Public Affairs Communication

A student presents at the annual Research Symposium

The Public Affairs Communication concentration is one of three concentrations available in the Applied Communication major.  See the major page for more information.

Concentration Curriculum Requirements

The Applied Communication major with a concentration in Public Affairs Communication major consists of 36 s.h. distributed as follows:

Required Core Courses

  • ACL 3540 Strategic Business and Professional Communication (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 4700 Applied Communication & Leadership in Organizations (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 4900 Internship (3 s.h.)

Required Statistics Course

Select one course (3 s.h.) from the following:

  • MAT 2200 Applied Statistics (3 s.h.)
  • SOC 2200 Applied Statistics (3 s.h.)
  • PSY 2500 Statistics for Psychology (3 s.h.)
  • BUS 2160 Statistics for Business and Economics (3 s.h.)

Major Electives

Select 12 s.h. from the following:

  • ACL 3400 Theories and Techniques of Effective Listening (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 3600 Exploring Cross-Cultural Communication (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 3700 Results-Oriented Persuasion (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 3710 Effective Interpersonal Communication (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 3750 Small Group Communication Skills (3 s.h.)
  • ACL 3900 Collaborative Conflict Management (3 s.h.)
  • COM 1050 Introduction to Mass Communications (3 s.h.)
  • COM 2800 Mass Communications Theory (3 s.h.)
  • LSS 3000 Principles of Leadership (3 s.h.)
  • LSS 3400 Issues in Contemporary Leadership (3 s.h.)

Public Affairs Communication Concentration Electives

Select 12 s.h. from the following:

  • BUS 3770 Employment Law (3 s.h.)
  • BUS 3780 Labor Relations Law (3 s.h.)
  • COM 3350 Public Relations (3 s.h.)
  • ECO 3810 Public Economics (3 s.h.)
  • ECO 4000 Current Economics Issues (3 s.h.)
  • ENG 3201 Business Writing (3 s.h.)
  • ENG 3210 Technical Writing (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 1010 Environmental Science (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 1700 Industrial Processes and Operations (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 2010 General Principles of Industrial Hygiene (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 2100 Introduction to Natural Resource Management (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 2500 Environmental Regulations I (3 s.h.)
  • ENM 2600 Introduction to Clandestine Labs (3 s.h.)
  • JUS 3300 Police in an Urban Society (3 s.h.)
  • JUS 4200 Ethical Foundations of Criminal Justice (3 s.h.)
  • LAW 2000 Introduction to Legal Studies (3 s.h.)
  • LAW 3100 Law and the Legal System (3 s.h.)
  • PSC 3050 Democratic Principles and Theory (3 s.h.)
  • PSC 3330 Public Administration (3 s.h.)
  • PSC 3510 International Relations (3 s.h.)
  • SOC 3320 Methods of Social Research (3 s.h.)

Minor Requirements

Students may also minor in Applied Communication with a concentration in Public Affairs Communication.

A minor consists of 18 s.h. with at least 9 s.h. with the ACL designation.

Contact the Applied Communication Program

Dr. Bill Watt

Bill Watt, Ph.D.

Professor of Speech
Dr. Bill Watt
Bill Watt, Ph.D.

Professor of Speech

B.S., Manhattan Christian College; B.S., M.A., Ph.D.; Kansas State University


Willis M. “Bill” Watt retired as Professor of Speech Communication in Dec. 2020. He was formerly also Chair of the Applied Communication Department at Methodist University.

His professional academic experiences include teaching and administrative duties such as vice president for academic affairs, academic dean, school dean, division director, and department chair at NCAA division I, II, and III as well as NCCAA universities and colleges.

Bill was selected by the Kansas Speech Communication Association as the Outstanding College Teacher of the Year (1996). He was inducted into the Mid-America Education Hall of Fame in 1998.

Bill has presented over 50 scholarly papers on topics ranging from communication, leadership, theatre, and religion at state, regional, national, and international conferences with many of the papers being included in conference proceedings. He has authored or co-authored five books in the field of speech communication and business/professional speaking, several monographs about theatre, and co-authored book chapters on intercollegiate debate and leadership. He has published many poems and short stories locally, nationally, and internationally.

Bill was ordained in the Christian ministry in 1976 by the Christian Church (Independent). He currently serves as a staff member/trainer for the Cumberland County Institute for Community Leadership and is a member of The Fayetteville Observer Community Advisory Board.

Research Interests:

  • Leadership theory and practice
  • Various aspects of communication to include nonverbal, gender, conflict management, intercultural, interpersonal, public speaking, business & professional speaking, persuasion, debate & argumentation, small group communication, organizational communication
  • Theatre (drama)
  • Religion and the arts
  • Religion and spirituality

Personal Interests:

  • Racquetball
  • Go
  • Chess