Communications & Information Technology (CIT)
This course focuses on communicating effectively in a culturally-diverse world. Students receive a solid grounding in Cultural Anthropology combined with Interpersonal Communication theory and practice to develop knowledge and skills essential for communicating effectively across cultural borders. Through lectures, small group discussions, research projects, videos, and guest speakers, students learn first to identify other peoples cultural patterns and then to analyze strategies for adjusting their own communicative styles to resolve and to avoid intercultural conflicts. Students demonstrate proficiency in intercultural theory and practice through writing assignments, including a formal cross-cultural research paper; oral presentations; and a variety of class activities and assignments.
As the final course in the CIT core, Communicating for Leadership serves as a bridge to upper-level courses in students fields of study. Furthermore, different sections are taught by instructors in these fields. This allows students to study the specialized communication styles and demands associated with effective leadership in their majors; that is, business majors study corporate communications; students in legal studies examine communication models and strategies for conflict resolution, liberal studies majors draw upon multimedia skills and technologies to enhance their communications, etc. Through readings, writing projects, discussions, and role-plays, students also study interpersonal communication skills, verbal and non-verbal communication, the dynamics and ethics of interviewing, and organizational and small group communication. While writing, reading, listening, and information literacy are integrated into the course, the course offers explicit instruction in public speaking and offers students opportunities to practice speaking to multiple and complex audiences in forums relevant to their fields of study.