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    Irvine Valley College
    Feb 24, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog 
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED]

Communication Studies

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Dean: Joseph Poshek
Academic Chair: Gary Rybold, PhD
Faculty: Gary Rybold, PhD; Jules French, JD; Edwin Tiongson; Bill Neesen

In study after study, employers have expressed the number one skill wanted from employees is communication. Oral communication has a long, proud academic history starting as a skill 2400 years ago during the Golden Age of Greece. The ability to express yourself will give you an advantage over other less articulate peers for the rest of your life.  Even if you want to major in a STEM field or Business Adminstration you should seriously consider either a double major with communication studies or taking a variety of our classes to hone your professional collaboration skills. As the world depends more and more on technology we will always need those with strong oral communication skills.

Of course, everyone should take Comm 1, Communication Fundamentals. This class introduces you to instant organizational techniques, how to use research to construct a logical argument, and how to deliver your speech like a pro. Our students develop better listening skills and confidence in what many describe as the “most fun” class they’ve ever taken. Our unique and engaging approach has received awards and been featured in journal and convention articles.

Should you find your voice in Comm 1, the next natural step is Comm 3, Argumentation and Debate. In the era of fake news it is refreshing to come to a class where you can uncover the fallacies in an opponent’s assertions. And you’ll learn from the best debate coaches in the country. If you visit our area in the middle of the second floor of the BSTIC building you will see the 19 national championship awards we’ve taken over the past 25 years. You will also see our photographs of the international debate program we sponsor. We’ve taken over 130 students and coaches to China to debate. And we’ve had debaters on campus from the United Kingdom, Ireland, China, Japan, Eastern Europe, and Rwanda. In 2019 we took students to an international tournament in Berlin.

Of course, students maximize their development with competition on the IVC Speech and Debate Team (Comm 106 - Forensics Activity). In addition to debate, students compete in individual events such as impromptu, persuasion, and poetry.  Competing for the speech and debate team will always be a gold star on your resume. Many team members express an increased confidence from what is the “best of collaboration” - working with team mates - making it worth all of the effort. Often these students end up in law school. One of our debate team alumni attends Harvard Law School.     

If you want to become an expert in communication, we have Persuasion (Comm 2), Interpersonal Communication (Comm 5), and Intercultural Communication (Comm 9). Our Leadership class (Comm 10) will help you prepare for the time when you need to be a leader. We even have an oral interpretation of literature class (Comm 30) for budding actors and those who want to develop a storytelling ability so needed in today’s workforce.

The Communication Studies Department was recognized as a “Model Communication Studies Program” by the Western States Communication Association (2016). The department waits to serve those students who want to become masters of their field with the skills employers really want.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the communication studies program, students will be able to

  • Advocate a specific topic to an audience of any size.

  • Critically assess other speakers’ format, content, and delivery and articulate constructive criticism in an oral critique.

  • Articulate and dissect models of communication and apply such methods in public speaking and interpersonal settings.

  • Research and construct positions on a set topic to communicate and advocate a particular point of view.

  • Critically think about how meaning is exchanged and the implications of our messages.

Speech and Debate Team

The Irvine Valley College Speech and Debate Team is one of the most respected and accomplished teams in the nation, competing against colleges and universities throughout the United States. Over the past 15 years, the team has placed in the top three at 12 state championships, while winning 12 league championships. Since 2000, the team was crowned the national champions in the community college division of the National Parliamentary Debate Association 11 times. The team also has an international reputation and has hosted debate teams from the UK, Ireland, Eastern Europe, Japan, Rwanda, and China on 21 occasions. In addition, the team has traveled several times to China for debate demonstrations, competition, and study abroad programs. In the spring of 2019 the team also plans to travel to Berlin, Germany to participate in the International Forensics Association Speech Tournament.

The coaching staff takes pride in developing students to become better speakers and better thinkers. All majors are welcomed and encouraged to join. Interested students may contact Director of Forensics Jules French at or Bill Neesen at

Potential Careers

What can you do with a Communication Degree?

Community Relations Director  

Communication Trainer

Museum Curator  



Quality Inspector 


Radio News Director 

Radio Talk Show Host 

Wedding Consultant

Activities Director (Retirement Center)

Camp Director

Career and Training Advisor

Recreational Coordinator and Supervisor

Residential Housing Director 


Accreditation Specialist

Advertising Executive

Alumni Coordinator

Arts Administrator

Sales Representative Script Writer

Newspaper Publisher

Special Events Coordinator

Secondary School Speech Teacher


Sports Announcer

Sports Marketer

Public Affairs Director

Travel/Conference Manager

Sports Publicist

News Anchor


Student Activities Director

Student Services Director

Media Relations

Human Resources Specialist

Human Rights Officer

Instructional Designer

Tour Guide

Department Administrator

Leasing Consultant

Legal Communication Consultant

Legislative Assistant

Legislative Correspondent


Health Services Manager

Telemarketing Manager

Television Producer

Television Reporter

National Fraternity/Sorority Chapter


Account Manager

Hotel Manager

Human Resources Manager

Child Welfare Worker

Claims Adjuster

College Admissions Counselor

Private Investigator

Production Assistant

Promotional Specialist

Motivational Speaker

Multicultural Specialist

Patient Rights Advocate

International Students Coordinator


Labor Negotiator

Labor Relations Consultant

Language Arts Teacher

Law Firm Recruiter

Maintenance Supervisor Manager

Market Researcher



Media Account Executive

Media Buyer

Media Critic

Mediation Specialist

Hospital Volunteers Coordinator

Information Analyst

College Recruiter

Government Relations Officer

Public Opinion Researcher

Communication Consultant Communication Statistician

Property Manager

Administrative Aide


Broadcasting Floor Manager Public Information Officer

Public Relations Coordinator

Communication Researcher

Community Affairs Liaison


Community College Speech Instructor

Business Manager

Instructional Development


Arena Director/Manager

Personnel Development Specialist

Conference Leader

Community Outreach Director

Theatre Manager

Company Spokesperson

Consulting Analyst



University Administrator

Technical Recruiter

University Information Specialist

Crisis Manager

Database Analyst 

Customer Service Representative


Nonprofit Organization Director

Development Officer

Child Language Specialist

Political Activist

Disc Jockey

Mental Health Professional

College Admission Counselor

Director of Admissions

Director of Corporate Communication

Diversity Consultant

Drug Company Representative

Educational Media Specialist

Systems Administrator

Broadcasting Production Supervisor


Employment Interviewer

Environmental Lobbyist


Events Planner

Executive Administrative Assistant

Fashion Merchandiser

Political Analyst and Campaign Director

Film Marketing

Forensics/Debate Director


Gallery Manager/Owner

Press Secretary

International Program Coordinator

Intercultural Communication Consultant

Marketing Communication Manager

Marketing Product Manager 

Corporate Communication Director



Areas of Concentration in the Communication Discipline

Electronic Media, Media Literacy

Study of media systems, mass communication theory, aesthetics and criticism, broadcasting and convergent media technologies.


Study of communication among individuals of different cultural backgrounds, including the study of similarities and differences across cultures.

Interpersonal, Family, Gender 

Study of communication in dyads (pairs), family systems, and the similarities and differences in communication related to gender and sex.

Language and Social Interaction

Study of the structure of verbal and nonverbal behaviors occurring in social interaction.

Mediation and Dispute Resolution

Study of understanding, management, and resolution of conflict within intrapersonal, interpersonal, and intergroup situations.

Organizational Communication

Study of processes used to analyze communication needs of organizations and social interaction, including the design of training to improve communication between supervisors and employees.


Study of performer(s), text, audience and context.

Political Communication, Public Address

Study of role communication plays in political systems; study of speakers and speeches, including the historical and social context of platforms, campaigns, and movements.

Public Relations

Study of managing two-way communication between an organization and its diverse publics.


Study of principles that account for the impact of human communication between speaker and audience.

Small Group

Study of communication systems among three or more individuals who interact around a common purpose and who influence one other.





Adapted from Pathways to Communication Careers in the 21st Century, National Communication Association



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