Volume 9, Issue 6 - December 2014Print | Email

Critical War Play

96PaynePhoto1In the years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, one of the most popular and commercially successful video game genres has been the military shooter. Typically played from either the first- or third-person perspective, these titles locate players on historic and near-future battlefields, arm them with a bevy of weapons, and task them with achieving tactical objectives in scenarios ranging from conducting surveillance runs to engaging in close-quarters combat to spearheading vehicular battles. Not surprisingly, the overwhelming majority of shooters published by major firms such as Activision, Ubisoft, and Electronic Arts celebrate America’s endless War on Terror as a grave but necessary and patriotic undertaking. The post-9/11 shooter’s gameplay design and marketing formula established a jingoistic genre that netted billions of dollars for the industry’s biggest firms.
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Cross Current

NCA’s Centennial Committee Celebrates the Association’s 100th Year

96NCA Centennial LogoNCA’s Centennial is a wonderful opportunity to ponder the past, present, and future of the association and discipline and to celebrate! The Centennial Committee was appointed by former NCA President Betsy Bach in 2009. We began meeting at the NCA convention in Chicago, where we returned for our 2014 meeting, November 20–23. Chaired by Dawn O. Braithwaite and Richard West, the committee began working on projects that have now come to fruition in 2014. 
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Instructor's Corner #1: The (R)Evolution of the Basic Communication Course

96ValenzanoWallacePhoto1Students from all majors take their first—and often only—look at communication through the basic course, making the course the discipline’s “front porch.” As we enjoy NCA’s centennial year and reflect on this core element of our discipline, we appreciate the important place speech instruction holds in higher education. That status has evolved over time alongside general education, but it now faces a revolutionary moment as the ground under higher education shifts. To help us understand where oral communication instruction is headed though, we must look back to where it came from.
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Instructor's Corner #2: Teaching While Traveling: A Practical Method for Teaching from the Conference or Field Site

96PedeltyHoffmannPhoto1What do you do when research-related travel requires you to miss a few class sessions? Do you cancel class or turn it over to your teaching assistant? Maybe you screen a film? Frustrated by those options and hoping to turn research travel to pedagogical benefit, we experimented with several methods for teaching while traveling, and believe we have found a method that offers a positive alternative.
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Instructor's Corner #3: When Students Cyberbully Instructors: Threats to the Educational Process

96VoglBauerPhoto1In years past, when students didn’t like their instructors or grades they received in classes, they might complain to friends or family members. If they were really angry, they might pursue more formal channels at their academic institutions. However, today’s disgruntled students have other options at their disposal. They can use email, social media, and other types of technology to share damaging messages that can have a serious impact on their instructors’ reputations or careers. They can cyberbully their instructors.
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Instructor's Corner #4: Making Discussion in the Classroom Work

96MullerPhoto1Discussion in the classroom is something we’ve all experienced, whether as teachers or students. Researching discussion-based teaching as a communication practice makes visible ways of thinking and talking that foster lively classroom discussion and ways that bring about inconsistent and intermittent student participation. Engaged and participatory classroom discussion is accomplished through the co-creation of an interaction where teacher and students talk together in curriculum-relevant ways.
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How “Googling” Changes Personnel Selection

96BerkelaarBuzzanellPhoto1The first place most people go when they want information is online, whether they want to learn more about an upcoming date, potential roommate, future employer, prospective employee, or are just curious about what someone is doing.
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Communicating About Race and Diversity

 96NoranderGalanesPhoto1Although the United States is a diverse country, many towns and communities have little visible diversity. As such, becoming a more welcoming and inclusive community can prove to be a struggle. 
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Listening for the Local

96McCormickPhoto2Many Americans are enthusiastic about deliberative democracy, but appalled by its actual practice, especially when it comes to local forums of civic life.
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“Act Your Age”: A Weighty Issue on The Biggest Loser

96YamasakiPhoto2 The Biggest Loser (TBL) is a popular reality series designed to empower dangerously obese contestants with the knowledge, resources, and time needed to lose large amounts of weight and transform their lives. 
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Who Am I? Adopted Individuals’ Identity Is Based in Adoptive and Birth Family Relationships

96PoynterColanerPhoto1We all have a built-in need to know who we are. Our identity  helps us know what about us is consistent and unique from other people.
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Coping with Racial Discrimination and Helping Those in Need

96HanasanoChanPhoto2 Racial discrimination is a special type of communication stressor that can harm minorities’ physical and mental well-being.
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Home Page | Critical War Play | NCA’s Centennial Committee Celebrates the Association’s 100th Year | Instructor's Corner #1: The (R)Evolution of the Basic Communication Course | Instructor's Corner #2: Teaching While Traveling: A Practical Method for Teaching from the Conference or Field Site  | Instructor's Corner #3: When Students Cyberbully Instructors: Threats to the Educational Process | Instructor's Corner #4: Making Discussion in the Classroom Work | How “Googling” Changes Personnel Selection | Communicating About Race and Diversity | Listening for the Local | “Act Your Age”: A Weighty Issue on The Biggest Loser | Who Am I? Adopted Individuals’ Identity Is Based in Adoptive and Birth Family Relationships | Coping with Racial Discrimination and Helping Those in Need 
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