Interpersonal Communication

August 5, 2009

NOTE: This course is designated as a Service-Learning Course. While service-learning is not a new concept, this campus has designated particular courses as means to help the community and benefit students with insightful and reflective teaching methods for the course. In this case, Service-learning is a community-based project that requires students to present workshops to residents of a group home on appropriate topics from this course. Extensive discussions about the service-learning component of this course will be addressed on the first and second day of class and any concerns should be shared with the instructor no later than the first week of the semester.

I. Contents of Syllabus
a. Contract
b. Required textbook
c. Course description
d. Course objectives
e. Course evaluation/assessment methods
f. Calendar of Events
g. Rules and comments for the course/classroom
h. Instructor’s expectations, perspective and rationale

II. Syllabus as contract
It is your responsibility to read this syllabus carefully. It is your contract for completing the course. Changes to this contract by the instructor may occur to facilitate opportunities for further study in specific areas and/or the course overall. If you have any questions regarding the syllabus items, you are tasked to ask the instructor in class, in her office at office hours or during a negotiated time.

III. Textbook required for the course
Wood, J.T. (2007).(5th Ed.). Interpersonal Communication: Everyday Encounters. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth.

IV. Course Description
This is a service-learning course with a course project that will involve creating and delivering individual workshops for a particular population group from a not-for-profit organization. The project itself is outlined further in this syllabus. The purpose of this course is to acquaint the student with the field of interpersonal communication through an understanding of the fundamentals, an initiation of interpersonal communication theories and a view to the span of interpersonal communication research. Upon completion of this course, the student should have developed an understanding of the complexity of interpersonal relationship communication. Benefits of this course are that the student may gain a glimpse into the constantly changing flow of communication between people, not static but varying throughout relationship development. Further, the student will find that the exchange process of interpersonal communication influences the outcomes of relationships.
This class will specifically focus on ways that interpersonal communication helps the student to understand the variables involved in relationships, the way they perceive, talk, and listen to others, the rules followed, and common errors in daily communication exchanges. As a group, we will talk about communication with friends, family, and significant others and the impact and influence of culture, conflict, and power that confounds those relationships. This course will devote a considerable amount of time on cultural diversity issues and workplace communication.
Throughout the course, the guiding principle of all our interactions will be that we can all learn to improve our communication strategies with others by a growing awareness of others’ personal preferences and needs.

V. Course objectives and assessment methods
A. Students should be able to define the general terms and concepts of interpersonal communication. Assessed by four reflection papers, two examinations and two workshops.
B. Students should be able to express the concepts of interpersonal communication. Assessed by four reflection papers, two interviews with service-learning participants, two examinations and two workshops.
C. Students should be able to apply the principles and theories of interpersonal communication. Assessed by four reflection papers, two interviews with service-learning participants, two examinations and two workshops.
D. Students should be able to develop, apply and discuss critical thinking techniques in interpersonal communication situations and settings. Assessed progressively in four reflection papers, two essay examinations, two peer and self evaluation reports and two workshops.

VI. Assessments and Evaluations
A. Graded items
1. Interviews (2 @ 50 each) 100
2. Workshop outline #1 50
3. Workshop #1 100
4. Peer Evaluation on Workshop #1 50
5. Self Evaluation on Workshop #1 50
6. Reflection papers (4@50 pts) 200
7. Workshop outline #2 50
8. Workshop #2 100
9. Examinations (2@100 pts) 200
10. Participation and Attendance 100
Total 1000
B. Grading scale
1000-910 A 889-810 B 789-710 C 689-610 D
909-900 A- 809-800 B- 709-700 C- below 610 F
899-890 B+ 799-790 C+ 699-690 D+

VII. Calendar of events

Date Topic Evaluation
Aug 26 Introductions, discussion of course syllabus & questionnaire
Explanation of service learning project
Discussion of reflection paper (content and form)
Discussions on course direction, worldviews and value systems

Read Chapter 1

Aug 28 Discussion of Service-Learning Project and Chapter 1
Special Speaker from Service learning community partner
Discussion question: What is interpersonal communication?

Read Chapter 2

Sept 2 Discussion of Ch 2
Discussion question: How is self created and presented?
Discussion on service learning project

Read supplement chapter by Duck and McMahan
Prepare Reflection paper #1

Sept 4 Discussion of supplemental chapter Reflection paper #1 due Discussion question: What is my reflection of self?

Read Chapter 3

Sept 7 Discussion of Ch 3
Discussion question: How do I perceive others, myself?

Read Chapter 4

Sept 11 Discussion on Chapter 4
Discussion question: What is 9-11 for Americans, for others?

Review Chapter 5

Sept 16 Discussion of Chapter 5
Discussion question: What is your best, worst nonverbal
communication used by yourself, used by others?

Read Chapter 6

Sept 18 Discussion on Chapter 6
Discussion question: What is your listening score?

Prepare questions about Exam #1

Sept 23 Discuss Chapter 6 and Exam #1

Prepare for Exam #1 covering Ch 1-6, activities, discussions,
handouts, films and examples

Sept 25 Exam #1

Prepare interview questions for service-learning participants

Sept 30 Discussion on Service Project Workshops and Use of Interviews
Discussion and Activity with Interview questions—come prepared!

Oct 2 Interview Day with Service Learning community partner participants

Prepare Workshop #1 using Chapters 1-6 and interviews
Prepare Reflection Paper #2 on interviews (to be shared with
community partner management team)

Oct 7 & 9 No class: Dr. Crume at conference

Oct 14 Workshops #1 (4 team presenters) Reflection Paper #2 due

Oct 16 Workshops #1 (4 team presenters)

Oct 21 Workshops #1 (4 team presenters)

Prepare Peer Evaluations and Self Evaluations
Prepare Reflection Paper #3 on workshop experience (to be shared
with service learning community partner management team)

Read Chapter 7

Oct 23 Discussion of Ch 7 Reflection Paper #3 due
Discussion question: What is emotional intelligence?

Read Chapter 8

Oct 28 Discussion of Chapter 8
Discussion question: What do you do to achieve a desired
communication climate?
Read Chapter 9

Oct 30 Discussion of Chapter 9
Discussion question: What is your conflict style in a current

Read Chapter 10

Nov 4 National, State and County Elections—VOTE TODAY
Discuss Chapter 10
Discussion question: What’s/ who’s a friend?

Read Chapter 11

Nov 6 Discussion of Chapter 11
Discussion question: What are different types of romantic
relationships and why?

Read Chapter 12

Nov 11 Discussion of Chapter 12
Discussion question: What is the bond/cement of family

Prepare interview questions for service-learning participants

Nov 13 Discuss Workshops #2 using Chapters 7-12 (Service learning
community partner management attending)
Discussion and activity with interview questions—come prepared!

Revise interview questions for service-learning participants

Nov 18 Interview Day with Service Learning community partner participants
Nov 20 Discussion on Workshop #2

Prepare for Workshops #2 using Chapters 7-12

Nov 25 Workshop #2 (4 team presenters)

Nov 27 No class: Thanksgiving

Dec 2 Workshop #2 (4 team presenters)

Dec 4 Workshop #2 (4 team presenters)

Prepare for Exam #2 covering Chapters 7-12 with workshop
information, interview experiences and lectures

Dec 9/11 Exam #2 covering Chapters 7-12, workshops, interviews, lectures
Student Evaluations

School: Kent State University
Professor: Dr. Alice Crume
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