Saturday, January 30, 2010

Welcome to the Class

Our syllabus:

COMM 6090 Spring 2010

Understanding New Media

Dr. Lance Strate

Required Texts

1. Jay David Bolter & Diane Gromala, Windows and Mirrors: Interaction Design, Digital Art, and the Myth of Transparency.
2. Paul Levinson, New New Media.
3. Lance Strate, Ron L. Jacobson, and Stephanie B. Gibson, Communication and Cyberspace: Social Interaction in an Electronic Environment (Second Edition).


1. Regular attendance.
2. Relevant and sensible class participation and online interaction.
3. Careful reading of assigned texts.
4. Postings on the class blog at least three times a week related to readings, class discussion, and analysis of new media, and commenting on posts put up by others.
5. A term paper in the form of a scholarly article or essay. The paper should follow an accepted style guide (e.g., APA, MLA) and should be thoroughly proofread. Term papers will be due on February 27 in both a print version and as a post on the class blog (which can include links, images, and audiovisual material).
6. Careful reading of all of the posted term papers and posting of comments with your response to and constructive criticism on the papers.


This course is devoted to the exploration of the computer as a medium of communication, and to the related technologies that make computer-mediated communication possible. This includes those communication technologies known as new media, the Internet, online communications, and concepts such as cyberspace, virtual reality, hypermedia, digital media, social media, and of course new media. The goal of this course is to gain a general understanding of how these media work, and work us over. In other words, the main concern is with how we communicate in our new media environments, and how that communication differs from the way that we have interacted previously; how we think, feel, and behave in virtual worlds; how we form our sense of self and identity online (and off); how we form our sense of community online (and off). No special skill in computing is needed for this class, but it is assumed that students have access to and are familiar with e-mail and the Web.


Jan. 30 Class Meeting: Introductions and Foundations

Feb. 6 No Class Meeting—Read Bolter &; Gromola

Feb. 13 Class Meeting—Read Strate et al

Feb. 20 No Class Meeting—Read Levinson

Feb. 27 Class Meeting

Mar. 6 No Class Meeting

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