Section Name

Research Articles


Conducting long-term assessment of the impact of students’ participation in introductory communication courses is an important endeavor for enhancing pedagogy and understanding the contribution of communication instruction to the student experience. This 14-year study reports data from a campus-wide assessment program extending from 2004 to 2018. The study analyzed a large sample of undergraduate students’ self-reported pre- and post-test scores on critical variables related to student outcomes in three introductory communication courses. The variables examined were demographic characteristics, self-esteem and communication apprehension in both the public speaking course and the business communication course, and self-esteem and willingness to communicate in the interpersonal communication course. Across the 14-year period, 93% of the results of pre/post comparison scores showed a significant increase in students’ self-perceived levels of self-esteem and willingness to communicate and a significant decrease in communication apprehension (p < .001). The usefulness of the results are discussed. Four general conclusions for engaging in introductory course assessment are outlined, along with specific lessons learned and best practices for consideration by basic course directors and faculty.



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