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Public Relations Concentration

COURSE CODE
COURSE TITLE
CREDITS
MSC Core Requirements

 

 

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COM701

COM701 - Communication, Ethics, & Society

This course is designed to present students with a graduate-level overview of contemporary mass communication. We focus on the relationship between mass media and society and the ethical issues inherent in that relationship; in the process, we identify current trends, particularly in technology, that are changing the nature and function of traditional mass communication. Students gain insight into the influences of mass communication on business, government, politics, education, the home environment, and non-profit instutions, as well as related ethical issues.

X
Communication, Ethics, & Society
3
COM702

COM702 - Organizational Communication

This course focuses on both theoretical understanding and practical knowledge of the context and applications for organizational communication. Topics include: leadership, new technologies and their impact on organizations, organizational climate and culture, ethics, formal and informal channels of communication within organizations, management of diversity and conflict, relational communication (with interpersonal and group work), and issues of power and politics within the context of organizational settings. During the first half of the course, the focus is on the theoretical bases for organizational communication; then emphasis shifts to professional perspectives on organizational communication and practical applications for “real life” situations in the work environment.

X
Organizational Communication
3
COM703

COM703 - Communication Research

This course provides students with an understanding of the concepts, roles, processes, techniques, and strategies of communication research. The course examines research conducted in both the professional and academic settings, and includes quantitative (surveys, experiments, content analyses) and qualitative (focus groups, etc.) methods. The main goal of this course is to help students become intelligent "consumers" of research -- to provide the tools needed to evaluate and interpret research, as well as the ability to make knowledgeable decisions about the uses and benefits of research.

X
Communication Research
3
COM705

COM705 - Media Relations

Managing media relations for organizations is the focus of this course. The course is intended to increase knowledge of the principles and methods of generating publicity as well as the basics of planning and writing media relations campaigns. The rapidly changing nature of global companies and the convergence of new information technologies are influencing the ways that communication professionals achieve their goals. Students work individually or in teams to plan a comprehensive media relations program, to communicate a clear message, and to evaluate the effectiveness of public relations strategies for a chosen client. Lectures, readings, group work, guest speakers, and class discussions focus on techniques useful in such areas as local & national publicity, special events, and in community and government relations for organizations.

X
Media Relations
3
COM709

COM709 - Negotiations & Conflict Resolution

This is a communication skills course designed to better understand the nature of conflict and its resolution through persuasion, collaboration, and negotiation. Students learn theories of interpersonal and organizational conflict and its resolution as applied to personal, corporate, historical, and political contexts. Students assess their own styles, skills, and values, and develop techniques to better resolve disputes, achieve objectives, and exert influence.

X
Negotiations & Conflict Resolution
3
COM738

COM738 - Persuasion & Public Opinion

This course introduces students to the dynamics of social influence. Students learn the theories, strategies, and techniques of persuasion as a means of shaping public opinion and attitudes. The course examines how individuals, business, government, and institutions craft messages and communicate through the press, entertainment media, advertising, and public relations. Primarily through public opinion research, students can ascertain and understand the beliefs, attitudes, and values of groups and society. Students learn how to craft persuasive messages, how to evaluate the attempts of others to persuade audiences, and how to recognize and avoid unethical attempts at persuasion.

X
Persuasion & Public Opinion
3
Choose 1 from the following:

 

 

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COM796

COM796 - Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive examination provides evidence of student knowledge of key concepts, skills, and other important materials related to the communication field. Preparation throughout the semester includes regular study group meetings with faculty and peers focused on reading and discussing case studies related to the major, as well as preparing written analyses of issues and concepts found in the case studies. The full-day exam requires analyzing case studies in the major and in the area of concentration, and developing written responses that integrate skills and understandings derived from coursework and other educational experiences in the degree program. Prerequisite: COM 703

X
Comprehensive Examination
3
COM797

COM797 - Thesis

Students completing a master’s thesis design, conduct, and report original research related to their concentration, working closely with a faculty advisor in the department and following detailed guidelines provided by the department. Prerequisites: COM 703 and prior preparation in statistics.

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Thesis
3
COM798

COM798 - Special Study Project

The project can be a document, a video, or a multi-media presentation developed under the guidance of a Lasell College faculty member to applying communication skills and professional expertise derived from the student's program of graduate study. Such projects are designed to solve some problem in communication that is relevant to the student's area of concentration in public relations or integrated marketing communications.Prerequsite: COM703

X
Special Study Project
3
COM799

COM799 - Professional Internship

The internship is a hands-on working experience in the field of the student’s concentration. Students who opt for the internship are expected to complete 150 hours in organizations that are committed to providing interns a high quality educational experience by having a supervisor available with time expressly for the purpose of teaching and guiding the intern. As a part of their internship, students undertake meaningful projects, including regular reflection, analysis, and written products, under the supervision of both an employer and Lasell College faculty member.The internship is a hands-on working experience in the student’s field of concentration requiring a minimum of 150 hours of placement under the supervision of both an employer and a faculty member. Beginning in the semester preceding the internship placement, the student identifies what type of organization they desire for their internship. The student holds primary responsibility for obtaining a field experience site and is responsible for setting up interviews with prospective internship sites.. The internship supervisor monitors student performance and visits internships sites as needed. On completion of the internship, the student submits a reflection paper to the faculty supervisor on their experience. Students may not perform internships at their current place of employment without prior consent of the Dean of Graduate and Professional Studies. Each student makes a public and professional presentation of the Graduate Internship experience. This course is taken during the student’s final graduate semester. Prerequisite: COM 703.

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Professional Internship
3
Concentration Courses

 

 

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COM713

COM713 - Writing for Public Relations

Public relations writing focuses on multiple aspects of communication such as client needs, target audiences, and various formats. In this course, students learn how to craft effective written and visual messages for press releases, speeches, brochures, newsletters, broadcast outlets, web pages etc., and they develop strategies for soliciting and evaluating feedback from designated target audiences.

X
Writing for Public Relations
3
COM721

COM721 - Principles of Public Relations

This course is in-depth study of the profession of public relations with a focus on contemporary issues, problems, and challenges using guided discussion and analysis of case studies. The course examines public relations and its role in mass media and in society and the challenges facing public relations professionals today. Upon completing this course, each student should: 1) understand what the field of public relations is and how to recognize best practices for public relations professionals; 2) be able to evaluate the effectiveness of public relations strategies; 3) be familiar with issues and concerns public relations professionals face in today’s increasingly global society; and 4) understand the importance of ethical behavior in public relations.

X
Principles of Public Relations
3
COM722

COM722 - Crisis Communication

This course prepares students for anticipating the seven major types of crises faced by communication managers in organizations (skewed values and ethics, deception, management misconduct, natural disasters, technological crises, confrontations and boycotts, malevolence, and disinformation) and how to make preparations to deal with them effectively and competently. Students explore which organizational cultures and government practices create vulnerability to crises. The course examines appropriate leadership styles, management actions, and communications strategies before, during, and after a crisis. Students review issues such as leadership initiatives, management monitoring, crisis analysis, action strategy and determination, and implementation of communication strategies. Students learn how to minimize the damage to reputation caused by a crisis; engage in sound media relations; prepare risk communication programs; communicate with key stakeholders; and contribute to the post-crisis recovery and renewal of an organization.

X
Crisis Communication
3

Two Electives: 6 credits
Students may take any courses offered at the graduate level to fulfill their elective credits. View course options here.