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Business Programs ►Business Communication Professional Certificate Program with Externship


Program includes National Certification & an Externship Opportunity



The Business Communication Professional

The Business Communication Professional program provides students the basic competencies involved in effective communication and team work between those at the very top of a company through to middle management, first-line supervision and line workers. Clear and concise communication is a must for today’s fast-paced business world. Business professionals require the ability to communicate efficiently and effectively on a range of complex subjects. Communication between staff and management, with clients and prospective clients, requires the utmost clarity to ensure expectations are met and decisions can be made on the basis of accurate information. Without effective communication skills, both menial tasks and strategic business decisions can result in costly mistakes for any organization. Moreover, effective business communication can mean the difference between closing a deal with a prospective client or losing their business altogether.


The Business Communication Professional Program

Whether in writing or speaking, effective communication is a must for business managers at all levels as well as those seeking promotion into higher ranks. Students will learn the fundamental strategies behind effective business communication alongside potential barriers that may inhibit these efforts. Students will be introduced to technology that will facilitate their communication efforts, gain insight into effective oral presentations as well as visual aids that can help in these efforts.


Program Objectives

At the conclusion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Evaluate elements of effective business communication and explain any barriers
  • Examine how technology has impacted business communications
  • Explain the importance of intercultural communication in the business setting
  • Use the English language appropriately in business communications
  • Write an effective business message and develop effective visual aids for a proposal
  • Prepare an oral presentation
  • Create a resume, application letter, and follow-up messages
  • Define communication and describe effective listening skills
  • Use appropriate questions in communicating with others
  • Explain why communication is important in helping people learn
  • Identify best practices and correct audiences for delivering successful presentations
  • Organize topics for business communication and identify the types of business writing
  • Describe correct sentence structure and elements of direct and forceful writing
  • Use appropriate language in business communication
  • Describe revising and editing techniques
  • Use Microsoft Office

INTRODUCTION TO BUSINESS COMMUNICATIONS

  • Explain how effective business communication is achieved
  • Examine tools used for effective business communications
  • List communication barriers
  • Describe the impact that technology has had on business communications
  • Analyze ethical issues related to communication
  • Describe the characteristics of effective teams
  • Examine elements of appropriate business etiquette

LISTENING AND NONVERBAL COMMUNICATION SKILLS

  • Recognize elements of a successful business meeting
  • Identify categories of nonverbal communication
  • Recognize barriers to effective communication

COMMUNICATING ACROSS CULTURES

  • Describe how to overcome language barriers
  • Describe the challenges of communicating across cultures
  • Identify communication approaches to communicating across cultures
  • Discuss intercultural sensitivity

COMPOSING A BUSINESS MESSAGE

  • Explain how a business message can be sent successfully electronically
  • Write an effective business message
  • Develop a written message using the steps in the writing process
  • Formulate a business message using successful design characteristics

COMMUNICATING ROUTINE INFORMATION

  • Produce a routine business message
  • Develop an effective business memo and business letter
  • Discuss approaches for conveying positive messages
  • Develop a response to a business message

COMMUNICATING BAD NEWS

  • Discuss approaches for conveying bad news
  • Describe types of bad-news messages
  • Evaluate methods used to send bad-news messages
  • Write an effective bad-news message

PERSUASIVE COMMUNICATIONS

  • Describe methods used to send persuasive messages
  • Identify strategies for developing a persuasive business message
  • Apply effective writing skills in producing a persuasive message

INTRODUCTION TO BUSINESS REPORTS AND PROPOSALS

  • Identify types of business reports and proposals
  • Demonstrate the ability to conduct and analyze research materials

COMPOSING BUSINESS REPORTS AND PROPOSALS

  • Identify parts of a business report and proposal
  • Produce a business report
  • Develop effective visual aids for a business proposal

FORMAL REPORTS AND PROPOSALS

  • Identify parts of a formal report
  • Explain the purpose of a formal proposal
  • Critique a formal report

ORAL PRESENTATION SKILLS

  • Demonstrate knowledge regarding audience awareness
  • Write an oral presentation
  • Develop appropriate visual aids for an oral presentation

RESUME WRITING AND THE EMPLOYMENT INTERVIEW

  • Discuss types of interviews
  • Explain the importance and elements of appropriate follow-up messages
  • Create a resume
  • Write an application letter
  • Create samples of appropriate follow-up messages

EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION

  • Define communication
  • State the reasons managers communicate
  • Describe obstacles to clear communication
  • List the key principles of clear communication

LISTENING FOR THE MESSAGE

  • Differentiate between hearing and listening
  • Identify obstacles to good listening
  • Differentiate between repeating and rephrasing
  • Define active listening
  • State key actions for improving listening skills
  • Describe strategies for delivering clear spoken messages
  • Explain how to use communication skills to influence others
  • Describe actions you can take to ensure that your message is received and understood
  • Apply strategies for delivering criticism or bad news

LEARNING AND TEACHING

  • Describe situations in which managers need to ask good questions
  • Identify the four types of questions: open-ended, closed-ended, clarifying, and probing
  • List key strategies for asking useful questions
  • Ask appropriate questions during an interview, to encourage meeting participation, or to elicit information in a difficult situation
  • Identify the unique needs of adult learners
  • Describe how to teach someone a process
  • Identify the purposes for managers to give presentations
  • Describe the key actions for planning and delivering a successful presentation
  • Describe strategies for coping with presentation fear

HOW TO WRITE WELL IN THE WORKPLACE

  • Identify the advantages of written communication
  • Describe the criteria for good business writing
  • Determine the purpose of business writing
  • Explain how to plan successful written communication
  • Describe the four business writing guidelines to help readers
  • Revise to improve a business document
  • Identify effective writing in business documents
  • Explain how to proofread written work

GOOD BUSINESS WRITING

  • Name three criteria for good business writing
  • Ask the central question you need to answer before you begin writing
  • List the three levels of potential readers within an organization
  • Name three ways of applying basic psychology to encourage readers to read your message
  • List five elements that contribute to an appropriate tone in most business writing

A PLANNED APPROACH TO BUSINESS WRITING

  • Write an outline with the appropriate level of detail
  • The first 2 questions a reader asks when receiving a memo, letter, proposal, or report
  • Name four criteria of good evidence
  • Describe direct/indirect patterns of organization and explain when each should be used
  • Name and define five common sequences of supporting ideas
  • Set up a business letter in the correct format
  • Name the main parts of a memorandum
  • Describe what the minutes of a meeting are used for
  • Cite the main purposes of written proposals and reports
  • State eight things to be explained in the body of a proposal

EFFECTIVE WRITING

  • Identify the three basic sentence patterns
  • Explain what a topic sentence is and what it does
  • Structure sentences to emphasize or deemphasize ideas
  • Explain the elements of a dictionary entry
  • Describe the difference between the denotation and the connotation of a word
  • Define subject-verb agreement
  • Explain the uses of warm and cold language
  • Edit to make writing more concise

WRITING FOR MAXIMUM IMPACT

  • Name three techniques to make your writing powerful and precise
  • Identify when to use active and passive verbs
  • Define concrete nouns and abstract nouns
  • Explain the uses of the three end marks of punctuation
  • List and illustrate the most common uses of the comma, semicolon, colon, apostrophe, and dash
  • Cite two basic rules for the use of quotations
  • Identify strategies for rewriting and revision
  • List potential sources of information for business writers
  • Give examples of three kinds of questions and explain their usefulness
  • Identify major kinds of reference material available at libraries
  • Cite guidelines for creating visually appealing documents
  • Cite recommendations for using a computer to help in your writing
  • State the safest policy for dealing with the limitations of privacy for email
  • Describe basic copyright policies for material that appears online

Note: This program can be completed in 6 months. However, students will have online access to this program for a 24-month period.

Education and National Certifications

  • Students should have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED.
  • There are no state approval and/or state requirements associated with this program.
  • There is a National Certification exam available to students who successfully complete this program:
    • Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certification Exam.

National Certification

Upon successful completion of this Auburn University program, students would be eligible to sit for the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exam. Although there are no state approval, state registration or other state requirements for this program, students who complete this program at Auburn University will be prepared and are eligible to sit for this national certification exam. Students who complete this program are encouraged to complete the externship option with their program. Students who complete this program can and do sit for the MOS national certification exams and are qualified, eligible and prepared to do so. Auburn University works with each student to complete the exam application and register the student to take their national certification exam.


Externship / Hands on Training / Practicum

Although not a requirement, once students complete the program, they have the ability to participate in an externship and/or hands on practicum so as to practice the skills necessary to perform the job requirements of a professional in this field. Students will be assisted with completing a resume and/or other requirements necessary to work in this field. All students who complete this program are eligible to participate in an externship and will be placed with a participating organization near their location. Auburn University works with national organizations and has the ability to place students in externship opportunities nationwide.