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Spring 2010                                                                                                                                                                 TTh  2:30-3:45


                      HCOM 300:  Introduction to Research in Speech Communication                 


Instructor:  Dr. John Reinard                                 Office:  CP Suite 420, Room 1

Phone:  278-3617                                                Office Hours:  TTh: 8:30 – 10:00 am, 

e-mail:  jreinard@fullerton.edu                                                      and by appointment

Class web page: http://commfaculty.fullerton.edu/jreinard


Education Unit Conceptual Framework


a transformational journey toward educational advancement and achievement

Core Values

We are a community of educators, educational partners, and students. Seven core values undergird our professional community. We value learning as a life-long process, professional literature that guides and informs our practice, responsibility to self and to the group, diversity as enriching the whole, multiple pathways to learning including the use of technology, critical inquiry that promotes positive student outcomes, and authentic and reflective assessment. We aspire to adhere to and model these in all our professional interactions. Through experiencing these core values in their educational journey, we believe our students will embrace and in turn, model them in their professional lives.

Based on our core values, our mission is as follows:

Mission Statement

Our mission is to teach, to serve, and to engage in scholarship. We teach our students to be critical thinkers and lifelong learners. We prepare professionals who improve student learning, promote diversity, make informed decisions, engage in collaborative endeavors, maintain professional and ethical standards, and become change agents in their workplaces. We engage in scholarly work that informs the profession and serve the educational community by providing applied scholarship.

Student Outcomes and Indicators
After successful completion of a program of study, our credential recipients and program graduates are:

   Outcome 1: Knowledgeable and Competent Specialists

·          a ) demonstrate strong foundation in subject matter or field of study

·          b ) demonstrate strong understanding and implementation of pedagogical skills or skills in their field

·          c ) demonstrate ability to use technology as a resource

   Outcome 2: Reflective and Responsive Practitioners

·          a ) promote diversity

·          b ) make informed decisions

·          c ) engage in collaborative endeavors

·          d ) think critically

   Outcome 3: Committed and Caring Professionals

·          a) become change agents

·          b) maintain professional and ethical standards

·          c) become life-long learners


 Department of Human Communication Studies:  Mission Statement and Goals for Communicative Disorders Program

The instructional mission of the Communicative Disorders Program is to provide its majors with an understanding of and appreciation for (a) normal and disordered human communication across the life span and across culturally/linguistically diverse populations, (b) the scientific foundations of the speech, language, and hearing professions, and (c) the interaction and interdependence of speech, language, and hearing processes within the discipline.  Graduates of the program are prepared to (a) pursue advanced degrees and credentials in speech-language pathology, audiology, and speech and hearing sciences and (b) become professional practitioners of speech-language pathology capable of serving in clinics, schools, community centers, hospitals, and private practice.


COURSE OBJECTIVESA field defines itself by the integrity of its research.  Communication studies represent such a diversity of approaches that the contemporary student must be conversant with many methods.  To be competent to read the field's literature, one must have a working knowledge of research methods from several arenas.  Undergraduate research methods courses in communication are designed to help students develop a facility for critical interaction with the field's important research.  This course seeks to meet five general purposes:

1. to equip the you with a general knowledge of communication research objectives and methods;

2.   to prepare you to write scholarship in communication;

3.   to prepare you to evaluate existing communication research approaches;

4.   to develop your skills in using library resources;

5.   to enhance your ability to develop persuasive scholarly arguments.

 TEXTBOOK:  Reinard, J.C. (2008). Introduction to communication research (4th ed.). Boston: McGraw-Hill.

  A Guide to Writing and Usage (download from
       http://commfaculty.fullerton.edu/jreinard/bookweb/newpage1.htm )

                          Bookwebpage and student study guide materials:


optional and recommended strongly:

                        Publication manual of the American Psychological Association

COURSE FORMATBy use of electronic "slides," examples, and workbook materials you will spend most class periods applying concepts you are learning.  The class requires active, not passive involvement.  Though, admittedly, lectures are a regular part of the course, knowledge necessary for your progress will be obtained though in-class contributions, class activities, text readings, and collateral assignments.  Thus, you must read assigned material before coming to class.  Moreover, this reading must be active and not passive.  Students will be called on by name to answer questions about materials covered in reading.  You should be prepared to summarize positions taken in the book so that you can apply them in class.  Questions and issues should be raised during class and are welcomed since they often illuminate matters of concern for new students of research methods.  The instructor will not read the book for you in class, though questions and exercises based on the book will be included prominently.

EVALUATION Since the class features a lot of "learning by doing," there are no "big" assignments that can "make or break" your grade.  Instead, many "little" activities contribute to the grade.  Specifically:

·   there will be a midterm exams during the term, which will count 19% toward your final grade;

·   a cumulative final exam will count 25%;

·   the first written paper, "Research Problem Paper" will count 8%; this paper is 1-2 pages in length and may be revised after receiving feedback;

·   the "Definitional Paper" will count 12%; this paper is 3-5 pages in length and may not be revised after it is submitted for grading;

·   the “Literature Review” paper will count 16%; this paper may vary greatly in length depending on the research argument the student makes; even so, most papers will range between 7 and 15 papers and may not be revised after it is submitted for grading;

·   additional "study sheet" assignments and in-class activities will count 12% toward the final grade;

·   Quizzes on English usage and grammar will count 8%;

Unexcused late written assignments will be penalized by 20% the first day and 10% each subsequent day.  Students who do not turn in an assignment or answer a question when called upon by name will be presumed absent.  All assignments are graded on a percentage basis. 

The University has adopted a grading system including plus and minus grades. For instance, an A- is computed as 3.7 grade points rather than a 4.0. Since this course has never been troubled by unrealistic grades, the plus and minus system for this class does not reflect an attempt to punish students. Instead, it corresponds to the University arrangement of scores. Hence, the following range of class cumulative grades will result in the following grades: 

96+ = A+;  88.5 to 95.9 = A;  86.5 to 88.4 = A-

83 to 86.4 = B+; 78.5 to 83.9 = B;  76.5 to 78.4 = B-

73 to 76.4 = C+;  68.5 to 72.9 = C;  66.5 to 68.4 = C-

63 to 66.4 = D+;  58.5 to 63.9 = D;  56.5 to 58.4 = D-

below 56.5 = F

This class satisfies the University’s upper-division literacy requirement. A minimum grade of C is required to satisfy this requirement.


Given that the course has a lot of "learning by doing" in the form of activities or active feedback sessions, you cannot master the course by getting notes from friends.  If you are ill, have a personal emergency, or cannot attend due to a religious holiday, please leave a message on the professor's answering machine (278-3617) before class.  Such delayed work will not be penalized if a telephone call is received before class, but the work generally must be completed after returning to class (check with the instructor regarding the specific assignment in question).  No late work may be turned in after the last regular session of class (prior to final exams).  No late assignments will be accepted on the day of the final exam.  Students must be in attendance to benefit from the class.  Unexcused absences are handled according to the separate policy statement. 

POLICIES:  The following additional policies guide this course:

·         Plagiarism is cause for failing the class.  See the University Catalog for an official description and discussion of plagiarism.  Students may find it useful to study together.  Even so, worksheets that are turned in must not use same wording or examples.

·         It is impermissible to look at, copy, or consult the work of another student or one’s books during a quiz or exam. It is impermissible to copy someone else’s written work, or allow someone else to copy yours.  Doing so constitutes plagiarism, which is punishable by expulsion. 

·         According to the University Catalog, grades of “incomplete” can be given only when a student who is doing otherwise acceptable work is unable to complete a course because of illness or other conditions beyond his or her control.  But any requirements to make up the course "shall not include retaking the course."  Not attending regularly, failing to complete assigned coursework, or just doing poorly in class is not cause for an incomplete grade.  Work must be completed during the time provided for the course.

·         By University regulation, following the University Census date, a class may not be dropped "except for the most serious reasons."  A serious reason is defined as "a physical, medical, emotional, or other condition which has the effect of limiting the student's full participation in the class."  According to the policy "the reasons must be documented by the student."  The policy states specifically that poor academic performance is not evidence of a serious reason for withdrawal.  The University does not accept a change in work schedule to justify a late withdrawal from classes.  Your instructor is willing to talk to your boss to help you secure a reasonable work schedule if it becomes necessary (at least let him help you).  Review of such documentation is completed by the instructor, the Department Chair and, if required, by the Dean of the School.

·         Students must be in attendance to benefit from the class.  Students who miss more than one week of  unexcused class sessions will be subject to a lowering of their final cumulative grade by four full percentage points.  Additional days of unexcused absence may be penalized at the rate of an additional 2% per day.  Students will be excused from attendance due to personal illness, personal emergency, or observance of a religious holiday.  To be excused, students must telephone the instructor prior to the class sessions to be missed.

·        No late work or "extra credit" (whatever that means) assignments may be turned in after the last regular session of class (prior to the final exam).  The University will not permit “late completion of requirements” as a cause for changing a grade after the semester is completed.

·        Use of laptop computers during class. If you wish to use your computer during class, please sit in the front rows and do not send email or complete other school work during class.


PREPARATION OF WRITTEN ASSIGNMENTS Except for those assignments completed in class and other assignments completed on special "study sheets," all assignments are to be typed (double spaced). All papers are expected to follow the APA style sheet--those that do not meet these standards will be returned to the students ungraded so that they may be submitted once corrected.  Papers are to use standard grammar and correct spelling--those that do not meet these standards will be returned to the students ungraded so that they may be resubmitted after corrections.

All writing will be expected to follow acceptable standards of grammar and usage.  The standard for writing used in the class is found in A Guide to Writing and Usage, which you are to download and follow. Please read it and follow its instructions.  The standard for citation of all sources in this class is the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. 


Of the three major papers, one copy of each written assignment will not be returned to the student, but filed for future cross referencing.  Students who wish a copy for themselves, must make sure to turn in an additional copy.


The University Writing Center is available to CSUF students who need some additional help.  They are eager to help you with matters of grammar, clarity, punctuation, and the like.  But they are not in the business of editing your work before submission.  Furthermore, they will help you with your writing, but they will not help you do your class assignments.  To receive help on assignments and editing your papers, please talk to Dr. Reinard in advance of the due date for assignments.


STUDENTS WITH LAPTOP COMPUTERS:  If you have a laptop computer and wish to use it during class, please sit in the front rows. Do not send email to anyone (especially including other class members) during class. Students are asked questions in class, and email permits others to send them answers. Students are asked to close their laptop computers upon being asked questions during class.    


STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES Please let the instructor know if you have a disability that might affect your participation or study in this class.  The instructor will keep this information in strict confidence, of course.  Often, however, immediate and simple steps can be taken by the instructor to improve your learning environment in this course.  Your instructor and Disabled Student Services will cooperate to help meet your needs.  If you have not yet contacted Disabled Student Services, you should do so very soon since they must first identify student-clients prior to offering their services.


EMERGENCIES REQURIRING BUILDING EVALUATION:  In the case of an event that required evaluation from the building, students are to follow the instructor and to stay with the rest of the class. Students will form at least 200 feet from the buildings to assure access by emergency vehicles.


A PERSONAL NOTE TO STUDENTS Dr. Reinard really loves this field and its research.  He hopes that you will share that same love for it as well.  Please let him help you on assignments or just drop by to chat about your ideas for your career in this field.  Who knows?  He might be able to offer you more help than your other friends can.  Remember, though he may have written the book from which you are studying, he is just another student in this field with you.  But, please secure help early.  Do not expect to get feedback on work that is reviewed fewer than a week before the assignment deadline.


A WORD ABOUT FURLOUGHS.  On furlough days, the instructor is forbidden to conduct CSUF business, including answering email or meeting with students. Any office hours are not observed during the furlough day. For professional educators, it is a very unnatural arrangement. Nevertheless, students should not send email nor attempt to make contact with the instructor on those days.


                                                                  Course Outline


DATE      TOPIC                                                                       Readings from Textbook


1-26           I.    Introduction to Communication Research               (start reading the Usage Guide on the book

                        A.  Problem Questions                                         website)

   28                        (cont.)                                                                       Chs 1-2

B.     .Our Rhetorical Tradition                  

2-2/4                      (cont.)

                  II.   The Mechanics of Research                                            

                         A. Isolating Problems and Hypotheses (review)              

    9                   B.  Writing Research                                                      Appendix G

                                                                                                   (make sure you have read and understood the

                                                                                                   Usage Guide on the book website)

11            III. Arguing Positions in Research

.                    A.   Explanation and Prediction:   

                             The Notion of Theory and Definitions                          Ch 3 

   16            (Furlough)

   18            (cont.)

                          B.  Arguing Positions from Evidence                               Ch 5

   23            (Research Problem Statement Paper Due)


3-2                    C.        Statistical Evidence                                               Ch 12

    4/9          (Furlough)    

    11/18                        (cont.)

    23           Exam

    25           IV. Historical-Critical and Qualitative Research

                        A.  Extrinsic Research                                                     Ch 6

4-6                   B.   Intrinsic Research

   8                            (cont.)

                   (Definitional Paper Due)

   13                 C    Ethnography, etc.       Ch 7

   15                        (cont.)

                  V.  Quantitative Research                                                     

                          A.  Content Analysis                                                      Ch 8

   20                  B.   Survey Research                                                       Ch 9

   22                               (cont.)

                        C.   Design of Experimental Research                                Ch 10

   27/29                  (cont.)

5-4                   D.  Sampling (guest lecture)                                              Ch 11

   6                   E.   Measurement                                                             Ch 4

   11/13             F.   A Conceptual Introduction to Inferential                       Ch 13

                                                               Statistical Tools                         Ch 14

May 20    2:30-4:20:  Final Exam

                        (Literature Review Paper Due)



Other instructor furlough days: February 12, April 16, April 19, May 7