NCA names COMM 1310 ‘Program of Excellence’

By Paige Wilkerson
University News Service
November 11, 2011

The National Communication Association (NCA) Basic Course Division has named Texas State University-San Marcos’ basic communication course, COMM 1310: Fundamentals of Human Communication, a Program of Excellence for 2011.

The Program of Excellence award was established in 2007 to recognize the distinctive excellence of basic course programs and to identify programs that can serve as best practice models for other schools across the country. Nominated programs may focus on any introductory communication course.

"We're so pleased with this recognition,” said Steven Beebe, chair of the communication studies department at Texas State. “It validates the hard work we do to ensure that Texas State students are taking an outstanding communication course."

COMM 1310 is a basic hybrid course that provides instruction on the intercultural, interpersonal, small group and public speaking contexts. The fall 2011 semester experienced the highest enrollment numbers in history, 3,400 students total.

The award selection committee specifically noted the Texas State course’s outstanding program of assessment, led by communication studies faculty members Marian Houser and Kristen LeBlanc Farris.

“There are more than 20 or 30 programs that vie for this award each year although hundreds of basic course programs exist throughout the United States,” said Houser. “A panel of evaluators (basic course directors, department chairs and scholars) select the winner based upon the nomination packet and the ability of the program to meet the criteria adequately.”

The COMM 1310 course will be recognized for this honor during the Basic Course Division Meeting at the 2011 NCA Convention in New Orleans on Nov. 19.