Communication and Media Studies 439

COMS 439: Communication and Leadership

Prerequisites: COMS 130 and COMS 230, or permission of instructor

Credit Hours: (3)

An introduction to the study and practice of leadership from a communication perspective.  Anlysis of major theories and research in leadership with primary emphasis on application in real-world settings.  Through discussions and particpation in group activities, students explore leadership concepts and theories, analyze their personal leadership styles, and develop leadership skills.


An introduction to the study and practice of leadership from a communication perspective.  Analysis of major theories and research in leadership and group communication techniques with primary emphasis on developing communication skills in small group interaction.


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

Bill Kennan, Chair September 2001