COM 473 Courses Fall '16

For full course schedule (click here)

Note: COM 473 Can be repeated for credit provided the course title is different.

COM 473: Advanced Audio & Video Production. Professor Hammer.

In this course, students will build on previous knowledge and experience working with audio and video, using professional equipment and editing tools to construct a series of creative projects. Course topics and readings will include genre theory, film theory, and sound studies. Students will learn to use professional hardware (cameras, audio recorders, microphones, lighting, etc.) and software (Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe Audition) to prepare them for professional media production situations. Students should expect to do both individual and collaborative work in this class. Course projects will include music videos, sound design for film, and documentaries. Some previous experience with audio and video editing, though not required, is highly recommended.

COM 473: Communications Capstone Project. Professor Knight.

The Communications and Digital Media capstone is designed to synthesize the knowledge, design thinking and research skills learned in the courses comprising the student’s degree program. Students in the course will develop a semester-long project which may be critical or creative in nature. The projects will be executed in three stages with feedback
and discussion at each stage: 1) a full planning brief to propose a project, 2) project development and execution and 3) project finalization and presentation. Students are expected to discuss, present and critique their work with the highest level of professionalism and implement research strategies that contribute to the overall finished project.

Students in the course will meet weekly, report on the progress of projects, discuss research and screen prototype media for peer and faculty critique. At the conclusion of the semester, students present their capstone projects to the Communication Studies community.

COM 473: Digital Media and Electing a President. Professor Parry.

Media places an important role in public formation, one might even say that without media there can be no public. Media is the means by which people talk to each other, form opinions, and coordinate action. In this class we will look at the roll that media plays in democracy, specifically within the context of the role that digital media plays in presidential campaigns. The 2016 election cycle will provide us with a unique opportunity to understand how campaigns use/abuse digital media to convince/persuade/manipulate voters in an effort to win a national election.

COM 473: Participatory Culture, Online Communities, and the Practices of Social Media Research. Professor Wolff

Communication builds and perpetuates connections—connections among people, ideas, technologies, and media objects. This is nothing new, of course. From clay tablets to scrolls to the first books, humans have used communication technologies to represent ideas to be shared with others. Internet and web technologies, however, have transformed the
speed with which humans can communicate to create personal connections. Mobile technologies feed into the immediacy of those connections. As the Nancy Baym states, “the digital age is distinguished by rapid transformations in the kinds of technological mediation through which we encounter one another” (p. 1).

How do we make sense of these changes? How do they transform what we think about communication and the communities those communications serve? How do they change what it means to participate in a mediated society? What are the new terms and ideas that can help us understand what we see happening in public networked communication?

In Participatory Culture, Online Communities, and the Practices of Social Media Research (#popf16), we are going to consider what it means to communicate in digital spaces and how such communication contributes to the creation of personal connections. In doing so, we will consider ideas on off-line and virtual communities, social networks,
participatory culture, fandom, and social justice. We will engage directly with a variety contemporary archiving tools that afford netnographic research and sophisticated data visualization and learn how to interpret that data using various methodologies. Ultimately, we will come to a significantly more nuanced understanding of how people leverage digital spaces, like Twitter and Instagram, for a multitude of complex communication goals.

#popf16 is a course that encourages exploration, discovery, and curiosity. By exploring new opportunities for communicating, by discovering new communities and opportunities, and by allowing our curiosity to lead us in new directions, we will realize more fully what it means to communicate for and in digital spaces. No prior technological experience is necessary, nor is any expected.

VTV Film Festival

Villanova Television (VTV) is holding a Film Festival on April 10, 2016 at Villanova University. The festival is accepting 15 videos total, and will be giving out prizes in Editing, Directing, and Screenwriting. Also, they are looking sponsors to take part in funding this event.

The sign up period ends at 11:59 PM on March 27 and videos must be submitted before midnight on April 3. Entries will be charged $15 per submission into the festival, and attendance is $5 for adults and $3 for children under the age of 12. Food will be served at the event.…/vtv/vtv-college-film-festival.…

Summer Courses for 2016

The Communications Department is offering a few courses this summer. Summer registration begins February 22nd. For your pin please contact your adviser or Chris Hammond our administrative assistant ONLY if your adviser does not respond to you.

Summer I (3 weeks)

  • COM 372 Web Design and Development
  • ENG 261 News Reporting and Writing

Summer I (6 weeks)

  • COM 473 Crime, Justice and Media

Summer II (6 weeks)

  • COM 201 Ethics in Communication




Write Women Back Into History

Rachael is hosting an event February 27, 2016 from 9-1:30 PM, which includes a talk by Michelle Moravec, who is a digital humanist, blogger, and Associate Professor of American History/Women Gender Studies at Rosemont College. She will talk about interventions into women’s history on Wikipedia as part of a long history of efforts by non-historians to write women back into our understanding of the past.

Following that…..

There will be a Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon..Registration is required see the attached flyer for more details!

Register here!




Waltzing Matilda Internship Opportunity

Waltzing Matilda USA seeks a determined undergraduate or graduate student to join our continuously growing team in Wayne, PA. The Digital Marketing and Analytics intern will gain hands-on experience analyzing and implementing online marketing strategies, while learning about the inner workings of a USA-made company.

Continue reading “Waltzing Matilda Internship Opportunity”

Digital Internship Opportunity DATE EXTENDED

Have you ever wanted to work for the Mayor? Here’s your opportunity….


James F. Kenney, Mayor

Stephanie Waters, Digital Director

Office: 215-686-6210

Digital Internship Opportunity

Job Location: City Hall, Room 216, Mayor’s Office of Communications

Job Description:

The Mayor’s Office of Communications is currently offering a digital internship opportunity to students who will commit 12- 15 hours per week to this fast-paced work environment. Interns are often invited to attend events and/or internal meetings to acquire a better understanding of municipal government’s internal and external functions.  This opportunity is ideal for learning about municipal operations, politics, public service, public relations, media relations, community organizing, crisis communications, event planning and teamwork. Those majoring in communications, graphic design, and/or government studies are encouraged to apply.  We’re looking for a ‘team player’ with an enthusiasm for learning new skills while utilizing existing professional talents to assist with our office operation.

Continue reading “Digital Internship Opportunity DATE EXTENDED”

Spring 2016 Communications Topics Courses

COM 402 Advanced Web Design, MWF 2:30-3:20

Web Design & Development. The class will be a mixture of web design theory and practical front-end techniques. Students are expected to have experience hand-coding websites using HTML and CSS, a basic understanding of using Git, and be familiar with basic principles of design such as color and typography. Topics covered will include: usability, accessibility, git, Javascript/jQuery, designing for content management, and using WordPress as a CMS. By the end of this course, students should have solid understanding of the web design industry and modern web design techniques.

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Continue reading “Spring 2016 Communications Topics Courses”

Class Offerings Spring 2016

We have just posted our list of classes for the spring 2016 semester! Dates and times have been added as well as the ILC’s that are being offered this semester and count towards a Communications major.  See the Class Offerings Spring Tab on the left hand side  (or click this link (SPRING 2016) for the page with all the information listed above).

—ILC’s and COM Option courses can be found below our topic courses.

If you have any questions…feel free to ask on one of our social media sites. Follow and like us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram @SJUCOMM and SJU Communications Studies

Intercession 2016

The Communications Department will be offering two classes over the Intercession period. Find the information about both classes below.

COM 465: Bearing Witness: Images of War Past and Present 

Mike Lyons 

The course runs from Jan. 2 through Jan. 14. The first half (or so) of the course will be online – Jan. 2-7. We will meet in the classroom beginning Jan. 8.

For most of us the visual experience and memory of war comes from images. We will likely never see war first-hand so photographs and films shape our collective understanding and memory of armed conflict. This course will investigate images of war, including photographs, film and even comics and video games. These include films and photographs that depict and document several conflicts, including Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan.

We will discuss the dual purposes of photography and film – as art and as the documentation of an event (“bearing witness”). The course will also explore the ethical choices photojournalists and photo editors make and the impact of these photos on national and global politics.

This course is neither a film course nor a photography course. We will neither be taking pictures nor spending much time talking about trends in photography or analyzing the aesthetic qualities of films or photographs. This is a course on the “mediatization” of political events.

This is a compact, two-week course. That means that, theoretically, the idea here is to jam a semester’s worth of stuff into two weeks. That’s absurd. A two-week course is a unique beast and in a course like this it is impossible to get in a semester’s worth of discussion or material. So we will focus on a few key areas and explore them deeply.


COM 372 Web Design

Andy Famiglietti

This course is an introduction to the theory and practice of web design and development. Students will learn about web technologies and standards while building accessible and usable web sites. No previous experience is necessary, and the course will center on beginner/intermediate aspects of web design and markup languages–specifically, HyperText Markup Language (HTML5) and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS3). Readings will focus on the Web’s architecture and its history, the basics of site development, and current conversations about best practices (such as responsive design, grid systems, user experience, digital video, and mobile technologies). Students will study web technologies and apply best practices to their own goals or interests–creating, for example, a personal web portfolio or a basic client project–while developing a rhetorical and technological understanding of web-based communication.