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CCOG for COMM 214 archive revision 202004

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Effective Term:
Fall 2020
Course Number:
COMM 214
Course Title:
Interpersonal Communication: Process and Theory
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:

Course Description

Introduces interpersonal communication principles and concepts in various contexts to understand their effects on human relationships. Focuses on verbal and nonverbal message exchange in face-to-face, as well as digitally-mediated, interactions. Emphasizes the influence of culture, gender, identity and power on communication practices and strategies. Concentrates on the development of communication skills to build communication competence in diverse interpersonal contexts. Recommended: COMM 100. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon completion of the course students should be able to: 

1.     Identify appropriate communication behavior to improve the quality of person-to-person interactions in various contexts and types of relationships.

2.     Describe how an individual’s culture, gender, identity and power influences perception, communication behaviors and interactions.

3.     Analyze and effectively respond to messages using active listening skills.

4.     Apply conflict management techniques in a variety of situations.

5.     Practice communication competence in person-to-person and digital-mediated interactions to build and manage relationships.

Integrative Learning

Students completing an associate degree at Portland Community College will be able to reflect on one’s work or competencies to make connections between course content and lived experience.

General education philosophy statement

Communication is essential to being human. Communication courses inherently provide a foundation for understanding human interaction. While all humans use some form of communication to navigate the societies in which we live, each culture has its own set of ethical and social communicative norms. This course examines those norms by teaching students how to organize and make meaning of their own and others’ experiences and meet personal goals in a variety of communication styles and settings.

Course Activities and Design

Course outcomes and objectives are met in the face-to-face and online modalities with a combination of: lectures, online modules, in-class application activities, out of class experiential learning activities, reflection journals, group projects (role plays of course skills), discussion, discussion posts, exercises, interpersonal skill manuals, exams and service learning projects.

NOTE:  In order for the course to fulfill the Oral Communication outcome (outcome 4), instructors need to choose multiple assignments (at least 3) across the term that require synchronous, face-to-face oral communication activities.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

The forms of assessment will be determined by the individual instructor. 

Assessment strategies may include:

  • Qualitative examinations
  • Essays
  • Research papers
  • Portfolios
  • Oral presentations
  • Community Based Learning                        
  • Quantitative examinations
  • Journals
  • In-class participation
  • Projects
  • Group work
  • Dyadic exercises

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

Themes, Concepts, and Issues:

  • Identity
  • Perception
  • Self-Disclosure
  • Interpersonal Communication theories
  • Language
  • Relational Development
  • Active listening
  • Conflict Styles and Management
  • Nonverbal communication
  • Cultural context
  • Communication climate

Competencies and Skills:

Students will:

  • Be able to analyze dyadic conversations in terms of interpersonal communication theory.
  • Be able to explain communication models.
  • Be able to analyze the effectiveness of their own, as well as others’, communication choices in a variety of contexts.
  • Be able to explain how nonverbal behaviors influence the communication process.
  • Be able to see how the nature of language influences the communication process.
  • Be able to demonstrate effective listening.
  • Be able to identify a range of potentially useful conflict resolution behaviors.

A textbook is required. Suggested texts. Alternative texts need Dept. or SAC chair approval.

Interpersonal Communication: Competence & Contexts, Lane; Pearson

Interpersonal Communication: Everyday Encounters, Wood

Interpersonal Communication, Floyd

Interpersonal Communication, Trenholm

Interpersonal Communication: Relating to Others, Beebe, Beebe & Redmond

The Interpersonal Communication Book, DeVito

Reflect and Relate, McCornack, 3rd ed., Bedford/St. Martins

Interplay: The Process of Interpersonal Communication, Adler, Rosenfeld, Proctor. Oxford University Press

Just Relationships:  Living Out Social Justice as Mentor, Family, Friend, and Lover, Douglas L. Kelley