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MEA 100 - Mass Media and Society - Jean Miller

Course:Mass Media and Society
Professor:Jean Miller
  • Online
  • Hybrid
  • InPerson
Course Length:
  • 8 Week


Photo of instructor smiling

Hello Students!

Welcome! Before we begin, I wanted to share with you a little about myself and why I am teaching this course. I have been an Adjunct Instructor at College of the Canyons in the Media Entertainment Arts Department since 2005. I earned my Bachelor and Masters degrees from Florida State University with studies in broadcasting, social science, history and acting. Since the age of three, I have had the privilege of working in broadcasting and the performing arts, and am eternally grateful to have worked with scores of talented and inspiring artists, educators and media professionals from coast to coast who inspired me and  supported my journey to become a multi award winning actress, a National and Emmy winning  broadcast TV host / producer, a multiple television series regular, writer, reporter, filmmaker, and commercial and voiceover artist. I have served on  both the SAG Awards Motion Picture and  Television Nominating Committees.  I am an ongoing member of the COC Media Arts Advisory Committee, and still working professionally in the industry as a member of SAG-AFTRA and Actors Equity Association professional unions.

I love teaching MEA 100 about this rich and dynamic field, and I love sharing and supporting your aspirations with what I’ve learned in the media through the years.  Best of all, it’s great to learn and be inspired each and every semester by students just like you! I look forward to meeting you in class, either in person or online, and embarking on a great journey through our Mass Media & Society course together!


Welcome to Mass Media and Society MEA100,  Online or Hybrid/In Person  8 week Late Start Class.   This orientation letter is provided to give you a sense of the purpose, workload, and learning goals for the course.  The course is being taught  for the duration of the semester beginning in October, and concluding in December. All assignments, tests, quizzes, will be conducted on Canvas.  There will be an official  syllabus and schedule available on the 1st day.  I will also  send an email to the class one week prior to the start date with additional information. 

Course Description

Mass Media & Society surveys and evaluates the mass media. We analyze, compare, and discuss concepts related to mass media and their effect on society, using media from the Internet, newspapers, magazines, radio, sound recordings, television, motion pictures, advertising and public relations. We also look at some of the rules and laws that impact the media.This course of study requires the reading of various materials (both online and via a course textbook), viewing of online websites and news media, and your participation in online research and discussion with classmates. By the end of this course, you will be able to understand the relationship between media and society, and how it affects form and content in mass communication.

Course Objectives: Upon satisfactory completion, you will have a basic understanding of:

  • The fundamental model of communication, and how it defines mass communication
  • The key historical and technical developments in mass communication
  • How new media technologies and trends redefine “audience”
  • The different economic structures of mass media
  • How mass media impacts social, political, cultural and economic forces in the United States and abroad
  • How specific media industries influence mass media content and meaning
  • Ways in which various news media cover the same event or story
  • How and why mass media is regulated                                                                                            
  • Some of the legal responsibilities of the mass media and issues regarding individual consumers’ rights
  • How globalization and corporatization of public communication affect consumers

The biggest objective of this course is to help the student become more "media literate", meaning the development  of critical thinking tools: description, analysis, interpretation, evaluation and engagement that enable the student to become more engaged as a citizen and more discerning as a consumer of mass media products.


What to Expect in this Course

On average, students will spend between 90-130 hours of study for this course over the half length semester. If at any point in the session, you have difficulty keeping up with course content/assignments, please do not hesitate to contact me; I will also make an effort to check in regularly with you via email. 

The course is arranged in a module orientation and  involves assigned reading of two chapters each week from the official course textbook, convenient chapter summaries provided by the instructor, viewing articles and video clips from websites, and various news and other audio/visual media.   When we do our coursework, there will be assignments, discussions, weekly quizzes and tests to do according to a prescribed schedule. There will be opportunities each class period for participation points in discussions and Q & A  of current media events and course material. There will be two critical thinking research projects with essays to submit to the instructor and to discuss and share with classmates in sessions for  comment and reply. There will be many opportunities to earn extra credit reviewing films, TV shows and other media material and writing about their relevance to course material.

Required Technology

Although not required, it is recommended  for your class research that your computer and Internet connection  be outfitted for basic online communication with regular access to a reliable computer with stable, high-speed internet connection such as:

  • A Mac OS, PC/Windows OS (Windows XP or higher), or Lin
  • Microsoft Word. You can download the Microsoft Office Suite for FREE as part of your school My Canyons account (
  • Access to Netflix, or similar oline streaming service and YouTube
  • ux OS-based computer;
  • An Internet connection (broadband speed recommended for video and chat features);
  • A current web browser (Google Chrome recommended, however, Firefox, Safari, IE 9, should work as well);
  • QuickTime player software for viewing video materials (free player, available through Apple’s website at:
  • Adobe Reader software installed, (this is pdf file viewer to read online articles, available for free from Adobe at:
  • Circumstances may arise which require modifications of the above guidelines and the following schedule of assignments for the course, as deemed necessary by The instructor reserves the right to make necessary changes, in compliance with COC academic policies

Types of Assessments

  • Weekly participation through brief written reports of current events on media topics
  • Extra credit weekly video assignments.
  • Weekly 5 question review quizzes on each textbook chapter/chapter summary
  • 2 critical thinking research assignments on media topics with essays.
  • Five 50 question tests covering each of the five modules of the course.
  • Lots of extra credit opportunities: Film and TV shows, and internet reports relating to media topics.

Textbook Information

The required text is the 13th Edition of Media & Culture, by Richard Campbell and Christopher Martin, publisher Macmillan,  available in etext, loose leaf and paperback bound editions to buy or rent.

(**In addition, IN ORDER TO OPTIMIZE YOUR COURSE EXPERIENCE it is RECOMMENDED you obtain the required textbook, and bundle it with an  OPTIONAL ONLINE  PRINTED ACCESS  CODE  for the  publisher's course ware which you would view on your computer that  will give you opportunities to explore  IN-DEPTH VIDEOS for each chapter of the textbook  for extra credit throughout the course.) 

 Contact the COC bookstore to explore all textbook  options including etext, free trial periods, purchase and rental opportunities and costs.


Other Relevant Course Information

Regular and timely completion of  assignments, quizzes, tests and  projects are important for grading and your overall college experience.  Communication is key for success in this class. Any questions, issues or concerns or class absences should be addressed in an email sent to the instructor: Replies should be expected usually within 24 hours, except on weekends. Additional details will be available in the course syllabus available on the first day of class along with a semester class schedule.

Looking forward to meeting you in class and exploring the multi-faceted world of media and society with you soon!




When the course  begins you need to attend from the first day of the semester. In order to be counted as “present” and attending the course, the college requires that you attend the first day of instruction, and begin to complete coursework at that time. IMPORTANT: If you do not attend  by the third day of the session you will be dropped from the course (aka “No Show” Drop).



Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


The Library provides live online and in-person research help, access to a full range of e-resources and physical materials that support the curriculum, individual and group study areas, and much more!

Last updated: 06/02/2023 Sub#: 1225