Rhetoric/Communication Arts | St. Lawrence University Performance and Communication Arts

Rhetoric/Communication Arts

RHETORICAL STUDIES focuses on the use of symbols to alter attitudes and induce others to act in a particular manner. Students engaged in rhetorical studies are challenged to critically examine previous attempts at persuasion, as well as to enter creatively into the production of original persuasive messages. COMMUNICATION STUDIES includes rhetorical studies but encompasses a broader array of communication behaviors in a wider variety of contexts, including (among others) interpersonal, small-group and intercultural communication.

Major Requirements

Majors choose one of the two areas as their primary area of concentration and the other as their secondary area of concentration. Eleven courses are required to complete the major. Fulfillment of the major requires the following:

1.) All majors take the following four survey courses that will introduce them to various aspects of the major. These courses are open to first-year and sophomore students. Juniors and seniors can be enrolled after the registration period has closed. See departmental waiting list for more details.

    107.   Beginning Acting
    111.   Rhetoric and Public Speaking
    125.   Introduction to Theatre
    127.   Introduction to Communication Studies.

2.) All majors must complete the research methods course that will introduce them to basic methods of inquiry and philosophical approaches peculiar to various areas of the major:

    250.   Communication & Performance Research Methods.

3.)  Majors must complete six additional courses, at least five of which must be in their primary area of concentration. At least four of these courses must be at 300-level and above.

Primary Area of Concentration: Rhetoric-Communication

105. Language as Human Experience (dual-listed from ANTH)
126. Persuasion
201. Introduction to Journalism (dual-listed from ENG)
225. Peer Mentoring in Rhetoric and Communication
239. Media Industries
3000-3999. Special Topics in Rhetoric/Communication Studies (200-Level Courses)
310. Culture & Media
311. Advanced Public Speaking
315. Gender and Communication
316. Advanced Communication Studies
318. Argumentation and Debate
321. Intercultural Communication
326. American Public Address
328. Interpersonal Communication
329. Rhetoric of Social Movements
331. Presidential Campaign Rhetoric
333. Persuasion: Analyzing Rhetorical Texts
334. Environmental Communication
335. Sex Talk
336. Rhetoric and Citizenship
342. Blogging the Globe: News Analysis and Investigative Journalism (dual-listed from GS)
360. Public Sphere of Renaissance Venice
361. London Coffeehouse Culture & Modernity
370. Against Health: Rhetoric & the Health Humanities
4000-4999. Special Topics in Rhetoric/Communication Studies (300-Level Courses)
480. Independent Study
489. SYE: Senior Project
498. SYE: Honors Senior Project

Secondary Area of Concentration: Theatre-Performance

100. Beginning Ballet
101. Production Credit
103. Stagecraft
106. Performing Diversity
113. Introduction to Performance Studies
202. Sound for the Stage
203. Stage Lighting
204. Costume History and Construction
210. Children Theatre in Schools
215. Dramatic Texts in Context
218. Shakespeare in Performance
223. Playwriting
230. Beginning/Intermediate Modern Dance
235. Beginning/Intermediate Jazz Dance
237. Contemporary British Theatre – Intro Level (offered off campus in London)
244. Techniques of Screenwriting
255. African-American Drama
270. Collaboration Across the Arts
3000-3999. Special Topics in Theatre/Performance Studies (200-Level Courses)
301. Advanced Modern Dance
303. Stage Lighting
304. Arts Management (offered off campus in New York City)
306. Advanced Screenwriting
307. Characterization
308. Cultural Encounters (offered off campus in New York City)
309. Acting Styles
314. Devising for Performance
317. Performing Poetry
319, 320. Shakespeare
322. Native American Oral Traditions
327. Drama By and About Women
330. Ritual Studies
332. Directing
337. Contemporary British Theatre – Advanced Level (offered off campus in London)
338. Twentieth-Century Avant-Garde
340. Performance Art
344. Children’s Theatre in the Schools
355. Studies in World Dramatic Literature
358. Madrid Stage (offered off campus in Madrid)
4000-4999. Special Topics in Theatre/Performance (300-Level Courses)
480. Independent Study
490. SYE: Senior Project
499. SYE: Honors Senior Project


To graduate with honors, a major must maintain a 3.5 GPA in the department and a 3.0 GPA overall; the major’s senior project proposal must be approved for enrollment in 498/499 SYE: Honors Senior Project; and the student must earn at least a 3.5 in 498/499.