A strong introductory course is important for many communication departments, for the discipline, and for meeting our obligation to society. This paper utilizes the example of a recent curricular reform that threatened to eliminate a required oral communication course to reflect on strategies departments can use to build widespread and lasting support for the course. The paper reviews the events that led to the challenge and details the department’s response, which offers lessons that may be useful for other institutions. Four lessons include: tailoring the introductory course to the institution’s needs and mission, involvement in university work, making compelling use of assessment, and drawing on support from accreditation requirements.
Hess, J. A. (2012). Building support for the introductory oral communication course: Strategies for widespread and enduring support on campus. Journal of the Association for Communication Administration, 31(1), 2-13.