COMM 3300 Rhetorical Thinking

Instructor information

Name: Audra Barber


Virtual Office Hours: by email and appointment


Please reach out with questions to Dr. Christy Maurer (, the Communication Department’s Director of Online Programs.

About the Course

Reviews the classical tradition of rhetoric and its relevance to current events and public issues. Students learn how rhetorical perspectives help us create new ways of thinking, speaking, and acting through practicing creative message design.


Requisites: Requires prerequisite courses of COMM 1210 and COMM 1600 (all minimum grade C-). Restricted to students with 57-180 credits (Junior or Senior) Communication (COMM or COMN) majors or minors only.

Course Outline

In this asynchronous class, we will not meet for regularly scheduled class sessions. Your work across the semester is guided by the instructor through online materials, assignments, and feedback, as well as reaching them through office hours as needed. Some live meetings may be scheduled, offering you a variety for days and times to select from. You will take part in online regular class discussion boards to explore ideas and connect with peers.  This class expects your consistent and substantive contributions engaging with the materials, peers, and the instructor, by logging in to post across multiple days of every week.

Course materials and assignments are organized into units across the semester, through which you build knowledge and develop skills, culminating in the final project. Together, we explore communication in our world from a critical perspective, considering how interactions are affected by identities and ideologies. Here at CU, Communication classes strive to embody our CRAFT: Creativity in what we produce; Relational connections between people, communities, and ideas; Analytical in our understanding; Flexible across professional fields; and Transformative for society.


By the end of the course you should be able to:

  • Relate course concepts to our world.
  • Recognize the symbolic elements that make up our rhetorical world.
  • Discuss how rhetoric influences us.
  • Analyze how messages fit together.
  • Interpret and examine how messages alter human interaction.
  • Assemble symbols into coherent messages.
  • Generate insight into how rhetoric makes things.
  • Improve your research, writing, and critical thinking skills, as well as engage with ideas of your classmates

Required Texts

All readings for this course will be posted to or linked to on Canvas.


*assignment and weighted value may be adjusted to suit the needs of the class.

  • Reading Guides 15%
  • Influence Essay 15%
  • Analysis Essay 15%
  • Midterm & Final Exams 30%
  • Weekly Discussions 20%
  • Class Membership Tasks & Participation 5%


Now that you’ve selected your favorite Continuing Education courses, email or print the information, including class number, to more easily search Buff Portal and enroll. Still have questions? Contact an advisor.


Monday – Friday
8:00am to 5:00pm


We are located at the corner of University Avenue and 15th Street in a white brick building.


1505 University Avenue
University of Colorado Boulder
178 UCB
Boulder, Colorado