Research and Theory Master's

Course Offerings Course Offerings


ADV 5005 – Advertising Planning

A study of (1) the theoretical foundations and processes of developing advertising and promotion strategies using secondary and primary research in the development and evaluation of alternative advertising/integrated marketing communication campaigns. “Advertising planning” encompasses (1) campaign objectives (marketing and promotion); (2) brand concept development; (3) target market and target audience selection; (4) campaign strategy, including the integration of promotional elements (advertising, sales promotion, direct marketing, digital media and publicity objectives and strategies); (5) evaluation; and (6) budgeting.

ADV 6006 – Theories of Advertising

Theories dealing with consumer responses to marketing communications, state-of-the-art advertising and marketing communications theory, academic articles examining consumer responses.

ADV 6305 – Advanced Media Planning

Media planning to meet advertising goals. Use of research findings. Computer models.

ADV 6405 – International Advertising

Global Competition and worldwide markets; technological revolutions; and branding products and services under different cultural, regulatory, and competitive conditions.

ADV 6503 – Advertising Creative Strategy and Research

The objectives of this class are to familiarize students with: (1) the theoretical foundations of creative strategy in advertising and marketing communications; (2) the research methods utilized in gathering data for developing and evaluating strategy; and (3) the process of developing strategy. The course will include lectures and discussions. Participation is essential. Case studies will be employed. In addition, a group project, a test and a paper will be used for evaluation.

ADV 6505 – Advertising Research Methods

This course introduces students to the methods most commonly used in scholarly and professional research in advertising, including secondary, qualitative, survey, content analysis, and experimental methods. It will provide students with a basic understanding of the research process with emphasis on problem identification, appropriate method selection, including strengths and weaknesses of alternative methods, and planning and executing research. Research Methods in Advertising is designed to provide students the depth of knowledge to design and execute a research project from problem identification through data collection. Additional courses will be required to gain the knowledge necessary for statistical data analysis.

ADV 6602 – Advertising Management

Application of management principles and practice to effective development of advertising plans. Case studies and discussion of current problems in research, planning, operations, administration, and evaluation.

COM 6315 – Advanced Research Methods

Scientific method, measurement, analysis. Student research required.
Prerequisites: MMC 6421 and STA 6126 or equivalents, and consent of instructor.

COM 6940 – Individual Work—Supervised Teaching

The purpose of this S/U course is to provide teaching experience for students not on a paid assistantship. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

JOU 5007 – History of Journalism

Origin, development, and potentiality of print and broadcast media. Evolution of standards, policies, methods, and controls.

JOU 5705 – Issues and the Press

This is an applied theory course examining the influence of the press and internal and external pressures that may have impact on the news product. Particular emphasis will be placed on current issues and how the media define and shape public concern. Students will be required to create class presentations and a research proposal. Doctoral students may take the class for advanced-level credit.

JOU 6309 – Journalism as Literature

This course lies at the crossroads of journalism and literature as it explores the journalistic, historical and critical tangents that make up the notion of literary journalism. Students read and analyze some of the best reportage ever written from the 19th century to our present day, and in the process explore how form and content work together to create great factual literature. This course also looks back as far as the 18th century at some of the literary antecedents to what Tom Wolfe – and others before and after him – have called the “New Journalism.”

This course has a six-pronged approach as it explores:

  • Literary journalism’s historical antecedents.
  • Literary journalism’s future in the age of the connected computer.
  • The criticism literary journalism has received from friend and foe alike.
  • The theory behind this genre.
  • The techniques that comprise and define this genre.
  • Ways of toppling the inverted pyramid in developing individual writing styles using the techniques of literary journalism.

MMC 5015 – Electronic Publishing

This course provides a hands-on introduction to online journalism and multimedia skills. Students will build two Web sites during the semester, and along the way they will learn a little about a lot: information architecture, design theory, basic Photoshop, HTML and CSS, online media history, how the Internet works, gathering audio and video, and more. There are two hours of lecture and two hours of lab each week. MMC 5015 is a prerequisite for the college’s other online journalism skills courses.

MMC 5206 – Advanced Law of Mass Communication

This is a graduate level survey class focusing on media law and its impact on the various media professions. Students will study the First Amendment, freedom of expression, censorship, defamation, privacy, copyright, commercial and political speech, and the laws and regulations affecting the broadcasting and cable industries. Additional topics include newsgathering and access to information, free press and fair trial issues, the constitutional protections afforded sexually explicit, or obscene speech and the ability of journalists to protect confidential sources. Students need a basic understanding of American government and the American legal system.

MMC 5306 – International Communication

The course is centered on the analysis and discussion of issues and challenges in international communication. By participating in the course, students become more informed about the institutions and practices that structure the form and content global communications. Students demonstrate their mastery of international issues, institutions and networks of international communication, through written reports, oral presentations, discussions, and a final paper or project.

MMC 5308 – Communicating for Success

This program was developed to assist UF’s incoming international students, designed specifically for non-native speakers. Through an interactive, immersion-style learning environment, students will gain essential skills to enhance their ability to write and present with a high level of proficiency, as well as gain the cultural awareness necessary to become an effective communicator.  The course will also help students become familiar with the many standards and guidelines set forth by the journalism and communication industries.

MMC 5708 – Intercultural Communication

Success in the new global business environment requires executives, managers and staff who are knowledgeable about cultural differences and who know how to communicate effectively in increasingly diverse local, regional , national and global markets. This course sensitizes students to various factors which influence intercultural communication effectiveness. It equips them for success in the multicultural and global workplace of the 21st century. Students demonstrate their mastery of the subject through written reports, oral presentations, discussions, exercises and a final paper or project.

MMC 6202 – Legal Problems of Mass Communications

This course covers First Amendment constitutional interpretation as it relates to the mass media. The course uses a discussion format to cover the assigned readings and materials. A major goal of the course is to give students a greater comprehension of media law issues through more in-depth review and analysis of the law. To assist in this endeavor, students will be required to do a full-length legal research paper on a pre-approved topic and a class presentation on it. The course lists as a prerequisite MMC 5206 Advanced Law of Mass Communications, which is designed to give students an introduction to legal research methods. Students must have some proficiency in legal research or see the professor about doing what is necessary to achieve it.

MMC 6400 – Mass Communication Theory

This course includes a survey of some core journalism-focused mass media theories and examines contributions of other disciplines to media theory. Additionally, it includes an introduction to the fundamentals of academic research.

MMC 6402 – Seminar in Mass Communication Theory

A number of courses are taught under this number—Brand Management, Mass Communication Perspectives, and Seminar in Experimental Methods.

MMC 6409 – Science/Health Communication

Overview of the field of science and health communication. Nexus of scientists, journalists, public information officers and audiences. Topics include science literacy, framing of science issues, public involvement, impact of science communication on policy.

MMC 6417 – Seminar in Mass Media & Health

Mass communication and health communication theories examined as they related to intended and unintended effects on individual behavior and on public health policy. Focus on effects other than those associated with mass mediated public health campaigns.

MMC 6421 – Research Methods in Mass Communication

This course provides an overview of common mass communication research methods. Specifically, we will discuss content analysis, experiments, surveys and focus groups. You will learn the benefits and shortcomings for each method. In addition, you will also be introduced to SPSS, a software program used to analyze data.

MMC 6423 – Content Analysis Methods

Sampling, category construction, calculation of intercoder reliability, and analysis of data. Evaluation of content analysis methods and opportunity to undertake project using this methodology. Focus on analysis of mass media messages, but includes content analysis of other communication content.

MMC 6428 – Collaborative Communication Research

Experience in conducting team research. Student-faculty teams select and work through projects with intent to produce scholarly work for conference presentation, publication, or research grant proposal.

MMC 6612 – New Media and a Democratic Society

This course examines the relationships between communication technologies and democracy, not only in the United States but elsewhere as well. New communication technologies, such as the Internet, will not automatically lead to or improve democracy, but they do contribute to changes in the society as a whole. We will examine how changes related to communication media might enhance or curtail democracy, with a particular emphasis on the relationships among the press, the public, and the government in a democracy. Please note that the press includes TV, Internet, and other media. NGOs (nonprofits) also play a role in today’s democracies. This is not a course in political communication per se.

MMC 6615 – Race, Class, Gender and Media

Our perceptions of race, gender and class profoundly affect our aspirations, relationships and behaviors. The purpose of this course is to examine the relationship between media representations and institutional, economic, political and social structures, and the impact these have on our experience and praxis of race, gender and class, in both U.S. and international contexts. The course introduces students to various analytical approaches to understanding the intersections of race, gender, class and media, and enhances their ability to do intelligent media and social criticism, thus becoming more competent practitioners of mass communication in multicultural/multiracial societies. Students demonstrate their mastery of the subject through written reports, oral presentations, discussions, and a final paper or project.

MMC 6618 – Survey of Political Communication

Role of communication in political process, including study of news coverage of political events, political advertising, political debates, international political communication, and politics and new technologies.

MMC 6619 – Seminar in Political Advertising

Role of advertising in politics. Political advertising theories, research on negative advertising, political advertising and women candidates, international political advertising, and news media coverage of political advertising.

MMC 6660 – Mass Communication and Society

The purpose of this course is to give students in journalism, advertising, public relations, telecommunications, and other mass communications fields the opportunity to explore issues in the interaction between mass media/mass communication institutions and society. The course is aimed at helping students to develop a critical perspective on mass media as they consider different ways in which media institutions and media content affect — and are affected by — individuals and society. In particular, students are expected to engage in evaluation and discussion of the responsibilities media practitioners and media organizations have toward the larger society and how those responsibilities should be translated into individual behavior and organizational (or governmental) policies. Because the focus of the course is on contemporary issues and problems involving mass media institutions and professions, readings tend to be drawn from recent works rather than classic or seminal ones, although the classic works certainly may sometimes inform the debate.

MMC 6665 – Seminar in First Amendment Theory

This seminar focuses on important theories regarding the protection of both speech and press in the United States. Theories examined include, among others, the marketplace of ideas, democratic self-governance, self-realization and the Fourth Estate model. In addition, theories of access to the media and government-intervention in media ownership are discussed. Students must complete a research paper in which they apply theories to a current, real-life legal controversy.

MMC 6666 – Seminar in Research in Mass Communication Law

This intensive, writing-based seminar focuses on the research and writing skills that are essential to scholarship in the area of mass communications law. Using online legal databases, students must gather information, including law journal articles, judicial opinions and federal/state statutes, and write a research paper during the seminar that must be an original piece of scholarship on a mass communications law topic. The seminar includes in-class discussions and critiques of students’ writing.

MMC 6667 – Advanced Topics in Mass Communication Law

Execution of individual or group research project on specialized topic under close supervision of instructor. Offered in spring semester, even-numbered years

MMC 6706 — Covering the Arts

This course focuses on fundamentals of arts coverage and marketing arts journalism pieces.  It also includes critiques of arts journalism and provides an overview of current trends in the business of the arts.  The class features tours of local arts venues and multiple speakers from the arts community.

MMC 6905 – Individual Work—Independent Study

Typically, students taking Individual Work must conduct original research. Building on an exhaustive search of the literature, students must make an original contribution to the understanding of mass communication. The finished products ideally would be accepted for publication or presentation at a conference. Regular meetings with the course supervisor must be scheduled. This course is letter-graded.

Under rare circumstances graduate students may take an undergraduate class for graduate credit as MMC 6905. You must discuss with the instructor, and have approved by your advisor, a plan of action to elevate the course work to graduate level. See registration form for proposal details. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

MMC 6910 – Individual Work—Supervised Research

Proposals for taking this S/U course must include 1) the goal of the activity; 2) the specific duties to be fulfilled; 3) how often and for how long the student will confer with the instructor, and 4) the method of evaluation. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

MMC 6920 – Communication Proseminar

Required at beginning of program for each student in the law track as an introduction to the mass communication program and graduate studies. If the course is not offered during the first semester in which the student is enrolled in the law track, he or she may substitute another proseminar in any other area (but not an independent study).

MMC 6929 – Communication Colloquium

This course is designed to enhance opportunities for doctoral student success as an academic, researcher and professional. The first part introduces students to the College, the doctoral program, available resources, overall research issues, approaches and methodologies. The second part covers: job search and interview strategies, the tenure and promotion process, conference presentations, qualifying exams and dissertation, etc.

MMC 6930 – Mass Communication Teaching

The course is designed for both those with college teaching experience and those without teaching experience to develop and practice some of the skills involved in being an effective teacher. The course includes teaching theory and discussion of factors that affect teaching and learning in higher education. You will teach class on a topic related to teaching in higher education, such as designing multiple choice tests, working with students with learning disabilities, and incorporating technology into teaching. You also will create materials for an undergraduate communications course, including a course syllabus, assessment critieria, and lesson plans. The final project is preparing a teaching portfolio for use in applying for university faculty positions.

MMC 6936 – Special Topics in Mass Communication

Interactive Health CommunicationThe course is designed for graduate students who are interested in the issues and opportunities of health communication employing interactive media technologies. The course covers critical topics in interactive health communication (IHC), including users’ search of health information on the Internet, factors affecting users’ evaluation of online health information, and IHC research and campaigns. It also introduces students to unique characteristics of specific interactive media such as search engines, blogs, social network media, e-games, podcasts, and mobile phones, and their effective utilization for IHC campaigns. As the course is organized in a seminar format, students are expected to actively participate in class discussions based on their critical review of the literature. This course is an advanced graduate course. Students are required to conduct original research and produce a conference-level research paper by the end of the semester.  Contact Dr. Kim for more information (

MMC 6949 – Individual Work—Internship

This course requires 100 credit hours for each one credit hour taken. The S/U course is required for some degree plans and serves as electives for some others. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

 MMC 6971 – Individual Work—Master’s Thesis Research

This S/U course is required for all Master’s degree plans. Master’s thesis students are required to take credits in the term of graduation—3 credits if spring or fall and 2 credits if summer—no matter how many thesis credits they have already completed. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

MMC 6973 – Individual Work—Project-in-Lieu-of-Thesis

This S/U course is required for all students completing a project-in-lieu-of-a-thesis. Students in Telecommunication register for RTV 6973. See the individual degree plan for the number of credits required and in which semester. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

MMC 7979 – Individual Work—Advanced Research

This S/U course is for doctoral students before the successful completion of the Qualifying Examination. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

MMC 7980 – Individual Work—Doctoral Research

This S/U course is for doctoral students who have been admitted to candidacy following the successful completion of the Qualifying Examination. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)

PUR 6005 – Theories of Public Relations (Core)

The purpose of the course is to develop an understanding of the theoretical body of knowledge in public relations and its application to professional practice. The course objectives include the following: to provide the conceptual framework that underlies the theoretical body of knowledge in public relations; to examine and discuss professional standards, ethics, and values in public relations; to examine how public relations theory informs professional practice; to provide a synthesized perspective on theory in public relations that allows master’s students to complete a project or thesis successfully; to provide the same perspective to doctoral students as a foundation for further development of theoretical knowledge; and to foster an appreciation for diversity of people and viewpoints as well as a respect for debate and the right to dissent.

PUR 6006 – Public Relations Foundations (Core)

This course is the introductory course in the public relations master’s curriculum. The course focuses on the roles and responsibilities of public relations professionals, theories and principles of public relations, and public relations programming. The overall goal of the course is to help students develop the knowledge, expertise, and skills that lead to professional competence in the field. The emphasis is on strategic public relations management, although students also will gain experience in essential writing tactics/techniques that are basic tools of public relations technicians. The Arthur W. Page Principles provide the ethical framework for the course.

PUR 6416 – Public Relations and Fund Raising (Elective)

This graduate course provides an in-depth examination of the principles and practice of fund raising, a high demand, low supply occupation unique to the charitable nonprofit subsector. The organizational function is approached as a specialization of public relations. Emphasis is on theory and theory-based practice. The managerial role of practitioners is the central focus. The course is designated an “Advanced-level course” in the College of Journalism and Communications doctoral program, meaning Ph.D. students enrolled in the course are required to complete an original scholarly paper (academic conference quality) that advances knowledge in the field.

PUR 6446 – Public Relations and Philanthropy (Elective)

This course provides an in-depth examination of the principles and practice of philanthropic giving by individuals, corporations, and foundations. Emphasis is on giving to the charitable nonprofit subsector in the United States. For corporations and foundations, philanthropy is an organizational function that is approached as a specialization of public relations. Emphasis is on theory and theory-based practice. The managerial role of practitioners is the central focus. The course is designated an “Advanced Level” course in the College of Journalism and Communications doctoral program, meaning Ph.D. students enrolled in the course are required to complete an original scholarly paper (academic conference quality) that advances knowledge in the field.

PUR6506 – Public Relations Research (Core)

This course introduces graduate students to methods of research used by public relations professionals and academics. We will work to develop an understanding of the principles of research for the strategic management of public relations. Considerable emphasis is placed on conceptualization and operationalization of variables relevant to the study of public relations. We will cover such topics as literature review, concept definition, instrument creation, data collection, computer usage, statistical data analysis, and presentation of final results. Generally, in this course you will: 1) acquire tools to help you think critically about the importance of research to the practice of public relations (Identifying the major research methods used in mass media research and asking the right questions), 2) develop an understanding of research design issues including ethics, sampling, and measurement, and 3) develop an understanding of and proficiency executing the various research methodologies available to and used by public relations managers and communications researchers.

PUR 6607 – Public Relations Management (Core)

This course involves the application of strategic management principles to the development of public relations plans and programs. A particular emphasis is placed on public relations as a management function between an organization and its key stakeholders. Through case studies, you will examine these principles in the primary public relations functions, including media relations, employee relations, community relations, government relations, consumer relations, etc.

PUR 6608 – International Public Relations (Elective)

Public relations is practiced by all types of private, public, non-for-profit, activist, and non-governmental organizations and institutions that progressively engage in building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders in many locations worldwide. This graduate seminar includes content and discussions on global issues affecting the public relations profession, the professional, the specialized practices, and the engagement of stakeholders, simultaneously at home, host, and transnational levels. For instance, the course includes an evaluation of the various factors that determine the profession’s evolution and practice in different countries. Also, this course aims to introduce and analyze the main concerns affecting the management of the public relations function, such as transnational crises; coordination and control mechanisms (i.e., integration and localization efforts); professionalism levels; trends; and the practitioners’ social roles, responsibilities, and competences. Despite the emphasis on the global, the readings and debates of this course clearly address the subjects of diversity and multiculturalism, which are also relevant for the practice and study of public relations in complex national and regional environments.

PUR 6934 – Issues in Public Relations (Electives)

This course covers a number of topics including:

– Communication for Development and Social Change: Public relations and strategic communications have played a major role in the design, execution and evaluation of communication for development and social change efforts. These efforts have sought to identify and address social needs in local communities, national landscapes, and at a global scale. The communication practices involved in these efforts have evolved providing a new opportunity for communication professionals. Changes have spanned the conceptualization of communication for development and social change as well as the strategies and tactics employed in these efforts. This course seeks to introduce students to a discussion about practical theory and a series of applications for local and global (glocal) public relations for development and social change. The role of the multinational corporation as it relates to the growing call for corporate social responsibility and the need for multi-sector partnerships will also be explored. Additionally, this course will expose students to overlapping concepts and emerging paradigms in the communication for development and social change, and public relations fields. The overlap will be discussed as an opportunity for professional and scholarly cross-pollination. Students will be prepared to investigate, through empirical research methods, topics in the area of public relations for development and social change of their interest.

– Social Responsibility in the Global Corporation: The seminar will focus on the precursors to different types of corporate social responsibility and the effects of social responsibility on corporate stakeholders. The class will have two components. First, we will be reviewing original research, summarizing the results of that research, critiquing it, and making suggestions for follow-up studies. Second, the seminar members will work on research papers designed to further understanding of global corporate social responsibility.

– Public Relations in the Digital Age: The class is based on the analysis of existing theories as well as research findings and in-depth discussion. During the semester, students are expected to conduct research on a public relations relevant topic, particularly in the context of digital communication and present it to their peers. We will carefully examine a body of literature in public relations and particularly in the context of digital communication. This course will offer important insights into theories, practices, and critical issues of public relations with an emphasis on computer mediated communication. The course is aimed at developing and enhancing both students’ theoretical and practical knowledge of public relations in the digital age and research skills based on critical thinking and problem solving abilities. Topics include, but are not limited to, the interplay of how social media influences public relations practices, the effects of Digital Public Relations on particular audiences, and critical issues such as the proliferation of digital technologies and how they change the traditional sense of public relations practices. We will discuss and research public relations in the digital age in a number of contexts, including (1) challenges and opportunities presented to public relations practitioners in the digital age, (2) how social media are changing public relations practices, (3) what would be the most effective public relations practices in the digital age, and (4) other critical issues such as professional ethics and social responsibility.

RTV 5702 – Telecommunication Regulation

Examines the role of the several branches of government in the development, implementation and enforcement of laws and regulation of the electronic media; and of the structural and behavioral laws and regulations pertinent to the electronic media.

 RTV 6508 – Audience Analysis

The study of audiences and their behavior from both theoretical and practical perspectives, using both quantitative and qualitative methods. Understand, interpret, and use industry data, audience research software, and audience theory. Understand the role technology and economics play in the audience formation process. Students learn to think strategically and theoretically in approaching, conceptualizing, and carrying out audience analysis and behavior studies.

RTV 6801 – Telecommunication Management

Management principles of the telecommunications industry, with practical and theoretical application for television, radio, film, online, and other electronic media sectors.

RTV 6807 – Telecommunication Outlet Systems and Practices

Structural and procedural elements of broadcast stations, cable systems, and other local radio-television facilities. Review of research and models in telecommunications administration, economic planning and control, merchandising and positioning, sales and advertising.

RTV 6973 – Individual Work—Project-in-Lieu-of-Thesis

This S/U course is required for all students in the Telecommunication track who are completing a project-in-lieu-of-a-thesis. See the TC degree plan for the number of credits required and in which semester. (Departmentally controlled—registration form required with appropriate signatures.)