CS 43 - Professional Communications

Instructor: Victoria Austin
Email Instructor

Course Description

This course is designed to help students develop and refine the written and oral communication skills necessary to communicate effectively in a business environment. This will be accomplished through the planning, composing, and evaluating of written communication; report writing; and oral presentations.

Additional focus will be placed on developing interpersonal skills, team participation skills, and professionalism. Students who have completed or are enrolled in Business 43, Computer Networking Technology 43, Computer Science 43, English 43, or Speech 43 may not receive credit. Strongly Recommended: Eligibility for English 1A.

To take this class, you must have daily access to a computer with an Internet connection and experience using a web browser. You will also need to utilize your college Zonemail account. Learn more about Zonemail.

Check the college catalog for CSU/UC transferability and to see if this course meets AA/AS degree requirements.

The instructor may drop students who miss the first meeting of a course. The first meeting of online or hybrid Distance Education courses is the first day of the class as specified in the class schedule listing. For these courses, instructors may drop students who do not log into their Blackboard course and/or complete indicated activities by the third day of classes. DE instructors may drop students if they have not submitted work and/or accessed the class for two consecutive weeks.

There might be an instructional materials fee associated with this course. Learn more about instructional materials fees.

This class begins Jan 19 and ends May 27.

On-Campus Meetings

All class meetings will be online, EXCEPT on the following dates, when students are required to meet on campus from 10 am - 12:50 pm in Room 2460: Jan 23, Mar 12, and either May 7 or May 14. You can attend an OPTIONAL, on-campus orientation to Online Learning on Jan 13 from 1 - 2:30 pm or Jan 14 from 5:30 - 7 pm in Room 2410. A virtual session will be offered on the Internet on Jan 19 from 5:30-7 pm. Learn more about these orientations, which are NOT course-specific.

How This Class Operates

This is not a self-paced class; there are due dates throughout the semester that you are expected to meet, just like in a traditional face-to-face class.

Upon completion of this course, student should know how to:

  • use oral and written communication effectively
  • communicate across cultural barriers
  • present material in front of a group of people
  • create and present a formal business presentation
  • use word processing software to create a variety of business documents
  • use presentation software to create an effective business presentation
  • identify, explain, and demonstrate different types of business communications
  • demonstrate interpersonal skills including conflict resolution, business etiquette, active listening, team participation, and leadership skills

Communications will take place primarily via email and the class discussion board. Though the discussion board is not moderated, all content is reviewed by the instructor, and credit is assigned for
discussion work.

The instructor is also available for phone consultation and face-to-face meetings by appointment.

Class Activities

This class is divided into weekly segments, and each week has various assignments, typically reading from the primary textbook, a quiz on the previous week's reading, a discussion, and a written assignment based on some form of business communication. All work is due on Friday.

Twice during the semester, there are meetings where students present work in front of their classmates. These class meetings are mandatory, and it is not possible to pass the class without attending the presentation dates.

Class Project(s)

In addition to weekly assignments, there is one large research project on a subject chosen by the student that is due at the end of the term. The students will prepare a formal report of seven to ten pages and a short presentation for their classmates on their projects.

How Students are Graded

The final grade includes the following components:

Short writing assignments 15%
Research project 20%
Final exam 10%
Quizzes 15%
Participation in discussions 20%
Midterm Oral presentation 10%
Employment assignment 10%

Some assignments are credit/no credit, and students will be awarded credit if the work is completed. Some assignments are given letter grades. The assignments themselves include a description of the evaluation criteria.

Succeeding Online

Students who succeed in the online portion of hybrid courses tend to be independent, self-motivated learners with good computer skills. If you are a procrastinator who relies heavily on the instructor for motivation and can't use a computer too well, you should probably consider enrolling in a completely face-to-face course instead.

Also, don't enroll in this class if you believe the myth that learning online requires less effort than learning face-to-face. This course covers the same content and has similar activities as the completely face-to-face version of the course; only the method of delivery partly changes.

LPC offers a tutorial called "Succeeding in an online course" that will not only tell you if you are a good fit for online learning, but it also offers many strategies -- among other pertinent information -- that will help you succeed online. Though the title of the tutorial says "online course", all of it is applicable to the online portion of hybrid courses. Please complete the tutorial.


This course will use the Blackboard course management system as its virtual classroom. To learn how to log in to Blackboard, go to the Blackboard Login Procedures page. Once you enroll, you will not be able to log in until the first day of class.

Register for this course

Page last modified: April 25, 2017