Media and Society
MCOM 1300, CRN 22106
MWF 10 -10:50 a.m.
Help Desk hours (SRH216F): MWF 11 a.m. - Noon; TTH 1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., or by appointment.
Media Now: Understanding Media, Culture and Technology, Straubhaar, LaRose, Davenport, 9th Edition, Wadsworth
Recommended but not required: The Elements of Style, Strunk and White, Allyn Bacon
Designed to give entering students a comprehensive understanding of the role and function of the media in contemporary society. Drawing from various perspectives, the course examines the historical, economic, social, political, technological, aesthetic, legal, and ethical foundations of mass media. Special attention will be given to the understanding of the dynamic and ever-evolving nature of the media in the information society. Lecture.
The primary goal of the course is to examine how media messages are created and consumed within a network of social forces: economic, technological, legal and cultural. By the end of the course, students should have a basic understanding of the dynamic nature of the mass media in an information society.
Late assignments will be accepted for a maximum of 50% credit for up to one (1) working day after they are due. After this period, they will NOT be accepted for a grade.
However, you must still complete the assignment or you will fail the class. You may not skip any assignment. All assignments must be completed and turned in for you to receive a passing grade for the course. You will fail or you may be withdrawn from the course if you do not fully complete assignments.
The instructor will distribute an Assignment Sheet for each assignment or activity to include a detailed description of the assignment, length and other requirements, and tips on how to approach the work.
Students are responsible for keeping track of their own grades during the course. Please keep copies of all returned assignments, tests and quizzes for reference in calculating your grades over the course of the semester using the percentages listed below.
There is no mid-term and no final exam in this class.
Approximate points breakdown:
3 writing assignment/activities for 45% of grade
3 exams for 45% of grade
5 to 10 reading or news quizzes for 10% of grade
Students should familiarize themselves with all policies listed in the UCA Student Handbook.
Students are expected to attend each class. The instructor will take attendance at the beginning of class. However, to accommodate illness, family emergencies, etc., four (6) absences will be allowed.
Additional absences will result in the student’s grade dropping one (1) letter grade per absence.
After five (7) unexcused absences you will be subject to WF (withdraw fail) from the class. This may be modified at the instructor’s discretion.
Late arrival to class may at the professor’s discretion result in an absence being recorded. Regardless, three (3) late arrivals will be recorded as (1) absence. It is up to the late-arriving student to notify the professor at the end of class that they are in attendance.
Only officially sanctioned/sponsored university activities may be considered excused absences. Students must notify the professor ahead of time and must present written documentation.
Missed exams that occur from absences are the student’s responsibility to make up. As such, it is the student’s responsibility to contact the instructor either prior to the exam or within three (3) days of the missed exam to schedule a make-up exam, which will be given at the instructor’s convenience. Failure to contact the instructor and make such arrangements will result in a grade of zero (0) for a missed exam. You must take all exams in the course. Failure to take an exam or a make-up exam will result in a failing grade for the course.
Students may not take a quiz if they arrive late to class while the quiz is underway or if there is not enough time to complete the quiz. Please do not ask for a quiz if you arrive late to class.
It is the policy of the department that any student in a department class whose behavior regularly interferes with the instructor’s ability to conduct the class and foster student learning, or who exhibits a behavior so outrageous as to severely impede the conduct of the class, may be dropped by the instructor after the instructor consults with the department chair. Prior warning will be provided to the student when possible, but under extraordinary circumstances such warning may not be possible.
Students may not use computers, laptops or tablets during class unless instructed by the professor. Also, no headphones, earphones, ear buds etc.
Cell phones should be turned off and in a pocket, purse, or backpack. Please have them turned off, and completely out of sight. Any use of a cell phone in class (calls, texting, reading texts, checking for texts or calls etc.) will constitute an absence. The instructor will note this in the attendance log. Unauthorized use of a phone in class may result in dismissal from the class for the day.
No reading the newspaper; no doing homework for another class, no sleeping or “resting” one’s head on the desk. Violators will be asked to leave the class for the day.
Email is a formal and professional correspondence. Emails to the instructor should be written in proper format using correct grammar, spelling and punctuation, and include your name.
Students are urged to visit with the professor during office hours or by appointment for help with writing assignments and other issues..
For other writing help, students may also visit the University Writing Center located in Thompson Hall, Room 109. Please make appointments by calling 450-5123. The friendly, experienced staff there is waiting to help you. You may use the OWL (Online Writing Lab) available through the UCA website under the Writing Center page. Furthermore, UCA has established a tutoring center in the library with generously flexible hours to offer tutoring and technology support.
Assignments must represent your own work. Plagiarism is the cardinal sin of academia and the news media. Papers and articles that copy the research and words of others without properly attributing the source will be given a zero (0) and cannot be redone. Students may also be dropped from the class.
1. Any academic dishonesty in connection with the taking of, or in contemplation of the taking of any examination. (For the purposes of this policy, any student is academically dishonest who (a) knowingly discovers or attempts to discover the contents of an examination before the contents are revealed by the instructor; (b) obtains, uses, attempts to obtain or use any material or device dishonestly; or (c) supplies or attempts to supply to any other person any material or device dishonestly; or (d) during the course of an examination obtains or attempts to obtain unauthorized information from another student or from another student’s test materials.)
2. Any misrepresentation of academic work by a student as the product of their own study and efforts.
3. The unauthorized possession, taking, or copying of solutions manuals or computerized solutions for homework or research problems assigned by a professor and/or instructor.
Please refer to the student handbook for university policy on academic dishonesty and plagiarism as well as on sexual harassment and other academic and university policies.
The University of Central Arkansas affirms its commitment to academic integrity and expects all members of the university community to accept shared responsibility for maintaining academic integrity. Students in this course are subject to the provisions of the university's Academic Integrity Policy, approved by the Board of Trustees as Board Policy No. 709 on Feb. 10, 2010, and published in the Student Handbook. Penalties for academic misconduct in this course may include a failing grade on an assignment, a failing grade in the course, or any other course-related sanction the professor determines to be appropriate. Continued enrollment in this course affirms a student's acceptance of this university policy.
Student evaluations of a course and its professor are a crucial element in helping faculty achieve excellence in the classroom and the institution in demonstrating that students are gaining knowledge. Students may evaluate courses they are taking starting late in the semester through the end of finals week by logging in to myUCA and clicking on the Evals button on the top right.
Title IX Disclosure
If a student discloses an act of sexual harassment, discrimination, assault, or other sexual misconduct to a faculty member (as it relates to "student-on-student" or "employee-on-student"), the faculty member cannot maintain complete confidentiality and is required to report the act and may be required to reveal the names of the parties involved. Any allegations made by a student may or may not trigger an investigation. Each situation differs and the obligation to conduct an investigation will depend on those specific sets of circumstances. The determination to conduct an investigation will be made by the Title IX Coordinator. For further information, please visit: https://uca.edu/titleix. *Disclosure of sexual misconduct by a third party who is not a student and/or employee is also required if the misconduct occurs when the third party is a participant in a university-sponsored program, event, or activity.
The University of Central Arkansas adheres to the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you need an accommodation under this act because of a disability, contact the UCA Office of Disability Services at 450-3613 or Student Health 212.
The UCA Counseling Center (450-3138, Student Health 327) is open to all students, and the services are free. The center offers confidential, professional counseling to assist you with personal problems. Students are urged to take advantage of this valuable resource.
An Emergency Procedures Summary (EPS) for Stanley Russ Hall will be discussed during the first week of this course. EPS documents for most buildings on campus are available at http://uca.edu/mysafety/bep/. Every student should be familiar with emergency procedures for any campus building in which he/she spends time for classes or other purposes.
This syllabus and the following class schedule are subject to change depending on the pace and progress of the course. Any changes will be noted in class.
Jan. 13 - Course Introduction, Read Syllabus for next class
Jan. 16 - Martin Luther King Day of Service, No class
Jan. 18 - Plagiarism, Quiz on Syllabus, Read Chapter 1 for next class
Jan. 20 - Changing Media, Read Chapter 2 for next class
Jan. 23 – Changing Media, Understanding Media (Paper 1 Assigned)
Jan. 25 – Critical Thinking, Quiz on Syllabus, Fake News and You
Jan. 27 – Critical Thinking, Fake News and You, Read Chapter 4 for next class
Jan. 30 – Newspapers
Feb. 1 – Newspapers
Feb. 3 – Test 1, Read Chapter 5 for next class
Feb. 6 – Recorded Music
Feb. 8 - Recorded Music, Read Chapter 6 for next class
Feb. 10 – Radio
Feb. 13 - Radio, Read Chapter 7 for next class (Paper/Activity 1 Due)
Feb. 15 - Film
Feb. 17 – Film
Feb. 20 – Film, Read Chapter 8 for next class, (Paper/Activity 2 assigned)
Feb. 22 – Television,
Feb. 24 – Television, Read Chapter 10 and 11 for next class
Feb. 27 – Public Relations and Advertising and Public Relations
March 1 - Test 2, Read Chapter 9 for next class
March 3 - The Internet and the Web
March 6 - The Internet and the Web
March 8 – The Internet and the Web, Read Chapter 14 for next class, Midterm Grade Report due (No Midterm exam in this class)
March 10 – Media Uses and Impacts
March 13 – Media Uses and Impacts (Paper/Activity 2 Due)
March 15 – Possible Screening
March 17 – Possible Screening
March 18-26 – Spring Break
March 27 – Media Policy and Law, Read Chapter 15 for next class
March 29 – Media Policy and Law, (Paper/Activity 3 Assigned)
March 31 - Media Policy and Law, Read Chapter 16 for next class
April 3 - Media Ethics
April 5 - Media Ethics
April 7 - Media Ethics
April 10 – Possible Screening
April 12 – Possible Screening, Read Chapter 17 for next class
April 14 – Global Communications Media
April 17 – Global Communications Media
April 19 – Global Communications Media
April 21 - Test 3
April 24 – The Future
April 26 – The Future
April 28 – Dead Day
May 1-5 - Final Exams
May 4, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. - Final Exam (Paper/Activity 3 Due)
May 6 - Commencement
May 8 - Final Grade Report Due
Plagiarism in visual journalismhttp://www.poynter.org/2016/stop-asking-so-many-questions-and-other-tips-from-pulitzer-winners/404658/