discipline. 
- Be able to articulately explain communication concepts and theories relevant to your major
- Demonstrate awareness of diverse perspectives
- Be a competent reader, speaker, writer and listener in both face-to-face as well as mediated settings

If you're on the 2014-2015 bulletin:

- Explain communication concepts and theories relevant to your  major
- Read, speak, write, and listen competently
- Demonstrate the ability to be a critically engaged citizen

V. Course Tools:

• One required textbook, available from Follett’s IPFW Bookstore in the Walb Student Union, The Bookmark on North Anthony Boulevard, and from various web-based booksellers:

    Merrigan, G., & Huston, C. L.  (2009).  Communication research methods (2nd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. (ISBN: 9780195314823).

• Links to required readings and other important course information will be e-mailed to course participants.  Reading guides and other important information will be posted to the course web site.  Accordingly, you are required to have an e-mail account and access to the World Wide Web.  It is expected that your e-mail account will not be set to block e-mail from me as spam and that you will check this account regularly.

VI. Course Assignments: This course will be graded on a 1000 point scale, as follows:

• Tests (3 at 175 points each = 525 points).  The tests will cover material in lecture, class discussions and the textbook, as well as any brief additional readings that may be assigned. 

• Bibliographic Assignment (125 points) This assignment will require you to conduct library and computer research on a communication topic, prepare an annotated bibliography and answer other questions about the sources you find.  This assignment will be introduced and described in more detail in class, as indicated on the Course Schedule.

• Article Critique  (125 points).  This assignment will require you to write and present a detailed critique of a scholarly communication article on a topic of interest to you, and will be introduced and described in more detail in class, as indicated on the Course Schedule.

• Research Proposal (125 points).  This assignment will require you to write and present a research proposal on a communication topic of interest to you, and will be introduced and described in more detail in class, as indicated

• Class contributions (100 points) You are expected to attend class.  Beyond mere attendance, though, this is a participatory course.  Your productive contributions to class discussions and activities are important.  In addition, brief homework assignments beyond the readings will be assigned.  This portion of your grade reflects my assessment of your participation in class discussions and activities and brief homework assignments.  Each unexcused absence will reduce your grade for this component by 10 points.  11 or more unexcused absences will result in a grade of F for the course.  All that is required here is that you account for yourself for each class period, as follows: 1) If you know in advance you won’t be able to attend a given class, you should let me know the reason in advance, preferably by e-mail as that provides us with a written record.  2) In emergency situations where you can’t tell me in advance of your absence, it’s your responsibility to account for those absences as soon as possible afterward and in no event more than two weeks afterward. 3) I reserve the right to not excuse an absence if I believe you're abusing the privilege.  4) If you arrive to class after I have taken attendance, it’s your responsibility to see me after class to insure that I have recorded your presence.  5) Leaving class early without permission shall constitute an unexcused absence. 6) Use of a cell phone in class for any purpose without express prior permission from the instructor shall constitute an unexcused absence.

• Research participation: As part of this course, all students must participate in one communication research study. This participation is required to receive a passing grade in this class. I will provide you with directions for participating in research but I am not part of the research team on these studies. Participating in research will help you understand how new knowledge is generated in the study of communication. If you do not wish to participate in one or more of the research opportunities, you will be provided with an alternate activity that requires approximately the same time and effort.

VII. Grading Scale: A = 930-1000; A- = 900-929; B+ = 870=899; B = 830-869; B- = 800-829; C+ = 770-799; C = 730-769; C- = 700-729; D+ = 670-699; D = 630-669; D- = 600-629; F = 0-599.

VIII. Late or Missing Assignments and Tests: In the absence of extreme circumstances, written assignments will not be accepted after the class period in which they are due, and examinations not taken on the designated date can not be made up.  Failure to turn in an assignment or take a test will result in a grade of F for the course.

IX. Academic Integrity: You are expected to be familiar with what constitutes academic misconduct in this course and at IPFW, and with what the penalties are for such conduct, as set forth in  parts II and III of the IPFW Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities and Conduct, which is available online at <http://www.ipfw.edu/committees/senate/code/>.

As Professor Carr used to say on his syllabi, “if caught cheating or plagiarizing, a student will receive no credit for the assignment and/or an ‘F’ for the course. Any instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean and Vice Chancellor and may result in expulsion from the University. Most instances of academic dishonesty result from a combination of the last-minute rush, poor judgment and a lack of familiarity with academic propriety. Consult the instructor well in advance of an assignment due date to clarify your responsibilities.”

X. Incompletes: A grade of incomplete will only be given in compliance with IPFW’s policy on incomplete grades as set forth in Section 6.4 of the IPFW Academic Regulations, available online at <http://www.ipfw.edu/committees/senate/regulations/grades.html> and then only under extraordinary circumstances.  If such circumstances arise, please let me know and we will discuss whether an incomplete is appropriate.

XI. Campus Services:

• Services For Students With Disabilities, Walb Student Union 113, 481-6657, <http://www.ipfw.edu/disabilities/>, provides specialized academic support services and other assistance to persons with qualifying disability conditions.  You become eligible for those services in this class only after you deliver your SSD Accommodation Letter to me.

• The Writing Center, Helmke Library, 481-5740, <http://www.ipfw.edu/writing/>, provides one-on-one assistance with writing, both in person and online.  There are also links to valuable writing resources on their web page.  

• Center for Academic Support and Advancement (CASA), Kettler Hall G18, 481-5419, <http://www.ipfw.edu/success/>, provides tutoring by appointment.  You may also find useful the hints on their web page for note taking, text reading, and test taking.

• Information Technology Services, Kettler Hall 206, 481-6030 <http://www.ipfw.edu/its/>, provides student e-mail accounts and web space and administers the student computing labs.  Valuable computing help is available on their web site and by telephone.

• The Learning Community, 2041 Reed Road (Cor. State), 424-8852 <http://www.tlckidsfirst.com/>, provides childcare services for students.

• A variety of other student services are described on pages 75-83 of the 2014-2015 IPFW Student Handbook.  You're encouraged to grab a paper copy on campus if you can.  Additionally, a PDF is available at http://www.ipfw.edu/dotAsset/0105d798-5059-4e80-ad95-cffe4a87b4c3.pdf

XII. Course Contract: This document, together with assignments and other handouts you may receive from the instructor throughout the semester, explains some of the official course policies.  Please read it carefully.  If you have any questions, ask your instructor immediately.  Your continued enrollment in this course after the first week of class signifies that you understand these policies and agree to participate in this course according to them.

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Copyright © 2001-2014 Irwin Mallin
Last Updated: 27 August 2014
URL: http://users.ipfw.edu/mallini/300syl.html