CA302 Communication Ethics and Law

for F2J 2004

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Park University

Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

COURSE: CA 302 Communication Ethics and Law
TERM: Fall 2 2004 (F2J04)
TITLE: Adjunct Instructor of Communication Arts
FACULTY OFFICE HOURS: Before/after class or by appointment
TERM DATES: October 25 – December 19, 2004

COURSE DESCRIPTION: A study of the laws and ethics for journalists and other communicators. The course will analyze libel law, privacy, objectivity, responsibility, freedom of speech and censorship, and the role of the press in society.

INSTRUCTOR’S EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY: The instructor has an interactive, student-centered approach to teaching. She strives to create a safe, comfortable class environment, and to include course materials that are both enjoyable and relevant, as well as academically sound. She may involve students in any or all of the following: class discussions, critiquing, demonstrations, exercises, field trips, games, group projects, guest speakers, internet, interviewing, journaling, problem solving, reading, role playing, self exploration, tests, web sites, and writing.

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have demonstrated:
•An understanding of the philosophical principles, laws, and professional standards that apply to various areas of mass communication.
•An ability to use their knowledge and reasoning skills to make ethical decisions.
•An appreciation for the importance of ethical communication.

COURSE TEXTBOOK(S): Media Ethics: Issues and Cases, Fifth Ed. Patterson, Philip and Wilkins, Lee. New York: McGraw/Hill, 2005. ISBN 0-07-288259-X.

COURSE ASSESSMENT: Assessment of student learning in this course will be based on class participation (including punctuality, attendance, and informative quizzes), two tests, and individual and group performance in the accomplishment of a group project.

Test 1: Chapters 1-5 Plus Class Materials 100 points Week 4
Test 2: Chapters 6-8 Plus Class Materials 100 points Week 7
Tests are open-book and will include primarily short answer and essay questions, with some multiple choice and/or matching. Students are responsible for the textbook as well as class materials. One hour and a half will be set aside for each test. Students arriving late will not be allowed to work beyond the scheduled end of the testing period.

Group Project 200 points Week 8
Details of the project will be provided in class. The assignment will include doing additional research on the topic; developing a teaching strategy; and sharing responsibilities among group members. Groups will be allotted time, in class, to work toward this goal. Final presentation should last 45-60 minutes. Presentations will be scheduled for Session 8.

Attendance/Participation/Quizzes 200 points Continuous
Attendance (80 points): This includes being continually present from the start of class until the class is dismissed by the instructor. The instructor for this course does not allow ANY excused absences. All absences will be considered UNEXCUSED regardless of reason. With one absence, an A for the course is still possible; with two absences, a C for the course is still possible. Three absences will result in a grade of F for the course.
Participation (80 points): This course will feature many class discussions and exercises. It is vital that students actively participate in these. Consideration will be given to quantity and quality of involvement, and demonstrated attitude toward learning. Students are expected to be respectful toward each other as well as the instructor during all discussions. Part of participation is listening. A student who is daydreaming, reading a novel, or chatting with friends about his/her weekend, etc., rather than paying attention to what is happening in class, is not participating.
Quizzes (40 points): Informative quizzes will be given at the beginning of class sessions 2, 3, 5, and 6. They are designed to help students review the reading material and access their progress. The quizzes are not graded, but for each one completed, 10 points toward the student’s score is awarded. Informative quizzes cannot be made up if missed.

600 possible points
A = 540-600 (90-100%)
B = 480-539 (80-89%)
C = 420-479 (70-79%)
D = 360-419 (60-69%)
F = 359 or below (59% or below)

ACADEMIC HONESTY: Academic Honesty is required of all members of a learning community. Hence, Park will not tolerate cheating or plagiarism on tests, examinations, papers or other course assignments. Students who engage in such dishonesty may be given failing grades or expelled from Park.

PLAGIARISM: Plagiarism—the appropriation or imitation of the language or ideas of another person and presenting them as one’s original work—sometimes occurs through carelessness or ignorance. Students who are uncertain about proper documentation of sources should consult their instructors.

ATTENDANCE POLICY: Instructors are required to keep attendance records and report absences. The instructor may excuse absences for cogent reasons, but missed work must be made up within the term of enrollment. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of “F”. An Incomplete will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance (TA) or Veterans Administration (VA) educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student. Reports of F grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for students receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
NOTE: The instructor for this course does not allow ANY excused absences. All absences will be considered UNEXCUSED regardless of reason. With one absence, an A for the course is still possible; with two absences, a C for the course is still possible. Three absences will result in a grade of F for the course.

LATE SUBMISSION OF COURSE MATERIALS: The instructor will not accept late assignments. Assignments not submitted on the due date will receive a grade of “zero”.

CLASSROOM RULES OF CONDUCT: All communication devices, including mobile phones and pagers, must be turned off or set on silent. If you must answer a call, please leave the room as quietly as possible so as not to disrupt the class. If you are participating in an exercise, turn phones & pagers off.

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 American with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities and, to the extent 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:

Note: Reading assignments should be read prior to the class period for which they are listed.

Session 1: October 27
Course Syllabus
Chapter 1: Introduction to Ethical Decision Making
Chapter 2: A Profession Seeks the Truth

Session 2: November 3
Informative Quiz 1
Chapter 3: What’s Fair in Advertising and Public Relations
Chapter 4: Loyalty
Group Project Explained and Project Groups Assigned

Session 3: November 10
Informative Quiz 2
Chapter 5: Public Relations
Project Groups Meeting

Session 4: November 17
Test 1: Chapters 1-5
Chapter 6: Privacy
Project Groups Meeting

Session 5: November 24
Informative Quiz 3
Chapter 7: Mass Media In A Democratic Society
Project Groups Meeting

Session 6: December 1
Informative Quiz 4
Chapter 8: Media Economics
Project Groups Meeting

Session 7: December 8
Test 2: Chapters 6-8
Chapter 9: Photo and Video Journalism
Project Groups Meeting

Session 8: December 15
Group Project Presentations

Schedule subject to change at the instructor’s discretion