Office: LA 357
Coombs, W.T. (2007). Ongoing crisis communication: Planning managing and responding (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Weick, K. & Sutcliffe, K. (2007). Managing the unexpected: Resilient performance in an age of uncertainty (2nd ed.). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Other readings will be available online.
Nature of the Course
This course explores the communicative dynamics that both prevent and cause organizational crisis. The class is broken into two major sections. The first section examines how people plan, communicate and make good decisions when there is high-risk and little room for error like often exists for firefighters, airline pilots or those that work on nuclear reactors. The second part of the course takes a public relations focus and describes how to develop a crisis communication plan. The class will explore well-known crisis cases studies to better understand how to anticipate, prevent and manage organizational crisis.
You are expected to attend class every day and to come to class on time. As much of the work in this class is reading, your attendance each class period to discuss and debate the readings is essential to the success of the course. You will receive a grade for your participation in daily class discussions. I reserve the right to give quizzes if students come to class unprepared to discuss the readings.
If some extenuating circumstances beyond your control prevent you from meeting your expectations for your attendance and performance, I expect you to contact me immediately. It is important that you contact me sooner rather than later.
Notice to Students with Documented Disabilities
I encourage students with disabilities, including but not limited to, chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury and attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, to discuss with me, after class or during my office hours, appropriate accommodations that might be helpful to you.
A late written assignment will be penalized one full grade for each day it is late and NO late submissions will be accepted after the assignment has been graded and returned to your classmates. Oral presentations must be delivered on the day assigned as class time does not allow rescheduling. Group assignments and daily assignments must be turned in on the due date.
An organizational fact of life is that you will be asked to work in groups (teams). Learning to be an effective group member is as important as anything else that you will learn in school. A term project for this course will be conducted in groups. Although I will provide some class time for groups, time outside of class is required and expected to meet the requirements of the project. I encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity to learn about leadership, motivation, etc. in groups (and maybe make some new friends).Requirements of the Course/Grading
So there are no surprises at the end of the semester, I encourage you to keep track of your points.
Letter grades are figured as follows:
A = Outstanding - goes beyond expectations
As per our departmental policy, you may not drop or change your grading option after the thirtieth instructional day except in the following situations: a) documentable accident or illness, b) no evaluation record for the course, c) documentable family/personal emergency, and d) documentable change in employment schedule that prevents completion of course (ref. relevant university documentation).