Communication at Waynesburg University

The Department of Communication at Waynesburg University offers the opportunity to get involved with student-led activities as early as freshman year. Communication students benefit from real-world experience through nationally-affiliated student organizations, outstanding internships and hands-on community projects and programs.

Communication students can focus on a variety of options including:

  • Advertising
  • Digital Design
  • Electronic Media (TV/Radio)
  • Journalism
  • Public Relations
  • Sports Broadcasting/Information


Students who pursue studies in the communication field require top-of-the-line equipment and facilities in order to boost their resume and knowledge base. We make sure that our students have access to:

  • State of the art cameras and production equipment to aid in the creation of professional demo reels
  • A newly renovated campus television station to ensure excellent sound and visual quality with a beautiful backdrop
  • An exclusive iMac computer lab with 27" IPS screens at 2560x1440 resolution, 2.9GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processors and 1TB hard drives. They are equipped with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M graphics and processors with 512MB of GDDR5 memory, all of which makes designing for web and print a dream
  • A fully functioning Department of Communication TV Remote Production Truck, which allows students to capture and edit video as the events occur


Programs Offered

The Department of Communication offers three program options within the communication major, as well as majors in advertising, interactive design and public relations.

In all department majors and programs,

  • Classes are taught by faculty with real-world experience in photography, broadcasting, advertising, journalism, consulting and more.
  • Students work directly with modern video and production equipment and can apply skills through clubs and pre-professional organizations and activities starting at the freshman level.
  • Classroom learning is coupled with out-of class exercises and assignments to ensure maximum understanding.


The advertising major is designed to examine the complex issues related to the support industry that drives much of the mass communication activity in a consumer economy. Objectives of the major include advancing writing, speaking and research skills; providing technical knowledge in the fields of advertising, public relations and marketing; developing critical thinking skills and preparing students for graduate study in fields related to advertising.


The communication major offers students three areas of study leading to the Bachelor of Arts degree.

Electronic Media (Radio/TV)

Students enrolled in Waynesburg University’s electronic media option explore the business of radio and television broadcasting while learning the hands-on skills necessary for both behind the scenes and in front of the camera broadcasting and production.


Students enrolled in the journalism option develop news writing and gathering skills for print, electronic, radio and television journalism.

Sports Broadcasting/Sports Information

Students enrolled in the sports broadcasting/ sports information option study and practice a variety of news and information releases and learn how to manage a sports information staff and develop positive relationships with the media. In addition, the students master broadcasting techniques specific to the athletic industry.

Digital Design

The digital design major at Waynesburg University supplies students with experience and formal education in drawing, digital photography, design illustration and design principles for both print and web.

Public Relations

The public relations major teaches public relations writing and production, public relations theories and strategies, special events planning, non-profit public relations, media relations, crisis communication and more. Students perform public relations work for community organizations and develop connections through networking opportunities.



The communication minor instills basic communication knowledge and skills including introductory electronic media, graphic design and print journalism. An additional 12 communication credits round out the option and make an excellent minor for any career field.

Film Studies

Students pursuing a film studies minor learn about the history of film, script writing and directing. They also must participate in one semester with the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU) Best Semester Film Studies Program in Los Angeles, Calif.

Academic Curriculum

COM 101. Introduction to Electronic Media

3 credits

Introductory course exploring the business of radio and television broadcasting while learning the basic hands-on skills necessary for careers in broadcasting.

COM 105. Understanding Media

3 credits

A history of the various forms of print and electronic media, their development, and an identification of their various markets. Emphasis will be placed on the manipulative techniques used by the media to inform and persuade, as well as the media producer's responsible use of these techniques.

COM 110. Fundamentals of Television

3 credits

Hands-on, skill development course covering major aspects of television production. Student will start with learning the camera as an electronic medium to tell a story, moving on to learning lighting, audio, graphics, editing, and directing; all skills will be used in studio and field production. Students will be involved with WCTV, and other department television productions. Prerequisite: COM 101 or permission of the instructor. Spring

COM 121. Digital Photography I †

3 credits

A basic introduction to the use of digital photography techniques. The course will cover the use of industry-standard digital cameras and software applications to produce quality digital images.

COM 122. Digital Photography II †

3 credits

A more advanced examination of digital photography techniques. Special emphasis in the course is placed on the use of Photoshop as a tool for the ethical manipulation of digital images. Spring

COM 126. Principles of Design

3 credits

An introduction to the principles and visual elements of design to use them for optimal visual impact in media applications. The course will also cover the tools and processes used to complete graphic design and interactive design projects. This course meets the computer literacy requirement for communication.

COM 137. Introduction to Public Relations

3 credits

This course seeks to introduce students to the context and process by which public relations professionals establish and maintain lines of communication between an organization and its publics. The course examines methods and engages in skill development relevant to the practice of public relations, including historical development, definitions, concepts and management of public relations. Spring

COM 201. Fundamentals of Radio Broadcasting

3 credits

A practical course introducing students to the operation of radio equipment. Projects are designed to acquaint students with current radio station requirements. Included is a survey of the major areas of radio: history, technical information, programming philosophy, regulations, and social effects. Course work will be closely related to the campus station WCYJ-FM. Prerequisite: COM 101. Fall

COM 202. Television Technology

3 credits

The nature of television production is not only an aesthetic medium, but a technical one as well. Students will learn how television equipment works in order to function as a knowledgeable crew member in various kinds of production situations. Students will be involved with WCTV and other department television productions. Prerequisite: COM 110. Fall

COM 205. Sports Writing

3 credits

An introduction to and overview of the specific techniques of news and feature writing as they relate to the coverage of sporting events. Includes practical experience in preparing copy for print and broadcast media. Prerequisite: ENG 102 or 188. Fall

COM 207. Announcing

3 credits

A study of on-air announcing for radio and television. Emphasis on news reading, commentary, interviewing, sports play-by-play, and sports color announcing. Spring

COM 211. Print Journalism

3 credits

An introduction to the principles and practices of journalism, with a special emphasis on newsgathering and newswriting for print media. Includes basic techniques of news and feature writing, interviewing, and editing copy for publication. Cross-listed as ENG 211. Prerequisite: ENG 102 or 188.

COM 212. Journalism for Radio and Television

3 credits

A further study of the principles and practices of journalism, with special emphasis on newsgathering and newswriting for electronic media (radio and television). Includes techniques of writing and interviewing in the preparation of news for radio and television broadcast. Prerequisite: COM 211 or permission of the instructor. Spring

COM 213. Advanced Print Journalism

3 credits

A further study of the principles and practices of journalism for print media. Students will refine skills in news and feature writing, interviewing, and editing copy for publication. Prerequisite: COM 211. (Spring 2012 and alternate years)

COM 219. Digital Illustration

3 credits

An introduction to the tools and processes used to create digital illustrations for print and electronic media. Topics will include technical illustration, scanning, and image editing. Prerequisites: COM 121 and COM 126.

COM 228. Business and Professional Speaking

3 credits

Study of and practice in public speaking, conference speaking, oral presentations, group dynamics, interviewing, mediation, and conciliation. Theoretical basis for the course is in process-oriented rhetoric that emphasizes problem-solving and language appropriate for audience and purpose. This course meets the speech course requirement in the General Education curriculum (see pages 73). Prerequisite: ENG 102, 188.

COM 235. Sign Communication

3 credits

This course provides a study of the fundamentals of sign communication. Preparation for visual/gestural communication includes basic information relating to finger spelling, vocabulary, grammar, sentence structure and expressive/receptive techniques. Students will also engage in an intensive study of American Deaf Culture. (Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit.)

COM 236. Cross Cultural Communication

3 credits

The course is designed to examine the principles and processes of communicating from one culture to another. Focus for the course lies in the theoretical framework including differing perceptions, ways of thinking, values, non-verbal expression, language expression, and sub-groups within a culture as they relate to the medium and the message. Furthermore, students will have the opportunity to discuss strategies for practical application that will address these issues and integrate Christian values. (Fall 2010 and alternate years)

COM 237. Public Relations Writing and Production

3 credits

This course provides students with the opportunity to study and practice the various kinds of writing required of public relations practitioners, including but not limited to news releases, brochures, newsletters, and speeches. The course will also examine the emerging communication technologies diffusing into the field. Spring

COM 238. Message Design

3 credits

This course focuses on digital content planning, creation, management, and deployment. The course focuses on the work that begins before words are written or images are shot—the planning that is essential to successful communication. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 301. Television Remote and Field Production

3 credits

An advanced level course that focuses on producing and directing television productions that take place in the field. Specific focus will be on sports production. Attention will also be given to lighting, set design, editing, and technical considerations. Students will be involved with WCTV and other department television productions. Prerequisite: COM 110. (Fall 2011 and alternate years)

COM 302. Television Studio Production

3 credits

An advanced level course that focuses on the producing and directing of television production that is live or taped in the studio. An emphasis will be placed on the role of producer and director. Technical considerations including editing will also be covered. Students will learn to work together as a crew to accomplish good programming. Prerequisite: COM 110. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 305. Sports Information Management

3 credits

A study of the operation of a sports information office, with the goal of making the student aware of the various responsibilities assumed by the sports information professional. Included in the course are study of and practice in developing a variety of news and information releases, coordinating news conferences, gathering and disseminating statistics, conducting interviews, anaging a sports information staff, and developing positive relationships with the media. Spring

COM 307. Magazine and Feature Writing

3 credits

A study of the fundamentals of magazine writing. This course will focus on the major article forms and their use in publication. Magazine development and structure will also be discussed. (Spring 2012 and alternate years)

COM 308. Document Design

3 credits

This course is a study of design principles and the practical application of those principles for the conceptualization and creation of short and long documents. The documents students will be expected to plan and design will include a variety of single-and multiple-page documents, including newspapers and magazines.

COM 311. Radio Station Management and Operations

3 credits

Prepares students for future jobs in radio management. Topics covered include audience analysis, ratings, programming, developing on-air sound, playlists, FCC regulations, and financing. The course is required for all students who wish to be on the WCYJ-FM staff. Prerequisite: COM 201. Spring

COM 317. Communication Law

3 credits

Introduction to the federal, state, and local law concerning the uses and abuses of media, including copyright law.

COM 318. Script Writing

3 credits

Students produce scripts for radio, television, and other media productions. Scripts may be produced for WCYJ-FM and/or WCTV. Prerequisites: COM 101, 105. Fall COM 319. Multimedia I: Theory and Practice of Multimedia 3 credits An introduction to the theory and practice of multimedia production. Course content will include file management, graphics, basic animation techniques, and the incorporation of digital audio and video elements into multimedia presentations. Prerequisites: COM 101, COM 219. Fall

COM 325. The Photo Essay †

3 credits

A study of the principles and techniques of the photographic essay as a visual communication tool. The course includes preproduction, production, editing, and design of presentations for a variety of media. Prerequisites: COM 121, or approval of the instructor. (Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit).

COM 336. The History of Film (cross-listed as THE 366)

3 credits

A survey of the development of film from the early twentieth century through the 1960's, this course provides an understanding of cinematic art through an international survey of acknowledged classics of the past. This course meets the film course requirement in the General Education curriculum (see page 86). (Fall 2010 and alternate years)

COM 337. Sound, Projection, and Lighting for Ministry

3 credits

An in-depth study of operation and projection techniques, purchase and maintenance of media equipment and designing of media facilities including classroom, PA systems, multimedia and traveling media packages within the context of ministry. (Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit.)

COM 338. Non-profit Public Relations and Fundraising

3 credits

This course will introduce students to the concepts, tools, and applications used in non-profit public relations. Special emphasis is placed on the effective use of fundraising to enhance an organization's resources. Other topics include fund drives, gift planning, capital campaigns, and information technologies. Fall 2011 and alternate years.

COM 339. Creativity Theory and Practice

3 credits

This course will focus on the theory and application of creative problem solving to the various fields of communication. Students will study the nature of creativity in relation to person, product, process, and environment. Throughout the course, students will be exposed to many facets of creativity. Students will become increasingly aware of their creative self and will learn how to nurture their creativity skills through the use of assorted creativity techniques. (Spring 2012 and alternate years)

COM 399. Public Relations Research

3 credits

This course introduces students to the principles, tools, and methods in public relations research. Students will learn various methods and techniques to gather information, including case study, participant-observation, focus group, content analysis, and survey research.

COM 401. Single Camera Production

3 credits

An advanced level course which focuses on producing and directing film-style production. The focus will be on the entire production process from working with a client to off-line and on-line editing sessions. The course will also address lighting and editing. Prerequisite: COM 301 or permission of the instructor. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 405. Advanced Public Relations Strategies

3 credits

This course provides students with the opportunity to study and practice the various kinds of writing required of public relations practitioners, including news releases, brochures, newsletters, public service announcements, institutional advertising, and speeches. Students will complete these public relations tools for profit and non-profit organizations. Prerequisite: COM 237 or permission of the instructor. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 411. Advanced Radio Production

3 credits

This course develops the student's ability to produce and direct radio from idea to completed program. The course covers both live and recorded radio including talk radio formats, sports production, commercials, documentaries, and music production. Prerequisite: COM 201. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 419. Advanced Multimedia

3 credits

A study of advanced multimedia techniques, including creating and maintaining Web sites. Includes a study of the theory and practice of designing interactive presentations. Prerequisite: COM 319. Spring

COM 436. History of Broadcasting

3 credits

An examination of the development of radio and television in the United States, specifically its programming, audience, organization, technology, and philosophies. Special focus will be given to this development in light of cultural, economic, and civic interaction. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 437. Special Events Planning

3 credits

This course will instruct students in the effective planning, implementing, and managing of a special event. Students will examine the essential components of events planning, including identifying event objectives, working with planning committees, managing volunteers, marketing, and budgeting. Students will learn professional planning strategies and tactics for workshops, conferences, fundraisers, and many other special events. Prerequisite: COM 237. (Spring 2012 and alternate years)

COM 438. Communication Theory and Research

3 credits

The primary goals of this course are to provide the skills needed to understand and interpret research applications, methods, and results and to offer practice in basic research writing skills. This course will also prepare students to evaluate communication theories effectively and to apply these theories within a number of varying contexts. (Fall 2010 and alternate years)

COM 439. Digital Media Seminar

3 credits

A seminar course in which students will be introduced to advanced techniques in photography, design, animation, modeling, database creation, and telecommunications. Students will be expected to produce a wide range of mediarelated products. (Spring 2011 and alternate years)

COM 465. Internship

3-6 credits

On-the-job experience in either an on-campus or off-campus site. Specific internship duties are determined in contractual arrangement among the student, the on-site supervisor, and the department internship coordinator. All interns write a proposal, keep a journal of their work experiences, meet regularly with the coordinator, write a final report, and make a public final report on their internship experiences. Academic credit is three semester credits for 12 hours of work each week or six semester credits for 24 hours of work each week; all internships run 14 weeks. Prerequisites: attendance at three final report meetings prior to time of application, approval of the department internship selection committee, approval of the on-site supervisor, a 2.5 grade point average, and junior or senior standing. Graded credit.

COM 466. Practicum

3 credits

The course is designed to structure formally a practical working experience for students at the senior level in which a minimum of 50 clock hours of communicationrelated experience is required. Students will work in the general communication areas of electronic media, interactive media, and professional writing to produce mass mediated messages for outlets such as The Yellow Jacket, The Lamp, WCYJ-FM, WCTV, and other on-campus activities or organizations. The emphasis for instruction will be on the management of media outlets and also the techniques for producing mass mediated messages. Fall

COM 475. Advanced Faith and Learning Integration

3 credits

In the spirit of the mission of Waynesburg University, this course intends to provide junior and senior level students with an unparalleled opportunity to integrate the Bible materials and its history of interpretation to the academic disciplines. Students who wish to engage in this level of theological reflection on vocation should consult with both their academic advisors and with the Chair of the Biblical and Ministry Studies Major Program. See page 117 for further information. This course will not substitute for senior capstone/research courses required in the majors. Prerequisites: Junior or Senior standing; three credits in BMS courses; 3.0 minimum gpa. (Offered when interest is expressed and departmental resources permit.)

COM 495. Special Topics

3 credits

A study of various particular topics which are chosen by the members of the department in consultation with students. The topic will usually be different for each semester. Students may take only two Special Topics courses to fulfill major requirements. Once the major requirements have been completed, the student may take as many Special Topics courses as his/her schedule permits.

COM 497. Independent Studies

1-3 credits

A carefully guided writing, editing, or communicating project, the course is open to sophomore, junior, and senior Communication majors with the approval of their advisor. The course is also open to non-majors with the approval of the Communication program director and their major advisors.

COM 499. Senior Project

3 credits

An intensive study of an advanced topic selected by the student in consultation with a faculty supervisor. Suggested topics may include, but are not limited to, Webbased applications, digital pre-press processes, or multimedia presentations. The student's study will lead to the production of a portfolio-quality project. Other course requirements will be negotiated between the students and the faculty supervisor.


Lanny Frattare

Special Assistant to University Relations - Assistant Professor of Communication

Richard Krause

Chairperson for the Communication Department - Assistant Professor of Communication

William Molzon

Assistant Professor of Communication- Director, TV Operations

Chad Sherman

Assistant Professor of Communication


Testimonials The opportunities I have been offered in my classes have helped me develop professionally. Through my involvement within the Department of Communication at Waynesburg, and through my internship experiences, I am setting myself up to stand out in life.
Kyle Oland, senior public relations major

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