Public Relations Campaigns

Course Details

Course Number
MCOM 4693
Section Number
MCOM 4693
Spring 2012
Fain Fine Arts Center
Classroom Number
Days & Times

TR @ 11 a.m. - 12:20 p.m.

Liz Minden (view Profile)

Course Attachments


Course Objectives


Students will have the opportunity to develop and implement a short-term public relations campaign for a client.  By the end of the course, you will be able to:

1. Identify an organization’s stakeholder groups and evaluate their relationships to the organization.
2. Solve public relations problems using a team approach.
3. Develop and use appropriate research techniques to plan, implement and evaluate a short-term PR project for an organization.
4. Make public relations decisions based on client needs; social, ethical and legal constraints; and sound research information.
5. Write clear, concise, effective plans, reports and other materials.
6. Present a clear, professional project summary and evaluation in writing and orally.


Class discussions will include information about various aspects of PR campaign planning and implementation, including social, ethical and legal considerations.  Students will develop and implement a plan for a client, including conducting research, projecting a budget, creating publicity materials, and evaluating the plan’s success.  Class time also will include progress reports, group meetings and other activities necessary to implement the project.

Course Expectations


 a. In order to plan, develop and carry out a short-term PR project, the class will simulate a PR agency with account executives and other roles/responsibilities.
 b. Depending on the size of the class, specialized committees may be formed to ensure efficient project development and execution.
 c. Class time will be provided for meetings, but team members also are expected to meet outside of class whenever necessary to complete the project.
 d. Each team member will be responsible for not only his/her assignments, but also for the overall quality and timely completion of the project.
 e. At the completion of the project, team members will work together to write a project evaluation report.
 a. In addition to producing project materials, each team member must provide written documentation of his/her meeting attendance, completed tasks and assignments, etc., on Jan. 31, Feb. 16 & 28, March 8 & 29, and April 12 & 26.
 b. Report Content:
  (1) A clear synopsis of what the team member has done during that specific time frame.
  (2) A discussion about the project’s progress, insights into solving problems, problems that need to be resolved, etc.
 c. Report Format:  A personal narrative in complete sentences.
  (1) Length:  No specific length
  (2) Mechanics:  Typed, double-spaced, on regular typing paper
  (3) Heading:  Your name; report due date; course number and name
 d. Report Quality:  Each report must be a clearly written and organized narrative using good grammar/spelling/punctuation, and be submitted on time.
 a. Project Evaluation Report - The team will provide a comprehensive written evaluation report of the project.  Report format will be provided.
 b. Peer Evaluations - Team members will evaluate each other based on criteria provided for this project.  Peer evaluations are 1 p.m. Tuesday, May 8, 2012.

Grading Standards


1.  Late work will not be accepted.  This is a calendar-driven project that will be implemented for a real client, so any late assignment puts the entire project at risk.
2.  Excessive absences from regularly scheduled classes and meetings held outside of class will lower your grade.
3.  Fabricating information or using another’s work as your own earns you an “F” for the course.  Other sanctions also may apply.  (See “Course Policies” #2.)
4.  Work that frequently contains numerous grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors will lower your grade for the course.
5.  Students are expected to come to class having read and/or produced any assigned materials and to be prepared to discuss same.
6.  Numerical grades will be awarded for each assignment.  They will be totaled at the end of the semester and divided by the total number of possible points for all the assignments to determine each student’s course grade.  The grading scale is:

       90% - 100% = A [Outstanding work and team participation]
       80% - 89% = B [Good work and team participation]
       70% - 79% = C [Average work and team participation]
       60% - 69% = D [Below-average work and team participation]
       Below 60% = F [Unacceptable work and team participation]

Final Exam

05/08/2012 1-3 p.m.

Submission Format Policy

Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Late Paper Policy

Late work will not be accepted.  This is a calendar-driven project that will be implemented for a real client, so any late assignment puts the entire project at risk.

Plagiarism Policy

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception.

Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters.

We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student.

We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed.

Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

Students with Disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, (940) 397-4140.

Safe Zones Statement

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

Contacting your Instructor

All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MWSU e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

Attendance Requirements

Attendance:  Students are expected to attend, be on time for and participate in class.  The instructor reserves the right to drop any student who misses more than three class periods.  There is no “make-up work” for this course.  NOTE:  If you cannot meet outside of class time and/or must miss more than three class periods, DROP THIS COURSE.

Other Policies


1.  Attendance:  Students are expected to attend, be on time for and participate in class.  The instructor reserves the right to drop any student who misses more than three class periods.  There is no “make-up work” for this course.  NOTE:  If you cannot meet outside of class time and/or must miss more than three class periods, DROP THIS COURSE.

2.  Plagiarism and cheating:  The MSU Student Honor Creed, found in both your student handbook and the university catalog, includes the statement:  “As an MSU student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else to do so.”

 Plagiarism, lying and cheating include, but are not limited to:  fabricating information and sources, copying material from publications without crediting the author, turning in another student’s work as your own, and copying quiz/exam answers from another person.  STUDENTS WHO ARE CAUGHT CHEATING, PLAGIARIZING OR MAKING UP INFORMATION WILL RECEIVE AN “F” FOR THIS COURSE.

3.  Compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act: Any student with a disability who is registered with MSU Office of Disability Support Services should notify the instructor at the beginning of the course if you need any accommodations to participate fully in this class.

4.  Limited Right:  By enrolling in this course, the student expressly grants MSU a “limited right” in all intellectual property created by the student for the purpose of this course. This “limited right” shall include, but shall not be limited to, the right to reproduce the student’s work product in order to verify originality and authenticity, and for educational purposes.

5.  FERPA:  The instructor abides by the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.  The instructor also will not release a student’s academic information or discuss a student’s academic progress or class attendance with his/her parent or guardian.  Additionally, the instructor will not discuss a student’s grades with him/her in class, over the phone or by email.  STUDENTS WHO HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT THEIR GRADES MUST MAKE AN APPOINTMENT WITH THE INSTRUCTOR.

6.  Disruptive Behavior:  Anyone disrupting the class – or violating any other Standard of Conduct applicable to the classroom environment – will be dropped from the course.  (See MSU Student Handbook, Sec. VI, “Standards of Student Conduct.”)

 a. Turn off the sound on your cell phone; no text messaging either.  If your phone rings or you’re found text-messaging during class, you will be dropped from the course.
 b. Turn off your iPods and similar technology.  Like ringing cell phones, this is a class disruption issue and you will be dropped from the course if you do not comply.
 c. Be polite.  Discourtesy of any kind will not be tolerated.

7.  Senior Portfolio:  Please note that all mass communication majors are required to submit a senior portfolio before registering for the mass communication capstone course, Senior Production (October 1 for spring semester registration and March 1 for fall semester registration).  This requirement is a part of MSU’s reaccreditation with the Southern Assoc. of Colleges and Schools and is non-negotiable.  Students are required to demonstrate communication competence through the written word, the spoken word and visual communication; two examples of each competency are required.  Students will not be admitted to Senior Production until the department chair certifies that they have satisfied the portfolio requirement.

 As you go through this and other classes, you are responsible for saving course work that could be included in your senior portfolio.

 Please see your instructor, adviser, the department chair or any mass communication faculty member for handouts with more information (“Mass Communication Senior Portfolio Competencies” and “Mass Communication Senior Portfolio FAQ”).

 More information is available at:

Writing Proficiency Requirement

All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed the 6 hours of Communication Core and and 2) earned 60 hours. You may meet this requirement by passing either the Writing Proficiency Exam or English 2113. Please keep in mind that, once you've earned over 90 hours, you lose the opportunity to take the $25 exam and have no option but to enroll in the three-credit hour course. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.

Campus Carry

Senate Bill 11 passed by the 84th Texas Legislature allows licensed handgun holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, effective August 1, 2016. Areas excluded from concealed carry are appropriately marked, in accordance with state law. For more information regarding campus carry, please refer to the University’s webpage at

If you have questions or concerns, please contact MSU Chief of Police Patrick Coggins at