CA525 Interpersonal Comm Theories

for S2P 2013

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Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.


CA 525 Interpersonal Comm Theories


S2P 2013 DL


Dr. Joan E. Aitken


Professor, Park University


Doctorate in Higher Education and Communication, U. Arkansas
MA in Curriculum & Leadership, U. Missouri; MA Speech, U. Arkansas
BA in Communication Theory, Michigan State University

Office Location

None, distance location

Office Hours

See course announcement.

Daytime Phone

See course announcement.


Web Page

Class Days


Class Time


Credit Hours



No textbook.  You will read journal articles, which you can access through Ebsco Host's Communication and Mass Media Complete.   You can login and retrieve the articles here:

They are also located here.  The password information is in a course announcement.


The following book is NOT a textbook for the course, background material for lecture thought and discussion is directly quoted from this source and protected by publisher copyright: Berko, R. M., Aitken, J. E., & Wolvin, A. D. (2010). ICOMM: Interpersonal concepts and competencies. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.

Additional Resources:

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information
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FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.

Course Description:

CA525 Interpersonal Communication Theories: A study of research and theories of interpersonal communication, including exemplary leadership behavior for organizations.

Educational Philosophy:
The student will seek to improve interpersonal communication skills in personal and professional contexts by using research based communication principles.

Class Assessment:

Class Assessment
As a result of taking this course the student should be able to

1.Synthesize, evaluate, and apply research-based theories of interpersonal communication in a content analysis of a mediated text.

2.Apply theory-based problem-solving and decision-making strategies for effective interpersonal communication.

3.Self-analyze interpersonal communication strengths and needs.

4.Practice exemplary leadership behaviors by using effective interpersonal communication skills.

5.Demonstrate rhetorical sensitivity (e.g., gender, culture, ethnicity, and people with disabilities).

6.Use appropriate interpersonal communication according to context (e.g., family, business).

7.Analyze case studies according to research-based theories.

Core Assessment rubric

Conduct original research, which is a content analysis of some type of media (e.g., webpage, self help book, magazine article). Preferably, the student will find leadership themes in the content analysis. Apply findings to the student's own life to improve a currrent interpersonal relationship.


Exceeds Expectation


Meets Expectation


Does Not Meet Expectations


Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation

Learning Objectives #1, 3

Uses content analysis to find 4 or more interpersonal communication or leadership themes in a media text.

Gives explanation that shows self-analysis of strengths and needs.

Uses content analysis to find 2-3 interpersonal communication or leadership themes in a media text.

Gives explanation that shows self-analysis of strengths.

Uses content analysis to find fewer than 2 interpersonal communication or leadership themes in a media text.

Gives no explanation that shows self-analysis of strengths and needs.


Learning Objective #2

Applies 4 or more research-based communication theories to the media text.

Constructs 4 or more research-based strategies relevant to the text for improving interpersonal communication (e.g., problem-solving, decision-making).

Applies 2-3 research-based communication theories to the media text.

Constructs 2-3 research-based strategies relevant to the text for improving interpersonal communication.

Applies fewer than 2 research-based communication theories to the media text.

Constructs fewer than 2 research-based strategies relevant to the text for improving interpersonal communication.

Whole Artifact

Learning Objective #4, 5, 6

Demonstrates professional quality writing, exemplary leadership, appropriate contextual analysis, and rhetorical sensitivity.

Demonstrates 2 or 3 of the following: Professional quality writing, exemplary leadership, appropriate contextual analysis, and rhetorical sensitivity.

Demonstrates consistency in fewer than 2 of the following: Professional quality writing, exemplary leadership, appropriate contextual analysis, and rhetorical sensitivity.


See detailed information under "Assignments" under eCollege course home and in the gradebook.


Percentage of Final Grade
Possible for Course

Week 1 - Wk1 Discussion

10 %

Week 2 - Wk2 Discussion

10 %

Week 3 - Wk3 Discussion

10 %

Week 4 - Wk4 Discussion

10 %

Week 5 - Wk5 Discussion

10 %

Week 6 - Wk6 Core Assessment

20 %

Week 7 - Wk7 Discussion

10 %

Week 8 - Wk8 Discussion

10 %

Week 8 - Discussion Leadership

10 %




Late Submission of Course Materials:
A late core assessment requires an additional research paper.  Weekly discussion and minor assignments cannot be made up.  For additional information, see

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
Show respect, including exemplary communication and leadership principles.  For additional information, see

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:



List the basic characteristics of content analysis research.

Identify influences from mediated sources about interpersonal communication (e.g., blogs, magazines, films, books).

Take steps to improve your interpersonal communication.


Analyze interpersonal communication challenges associated with separation.

Conduct Communication and Mass Media Complete research to find scholarship that can help with interpersonal challenges.


Initiate strategies to increase intercultural sensitivity.

Initiate strategies to improve interpersonal relationships at work.


Evaluate one's communication style.

Evaluate one's rhetorical sensitivity.


Find ways to improve interpersonal communication through media.

Apply strategies for improving interpersonal communication through media.


Use content analysis to analyze media influences in interpersonal communication and leadership.

Apply research strategies to improve one's interpersonal communication in a personal or professional context.


Discuss strategies for dealing with intimate relationship challenges, such as those in dating, marriage, and unrequited love.


Provide leadership to others about improving interpersonal communication.

Provide a plan for the future regarding effective interpersonal communication and leadership.


Week’s Focus

Journal Articles—Available through Ebsco Host Communication and Mass Media Complete

Assignments Due

Week 1 How can you improve your interpersonal communication?

1.    Core Assessment

2.    Motives and Support

(Available in Doc Sharing)

Discussion Board

Week 2 How can you effectively maintain a relationship during separation and change?

1.    Army Couples

2.    Deployment Marriage

3.    Deployment Communication

4.    Returning Home

5.    Parent-Child Separation

6.    Dialectics at War

Discussion Board

Week 3 How can you develop effective interpersonal relationships in the workplace?

1.    Culture at Work

2.    Cuss at Work

3.    Leadership Style

4.    Attachment in Business

Discussion Board

Week 4 Do you have a healthy style of interpersonal communication?

1.    Communication Style

2.    Arguing and Stress

Discussion Board

Week 5 How can you improve your interpersonal communication through media?

1.    Virtual Teams

2.    Instant Messaging

3.    Spamming Me

4.    Mediated Lifestyle

Discussion Board

Week 6 No new assignments

Core Assessment Due

Week 7 How can you improve your interpersonal communication related to dating, partnership, or marriage?

1.    Dating Mess-ups

2.    Leaving Unrequited Love

Discussion Board

Week 8 Explain the centrality of interpersonal communication in all aspects of your personal and organizational life. 

Discussion Board


Academic Honesty:
As a learning community, the University upholds the highest standards of academic integrity in all its academic activities, by faculty, staff, administrators and students. Academic integrity involves much more than respecting intellectual property rights. It lies at the heart of learning, creativity, and the core values of the University. Those who learn, teach, write, publish, present, or exhibit creative works are advised to familiarize themselves with the requirements of academic integrity and make every effort to avoid possible offenses against it, knowingly or unknowingly. Park University 2012-2013 Graduate Catalog Page 21-22
Use your own words in everything. If the idea is someone else's, cite and reference the source of information.  In the rare case you use someone else's words, use quotation marks, and cite, and reference in APA style.  

Any student who duplicates content--as identified by Turnitin software--without direct quotation marks and APA compliance should expect an "F."

READ and KNOW American Psychological Association (APA) Ethical Requirements for this program:

Expectations of ethical behaviors pp. 11-20.
Compliance checklist p. 20.
Complying With Ethical, Legal, and Policy Requirements, p. 231-236.
Crediting Sources pp. 169-174.
Self-plagiarism, pp. 16, 29, 170.


Plagiarism is the appropriation of another person's ideas, interpretation, words (even a few), data, statements, illustration or creative work and their presentation as one's own. An offense against plagiarism constitutes a serious academic misconduct.  Although offenses against academic integrity can manifest themselves in various ways, the most common forms of offenses are plagiarism and cheating. Plagiarism goes beyond the copying of an entire article. It may include, but is not limited to: copying a section of an article or a chapter from a book, reproduction of an art work, illustration, cartoon, photograph and the like and passing them off as one's own. Copying from the Internet is no less serious an offense than copying from a book or printed article, even when the material is not copyrighted.

Plagiarism also includes borrowing ideas and phrases from, or paraphrasing, someone else's work, published or unpublished, without acknowledging and documenting the source. Acknowledging and documenting the source of an idea or phrase, at the point where it is utilized, is necessary even when the idea or phrase is taken from a speech or conversation with another person.

Park University 2011-2012 Graduate Catalog Page 21

Attendance Policy:

Students must participate in an academically related activity on a weekly basis in order to be marked present in an online class. Examples of academically-related activities include but are not limited to: contributing to an online discussion, completing a quiz or exam, completing an assignment, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a course related question, or using any of the learning management system tools. Park University 2012-2013 Graduate Catalog Page 26

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .

Additional Information:



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Last Updated:10/9/2012 6:28:27 PM