Integrated Marketing Communication

Course Details

Course Number: MCOM 4823  Section Number: 101

Fall 2013

Location: Fain Fine Arts Center

Classroom Number: 127

Days & Times:

MWF @ 12 - 12:50 p.m.

Course Attachments


MSU Faculty Member
Liz Minden   
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Course Objectives


This course is designed to develop students’ research, critical thinking, problem-solving, creative and writing skills in the context of an integrated marketing communications plan for a specific client. It will examine the research, strategy, market forces and other influences that drive the decision-making process in order for students to develop a comprehensive IMC campaign to achieve a client’s goals.  Working as a team, by the end of the course, students should be able to:

1. Find and evaluate market, audience and media research information to plan an IMC campaign.
2. Conduct primary research (e.g., surveys, focus groups) that helps them make decisions in developing an IMC plan.
3. Understand and use some of the basic terminology of the media planning and buying process.
4. Use the basic mathematical formulas in media planning and buying.
5. Write an integrated marketing communications plan, including creative executions, that is suitable to present to a client.
6. Apply some of the legal and ethical considerations advertising professionals face in today’s marketplace.
7. Effectively present an IMC plan to a client.


In addition to learning from classroom discussions, assignments and in-class exercises, students will complete a final project designed to reinforce the concepts presented.  Class discussions will include information about the legal, ethical and social aspects of account planning and implementation.  The final project will be developed by the entire class working as a team.  Class time also will include project research information, team meetings and other activities necessary to develop and write the plan.  However, this project also may require team members to meet outside of regularly scheduled class periods in order to complete the plan.

Course Expectations


a. Homework assignments and in-class exercises may be given at any time and cover lecture/discussion concepts and assigned reading materials.
b. TYPED project reports are required from each team member and must contain information about the work you have done for the campaign.  A report format will be provided.  Reports are due on the following dates:  Sept. 20, Oct. 11, Nov. 1 and Nov. 15.

2. ADVERTISING PLAN = 300 points
a. Working as a team, students will conduct research and prepare an IMC campaign for a client.  With the help of various resources, students will generate research information about the client, market, media and other campaign elements that will help them develop the plan, including campaign goals, strategy, media mix, promotions, creative strategy, public relations and a budget.
b. When all plan elements are determined, the team will organize and write the plan, including creative executions.
c. General Grading Criteria:  In addition to your plan’s research-based recommendations regarding goals, strategy, etc., the plan will be graded on overall content, organizational clarity, use of correct grammar, spelling and punctuation, and supporting documentation.  The final plan is due Wed., Dec. 4.  A late plan will not be accepted.

3. PRESENTATION = 100 points
An oral presentation highlighting elements of the advertising plan will be held.  All team members will help develop the presentation and present the plan.  Each team member also must be prepared to answer questions and participate in peer evaluations.  Presentation and team evaluations are Wed., Dec. 11, 3:30-5:30 p.m.

Grading Standards


1. Late work will not be accepted.  If you know you won’t be in class when an assignment is due, turn in your work early.
2. Making up research information or sources and/or citing them without proper source citations, or using another’s work as your own, earns you an “F” for the course.  (See “Course Policies.”)
3. Points will be deducted from all typed assignments containing numerous grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors.
4. Numerical grades will be awarded on all assignments.  These will be totaled at the end of the course and divided by the number of total possible points to determine your course grade.  The grading scale is:
 A = 90% - 100% (outstanding) C = 70% (average)  F = Below 60%
 B = 80% - 89% (above average) D = 60% (below average)  (unacceptable)

**NOTE:  The instructor reserves the right to adjust or cancel assignments as the course progresses.  If for some reason assignments total somewhat more or fewer than the original number set for the course, the method of calculating the final grade will remain the same:  the total points a student achieves for all submitted assignments will be divided by the total possible points for all the assignments to obtain a percentage, and a grade will be assigned according to the percentage scale outlined above.

Final Exam12/11/2013  3:30 - 5:30 p.m.

Submission Format PolicyNote: 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.  If you know you won’t be in class when an assignment is due, turn in your work early.

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, 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.  Makeup work for any absence is at the discretion of the instructor.

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.  Makeup work for any absence is at the discretion of the instructor.

2. Academic Dishonesty:  Plagiarism is (1) using someone else’s source material (including information from the Internet) without following accepted guidelines of giving credit; or (2) submitting work for credit that is not your own. THE INSTRUCTOR WILL TAKE APPROPRIATE DISCIPLINARY ACTION FOR STUDENTS CAUGHT CHEATING, PLAGIARIZING OR FABRICATING INFORMATION. The MSU Student Honor Creed, found in both your student handbook and the university catalog, reinforces this policy:  “As an MSU student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else to do so.” 

3. Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act: Any student who is registered with the MSU Office of Disability Support Services and needs course accommodations, or requires other special considerations because of a disability, should notify the instructor as soon as possible to ensure that these accommodations are provided.

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, “Standards of Student Conduct.”)
a. Turn off the sound on your cell phone during class.  No text messaging either.  If your phone rings or you’re found sending a text 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 portfolio as part of their internship course, which is a pre-requisite for Senior Production.  This requirement is a part of MSU’s reaccreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and is non-negotiable.  Through the portfolio, students are required to demonstrate communication competence through the written word and visual communication; two examples of each competency are required.

 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”).  These handouts are also available on the department web page:

8. Other:  You may be asked to provide your assignments on a portable computer medium (e.g., jump/thumb drive) or by email.

The instructor reserves the right to change any part of this syllabus for any reason, and will give sufficient notice if changes are necessary.

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 English 1113 and English 1123 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.