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Fall 2011


Professor: M. “Shae” Hsieh Email: or Facebook: Prof-Shae Says Voicemail: 909.274.6579 Office: 26D-1220E (Dept.), 26D-1441C (Forensics) Office Hours: Mon & Wed 4:45-5:45, Tue 11:30-12:30, or by appt. Mailbox: 26D-1421 !

26D-1441C (Forensics) Office Hours: Mon & Wed 4:45-5:45, Tue 11:30-12:30, or by appt. Mailbox: 26D-1421 !

COURSE DESCRIPTION This course is an introduction to the fundamental theories and competencies in interpersonal, small group, public, and intercultural communication. Oral presentations are required.


Verderber, Rudolph F., Kathleen S. Verderber, and Deanna D. Sellnow. COMM. Boston, MA: Wadsworth, 2009.


1. Explain the fundamental principles of communication.

2. Perform a minimum of three speeches, one of each from the following categories:

informative, persuasive, and impromptu (including one group presentation).

3. Create full-sentence outlines for informative and persuasive speeches using appropriate, credible research sources and attribution and appropriate speech organization.

4. Demonstrate proficiency in direct eye contact, appropriate speaking volume, and body control.

5. Speak extemporaneously (with minimal notes) for the required informative and/or persuasive speech assignment

6. Evaluate self-listening behavior and develop strategies for improvement.

7. Apply basic rules and assumptions that govern interpersonal communication.

8. Define and evaluate self-concept using a cultural framework.

9. Compare and contrast communication differences across cultures.

10. Analyze group member roles and norms.

11. Solve a problems as a member of a group.


Attendance Policy. Because speech communication is a skills-based course that involves listening, evaluating, and writing as well as speaking, you are expected to attend ALL class meetings. Attendance and class participation are necessary for success in this course. I realize that there may be times when an absence is unavoidable. Therefore, I offer the following Communication Department Attendance Policy: 2 absences without penalty.

Fall 2011

Attendance is especially important on presentation and exam days. Rescheduling a presentation or exam for an absence is not viable, and ONLY allowed if it is a documented emergency. Students with an unauthorized absence are not permitted to make up any speech presentation or exam and will receive a score of “0” for that assignment. Exceptions to this policy is limited and rare.

Students are expected to have all work submitted to the instructor by the assigned date regardless of absence, and should be current with the course upon their return. After your second free absence, additional absences will result in a 5-point grade deduction for each subsequent absence.

Tardies. In addition to attending class, you are also responsible for being to class ON TIME. Walking in late is disrespectful to the professor and your classmates. If you arrive after attendance has been taken, it is up to you to notify the professor that you had arrived post-roll call in order to be mark present. Three tardies will equal one unexcused absence. If you leave class before dismissal, it will also be marked as the equivalent of a tardy.

NOTE: (1) If you want to ensure your spot in class, attendance is mandatory the first two weeks of class until the end of the add period. I will drop anyone who is not present by the 30 minute mark of class and take on those trying to add. Leaving significantly early may also result in being dropped.

NOTE: (2) The door will be LOCKED on presentation days. Interrupting or distracting a speaker in any way may result in deductions from your own grade. If you are late on a speech day, please WAIT by the door until someone lets you in, in between speakers.

NOTE: (3) Being late on your assigned presentations day may run you the risk of points being deducted on your speech or not being able to speak at all, thus, receiving a “0” for the assignment. This is nonnegotiable.


1) Any student who is absent for a college-approved activity (such as a field trip, athletic competition, or leadership conference) and notifies the instructor in advance of the absence will not be penalized for the absence and will be allowed to make up graded work.

2) The only other exception will require that the student apply for exception by completing the official “Department of Communication Extraordinary Exception Form for Attendance.” The form is to be submitted to the instructor within one week of the absence. Valid documentation must be attached to the form, and only the following circumstances will be considered:

• Mandatory court appearance • Required military service

• Hospitalization of the student • Mandatory evacuation of home

Fall 2011

If the form is signed as approved by the Department Chair, the student will not be penalized for the absence and will be allowed to make up the equivalent points for graded work that was missed, including speeches, through any means determined by the instructor.

Students whose exceptional circumstances require them to miss a substantial number

of graded assignments may be advised to pursue a withdrawal.

Makeup. The only time a student may makeup missed work is for one of the above listed exceptions. That means late work is NOT ACCEPTED.

NOTE: It is the responsibility of the student to keep track of tardies, unexcused

absences, and points earned and/or lost. Furthermore, it is the studentʼ s responsibility

to get any information or assignments missed from a fellow student, first.

Grades are completely in your control! You are enrolled in a collegiate level speech communication course, so good communication skills are required at all times. This includes being able to articulate your ideas clearly, both verbally and in writing, using proper grammar. Below is how each letter grade is earned. If you are willing to put in the work, you will be able to earn the grade of choice.

A = 90 – 100%: You perform at the highest level, demonstrating sustained excellence

and exhibit an unusual degree of intellectual initiative. Not only do you complete the assignment meeting expectations, but you leave almost no room for improvement. You do an “exceptional or perfect job.”

B = 89 – 80%: You perform at a high level. Not only do you complete the assignment

meeting all requirements, but you exceed expectations. You do an “above average job.”

C = 79 -70%: You perform at an adequate level. You simply complete the assignment

fulfilling all requirements. Nothing special. You do an “average job.”

Figure out the rest.


= 69 – 60%: =(


= 59 – 0%: =*(

NOTE: Disagreements over any grades should be resolved soon after the grade is given. Any question regarding your grade must be discussed with me in person, not through email or over the phone. Disagreements over a grade should be typed and handed to me at the beginning of the next class meeting, not in class when you get your grade back or via email. This does not necessitate a grade change, but I will not consider one without it.

Fall 2011

Class Conduct, Rules and Policies. This class is a SAFE SPACE. Check your racism, sexism, homophobia, and all other “isms” at the door. This means you must walk into the classroom with an open mind and a willingness to accept differences in attitude, sexual orientation, spiritual and political beliefs, senses of humor and passion.

This class is also a FREE SPEECH ZONE. This course requires communication with all members of the class. The best classroom environments are ones in which all students feel comfortable enough to express their own views and opinions. However, this does NOT mean that you can/should offend or personally attack anyone in this class. Making these types of comments may result in being asked to leave for the day and possible further consequences. In order for this class to progress, we must be tolerant and come to class with an open mind. A college classroom is a professional learning environment in which mutual respect among and between students and the professor is expected.

Remember we all want a comfortable, respectful atmosphere for optimal learning and success. In addition, here are a few more rules and policies for my class:

• Respect your professor and classmates. No reading, working on assignments, listening to iPods, sleeping or talking is permitted while another is speaking.

• Graded speech presentations that are over/under time will be penalized.

• All written work must be typed in order to receive credit.

• Unstapled work will not be accepted.

• Emailed work will not be accepted.

• Always use e-mail etiquette when you send your instructor an e-mail message! I reserve the right to refuse service otherwise.

• Remember, your lack of preparation is not my emergency.

Academic Integrity. Academic dishonesty in any shape or form will not be tolerated. Academic dishonesty encompasses both cheating and plagiarism.

• Cheating includes obtaining, attempting to obtain, or assisting to obtain academic credit for work by the use of any dishonest, deceptive, or fraudulent means.

• Plagiarism involves submitting the works of others as your own and includes imporper source citation, no source citation, using materials prepared by another student, and using fictitious sources.

The penalties for academic dishonesty range from receiving an "F" on the assignment or exam to receiving an "F" in the course and may be reported to the Dept. Chair and/or the Dean of Students.

Fall 2011

Non-Discrimination Policy. “Mt. San Antonio College provides opportunities for the pursuit of excellence for all students and through its educational services…The college will provide open access to a college education and all support services without regard to sex, race, color, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, marital status, physical or mental disability (including HIV and AIDS), sexual orientation, or [] Veteran Status”

Special Accommodations. This campus will provide reasonable accommodations for students who face unique physical, learning, and emotional challenges. If you have special conditions as addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act and need accommodations, please inform me within the first two weeks of the semester. There are eligibility requirements for some of the programs offered. It is your responsibility to work with DSP&S to arrange for special accommodations. Please visit Disabled Student Programs and Services or call x4290.

Speech & Sign Success Center. The SSSC (26B-1551) is a free service provided to you as a currently enrolled SPCH student at Mt. Sac.

Withdrawal. Students are responsible for withdrawing from courses they do not intend to complete. The last day to drop without a “W” is 9/16/2011 and the last day to drop with a “W” is 11/4/2011.


Readings. You are responsible for the assigned material even if your instructor does not cover everything in class. Complete all readings and assignments prior to your arrival in class and be prepared to discuss topics. Please bring your textbook to class.

Communication Improvement Plan & Presentation:

1. Complete the scale “What kind of communicator are you?” found in the front of your textbook. a. Explain (1) Your results. Be objective and (2) Your comments regarding your results (e.g. Do you agree or disagree? Why? 1-2 paragraphs.

2. Using the steps found on page 13, develop a plan for improving your communication skills for each communication setting (i.e. public speaking, interpersonal, intercultural, & small group communication). a. Be objective and thoughtful. 2-4 paragraphs for each plan.

3. Identify and explain if there are any relationships between your scale results and your plan for communication improvement. 1-3 paragraphs.

Fall 2011

a. Execute this presentation through whatever means you deem as most effective (i.e. handouts, poster boards, powerpoint, etc.) If you are going to be using technology you must come set it up before class begins. You must also be prepared if technology fails. b. You must time this presentation before you present in class. Do not exceed 3-4 minutes.

Journals: Each journal should record experiences related to any topics discussed in class or in specific readings. Papers will be graded on both content (breadth and depth) and writing (free from errors). 2-4 pages. / Double-spaced. / 1 inch margins. / Name, title etc., do not count towards page limit.

Informative Speech/Outline: You will write and deliver a speech on something culturally specific. This speech must be well structured/organized, include sufficient support, and delivered in an engaging and effective manner. This speech requires 3 main points, at least 5 references, and presentation aid(s). Formal outline / 5-7 minutes / 2 notecards.

Critical Vlog: A vlog is a video blog. Instead, of a random rant you would find on youtube, your vlog should be a critical application of the theoretical concepts discussed in class or in specific readings. You should be thoughtful and reflexive when applying concepts to your personal life. Creativity is encouraged! Make sure that I can see/hear you. Poor visual/audio may affect your grade. Do not exceed 3-4 minutes.

Impromptu Speech: You will demonstrate your understanding of effective public speaking through an impromptu speech. You will perform with confidence and fluency. You will speak in an organized manner with supporting material. 2-3 minutes.

Small Group Persuasive Presentation/Packet: As a group you will apply the appropriate theoretical framework for persuasive speeches to a persuasive topic. Your group will demonstrate an understanding of persuasive proofs and present your material in 3 main points with at least 7 references, and with careful consideration to audience analysis, language use, and group delivery techniques. Presentation Aids and audience interaction are required. Formal outline / 20-25 minutes / 2 notecards each.

Group Public Performance: Iʼ ll let you know what it is once I figure it out!

(e)Learning Portfolio: A collection of material, assignments reflections, etc. demonstrating an understanding of concepts learned and real world applications.

Exams: There is a midterm and final for this course. The exams will assess your understanding of the readings and lectures through a variety of means: multiple choice, matching, true/false, fill in the blank, short answer.

HW/Participation: The success of this course is dependent of your willingness to participate in homework and class discussions.

Fall 2011

Assignment Grade Breakdown




Comm. Improvement Plan



Journal 1



Journal 2



Info. Speech/Outline



Critical Essay/Vlog



Impromptu Speech



Sm. Grp. Pers. Pres./Pckt.



Group Public Presentation



Learning Portfolio












720-800 = 90% = A 640-800 = 80% = B 560/800 = 70% = C

You calculate your grade by dividing the total points you earned by the total possible points.

Fall 2011








Comm. Perspectives (1)



Ice Breakers



Labor Day

Comm. Improvement Plan Pres.


No Class


Perception of Self & Others (2)

Communicating Verbally (3)



9/16 Last Day to Drop w/o a “W”


Communicating Nonverbally (4)

Putting it All Together Journal 1




Topic & Doing Research (12) Organizing Your Speech (Ch 13)

Adapting Verbally & Visually (14)






Informative Speaking (16)

Putting it All Together Journal 2




Info Speeches/Formal Outlines

Info Speeches/Formal Outlines



MIDTERM Ch 1,2,3,4,12,13,14,15,16

Listening & Responding (7)




Communicating in Relationships (6)

Developing Intimacy in






Communicating Across Cultures (5)

Putting it All Together Critical Vlog Due by 5pm




Participating in Group Comm. (10) Assign Groups

Member Roles & Leadership in Groups (11)



Interviewing (9) Impromptu Speeches

Persuasive Speaking (17)




Group Stuff

Group Stuff



Small Group Persuasive Pres.

Small Group Persuasive Pres.



Group Public Presentation

Putting it All Together Learning Portfolio Due