Education | Communication in the Classroom
F203 | 5131 | Joy Stephens
Because communication is pervasive and easily taken for granted, it is
easy for us to forget its importance. It is difficult to imagine an
activity more common, flexible, emotional, intellectual, useful,
creative, clear or ambiguous than communication.
In this course we will study communication from the point of view of
education. Some of the questions we will ask are: What is
communication and what is education; how does communication contribute
to learning; what are the components and kinds of communication; how
do they function in the classrooms and in schools; what is the
relationship between communication and community; how does
communication promote safety and the resolution of conflict; how can
teachers communicate effectively with parents?
We will pursue these and other questions by means of discussion,
demonstration, practice, readings, observation, written reflection,
and examination. In other words, you will find many ways to discover
communication in education. If this course is successful, many of the
ways you discover communication will be ways of your own creation.
Thus, you are encouraged to learn boldly, participate, risk, and take
responsibility for your own and other's education.
1. To understand yourself as a communicator, your style, and voice.
2. To acquire tools which will assist in communicating effectively
3. To think specifically about communication in the classroom, and
particular topics in educational environments today.
Morse, P.S. & Ivey, A.E. (1996). Face to face: Communication and
conflict resolution in the schools. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press,
Required Articles (These articles are placed on reserve in the
Cooper, P.J., & Simmonds, C. (1999). Small group communication.
Communication for the classroom teacher, (p.173-192), Needham Heights,
MA: Allyn and Bacon.
Dewey, J. (1911). Education as a necessity of life. Democracy and
education, (p.1-11), New York: The Free Press.
Kottler, J.A., & Kottler, E. (2000). Adjusting to multiple roles.
Counseling skills for teachers, (p.1-11), Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin
Kottler, J.A., & Kottler, E. (2000). Communicating with parents.
Counseling skills for teachers, (p.90-110), Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin
McKee, A., & Schor, S. (1994). Confronting prejudice and stereotypes:
A teaching model. Journal of Management Education, 18, 447-467.
Rogers, C.R. (1969). The interpersonal relationship in the
facilitation of learning. Freedom to learn, (p.102-127), Columbus,
OH: Charles E. Merrill Publishing Co.
Sadker, M, Sadker, D., & Long, L. (1997). Gender and equality.
Multicultural Education: Issues and perspectives (p.74-100). Boston:
Allyn and Bacon.
Tatum, B.D. (1997). Identity development in adolescence. "Why are
all the Black kids sitting together in the cafeteria?" and other
conversations about race, (p.31-51), New York: Basic Books.
Tatum, B.D. (1997). The early years: "Is my skin brown because I
drink chocolate milk?" "Why are all the Black kids sitting together
in the cafeteria?" and other conversations about race, (p.31-51), New
York: Basic Books.
Other Required Materials
An e-mail account
Class Evaluation and Assignment Descriptions
Participation: Due to the nature and content of this class, your
attendance and participation are essential. Participation includes
contribution to class discussions and activities as well as practice
of the communication skills that you will learn. Consistent
attendance, punctuality, and preparedness will be carefully considered
when calculating this portion of your grade. After three absences
(which includes "excused" absences) your grade will be lowered
one-half of a letter grade (from A- to B+, for example). After 6
absences your grade will be lowered an additional one-half of a letter
grade. (50 Points)
Identity Collage: As a part of our community building activities, you
will be responsible for designing a collage on a regular sized poster
board, which describes who you are as an individual and future
professional. You may use photographs, drawings, quotes, etc to design
your collage. Suggestions for this collage include family,
birthplace, accomplishments, unique characteristics, and hobbies.
Feel free to add to these suggestions. You will present your collage
in class on January 16, 2001. (25 Points)
Response Papers: Throughout the semester you will be asked to respond
in writing to both the readings and class discussion. Your responses
should include evidence that you have read the articles. It will also
be important for you to integrate your reactions to the class
discussion or activity. Each of the papers will be worth 10 points
and should be 2 pages in length. Topics include Multiple Roles, Group
Process, Cross Cultural Communication, Gender, and Parent Teacher
Communication. (100 Points).
Transcription Exercise: You will be responsible for transcribing an
8-10 minute segment of a discussion with a classmate. Upon
transcription you will analyze and interpret the communication skills
that you have demonstrated. You will also offer suggestions for other
effective means of communicating based on your growing knowledge. (50
Mid–Term Examination: There is a required midterm examination on Feb.
22, 2001. Questions will be comprised of course reading material,
course lecture, and may include questions generated by the class. (100
Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching: In groups of 4-5 you will be
responsible for researching and teaching a lesson for an entire class
period. Topics should be related to the central themes of the course.
However, presentations are not meant to restate material that has been
covered in class. Teams will be assigned within the first few weeks
of class and will be required to submit a topic by February 27, 2001
at the latest. Details on this assignment will be provided. (100
Final Examination: In your final assignment you will be asked to
reflect upon the work that you have completed in this course. This
4-6 page take-home will include thoughts about communication skills as
well as the special topics that have been addressed, i.e. Cross
Cultural Communication, Small Groups, etc. Details will be provided.
Participation 50 Points (10%)
Identity Collage 25 Points (5%)
Response Papers 100 Points (20%)
Transcription 50 Points (10%)
Mid-Term Exam 100 Points (20%)
Collaborative Inquiry 100 Points (20%)
Final Exam 75 Points (15%)
Total 500 Points (100%)
Planned Schedule of Course
*As the instructor of this course, I reserve the right to make changes
to this schedule as needed. I will inform each student of any changes
at the earliest date possible in class or via e-mail.
Jan 9 Orientation and Community Building
Jan 11 Community Building
Jan16 Community Building
Assignment Due: Identity Collage
Jan 18 Community Building
Assigned Reading: Dewey, A Brief Course in Philosophy of
Jan 23 Learning Relationships
Assigned Reading: Rogers, The Interpersonal Relationship in the
Facilitation of Learning
Jan 25 Class Discussion
Assigned Reading: Kottler & Kottler, Adjusting to Multiple
Assignment Due: Reaction Paper 1
Jan 30 Communication Skills: Listening
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapters 1 &2
Feb 1 Communication Skills: Questioning
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapter 3
Feb 6 Communication Skills: Reflecting
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapter 4
Feb 8 Communication Skills: Focusing
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapter 5
Feb 13 Influencing Skills
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapter 6
Feb 15 Influencing Skills (Cont.)
Assignment Due: Transcription Exercise
Feb 20 Midterm Review
Feb 22 Midterm Exam
Feb 27 Group Process
Assigned Reading: Cooper & Simmonds, Small Group Communication
Mar 1 Group Process (Cont.)
Mar 6 Conflict Resolution
Assigned Reading: Morse & Ivey, Chapter 7 & 8
Assignment Due: Reaction Paper 2
Mar 8 Conflict Resolution (Cont.)
Mar 13 Spring Break
Mar 15 Spring Break
Mar 20 Cross Cultural Communication
Assigned Reading: McKee & Schor, Confronting prejudice and
stereotypes: A teaching model
Mar 22 Cross Cultural Communication (Cont.)
Assigned Reading: Tatum, The early years: "Is my skin brown
because I drink chocolate milk?" OR Tatum, Identity development
Mar 27 Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching
Assignment Due: Reaction Paper 3
Mar 29 Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching
Apr 3 Gender in the Classroom
Assigned Reading: Sadker, Sadker, & Long, Gender and equality
Apr 5 GLBT Issues
Apr 10 Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching
Assignment Due: Reaction Paper 4
Apr 12 Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching
Apr 17 Parent Teacher Communication
Assigned Reading: Kottler & Kottler, Communicating with parents
Apr 19 Parent Teacher Communication (Cont.)
Apr 24 Closure Activity
Assignment Due: Reaction Paper 5
Apr 26 Course Evaluation and Wrap-Up
* Your Final Exam will be due Tuesday, May 1, 2001.