COMM301 - Organizational Communications

As an introduction to managing communications and public relations, this course prepares students to engage with or develop a strong communications function within an organizational context. Topics covered include the purpose and value of the communications function, characteristics of excellent organizational communication, planning and research, internal communications, media relations, community relations, crisis communication, communications technology, and the evaluation of communication strategies.


Credits: 3


Hours: 45 (Lecture Hours: 45)


Successful completion of ENGL 110; OR permission of Chair


Non-Course Prerequisites:




Detailed Course Content, Topics and Sequence Covered:
- The Communications Function
- The Social Role of the Communications Professional
- Strategic Planning & Communications
- Internal Communications
- Marketing Communications
- Customer Relations
- Public Relations
- Media Relations
- Investor Relations & Financial Communication
- Government Relations
- Managing Organizational Reputation
- Technology for Organizational Communication
- Crisis Communications & Issue Management
- Group Presentation & Communication Skills


Learning Outcomes:
Communications, Trust, and Organizational Success
- Describe the value of effective communication to an organization
- Describe the organization of the communication function and its relationship to other management functions
- Explain the ways in which high levels of organizational trust can benefit business
- Identify three primary corporate communication functions
- Distinguish between external communication, internal communication, and marketing communications
The Social Role of the Communications Professional
- Describe corporate social responsibility and its relevance in contemporary business 
- Explain how CSR communications programs can be used to position a company and its products or services
- Explain how CSR communications activities can increase organizational visibility
Communications and Strategic Planning
- Describe the relevance of the strategic planning process to communications
- Identify the components of a comprehensive communication plan and describe their functions
- Create realistic and measurable communications-based vision statement(s), goal(s) and objective(s)
- Describe the role of research in communications planning and management
- Identify at least two different research methods for collecting communications-related data and information
Internal Communications
- Identify the three key building blocks of internal communication and explain them
- Describe the hierarchical model of internal communication
- Identify and describe the functions of mass communications platforms for internal communications
 Explain the ways in which social networks can bolster and improve internal communications
- Explain the function of social media in contemporary corporate communications through a company case study
Public Relations
- Identify the basic uses of public relations research
- Know the basic steps in effective public relations planning
- Identify the appropriate research method(s) for a public relations question, strategy or campaign
Media Relations
- Identify contemporary news values and explain why they are important in public relations
- Identify and describe the primary media relations tools 
- Evaluate the primary media relations tools in terms of their benefits and drawbacks
- Craft a communications product using a media relations tool
- Identify measurement techniques for various media relations tools
Monitoring and Measurement
- Describe the importance of evaluation and measurement
- Explain the five key steps in developing and implementing a measurement plan
Contemporary Tools and Technology for Communication 
- Explain the ways in which technological advances have influenced business communication practices
- Identify some of the challenges and consequences of contemporary technology to organizational communication 
- Identify some key tools for organizational communications in the digital era
Crisis Communication and Issue Management
- Identify the two primary forms of crises faced by contemporary organizations
- Explain the importance of risk management to preventing crises  
- Describe the issues management process and its relevance to organizational success
- Identify the five stages involved in issues management 
Public Communication/Presentation
- Present and receive feedback on communications plan
- Participate in the peer feedback process 
- Explain the function of social media in contemporary corporate communications through a company case study


Grading System: Letters


Passing Grade: D (50%)


Textbooks are subject to change.  Please contact the bookstore at your local campus for current book lists.