1. UNIVERSITY OF PUERTO RICO AT BAYAMON, PUERTO RICO
SYLLABUS – INCO 3005
Course Title : Business Communication I
Codification : INCO 3005
Credits : Three credits
Requisite : INGL 3102, INGL 3104 or INGL 3012
Contact Hours : Three contact hours per week for 15 weeks
Course Description : Course is designed for students in Business Administration, Office Systems, or
Materials Management. Students are given training in the correct form of
writing and communicating in business. Special attention is given to achieving
effective communication in business and understanding the logical processes
that involve the writing of business correspondence.
Textbook : Business Communication Process and Products
Mary Ellen Guffey
Thompson, South-Western College Publishing, 2006
Evaluation : Partial Exams (2) 55%
Assignments, Quizzes, 15%
Letters, & Memos
Article summaries (4) 15%
Final Exam 15%
Partial Exams (3)
(Eliminates the lowest grade) 50%
Article Briefs (5) 10%
Letter & memo 15%
Agenda (Bonus) 5%
Final Exam 25%
: Curve: 90 - 100 = A
80 - 89 = B
70 - 79 = C
60 - 69 = D
0 - 59 = F
2. Syllabus – INCO 3005
2006-07 – Page 2
NOTE: Attendance is required. When absent, students will be responsible for the work
given. All work must be handed in on the date requested. There will be no
make-ups for exams, nor for documents written in class. Cell phones and
pagers (beepers) must be turned off in class.
General Objectives : Upon completion of the course, and with a high percentage of
effectiveness, the student will:
1. understand and apply the fundamentals of effective communication in business behavior
2. apply clear critical thinking skills in analyzing business communication situations.
3. use appropriate English skills and mechanics for effective communication.
4. communicate more effectively in writing business documents applying the basic principles of
effective written communication.
5. communicate using non-discriminatory language regarding gender, race, ethnic background,
6. understand the importance of preparing to work in a team-oriented workplace.
7. use the computer as a tool in the development of written business documents and in research.
8. demonstrate confidence in the preparation of written documents.
9. identify and use various technological advances used in the preparation of business
10. acquire updated information related to business topics in Puerto Rico, the global marketplace,
and/or business communication.
11. recognize the need to keep an agenda.
Specific Objectives : After covering the topics indicated, the student will
TOPIC: Communication Process
1. identify and define the components of the communication process.
2. distinguish between verbal and nonverbal communication.
3. identify the barriers in the communication process.
4. distinguish between formal and informal modes of business communication.
5. identify the cultural aspects that can affect the communication process.
6. identify the channels and directions of the communication process.
7. explain the legal and ethical dimensions of communicating.
8. communicate effectively in small groups.
9. explain the meaning of nonverbal messages communicated in different cultures.
10. listen effectively in business situations.
11. use appropriate behavior to maintain effective working relationships.
12. keep, an agenda.
3. Syllabus – INCO 3005
2006-07 - page 3
TOPIC: Writing Effectively
1. identify the differences between business writing and other types of writing (creative, scientific,
2. apply the basic writing principles by:
a. choosing the right words
b. writing effective and concise sentences
c. writing with vigor
d. producing logical and coherent paragraphs
e. using correct mechanics
f. preferring positive language
g. using parallel structure where listening.
3. explain why tact is necessary when writing negative messages, especially when
communicating with other cultures.
4. apply the following in their writing:
a. courteous and sincere tone
b. emphasis and subordination
c. nondiscriminatory language
d. “YOU” attitude
e. appropriate level of reading difficulty
f. use a variety of strategies to overcome writer’s block
5. follow the stages in the writing process to develop written correspondence
6. apply the established formats for letters and memos using the computer
7. discuss and write memos, letters using the deductive approach
8. produce short reports on business topics related to Puerto Rico, the global marketplace and/or
Topic: Communication Technology
1. identify the major types of electronic information sources.
2. browse and search the Internet.
3. communicate using e-mail.
An eclectic approach in methodology is used incorporating whole group, small group, pairwork, and
individual tasks. Critical thinking skills and group discussions may use the collaborative learning
approach. Once students begin writing, the course will follow a workshop format allowing for the
development of writing from group to individual work. The text website will be used to further
develop the business skills.
4. Syllabus – INCO 3005
2006-07– Page 4
Business Communication Today, 6th Edition
Courtland Bovée and John Thill
Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall International, 2002
Excellence in Business Communication, 7th Edition
John Thill and Courtland Bovée
Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2007
Foundations of Business Communication: An Integrative Approach
Dona J. Young
Boston: McGraw-Hill Irwin, 2006
Professors will choose articles from those most recently published which are related to the topics
discussed in class. These articles will be available in the reserve section of the library or on the
Internet (which students have access to at the university or at home). Among the Internet sites that
may be consulted are the following:
Business Week: www.businessweek.com
Business 2.0: money.cnn.com/magazines/business2
Spanish – English
English – English
Students will be provided or directed to current articles related to course topics available in the
library or on the Internet. These are constantly updated, they will frequently change, and they will
vary according to instructor.
Students with disabilities
All the reasonable accommodations according to the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) will be
coordinated with the Dean of Students and in accordance with particular needs of the student.
La UPRB cumple con las leyes ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) y 51 (Servicios Educativos Integrales
para Personas con Impedimentos) para garantizar igualdad en el acceso a la educación y servicios.
5. Syllabus – INCO 3005
2006-07– Page 5
Estudiantes con impedimentos: INFORMA al profesor(a) de cada curso sobre sus necesidades especiales
y/o de acomodo razonable para el curso en la tarjeta de información de la primera semana y visita la
Oficina de Servicios a Estudiantes Universitarios con Impedimentos (SASEIPI) a la mayor brevedad
posible. Se mantendrá la confidencialidad.
Sample Course Schedule
INCO 3005 Course Schedule Fall 2006
Jorge Vélez Office Hours: LKMJ 8-8:30, 12:30-1, 2:30-4
Textbook: Business Communication: Process and Product 5th ed., 2006
Mary Ellen Guffey; Thompson-Southwestern
Meetings 1 – 8 Chapter 1: Communication process; interpersonal communication barriers;
organizational communication; communication flow; ethical challenges; communication
Chapter 2: Group and team communication; team development and roles; effective and
successful teams; team-based presentations; meetings; use of groupware
Meeting 9 TEST #1 September 12, 13
Meetings 10 - 16 Chapter 3: Listening process and barriers in the workplace; improving listening skills;
the role of nonverbal communication;
Chapter 4: Importance of intercultural communication; understanding culture;
intercultural sensitivity; intercultural audiences; ethics; workplace diversity
Meeting 17 TEST #2 October 10, 11
Meetings 18 – 23 Chapter 5: Preparing to write; task vs. audience analysis; legal responsibilities
Chapter 6: Researching data and generating ideas; organizing data and ideas into
patterns; the first draft
Meeting 24 TEST #3 November 6, 7
Meetings 25-30 Chapter 7: Revising messages; vigor and directness; readability; proofreading; product
Chapter 8: Routine messages; e-mails and memos
TEST #4 December during final exam period
Mechanics, vocabulary, and sentence and clause grammar will be covered during the course of the semester and will
also be included in the tests. Aside from the material in the textbook, students will do in-class exercises and out-of-
class assignments for credit. These must be done on time, on the assigned dates in class, completely, and in
compliance with instructions in order to receive full credit.