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COMM 2025 (formerly SPCH 1010) Syllabus

Course Syllabus

COMM 2025 (formerly SPCH 1010) - Fundamentals of Communication (formerly Fundamentals of Speech Communication)

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

An introductory communication course that explores the basic concepts of interpersonal, small group and public communication.

Course Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Analyze and evaluate oral and/or written expression by listening and reading critically for elements that reflect an awareness of situation, audience, purpose and diverse points of view.
  • Distill a primary purpose into a single, compelling statement and order and develop major points in a reasonable and convincing manner based on that purpose.
  • Develop appropriate rhetorical patterns (i.e. narration, example, process, comparison/contrast, classification, cause/effect, definition, argumentation) and other special functions (i.e., analysis or research) while demonstrating writing and/or speaking skills from process to product.
  • Understand that the writing and/or speaking processes include procedures such as planning, organizing, composing, revising and editing.
  • Make written and/or oral presentations employing correct diction, syntax, usage, grammar, and mechanics.
  • Manage and coordinate basic information gathered from multiple sources for the purposes of problem solving and decision-making.
  • Recognize the use of evidence, analysis, and persuasive strategies, including basic distinctions among opinions, facts and inferences.
  • Develop interpersonal skills necessary for personal and professional success.
Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

ENGL 1010

Course Topics:
  • Orientation Module
  • Module 1 - Foundations of Communication
  • Module 2 - Interpersonal Communication 
  • Module 4 - Persuasive Public Speaking
  • Module 5 - Persuasive Public Speaking
Specific Course Requirements:

During the Public Speaking portion of the course, students will prepare an informative speech and a persuasive speech following the assignment criteria listed in Modules 3 and 4. The two speeches must be delivered in front of approved audiences, videotaped, and submitted to the instructor as an Unlisted video on YouTube. Both speeches must be completed in order to pass the course.

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

None required.

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Grading Procedures:

Letter grades for this course will be assigned based on the following scale.

Point RangeAssigned Grade
716 - 800 pointsA
636 - 715  pointsB
556 - 635 pointsC
476 - 555 pointsD
under 476 pointsF

Graded Items:


Orientation Module

Orientation exercise: 10 points

Orientation discussion: 20 points

Orientation quiz: 10 points

40 points

Module 1 Assessments for Chapters 1 - 4

4 exercises: 20 points each equals 80 points

Discussion: 20 points

Quiz: 50 points

150 points

Module 2 Assessments for Chapters 5 - 8

4 exercises: 20 points each equals 80 points

Discussion: 20 points

Quiz: 50 points

150 points

Informative Speech Module

Topic selection assignment: 20 points

Research assignment: 25 points

Citing sources assignment: 20 points

Informative speech outline checklist: 10 points

Informative speech outline: 25 points

Informative speech discussion: 20 points

Informative speech: 100 points

220 points

Persuasive Speech Module

Topic selection: 20 points

Research assignment: 15 points

Persuasive outline checklist: 10 points

Persuasive outline: 25 points

Persuasive speech discussion: 20 points

Persuasive speech: 150 points

240 points
Total points800 total


Grading Scale:





Assignments and Projects:

In the Orientation Module and Modules 1 & 2, timed multiple choices quizzes are used to assess understanding of the concepts in the course and in the text. 

The exercises and discussions in Modules 1 & 2 provide you with an opportunity to apply concepts from the course to everyday situations. The exercises are graded on completeness and integration of the concepts.

In Modules 3 & 4, assignments and discussions are designed to help them prepare for the two speeches. Students are graded on completeness and ability to follow the formats provided. The evaluation forms provided in Modules 3 & 4 are used to provide feedback regarding the speeches.

Class Participation:

You are expected to participate in Discussion forum. You must post at least twice for each question in order to be eligible to receive full credit. You must post once to answer the question yourself and again to respond to the postings of at least one classmate. You are expected to communicate with your instructor on a regular basis to ask for any needed assistance and check the course frequently for announcements. You will be responsible for meeting all deadlines by their due dates.

Late Policy:

All coursework is due by the date indicated on the Calendar. You should become familiar with the Calendar to determine when materials are due and adjust your study schedule accordingly. This course has been designed to help you successfully complete the necessary materials and assignments by the end of the semester. Therefore, it is important to stay on schedule and to complete each assignment by the due date. Late work is accepted ONLY when approval has been given by your instructor due to a documented event of sufficient seriousness and duration as to prevent you from submitting the work by the published due date. You should keep the following details in mind.

  • If you wait until the last minute to complete the work and an unexpected event prevents you from completing the work, your documented circumstances may not meet the requirements for approval for late submission. This would result in a zero for the assignment. This situation should be avoided by reading the assignments ahead of time and beginning your work in time to allow for successful completion before the due date.
  • If you wait until the due date or after the due date to notify your instructor, your documented circumstances may not meet the requirements for approval. This would result in a zero for the assignment.
  • With some assignments, feedback from your instructor is necessary in order for you to complete the next assignment correctly. For example, the outlines for the speeches are prepared so that you can complete the speeches correctly. When such work is submitted after the due date, your instructor may give you feedback if time allows but you will still receive a zero for the assignment.
  • Your instructor reserves the right to apply a late penalty to approved late work depending on the situation.
  • Requests for permission for late work should be submitted to your instructor using the email inside this course.
  • If you are approved for late work, it must be submitted within one week of the original due date.
  • Unless otherwise stated, approval for late work applies to one assignment and other subsequent assignments must be submitted on time.
  • If you find that you are unable to work on the coursework for a period of time longer than one week, you should consider dropping the course since this situation would greatly decrease your chances of successfully completing the course.
  • The Late Work Policy does NOT apply to the second speech, the Persuasive Speech. The course schedule has been designed to give you as much time as possible to complete this speech before the end of the semester. Due to the fact that instructors must grade this last speech in order to submit final grades on time, the Persuasive Speech must be submitted by the due date.

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on September 7, 2018