Global Communication OER Portfolio

Purpose: to help other instructors teaching the same course

Common Course ID:  Global Communication COMM 4303
CSU Instructor Open Textbook Adoption Portrait

Abstract: This open textbook is being utilized in a Communication Studies course for undergraduate students by Ece Algan at CSUSB. The open textbook is a reading packet comprised of articles and chapters put together by the instructor. The main motivation to adopt an open textbook was to expose students to a variety of contemporary regional and country-specific case studies in media and cultural globalization in addition to saving students money. Most student access the open textbook in the library and online.

About the Course

Course Title and Number: 
COMM 4303-Global Communication

Brief Description of course highlights:  

This course provides an introduction to the theories and processes of globalization as they relate to communication, media and culture. It also examines local responses to globalizing processes and how transnational media industries contribute to globalization. It approaches global communication mostly from a historical and economic perspective while analyzing its contemporary socio-cultural impact. The course discusses new information and communication technologies, particularly the Internet, in the context of the changing cultural landscapes and political economy of media. It considers developments at both regional and national levels especially when analyzing the global flow of information and media texts.

The course is an upper division Communication Studies course which counts as an elective for Media Studies and Human & Organization Communication tracks. It satisfies GE designation G and is also one of the electives for Latin American Studies and International Business programs.

Student population: Communication Studies, World Languages and International Business majors with no prior knowledge in media and cultural globalization often take this course.

Learning or student outcomes: 
 Upon completing the course, students will be able to:

  • Articulate the theories and processes of globalization and global communication
  • Assess global communication in its historical, political and socio-economic context
  • Critically examine the impact of American popular culture in the world
  • Analyze the role of nation-states and transnational institutions in global media and cultural flows

About the Resource/Textbook 

Textbook or OER/Low cost Title: Global Communication Reading Packet 

Brief Description: The reading packet I put together consists of a number of journal articles and book chapters from e-books that students can access via the library. The reading materials are designed to help students learn the historical development of global communication, theories and concepts that explain significant trends in media and cultural globalization and survey major regional and global flows of media. 

Student access:  Students access the reading materials via Blackboard and online.

Supplemental resources: Videos from news websites and recorded public lectures and panels featuring academics and media professionals relevant to the concepts and topics assigned in the readings are used to supplement the reading packet.

Cost Savings:  The book I previously used for this course is Global Communication by Yahya Kamalipour (Second Edition), which retails for $118.90. Since I teach this course to 35 students every semester, the total potential savings for students is $4161.50 per semester.

License:  Among the reading materials, there were a number of openly licensed readings as well as copyrighted materials that required students’ library access.

OER/Low Cost Adoption

OER/Low Cost Adoption Process

Provide an explanation or what motivated you to use this textbook or OER/Low Cost option. My motivation to use an OER reading packet was twofold: I wanted to save students money and at the same time to discuss with them specific case studies by curating topic-based modules that consisted of written materials supplemented by news videos, recorded panels or talks. The case studies I chose reflected national, regional and global levels of contemporary media and cultural globalization. My pedagogical approach is to de-westernize and decolonize the curriculum. This requires me to reconsider assigning a sole-authored textbook or an anthology that mostly focuses on western-based global media corporations and their impact, and instead incorporate research written by scholars from the Global South.

How did you find and select the open textbook for this course?
I have been bookmarking articles and books that I thought would be educationally valuable at the undergraduate level. With the help of the librarians, I was able to order e-book versions of some of those books I considered using in the reading packet.

Sharing Best Practices: I will recommend my colleagues to start asking the librarians to buy electronic versions of newly-published academic books that are written in a way that undergrads can understand and enjoy as they come across such work. Because it takes some time to assemble and curate a reading packet that works well in the classroom. 

Describe any challenges you experienced, and lessons learned.  One challenge I faced was that the two journal articles I had chosen were a bit confusing and difficult for my undergraduate students to understand, but I alleviated that problem by removing one from the final exam and asking students to only read certain pages from the other article.

About the Instructor

Ece Algan 
Professor of Communication Studies

California State University, San Bernardino