Academics
A Notre Dame Education

Communications

Mission

Through our expanding course offerings, the Communications Department seeks to develop
each student’s knowledge about communication arts and sciences because we believe that
communication is the key to issues of power and representation.

We are committed to building and nurturing a community of students who:
• Are able to think critically
• Have an awareness of and appreciation for multiple and diverse perspectives
• Are competent and trustworthy practitioners of communication
• Have the capacity for understanding that characterizes responsible engagement with
our communities and environment
• Are committed and willing to use communication skills to improve society

Our Goals:
• To provide educational experiences that promote the ideals of responsibility,
compassion and justice by fostering the technical, creative and ethical understanding of
human communication and interaction
• To teach students how to prepare and present effective responsible messages whether
those messages take the form of media stories, speeches, comments during meetings,
or casual conversations
• To empower students to develop more meaningful and effective voices
• To strengthen students’ basic speaking and writing skills
• To enhance students’ competence as media consumers and critics
• To acquaint students with the dynamic processes involved in all forms of discursive and
symbolic interaction

Courses Offered

List of 17 items.

  • Speech

    This course introduces students to the art of public speaking. Students will give four speeches over the course of the semester, ranging from extemporaneous speaking to more formal, memorized formats. Students will learn basic public speaking techniques for delivery, organization, memorization, confidence-building, audience analysis, and development of visual aids using various forms of technology.

    Prerequisites/Comments - This elective course is open to all students. (UC “g” Elective)
  • Introduction to Debate

    This course introduces students to basic argumentation theory and practice. Students will learn the basics of argument development, research, analytical reasoning, and public speaking. Students are expected to participate in novice level debate tournaments throughout the school year. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Open to all freshmen. Sophomores, juniors and seniors require the written consent of the instructor. Required of all students who plan to take Advanced Debate. (UC “g” Elective)
  • Intermediate Debate

    This course introduces students to advanced argument theory and practice. There is a more advanced focus on research and analytical thinking skills. Students begin to craft their own positions using research. Students are expected to practice these skills in sessions after school and to participate in varsity level competitions throughout the school year. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Students must have completed Introduction to Debate and Intermediate Debate or obtain the consent of the instructor. This course can be repeated for credit. (UC “g” Elective)
  • Advanced Performance Debate

    Students continue to master advanced argumentation theory and practice. They will develop in-depth knowledge of argumentation strategy with a focus on advanced research skills and audience adaptation. Students are expected to practice these skills in sessions after school and to participate in varsity level competitions throughout the school year. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Students must have completed Introduction to Debate and Intermediate Debate or obtain the consent of the instructor. (UC “f” VPA)
  • Honors Advanced Debate

    Students will apply their argumentation theory and practice to developing community leadership skills. Students will master their public speaking skills by crafting and overseeing the implementation of a social action project. Students will be required to apply their advocacy skills in a “real world” setting to address an issue of social justice in line with the Holy Cross legacy of community service and experiential learning. In addition, students are expected to practice these skills in sessions after school and to participate in varsity level competitions throughout the school year. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Students must have completed Introduction to Debate, Intermediate Debate, and Advanced Debate. This course is open to 4th year debate students with the consent of the instructor. 
    (UC “g” Elective – UC Honors)
  • Journalism I

    This course introduces students to the basic writing principles and styles of news and feature writing for print and online publications. Additional topics include a historical perspective of print journalism, the moral and ethical standards of both the print and broadcast media, and layout and design. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Required of all students planning to take Journalism II or Yearbook. (UC “g” Elective) 
  • Journalism II: Art of Blogging

    A follow-up to Journalism I, this course focuses on the researching, writing, interviewing, and reporting techniques necessary to produce stories for print and online publication with an emphasis on the current journalistic trend of blogging. Additional topics include an introduction to photojournalism, magazine layout and design techniques, and video production. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Completion of Journalism I and consent of the instructor. Required of all students planning to take Advanced Journalism. (UC “g” Elective)
  • Yearbook/Magazine Design & Publication (ID 1060)

    This course focuses on the researching, writing, interviewing and reporting techniques necessary to produce the student magazine, The Knight, and update the Notre Dame student blog (www.ndhsmedia.com). Additional topics include photojournalism, advanced magazine layout & design techniques, video production, generating story assignments, editing, and publication management.

    Prerequisites/Comments - Completion of Journalism II. Can be repeated for ND credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Yearbook/Magazine Design & Publication (ID 1075)

    Students in this course design, create and produce the school yearbook, The Arches. Relying on journalism skills acquired in Journalism I, students target their journalistic focus on feature writing and more complex layout and design and photojournalism skills. Also relevant to the course are project management techniques necessary to produce a visual representation of the school year that adheres to necessary publication deadlines and budget requirements. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Completion of Journalism I or consent of the instructor. Not open to freshman Can be repeated for ND credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Media Studies

    (Formerly TV Production I). Media Studies will allow students to develop and apply knowledge of artistic principles and gain technical skill in film and television production. Students will study award-winning films and videos, learn the fundamentals of visual art as they apply to film and television, and produce their own original short video projects using industry-standard equipment and software. Theoretical topics covered will include the history of film and television, the elements of film art, and storytelling as a visual endeavor. Technical topics covered will include the use of studio and cameras, lighting, audio, visual effects, editing, and pre and post production work. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Open to 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students. Required of all students planning to take TV Broadcasting or Filmmaking. (UC “f” VPA pending) 
  • TV Broadcasting

    Formally titled “TELEVISION PRODUCTION II”, this course deepens and refines the skills, experiences, knowledge, and vocabulary introduced in Television Production I/Media Studies. A component of this course will examine the history of video today and future trends. The core of the class is a project-based workflow designed for students to emulate and experience a real-world media production environment, regardless of their chosen career path. Because a primary focus is on broadcast journalism, students learn about its foundations and the craft’s two main components – writing and reporting news and feature stories. Students experience how an actual television newscast is produced, directed, and put on the air, while also training to take on supervisory roles in the production of NDTV -- the school’s weekly broadcast news program. Students are responsible to plan, design, shoot, edit, distribute, and exhibit their work while developing artistically, intellectually and managing aesthetic and logistical challenges. This is a time-intensive course which requires field and studio production work before and after school, as well as during X-period. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Completion of TV Prod I or Media Studies and consent of instructor. Can be repeated for credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Filmmaking

    Formally titled “TV PRODUCTION III – Art of Filmmaking”, this course exposes students to more advanced topics related to film production. Topics covered include screenwriting, storyboard creation, shooting scripts, scheduling, budgeting, production design, cinematography, editing, and sound design. There is a fee for this course. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Completion of TV Production II/TV Broadcasting and consent of the instructor. Can be repeated for credit. This is a time-intensive course which requires field and studio production work before and after school as well as during X-period. (UC current “g” Elective - "f" VPA pending) 
  • Sports Broadcasting

    In this course, students learn to produce various types of sports programming, including play-by-play and color commentary, anchoring and reporting, as well as editing and voicing sports packages and sports highlights. Some productions may be Live-Streamed on the school’s website. Sports-related guest speakers and field trips supplement the curriculum. Additionally, this class will also work to produce sports content for the on-campus platform, NDTV. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - This elective course is open to all students. (UC “g” Elective) 
  • Broadcasting Anchoring & Reporting

    In this course, students will learn to choose and effectively research newsworthy stories while developing the skill set to write quality news scripts and deliver those stories on various platforms: Television, Radio, Web, and Social Media. Topics covered will include identifying newsworthy stories, writing for broadcast, identifying your audience, developing a voice. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - This elective course is open to all students. (UC “f” VPA pending) 
  • Voiceover and Podcasting

    This course will focus on vocal presentation, which impacts every aspect of broadcast communication. Students will perform basic vocal exercises and drills to start developing their vocal instrument. Students will explore the philosophy and process of speaking with audiences through commercials, promotions, character voices, newscasts, and podcasts. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - This elective course is open to all students. (UC “f” VPA pending) 
  • Screenwriting I

    In this course, students will learn the fundamentals of screenwriting—story structure, character development, plot, theme, conflict, and “vision.” Through an emphasis on the structural analysis of feature film writing, students will develop a professional screenwriter’s conceptual vocabulary for developing, writing and rewriting his or her own work. Students will begin writing their own feature-length screenplays and by the end of the course will have completed the first act. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - This elective course is open to 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students. (UC “g” Elective) 
  • Screenwriting II

    In this course, students will continue to hone their understanding of the fundamentals of screenwriting covered in Screenwriting I—story structure, character development, plot, theme, conflict, and “vision.” Students will take the screenplay they began in Screenwriting I and by the end of the course will have completed the second act. Students will also begin pre-production work for their films. Depending on their progress, students may also begin pre-production work for their films. 

    Prerequisites/Comments - Screenwriting I. This elective course is open to 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students. (UC “g” Elective pending) 

Faculty

List of 6 items.

  • Sabrina Landinguin

    Communications Department Chair & Journalism Teacher
    (818) 933-3652
  • Elisia Harkins-James

    Television Production & Film Production Teacher
    (818) 933-3654
  • Christina Tallungan Phillips '95

    Debate Teacher
    (818) 933-3653
  • Bill Seward '76

    Sports Broadcasting Teacher
    (818) 933-3600 Ext. 461
  • Nate Tupas '13

    NDSN & Sports Broadcasting Teaching Assistant
    (818) 933-3600
  • Monique Gelineau '09

    Television Production & Film Production Teaching Assistant
    (818) 933-3600
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