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Communication and Media Studies 539

COMS 539: Leadership and Group Communication

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and instructor's permission

Credit Hours: (3)

Analysis of major theory and research in leadership and group communication techniques with primary emphasis on developing communication skills in small group interaction. Through discussions and participation in group activities students explore identification and evaluation of leadership techniques, communication networks, leadership training, research needs, and methodologies of group observation.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

The course approaches the issue of leadership for work groups from a systems point of view. Several theoretic models of leadership are studied, with a view to using leadership to maximize the productivity, and creativity of groups, as well as the commitment and motivation of individual group members. Particular attention is given to consideration of working groups within organizational structures.


Detailed Description of the Conduct of Course

The course is conducted in lecture/discussion format. Students are particularly encouraged in class discussion to evaluate differing theoretic perspectives on leadership and to assess their value in different work group environments.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

The central objectives of this class are to make prospective managers and training officers aware of the body of knowledge relating to the leadership and motivation of work groups within organizations. Students should come to understand appropriate and inappropriate uses of groups within organizations, and to effectively provide leadership for them.


Assessment Measures

Assessment measures include at least two examinations and a research paper, which involves detailed investigation of at least one variable important to an understanding of the leadership process.


Other Course Information

This course is available for graduate credit. Graduate students enrolled in the class are required to do extra readings in addition to the textbooks and to write an additional research paper.


Review and Approval

April 1999 David Dobkins, Chair