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Viewing: PA 516 : Effective Communications for Public Administrators

Last approved: Tue, 24 Apr 2018 08:00:43 GMT

Last edit: Thu, 19 Apr 2018 16:36:03 GMT

Formerly Known As: PA 501


Catalog Pages referencing this course
Change Type
Major
PA (Public Administration)
516
016642
Dual-Level Course
No
Cross-listed Course
No
Effective Communications for Public Administrators
Effective Public Communication
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Political Science (16PS)
Term Offering
Fall and Spring
Offered Every Year
Spring 2018
Previously taught as Special Topics?
Yes
4
 
Course Prefix/NumberSemester/Term OfferedEnrollment
PA 598Fall 201710
PA 598Spring 201715
PA 598Fall 201612
PA 598Fall 201612
Course Delivery
Face-to-Face (On Campus)

Grading Method
Graded/Audit
3
16
Contact Hours
(Per Week)
Component TypeContact Hours
Lecture3
Course Attribute(s)


If your course includes any of the following competencies, check all that apply.
University Competencies

Course Is Repeatable for Credit
No
 
 
Bruce McDonald
Associate Professor, MPA Program Director
Graduate Faculty

Open when course_delivery = campus OR course_delivery = blended OR course_delivery = flip
Enrollment ComponentPer SemesterPer SectionMultiple Sections?Comments
Lecture1515NoThis is a required course in the MPA program. The program has approximately 30 new students start each year that would take the course.
Open when course_delivery = distance OR course_delivery = online OR course_delivery = remote


Is the course required or an elective for a Curriculum?
Yes
SIS Program CodeProgram TitleRequired or Elective?
16PSPublic AdministrationRequired
Focus on professional written and oral skills and the applications needed by public and nonprofit administrators. This includes drafting, editing, and presenting factual and persuasive materials. Use of visual aids, handling question and answer sessions, dealing with media, and holding effective meetings. Composing memos, position papers, and press releases. The course develops competency to communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry.

Two changes are being proposed by the department. The first change is to adjust the course numbering from 501 to 516. This will bring the numbering in line with the other core courses in the program. The second change is an adjustment from 1 credit hour to 3 credit hours. This decision was based on feedback from our alumni who noted that they wish that their coursework would have been able to provide additional time on how to handle themselves in an effective manner. This was particularly important given that many of our alumni are beginning to engage social media as part of their employment. Similarly, feedback from public service leaders who supervise MPA students interns has consistently indicated the need to improve students' communications skills (i.e., both in professional policy and executive memos, position papers, and the like as noted in the catalog description). The second reason for the change was at the recommendation of our accrediting body related to the development of professional competency in public communication with an increasingly diverse set of stakeholders.


No

Is this a GEP Course?
GEP Categories

Humanities Open when gep_category = HUM
Each course in the Humanities category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Mathematical Sciences Open when gep_category = MATH
Each course in the Mathematial Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Natural Sciences Open when gep_category = NATSCI
Each course in the Natural Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Social Sciences Open when gep_category = SOCSCI
Each course in the Social Sciences category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Interdisciplinary Perspectives Open when gep_category = INTERDISC
Each course in the Interdisciplinary Perspectives category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Visual & Performing Arts Open when gep_category = VPA
Each course in the Visual and Performing Arts category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Health and Exercise Studies Open when gep_category = HES
Each course in the Health and Exercise Studies category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to:
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
&
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Global Knowledge Open when gep_category = GLOBAL
Each course in the Global Knowledge category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to achieve objective #1 plus at least one of objectives 2, 3, and 4:
 
 

 
 

 
Please complete at least 1 of the following student objectives.
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

US Diversity Open when gep_category = USDIV
Each course in the US Diversity category of the General Education Program will provide instruction and guidance that help students to achieve at least 2 of the following objectives:
Please complete at least 2 of the following student objectives.
 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

 
 

Requisites and Scheduling
 
a. If seats are restricted, describe the restrictions being applied.
 

 
b. Is this restriction listed in the course catalog description for the course?
 

 
List all course pre-requisites, co-requisites, and restrictive statements (ex: Jr standing; Chemistry majors only). If none, state none.
 

 
List any discipline specific background or skills that a student is expected to have prior to taking this course. If none, state none. (ex: ability to analyze historical text; prepare a lesson plan)
 

Additional Information
Complete the following 3 questions or attach a syllabus that includes this information. If a 400-level or dual level course, a syllabus is required.
 
Title and author of any required text or publications.
 

 
Major topics to be covered and required readings including laboratory and studio topics.
 

 
List any required field trips, out of class activities, and/or guest speakers.
 

This course has been taught historically under its original numbering, PA 501. For the last couple of years it has been taught as a special topics course (PA 598) to allow for the assignment of 3 credit hours. This course is already being offered within the boundaries of the resources of the program. No new resources would be required.

The goal of this course is to provide practical experience in communication for public or non-profit managers. Each student will define policy problems, conduct research and communicate that information. Anyone that communicates with individuals in public policy must do so effectively and clearly and understand the different communication methods that are used. 


Student Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:



  • Identify cognitive processes involved in communications;

  • Conduct public hearings;

  • Communicate performance results to diverse stakeholders;

  • Prepare and present effective, persuasive testimony within time constraints; and,

  • Conduct press conferences and effectively work with television, radio, and print media.


Evaluation MethodWeighting/Points for EachDetails
Quizzes10Grammar Quiz
A take home quiz will be given at the beginning of the semester. This quiz covers appropriate punctuation, grammar, and word usage. It is designed to make sure you understand the basics before the class moves into the written portion and oral communication of those materials.
Written Assignment25Individual Written Assignments
The course begins with an overview of appropriate grammar and word usage. It follows with an introduction of the different written styles of communication in public policy. These include the following:

• A Policy Memo;
• Media Talking Points;
• An Op Ed

In addition to these types of writing, the course will review the impact of new media in public policy, preparing and writing legislative testimony, discussing crisis communications and speechwriting, and writing a project scope of work. By the end of the course, each student will have a solid foundation for public policy writing for most any situation that arises. A written assignment will accompany each style of writing as it is introduced throughout the semester. Information on the due dates and the styles which you will be writing on are presented in the course outline at the end of the syllabus.
Oral Presentation25Oral Speaking Presentations
After many of your writing assignments, you will present the information to the class. You will do this in a variety of settings – in front of the class using Power Point as a presentation tool, or distillation of major findings into a five-minute quick briefing for a busy executive.

Your peers will evaluate you throughout the class through your written documents and in your oral delivery. It is a very supportive environment and learning from me as your instructor as well as your peers will help improve your communication. I will provide a template for your review of each assignment.
Participation20In-Class Participation
Class attendance and active participation are expected. Since this is a graduate level course, you are expected to read assigned materials before class and be an active and informed participant. Course readings will be from the course texts and selected articles, as indicated in the course schedule at the end of the syllabus.
Final Exam20Final Exam
A final exam will be given at the scheduled final exam time. You will have three hours to complete the exam. More details on the exam format will be provided later in the semester.
TopicTime Devoted to Each TopicActivity
Introduction to Policy Writing, Punctuation, Grammar & Word Usage3 hoursAssignment: Take Home Quiz: Appropriate Punctuation and Grammar and Word Usage Assigned

The first assignment is a take home quiz on appropriate punctuation and grammar and word usage. It is designed to make sure you understand the basics before the class moves into the written portion and oral communication of those materials.
The Policy Memo 6 hoursRead: Writing Public Policy, Chapter 3,4,6, and 8

Assignment: Policy Memo on Financing Alternatives for North Carolina’s Highway and Road System.
The Press Release & Media Talking Points3 hoursRead: Words That Count, Chapters 1, 2 and 3

Assignment: Developing Talking Points for Critical Research
The Op Ed, Letters to the Editor, Blogs & Pitches9 hoursRead: Ten Rules for Effective Language; Persuasive Speaking Tips; Example Outline of a Persuasive Speech; Examples of Op-Eds from leading newspapers; Handouts on effective Op-Eds and making persuasive speeches

Assignment: Write an Op-Ed on a public administration issue you care about

Assignment: Oral presentation of the Op-Ed
New Media in Public Policy 3 hoursRead: Give Ways New Media is Changing Policies; Strategic Communication in the New Media Sphere; Why Right Brainers Will Rule the World

Assignment: Write a Blog entry on a public policy topic
Preparing and Giving Legislative Testimony3 hoursRead: Writing Public Policy, Chapter 10; Drafting Written Testimony and Presenting Oral Testimony; Elements of Effective Testimony

Assignment: Write an oral testimony over siting of hog facility in Duplin County
Speechwriting & Speechwriting Analysis3 hoursRead: The Political Speechwriters Companion, Chapters 1 and 3; The Political Speechwriter's Life; In the Words of My Speechwriter; Interview with Robert Lehrman.

Assignment: Write a two page speech analysis
Speechwriting & Delivering a Good Speech3 hoursRead: The Political Speechwriter's Companion, Chapters 5, 6, and 7
Writing a Project Scope of Work3 HoursRead: Components of a Scope of Work
Crisis Communications3 hoursRead: Crisis Management and Communications

Assignment: Exploring the experiences of three Manhattan hospitals during Superstorm Sandy.
mlnosbis 3/27/2018:
Note to reviewers: this action is to create a new course "Effective Public Communications" that has been offered previously as a special topics. Rather than propose new course, they are editing and replacing an existing record.
1) Suggest consultation with the DGP for Communications (Andrew Binder, arbinder@ncsu.edu) to confirm there is no overlap or see if they want to cross-list.

cohen (3/27/2018):
1. In CIM in the Enrollment field, there is a comment that this is a required course for the MPA program. But two sections below that, the answer to the question "Is this course required or an elective..." is "no." I assume the answer should be "yes." Please change that.
2. I'm not sure what is meant by the following sentence under Student Evaluation Methods in CIM (and in the syllabus):
In addition to these types of writing, the course will review the impact of new media in public policy,
preparing and writing legislative testimony, discuss crisis communications and speechwriting and
writing a project scope of work.
3. The grading of the course does not allow for an A+. Although I am ok with that, I would invite the reviewers to weigh in on that.
4. Under the Late and Makeup Work section in the syllabus, what happens if a student has a problem such as those listed in the section of the Attendance Policy? For example, what happens if a student has a documented illness?
5. There are a few typos in the syllabus that need to be corrected.

cohen(4/1/2018):
In the syllabus, please put a period at the end of the paragraph under Grammar Quiz.

ABGS Reviewer Comments 4/9/2018:
- No concerns.
bmcdona (Fri, 30 Mar 2018 14:18:59 GMT): Response to MLNOSBIS: 1) We have consulted with communications regarding the course. Given that the structure of this course is built around the requirements of the MPA programs accreditation, the course is noticeably different than anything currently taught in the communications program. Response to COHEN: 1) The enrollment field has been adjusted to reflect that the course is required. 2) The sentence was copy edited to add some clarity. These are additional topics that the course will cover. 3) It is the standard practice within the MPA programs to have an F to A grade range. 4) Clarification on the impact of a late assignment for those who have a problem that is listed under the attendance policy is provided in the attendance policy, that accommodations will be made and will be done in a way that does not penalize students who have a valid excuse. 5) The syllabus has been copy edited.
Key: 4203