MISSION: Wayland Baptist University exists to educate students in an academically challenging,
learning-focused, and distinctively Christian environment for professional success and service to God
and humankind.
COMS 1303 Professional Communication
Fall III 2014
Mr. Modesto R. Cordero
Telephone: 294-0232(cell) / E-mail:
[email protected] and/or [email protected]
The professor will be available immediately before and after class or by
Mondays 5:30 – 10:00 p.m.; Hickam
CATALOG DESCRIPTION: Survey of theories, skills, and practices needed for communicating
effectively in professional and citizenship roles in organizational contexts. Emphasis on basic
communication theories and skills needed for productive interpersonal relationships, effective
participation in groups, teams, and committees, and for making and evaluating formal and informal
presentations in professional and social contexts.
PREREQUISITES: None. May be taken to meet the core requirement.
Adler, R.B., Elmhorst, J.M., & Lucas, K. (2011). Communicating at
work (11th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
ADDITIONAL MATERIALS: The professor may provide additional articles and handouts for you to
read throughout the course of the term.
 Synergize theories and principles of communication into the successful preparation and delivery
of business and professional presentations.
 Use effective interviewing skills and techniques.
 Understand and practice good listening.
 Analyze and apply group communication theories and skills.
 Demonstrate application of conflict resolution strategies and theories.
 Manifest understanding of and ability to apply persuasion theory and principles.
 Recognize and apply effective verbal and nonverbal communication in a business and
professional context.
 Understand and apply ethical communication principles.
 Use research based principles to cope with communication apprehension.
 Use effective systematic problem solving skills and procedures.
 Demonstrate well-designed and well-executed business writing.
ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS: Students are required to attend class regularly and
promptly. Being in class means that you arrived on time and stayed until class is over. More than
one unexcused absence will hurt your performance in this class and is automatic -2 points from
the total point system. If you are not present in class, you are still responsible for the material covered.
Homework must be completed on the specified due date. You may make up a test or a speech with
verification that circumstances were beyond your control. If you know that you will be absent, please
notify me before class with a phone call so arrangements for missed assignment may be made. All late
or missed assignments must be submitted the day you return to class. Late assignments will not
receive full credit and will usually receive a minimum 5 point reduction. WBU policy states that
students must attend 70% of classes to successfully pass.
DISABILITY STATEMENT: In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
(ADA), it is the policy of Wayland Baptist University that no otherwise qualified person with a
disability be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination
under any education program or activity in the university. The Coordinator of Counseling Services
serves as the coordinator of students with a disability and should be contacted concerning
accommodation requests at (806) 291-3765. Documentation of a disability must accompany any request
for accommodations.
COURSE FORMAT/REQUIREMENTS: This course is a combination of an interactive, cooperative
experience between the students and the instructor. The format is designed to integrate lectures, small
group work, discussions, and student presentations. Student active participation is encouraged. Chapter
readings of the textbook and homework will be assigned in advance. It is important that all students
read the assigned chapters prior to class and come well prepared to participate in the discussion of the
material. For all written homework, proper grammar and correct spelling are essential. All written
assignment and speech outlines must be typed double-spaced. University students are expected to
conduct themselves according to the highest standards of academic honesty. Academic misconduct for
which a student is subject to penalty includes all forms of cheating, such as illicit possession of
examinations or examination materials, forgery, or plagiarism. Plagiarism is the presentation of the
work of another as one’s own work. It is the student’s responsibility to be familiar with penalties
associated with plagiarism stated in the catalog.
GRADING CRITERIA: The grading will be based on:
Class Attendance
Class Participation
Group Presentation
Total Possible:
A= 100-90, B= 89-80, C= 79-70, D= 69-60, F= 59-Below
Students shall have protection through orderly procedures against prejudices or capricious academic
evaluation. A student who believes that he or she has not been held to realistic academic standards, just
evaluation procedures, or appropriate grading, may appeal the final grade given in the course by using the
student grade appeal process described in the Academic Catalog. Appeals may not be made for
advanced placement examinations or course bypass examinations. Appeals are limited to the final
course grade, which may be upheld, raised, or lowered at any stage of the appeal process. Any
recommendation to lower a course grade must be submitted through the Executive Vice President/Provost
to the Faculty Assembly Grade Appeals Committee for review and approval. The Faculty Assembly
Grade Appeals Committee may instruct that the course grade be upheld, raised, or lowered to a more
proper evaluation.
** A grade of incomplete is changed if the work required is completed prior to the last day of
the next long (10-15 weeks) term, unless the instructor designates an earlier date for
completion. If the work is not completed by the appropriate date, the I is converted to a grade
of F. An incomplete notation cannot remain on the student’s permanent record and must be
replaced by the qualitative grade (A-F) by the date specified in the official University calendar
of the next regular term. An incomplete turned to a qualitative grade will be indicated by the
notation I/grade on the student transcript.
8/25/14 Course Overview
Communicating at Work
No Class – Labor Day Holiday
Self-Introduction Presentation
Communication, Culture, and Work
9/15/14 Hometown Presentation
Verbal and Nonverbal Messages
Interpersonal Strategies and Skills
9/22/14 Mid Term
Developing and Organizing the Presentation
Types of Business Presentations (Informative
9/29/14 Job/Career Presentation
Verbal and Visual Support in Presentations
Delivering the Presentation
10/6/14 Informative Speech Presentation*
Types of Business Presentations (Persuasive
Presentations) (Special Occasion-Speaking)
10/13/14 Principles of Interviewing
Leading and Working in Teams
Effective Meetings
10/20/14 Group Presentations***
10/27/14 Persuasive Speech Presentation**
Final Exam (1.5 Hour)
Chapter 1
2 minutes
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
3 minutes
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapters 1-5
Chapter 9
Chapter 12
4 minutes
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
5-8 minutes
Chapter 12
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
20-25 minutes
8-10 minutes
Chapters 6-12
*Informative Speech: Each student will deliver an informative speech of 5-8 minutes about a particular
professional communication topic. The purpose is to inform the audience and not to persuade them.
The presentation will consist of gathering at least 3 credible outside sources for your presentation,
such as journal articles or credible books to be cited during your presentation. Your presentation
should expand beyond what is covered in class. Each student will turn in an outline and a reference
page of sources. Points will be deducted for not abiding to the time limit.
**Persuasive Speech: Each student will deliver a persuasive speech of 8-10 minutes about a particular
topic of importance in professional communication. The purpose is to persuade the audience to accept
the speaker’s ideas about a particular issue, enterprise, product, or service. It is imperative for the
speaker to demonstrate why his or her proposition is superior. The presentation will consist of
gathering at least 4 credible outside sources for your presentation, such as journal articles or credible
books to be cited during your presentation. Your presentation should expand beyond what is covered
in class. Each student will turn in an outline and a reference page of sources. Points will be deducted
for not abiding to the time limit.
*** Group Presentation: This presentation entails groups of 3-4 students working together. In your
group, decide on a topic that is related to professional communication. Then each person will conduct
library research and interview one person regarding one aspect of the topic. Your interview will be
used as one source. Please integrate it into your main points. Each member of the group will then
present one aspect of the project to the class in a 5-minute presentation and cite at least 3 credible
sources. Points will be deducted if it is not between 4-5 minutes long. Hence, if you have 4 group
members your group speech length should be about 25 minutes. Along with an introduction and
conclusion to the entire presentation (additional 3-5 minutes), each speaker should provide a miniintroduction and conclusion to his or her segment. Like the introduction, transitions are an especially
important way to help listeners follow the structure of a group presentation. Work as a group to plan
the introduction, conclusion, and transitions of your group presentation. The key is to synthesize the
material together as a group presentation! Each student will receive a grade based upon their
individual presentation. Each student will turn in an outline of their part of the speech and a
reference page of their sources. In addition, each student will attach their interview questions and
answers in a separate document.
1. Point deductions will be given to students who do not fully participate with their group
members throughout the entire process. Hence, it is imperative for students to show up to
group meetings.
2. Presentations must be prepared and presented using Microsoft PowerPoint (please bring your
presentation on a flashdrive or CD for easy compatibility with A/V equipment). Students are
strongly advised to email themselves a copy of the presentation as backup.
3. Additionally, you are expected to be respectful of your peers in order to maintain a positive
learning environment. Students who come to class regularly, do all the readings, but never
speak unless forced to do so will earn a C in participation. Inconsistent performances and
inconsiderateness may also cause a loss of points in this category.
4. Encyclopedias and dictionaries do not count as sources.