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Course Name Intro. to Public Relations


COM 213
Course Coordinator -
Course Co-coordinator -
Class Time and Location T.Th 4:00 pm - 5:15 pm, Fine Arts Building: 2205

Credits and Contact Hours 3.000 Credit hours
Semester Fall 2013
Last Revised on September, 2013


CURRENT CATALOG DESCRIPTION
This course is an introduction to the principles and practices of public relations in light of the new
changes in media. Students will learn the process of public relations through the examination of
various types of PR campaigns, with emphasis on specific case-studies. They will also engage in
the organization and implementation of a PR event.

COURSE PREREQUISITE/COREQUISTE
ENG101 English I.


INSTRUCTOR
Name: Abir Chaaban
Email: abir.chaaban@lau.edu.lb
Course Page:
https://banweb.lau.edu.lb/prod/bwckctlg.p_disp_course_detail?cat_term_in=201320&
subj_code_in=COM&crse_numb_in=213

Office: Nicol Hall 522
Office Hours: T.TH 15_00-16:00 pm


COURSE LEARNING OUTCOMES

CLO1: Distinguish between the dominant and the critical paradigms underlying public relations
theory.
CLO 2: Demonstrate understanding of theories within the functionalist and the critical paradigm
in exams (i.e. excellence theory, symmetry, asymmetry, systems theory, and the theory of
communicative action).
CLO 3: Identify linear processes underlying a public relations campaign, and the critique of linear
processes.
CLO4: Distinguish between the public sphere and the private sphere and the importance of
public opinion in democratic societies.
CLO5: Identify a public issue and the issues life cycle and evaluate a current or an emergent
issue.
CLO6: Analyze media outputs.
CLO7: Conduct a situational analysis of an issue.
CLO8: Identify the target public and develop a communication strategy aiming at behavioral
change.
CLO9: Select effective message strategies for a public relations campaign.
CLO10: Formulate a research question on an issue.
CLO11: Select an appropriate research method or a combination of methods conducting PR
research.
CLO12: Research an issue to indentify target public.
CLO13: Recommend strategies to communicate messages to target public.
CLO14: Develop a campaign plan, write a press release, and present a campaign plan.


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COURSE GRADING AND PERFORMANCE CRITERIA
PARTICIPATION, AND DISCUSSIONS 10%
ASSIGNMENTS, QUIZZES 20%
MID TERM 20%
RESEARCH PAPER 15%
FINAL EXAM 15%
FINAL CAMPAIGN PLAN AND PRESENTATION 20%

SEE SCHEDULE FOR ASSIGNMENTS, RESEARCH PROJECT, FINAL CAMPAIGN AND
PRESENTATION IN THE COURSE SCHEDULE BELOW.

TEXTBOOK AND REFERENCES
Required readings are selected from:

Anders Hansen, Simon Cottle, Ralph Negrine and Chris Newbold, Mass Communication Research
Methods (New York: New York University Press: 1998).

Brad L. Rawlins Brigham Young University, Prioritizing Stakeholders for Public Relations March
2006, http://www.instituteforpr.org/topics/prioritizing-stakeholders/

Erica Weintraub and Austin, Bruce E. Pinkelton Strategic Public Relations Management:
Planning and Managing Effective Communication Programs (Mahwah, New Jersey
London: LAWRENCE ERLBAUM ASSOCIATES, PUBLISHERS 2001).

David H. Weaver, Thoughts on Agenda Setting, Framing, and Priming School of Journalism,
University of Indiana, Bloomington, Journal of Communication http://amecorg.com/

Jim Macnamara, Media Content Analysis: Its uses; benefits and best practice methodology,
University of Technology Sydney, Asia Pacific Public Relations Journal, 6(1), 134. 1
http://amecorg.com/

LEtang, Jacquie, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and Critique, (London, LA: SAGE
2008).

Katie Delahaye Paine, KDPaine & Partners, How to Measure Social Media Relations: The More
Things Change, the More They Remain the same http://amecorg.com/

USC Center of Public Diplomacy, at Annenberg School, An Evaluation of Alhurra Television
Programming, http://uscpublicdiplomacy.org/media/AlHurraReport.pdf

Walter K. Lindenmann, Public Relations Research for Planning and
Evaluationhttp://amecorg.com/

Internet resources:

International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication
http://amecorg.com/

International Public Relations Association http://www.ipra.org/
Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management
http://www.globalalliancepr.org/

Society for New Communication Research http://www.sncr.org/
UNDP Communications http://www.undp.org/comtoolkit/why-communicate/why-core-concepts-
what.shtml

United Nations Meetings and Press Coverage http://www.un.org/en/unpress/index.asp


MAJOR TOPICS COVERED IN THE COURSE AND TENTATIVE SCHEDULE
Week Topic Reading/Assignment/Deadline
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Week 1,2,3 Course Overview
Defining the Discipline
and the Practice
Public Affairs and the
Public Sphere
Public Opinion and
Persuasion.
Intercultural
Communication.
Public Diplomacy
International Public
Relations


Key Concepts:

Public, Public Opinion,
Public Relations,
Public Sphere,
Propaganda, Political
Marketing, Political
Communication,
Private Sphere,
Stakeholder, Lobbying
Strategic PR, Systems
of Knowledge


LEtang, Jacquie Chapter 2 in Public Relations,
Concepts, Practice and Critique (London, LA: SAGE
2008). (E-reserve Com 213 Public Relations)

Chapter 5, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique (e-reserve Com 213 Public Affairs and the
Public Sphere).

Chapter 2, Introducing Public Relations (e-reserve Com
213 Communication Models)

Chapter 11, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique (e-reserve Com 213 Public Relations in a
Globalized World).


Assignment: Groups will be formed; each group
member will summarize one of the chapters
required for reading and present the main
concepts to class.

Presenting Concepts:

LEtang, Jacquie Chapter 2 in Public Relations,
Concepts, Practice and Critique

Chapter 5, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice
and Critique (e-reserve Com 213 Public Affairs
and the Public Sphere).

Chapter 11, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice
and Critique (e-reserve Com 213 Public Relations
in a Globalized World).

Week 4 Critical Thinking and
Interdisciplinary
Perspectives
Key Thinkers and
Thought in Public
Relations
Theories of Mass Media

Key Concepts:

Assumptions, Critical
Theory, Critical
Thinking, Paradigm
Dominant Paradigm,
Functionalism,
Reflexivity, Meta-
theory, Positivism,
Post-positivism, Post
Modern, Rhetoric,
Theory of
Communicative
Action, Sociology of
the Media




Chapter 1, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique

Chapter 2, Introducing Public Relations e-reserve
Communication Models.

Chapter 12 Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique


Presenting Chapter 2, Introducing Public
Relations e-reserve Communication Models
Week 5 Risk, Issues and Ethics Chapter 3, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
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Critique

Individual Assignment Reflective Essay:

Ethical Corporate Social Responsibility: A
Framework for Managers
Jacquie L'Etang
Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 14, No. 2 (Feb.,
1995), pp. 125-132
Week 6 Risk, Issues and Ethics
Systems Theory
Situational Analysis

Key Concepts:

Defamation, Libel,
Slander, Privacy,
Business Ethics,
Corporate
Governance,
Corporate
Responsibility,
Corporate
Punishment, Criminal
Liability, Issues
Management, Risk
Assessment, Risk
Management, Systems
Theory

Chapter 4, 5, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique


Mid Term during Week 6

Week 7 Effective Message
Strategies


Chapter 14, Theories for Creating Effective Message
Strategies, Erica Weintraub and Austin, Bruce E.
Pinkelton Strategic Public Relations Management:
Planning and Managing Effective Communication
Programs



Week 8

Peace Education
Peace Education an overview of themes.
Themes to work with for this semester projects

In class workshop

Critical thinking and active non-violence



Week 9

Developing a Research Plan
Determining Research Needs
Determining and Understanding
Target Publics
Elements of the Research Plan



Chapter 4, Erica Weintraub and Austin, Bruce E.
Pinkelton Strategic Public Relations Management

Public Relations Research for Planning and Evaluation
By Walter K. Lindenmann,


Project:
You should have started collecting data about
your issue. i.e. newspaper clippings, internet
websites, publications, opinions, commentary,
positions, activism, by who, what age groupetc,
your aim is to determine your friendly, hostile,
and neutral publics to your issue.

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Week, 10

Research Methods
Content Analysis
Survey Research
Focus Groups


Chapter 5, 9,10, Anders Hansen, Simon Cottle, Ralph
Negrine and Chris Newbold, Mass Communication
Research Methods ( New York: New York University
Press: 1998).

Project:
You should determine what research methods
you will use to indentify segments of public. Your
aim is to develop targeted message strategies.
You should also state your objective prior to
developing the strategy. (i.e. strengthen friendly
public, recruit from neutral public, normalize
hostile publicsetc)

Week 11,
12

Media Perspectives: critique,
effects, and evaluation.

Data collection and media
Analysis

Agenda Setting
Media Evaluation
Media Framing
Analyzing Blogs
New Technologies in
Public Relations,
Facebook, blogs, twitter etc



Chapter 6, Public Relations, Concepts, Practice and
Critique

Readings available electronically

AMEC Guide to Media Evaluation

Media content analysis: Its uses; benefits and best
practice methodology Jim Macnamara

How to Measure Social Media Relations:
The More Things Change, the More They Remain the
Same by Katie Delahaye Paine

Thoughts on Agenda Setting, Framing, and Priming
by David H. Weaver

By week 10 groups should have finalized the
situational analysis of their selected issue and
determined their research needs.


Week 13

The Elements of a PR
Campaign

Media
Press Kits (Print and
Electronic)
Develop Media Lists
Press Releases
Media Training
Public service
announcements
(PSAs)
Op-Ed Articles
Letters to the Editor
Press conferences
Media tours
Special Events
Trade Shows
Speech Writing
Photography
Audio Tapes
Internet Monitoring
Community Meetings
Specialized Fact
Sheets

Chapter 2, 3, Erica Weintraub and Austin, Bruce E.
Pinkelton Strategic Public Relations Management:
Planning and Managing Effective Communication
Programs (Mahwah, New Jersey London: LAWRENCE
ERLBAUM ASSOCIATES, PUBLISHERS 2001).


Press Release

Final Exam



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By-line Articles
Quarterly Newsletters
Annual Reports
Community Calendar
Listings
PR Campaign
Measurement
Crisis Management


Week 14

The Campaign Plan


Planning :

Analyze content of media
coverage related to the issue
of interest.

Analyze official website of
your issue if applicable

Collect newspaper coverage
on your issue

Determine negative publicity
concerning your issue

Write a report on main
concerns from press coverage


Develop a counter strategy to
improve the image of your
issue

Write a news release,
Present your case and
rationale to start planning
your Campaign



Chapter 16, Erica Weintraub and Austin, Bruce E.
Pinkelton Strategic Public Relations Management
Exercise TBA

Discussion is composed of two class sessions.
During the first session, each group will talk for
10 minutes discussing these topics in
relationship to the issue under study. During the
second session groups will respond to comments
given in the first session.
Discussion Topics:
Core problem
Current attitudes
What is the current situation of your issue
What ideas you want to change
How are you planning to do the change
What activities do you wish to implement
Why do you want to change these ideas
Where do you plan to do your activities


Week 14 Final Presentations
Event
Each group will present a final typed campaign
plan, (separate instruction will be handed to
students on structure) and make a 15 minutes
presentation on issue, students can use audio-
video, documentary, PowerPoint,
advertisements, or any other media to create
their presentations.

POLICY ON CHEATING AND PLAGIARISM
Students caught cheating on an exam receive a grade of zero on the exam in their first cheating
attempt and receive a warning. Students caught cheating for the second time will receive a grade
of F in the course and another warning. Plagiarism on assignments and project work is a serious
offense. If plagiarism is detected, a student will be subject to penalty, similar to the cheating case,
which ranges from receiving a zero on the assignment concerned to an F in the course in
addition to a warning.

ATTENDANCE POLICY
Missing one third of classes implies that a student has to drop the course. (or alternative
policy, provided that the number of missed classes is not less than 2 weeks of classes)
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WITHDRAWAL POLICY

Deadline for withdrawal from courses: December 6, 2013


COURSE ONLINE EVALUATIONS
Completion of the online course evaluations is required. Students will not be able to access their
course grades until they have completed the course evaluations.



1. A student who withdraws after the Drop/Add period and by the end of the 5th week of classes
(10th day of classes for Summer Modules) will obtain a WI on that particular course.
The student may process such request directly through the Registrars Office.
2. A student who withdraws from a course between the 6th week and the end of the 10th week
of classes (18th day of classes for Summer Modules) will receive either a WP or a WF. WP
or WF will be determined by the instructor based on the achieved academic performance in
that course till the time of withdrawal.
3. The WI and the WP will not count as a Repeat; whereas the WF will count as a Repeat.
4. WI, WP and WF will not count towards the GPA calculation.