COM 466

Deceptive Communication
COM 466

We have all been lied to and we have all told lies. Whether they are lies of commission or omission, they are everywhere. Why do we lie to strangers, enemies, friends, lovers, and family? This class can help you unravel the mystery of why we lie and are lied to by others. What are the various ethical and philosophical approaches to lying and deception? How much confidence can you have that the person you’re conversing with is telling you the truth?  What are the most reliable cues for detecting deception, and which are worthless? These are just a few of the key questions about lying and deception that this course covers.

There has been a great deal of empirical theory and research about deception from a communication perspective.  In this course, we attempt to develop a better understanding of what this theory and research tells us and how we can apply it to our own lives, personal and professional. There also exist many myths and misconceptions about deception in human interaction, so we also hope to dispel these misleading ideas. Course topics include, among other things, types of lies and liars, the behavior of liars (verbal and nonverbal), assisted and unassisted lie detection, lying within the public and political arenas, and case studies of infamous liars such as Scott Peterson, Steven Glass, and Pete Rose.

The course is video intensive, and also relies a lot on both lecture and classroom discussion. Students are flocking to this course, and that’s no lie! Come find out why…


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