This course examines the evolution of the theoretical and practical applications of contemporary persuasive communications. Students will have the opportunity to delve into the traditional theories of persuasion to persuasion concepts in affective neuroscience, in application to audio-visual storytelling to the current trends in empirical persuasion research, specifically in cinema, and social and interactive media. Students will be challenged to construct and deliver persuasive messages in individual and group settings, and create a media strategy or campaign that will address a major societal problem or a major health concern to help the local community or a nonprofit organization.
Throughout the semester, students will also have opportunities to analyze, evaluate and create persuasive media, including advertising in print, oral and electronic media / transmedia designed to imbibe the ethical principles involved in the creation, distribution and reception of persuasive messages.
The goals of this course include the following:
• to define the traditional and emerging theoretical constructs of the persuasive communications
• to apply the science and art of persuasion in individual or organizational situations by identifying and employing effective and efficient techniques of persuasion
• to effectively analyze a specific communication situation and create a solid media plan or strategy in response to a societal challenge
• to understand and respond to the importance of ethics in persuasion, specifically in dealing with the not-for-profit environment
Topics discussed in this course:
- Principles of Persuasion: From the Aristotle's Rhetoric and Poetics to the Commercials of Spike Jonze
- Persuasive Media Theories, Demographics, Altruism and Affective Neuroscience
- The Science and Art of Persuasion: Photography, Film and Interactive Media
- The Hypertext, Hypermedia and the Conventional Methods of Persuasion
- Demographics: The 'Metaphotographer', Storyteller and Media Maker
- Ethical Persuasion and Visual Analysis
- Media Strategies and their Effective Application