COMM 2010A

COMM 2010A: Media Literacy (Dr. Bulla’s section)

The Takeaway (or what you should have learned in this class):

The Takeaway

Reading for press freedom chapter:

The First Amendment explained (CNN)

Final project:

Final Project_2010A_1a



Power Points:






























Weekly assignments:

Aug. 16: Read pp. 3-13 for homework. (Quiz on this reading will be Monday, Aug. 21, 2017). The following is due at the start of class Monday, Aug. 21.

Aug. 21 and 23: Please read pp. 13-17 and 20-24 in Baran. Be reading newspapers.  Finish Chapter One and begin discussion of Gutenberg and the printing press. Reading Quiz #1 and News Quiz #1.

Aug. 28 and 30: Please read pp. 29-39 in Baran for Monday . Reading Quiz #2 is on Monday, Aug. 28. Please read pp. 39-43 in Baran for Wednesday. Have a happy Labor Day weekend.

Sept. 6:  Please read pp. 48-59 (Chapter 3) in Mass Communication by Stanley J. Baran.

Sept. 13: Please read pp. 71-91 (Chapter 4) in Mass Communication by Stanley J. Baran.

Sept. 18-20—Constitution Day. Finish newspapers. Pop quiz. Read pp. 95-115 in J. Baran.

Sept. 25-27—Magazines. Begin reviewing for Exam I.

Oct. 2-4—Review for exam; news quiz. Exam I on Wednesday.

Oct. 9-11—Read film chapter in Baran, pp. 118-143. Reading quiz Monday; news quiz on Wednesday.

Oct. 16-18—Read radio/recorded music chapter in Baran, pp. 147-172. Reading quiz/writing prompt Monday; news quiz on Wednesday. Listen to Hindenburg disaster call from 1937 and Churchill “Blood, toil …” speech from 1940.

Oct. 23-25—Read television chapter in Baran, pp. 175-201. Reading quiz on Wednesday. Exam 2 will be on Nov. 15. See above for final project details.

Oct. 30-Nov. 1—Read chapter on the internet and social media, pp. 2223-251. Turn in take-home quiz at the start of class Monday. Reading quiz on Wednesday. Do Review questions on p. 249, Nos. 1-10. Due at start of class Wednesday.

Nov. 6-Nov. 8—Read chapter on public relations in Baran, pp. 253-275. Writing prompt on Monday.

Nov. 13-Nov. 15—Communication theory. Prepare for Exam 2, which will be on Wednesday. (See review sheet above.) Fifty MC questions. Bring a No. 2 pencil. Turn in your final project memorandum on Monday.

Nov. 20—View “Harvest of Shame” (Murrow “CBS Reports” show).

Nov. 27 and 29—Ethics and media freedom.

Dec. 4 and 6—Global media; begin final project presentations.

Exam date: Dec. 12, 2 p.m.—Final project presentations. END OF SEMESTER.

Other assignments and handouts:


Edward R Murrow_bio

COMM 2010A Review for Exam_1b

COMM 2010A Review for Ex 2

Writing prompt_1_COMM_2010A_F17


WP3_ 2010A


Fall 2017

Augusta University

Dept. of Communication

Instructor: Dr. David W. Bulla, Associate Professor of Communication and interim departmental chair.

Section A meeting place and time: Allgood Hall N234, 1-2:15 p.m., Mondays and Wednesdays.

Office: Allgood Hall E123.

Office Hours: Mondays, 10 a.m.-noon; Tuesdays, 1-3;30 p.m.; and Thursdays, 1-2:30 p.m.

Phone: (706) 993-0054.


Course site:

Twitter:  @d_bulla

Textbook:Baran, S.J., Introduction to Mass Communication: Media Literacy  and Culture. New York: McGraw-Hill, Ninth Edition. References: A History of Mass Communication: Six Information Revolutions by Irving Fang (Boston, MA: Focal Press, 2012, eighth edition); and A History of News by Mitchell Stephens (Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2006).

COMM 2010 Description:

Communications and Culture (COMM 2010) is an introductory course to help students understand and recognize the role of mass media in American culture—and to appreciate and evaluate the relationship between the mass media and the public. In this course, we will review the history and role of mass media, with an emphasis on technology, professional fields, and consumption. Students are expected to be active consumers of the mass media during the class and should become active consumers of news from a variety of souces (newspapers, websites, television, radio, social media). This course provides an overview of the events, institutions, people, technologies, and ideas that have shaped communication. A major goal for the course is developing your own understanding of and explanation of the role of communication in our society, identifying primary and secondary sources, and interpreting history from the perspective of the news media and consumers of the news media. The question is: What roles do the media play in our soceity, and how should individual consumers of the media “read” them? The emphasis will be on professional communication: journalism, public relations, broadcasting, advertising, film, music industry, and publishing. We will start with the early history of written communication and move forward to the present, a time of smartphone technology, social media, and declining print media. We will look at both the legacy news media and the so-called new media. In addition to learning the basic narrative of communication history and the interplay of the professions and society, we will also learn how mass communication scholars conduct their research on communication issues. The most important skills in this class are the abilities to carefully read and analyze a text and the ability to write short essays that logically develop ideas based on primary evidence. The number one experience in the class will be the reading of the text and interacting with today’s news media–including the Augusta Chronicle, Atlanta Journal Constitution, CNN, New York Times, Washington Post, Time, BBC, The New Yorker, NPR, and many others. We will also look at how the news media today use a social media strategy to build and maintain audience, taking advantage of free platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Note: The writing style of the class will be Associated Press. I highly recommend you purchase or borrow a recent AP Stylebook.

Prerequisites: ENGL 1101-1102 or ENGL 1113-1114, with a grade of C or better in each.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Understand and explain the historical development of mass media in the United States;
  2. Recognize and describe current issues and trends regarding mass media and their auxiliary partners
  3. Understand and explain the general process of news gathering and reporting, media law, and media ethics;
  4. Recognize and describe the role of mass media in current American society;
  5. Recognize and define basic media terminologies; and
  6. Develop good writing, listening, speaking, and critical thinking skills.


  • Attend all class meetings. Be on time.
  • Manage their attendance, behavior, and course assignments professionally. The nature of mass media and communications work requires attention to deadlines; students taking mass media and communications courses must learn to work within and meet deadlines.

Course Requirements and Policies

Check your e-mail regularly. Listen to and participate effectively & appropriately in class discussions. Students should follow the traditions of decorum and civility.

Regular ON TIME class attendance is required. Attendance and late arrivals will be evaluated as part of student’s grade. After a total of 2 absences or late class arrivals, 1 point will be taken off for being late or 3 points for a missed class. After 5 absences you are subject to immediate withdrawal from the class. You are late once attendance has been taken and the class has started. If you are late, it is YOUR responsibility to check in with the Professor at the end of class to make sure you are marked late not absent. All assignments, exams and projects must be completed in order to pass the class. Projects turned in late will be appropriately marked down and after 48 hours not accepted. In special cases (circumstances deemed extraordinary by the professor) the professor has the option of accepting and grading late projects.

Students, who are disruptive, behave inappropriately and/or negatively impact the class are subject to immediate withdrawal (Jaguar Student Handbook). Unauthorized use of University multimedia equipment is prohibited and is grounds for immediate withdrawal and failure of the class. Recording of classes prohibited. Computers must be kept off unless instructed by professor.

The classroom is a place of work. While in class you should be engaged in activities relevant to the class, and should not be doing non-class business during class meetings. This includes having private conversations with other students, texting, or otherwise engaging in distracting behavior. Save such activities for outside of class. While watching films in class or in a theatre setting follow proper decorum of not talking, silencing phones and not using electronic devices. Leave distracting behavior at home. If you’re doing these kinds of things in class or at the cinema, and I notice that you are doing so, then it is, by definition, distracting and your participation grade for the class will reflect it.

Classroom Activities and Free Speech

Civil, reasoned debate is a hallmark of a democratic state as well as an academic institution. You are encouraged to express your ideas in class in a respectful manner, recognizing that those who disagree with you have the right to see matters differently. It is both your and your professor’s responsibility to see that in-class discussions remain open and civil, make appropriate use of class time, and honor reasonable standards of argument and evidence.References:

Augusta University Student Manual, Sections 2.55 and 2.56.

Augusta University Academic Conduct Policy

Augusta University Academic Rights and Responsibilities Policy

Augusta University Assembly and Speech Guidelines Policy

AU Academic Conduct Policy

Academic Honesty

“The University recognizes that honesty and integrity are necessary to its academic function. The following regulations protect the equity and validity of the university’s grades and degrees, and help students develop ethical standards and attitudes appropriate to academic and professional life.

Violations of academic honesty include cheating of all kinds, plagiarism, fraudulent research activity and/or scholarship, collusion, and false statements made to avoid negative academic consequences.

Cheating on course examinations or assignments is prohibited; including but not limited to the following:

  • Possessing, using, or exchanging improperly acquired information, whether in written or oral form, in the preparation of any essay, laboratory report, or other assignment in an academic course, or in preparing for any examination in a course.
  • Copying from another student’s paper.
  • Use of prepared materials, notes, or texts other than those specifically permitted by the instructor during the examination.
  • Collaboration with another student during an examination, unless such collaboration is explicitly allowed by the course instructor for the examination in question.
  • Unapproved use of any technological device to gain or provide advantage on an examination, lab practical, or other assignment to be submitted for academic credit.
  • Substituting for another person during an examination or allowing someone else to substitute for you.
  • Solicitation or bribery of any person to obtain examination information.

Plagiarism is prohibited. Themes, essays, term papers, tests, presentations, creative works, and similar work submitted to satisfy course and program requirements must be the personal work of the student submitting it. Plagiarism is the failure to acknowledge indebtedness to the authors/creators of works used to complete such assignments and/or other course requirements. It is always assumed that the work offered for evaluation and credit is the student’s own unless otherwise acknowledged. Such acknowledgment should occur whenever one quotes another person’s actual words; whenever one appropriates another person’s ideas, opinions, or theories, even if they are paraphrased; and whenever one borrows facts, statistics, or other illustrative materials, unless the information is common knowledge. Further, it is expected, in the production of creative work, that the student’s work products are original, and that any images, sounds, or other intellectual properties that are not the original work of the student will be used fairly and with acknowledgement of the original source(s).

Research Misconduct is prohibited. Misrepresentation of data collection and analysis, including falsification, fabrication or omission of data is prohibited. GRU Policy for Responding to Allegations of Research Misconduct applies to students.

Collusion is unauthorized assistance from or collaboration with another person in the preparation or editing of notes, themes, reports, or other written work or in laboratory work offered for evaluation and credit, unless such assistance or collaboration is specifically approved in advance by the instructor. In cases of collusion, both the provider and recipient of such assistance are in violation of this academic conduct policy. However, students are authorized to use appropriate campus resources in the completion of written work (e.g., the campus Writing Center). Unless stated otherwise by the course instructor, use of such campus resources does not constitute academic misconduct under this policy. However, no student, except those working in a tutorial capacity in a University-approved academic support center, will knowingly give or receive unauthorized assistance in the preparation of any assignment, essay, laboratory report or examination to be submitted for credit in an academic course.

False statements made to avoid negative academic consequences include oral and/or written statements designed to obfuscate, misrepresent, or otherwise distort the presentation of facts related to a student’s academic conduct in a course or program of study.”

Special Assistance:

If you have a special learning or physical need please contact the instructor.

Grade              Percent            Points

A                     90-100             900-1,000        Excellent Achievement

B                     80-89               800-899           Above Average Achievement

C                     70-79               700-799             Satisfactory Achievement

D                     60-69               600-699           Incomplete or Marginal Achievement

F                      00-59               below 60          Unacceptable Work

Course Evaluation

Your final course grade will be based on the following:

  1. Ten reading quizzes worth 50 points each 500
  2. Two exams (100 points each) 200
  3. Five (5) news quizzes worth 20 points each 100
  4. Final project worth 200 points

TOTAL POINTS POSSIBLE                                       1,000

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