Comm420 - COMM 420 Syllabus Spring 2008 Nisbet...

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COMM 420 Syllabus – Spring 2008 Nisbet Communication 420 Public Opinion and Social Influence Monday, Wednesday, 2:55pm– 4:10pm, MT Bache (Malott Hall) Instructor: Erik Nisbet Lecturer Department of Communication Office: 332 Kennedy Hall Email: [email protected] Office Hours: By appointment Course Description This course (Comm 420) is an advanced seminar on 1) theories of public opinion and political psychology, 2) the role of public opinion in society, and 3) social influences, especially the mass media and social networks, on opinion formation. Public opinion in the context of political campaigns, foreign policy, civil liberties, and political tolerance will also be examined. As an advanced course, basic understanding of theories and methodologies in such areas of communication, psychology, sociology, and political science is recommended. The amount of assigned readings will more closely resemble a graduate seminar than the typical undergraduate course. Required Textbooks The following textbooks are required and available from the Cornell campus store. 1. Gamson, William, Taking Politics 2. Glynn, Herbst, O’Keefe, and Shapiro, Public Opinion. 3. Mutz, D.C., Impersonal Influence. 4. Price, V., Public Opinion 5. Zaller, J.R., The Nature and Origins of Mass Opinion Class Website Assigned readings not in the required texts and all the lectures will be available on the class website through Blackboard. If you do not already have one, you need to get a Blackboard account at www.blackboard.cornell.edu . Grading Policies Your overall course grade will be based on the following assignments: Midterm – 35% - Due 3/13 Final Exam – 40% - Due 5/14 Class Attendance & Participation – 25% The midterm and final exams will be take home exams in which you will have @2 weeks to complete each. Each exam will consist of several short essay questions (2-3 pages).
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COMM 420 Syllabus – Spring 2008 Nisbet Cornell University page 2 It is critical to attend class and actively participate to make good grades. If you cannot come to class, let me know in advance. Participation is strongly encouraged. If you do not attend class or make an effort to participate in class discussions, the class discussion will suffer, as will your course grade. Attendance will be recorded randomly throughout the semester. Your class room participation grade includes occasional two-page response essays that may be assigned during the course of the semester or other class activities. Reading Questions I will propose several questions for you to consider when reviewing each assigned set of readings at the end of each class prior. When reviewing the readings, you should keep those questions in mind as they will be our point of departure for classroom discussion. Tracking Public Opinion
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This note was uploaded on 01/18/2009 for the course COMM 4200 taught by Professor Shanahan,j. during the Spring '08 term at Cornell.

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Comm420 - COMM 420 Syllabus Spring 2008 Nisbet...

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