Spring 2005             Dr. William R.Cameron


California State University, Sacramento

College of Business Administration

OBE 130 - Business Communications



Instructor :   William R. Cameron, Ph.D.



      Library 3021


& LOCATION: Tahoe Hall 2044: Wednesdays 12:00- 1:00 PM or by appt.


CLASS TIME: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays: 10:00-10:50 AM


CONTACT INFO:   278-7997 On Campus Office

      530.647.1176 Off Campus Office

      530.647.1152 Off Campus fax

      Personal Email: wcameron1@mindspring.com

      CSUS Email: cameronw@csus.edu




1. Ober, Contemporary Business Communications


2. Clark & Clark, How 10 - A Handbook for Office Workers.


3. English language dictionary (recent edition).


Course Description

Provides basic concepts for understanding and practice of communication in the changing world of business for managers and professionals. It examines the use of language and conversations in business settings and their role in coordinating actions, resolving breakdowns in work performance, and providing customer satisfaction. Course topics include: Practice in professional styles of business writing and formats, preparation of a formal report, development of competence in business conversation skills (written, electronic, and oral), and other selected topics. International, technical, and linguistic developments are integrated into the various applications of business communication.



OBE 130 Educational Goals (not in rank order) are to:


•  To develop student's understanding of international and inter-cultural barriers to

business communication.


•  To improve student's writing and editing abilities.


•  To assist students in understanding the need to relate to other individuals in organizations in a human and ethical manner.


•  To strengthen students' oral presentation skills.


•  To teach students how to organize and present written and oral information in a

manner consistent with the nature of the material and the needs of the audience.


•  To add to the managerial skills of students and their ability to understand social, political, legal and regulatory issues affecting business organizations.


•  To introduce students to the communication technology available and to provide students the opportunity to apply this technology to their individual learning experiences





1.   Please keep a record of all quizzes and assignments that you submit.


2.   Please make sure you place your name and class section number on all assignments

  submitted. On e-mails to me use OBE130 in the subject line.


3.   Please do not submit assignments to the OBE office.


4.   Cheating, in any form, will lead to consequences outlined in the CSUS Catalog.


5.   Regular class attendance is recommended but not required. You are responsible for

  obtaining information on missed assignments. For the benefits of both students and

  instructor, you must attend the class section you have registered for. If you miss the

  deadline for an assignment or receive a less than desirable grade on an assignment,

  no make up work will be assigned.


6.   There will be a number of team assignments/exercises in the classroom.

Page 3


Requirements On Assignments


1.   Written assignments must be typed on white paper. Letters, memos and

  informal reports must be typed single space. Formal reports must be double spaced.


2.   All out of class assignments are due at the beginning of class.


3.   Written in class assignments are written under the following conditions: double-       spaced, in script, legible and in ink. Pencil is not acceptable. Use 8 - 1/2" x 11"   paper.




The final grade will be based on the number of points accumulated over the course of the semester. Each assignment, exam, and quiz will be worth a certain number of points. Points are assigned as follows:


1.    Reports/cases are worth 50-100 points per course schedule. Reports may include

  memorandum reports, letter reports, and short reports.


2.    Exams and quizzes . Points on exams and quizzes are noted per the course schedule.


3.    Homework assignments will be given per the course schedule.


4.    Final exam . The final exam will be worth 200 points and cannot be made up. A     student who fails to take the final exam at the time scheduled will receive a grade of     "no credit" for the final.


Final grades will be determined as follows:


  (Percent of total possible points)

  A = 94 -100%   C = 73 - 76%

  A- = 90 -93%     C- = 70 - 72%

  B+ = 87 - 89%   D+ = 67 -69%

  B = 83 - 86%     D = 63 - 66%

  B- = 80 - 82%     D- = 60 -62%

  C+ = 77 - 79%   F = Below 60%

Page 4


Evaluation of Assignments and Deduction of Points for Errors


Fifty percent of the points for each writing assignment will be based on content . The balance of points will be based on grammatical structure. Points will be deducted for grammatical errors based upon the following scale: 5 or Less Errors: 0 Points/6 - 10 Errors: 15 Points/More than 10 Errors: 25 Points. Points will also be deducted for illogical content based upon the preceding point scale. All assignments will be looked at both objectively and subjectively by the instructor. Assignments are also evaluated on the basis of format, appearance, strategy, logic, word choice and writing quality. All letters, reports, memorandums and resumes must be of " mailable " quality and signed by you.


The following partial list of errors are made most often and should be watched for:


Sentence fragment/Run-on sentence/Spelling

Compound sentence error or complex sentence error

Lack of subject-verb agreement/Incorrect case pronoun or pronoun reference

Incorrect or inconsistent tense(s)/Incorrect or omitted words

Misplaced modifier/Incorrect form/Split infinitives/Punctuation/Word Division Expletive/Spacing/Capitalization


All assignments must have name and section number of course written in the upper right hand corner. Assignments more than two pages must be numbered and stapled. Points will be deducted for missing these requirements.


Assignment Summary


Three Quizzes 100 points each:         300

One Midterm Exam:             150         

Five Class Exercises or Cases 50 points each:     250

One Take Home Exercise:           100

Final Exam:               200

Total possible points:             1000

Page 5




WEEK (Starts on Tues.)



1) 1.24-28.05

- Understanding Business Communication-C1

- None

2) 1.31-2.4.05


- Work Team Communication-C2

- In Class Case-50 pts

3) 2.7-2.11.05

Quiz on Friday

- Communication Technology-C3

- Quiz 1(9.17.04)-100 pts

4) 2.14-2.18.05

- Writing With Style-C4

- In Class Exercise-50 pts

5) 2.21-2.25.05

- Writing With Style-C5


6) 2.28-3.4.05

- The Process of Writing-C6


7) 3.7-3.11.05

Quiz on Friday

- Routine Messages-C7

- Quiz 2 (10.15.04)-100 pts

Spring Break 3.21-3.25.05-

No Class

8) 3.28-4.1.05

- Persuasive Messages-C8


9) 4.4-4.8.05

- Bad News Messages-C9

- In Class Exercise/Case-50


10) 4.11-4.15.05

Mid Term Exam on Friday

- Planning the Report-C10

- Mid Term Exam (11.5)150



11) 4.18-4.22.05

- Collecting the Data-C11

- In Class Ex/Case-50 pts

12) 4.25-4.29.05


- Writing the Report-C12

- In Class Ex/Case-50 pts

13) 5.2-5.6.05

- Planning the Business Presentation-C13

- Quiz 3-100 pts 11.17

14) 5.8-5.13.05

- Illustrating & Delivering the Business Presentation-C14

Take Home Exercise: 100 pts.

15) 5.16-5.20

- Employment Communication-C15




Please check the campus schedule for day and time of final exam.



Final Exam is worth 200

points. There are 1000

points total for the class.




Biography: Dr. Cameron is currently the Principal of The Cameron Group, a consultation firm in organizational development and psychology. Besides holding a faculty appointment with California State University, Sacramento; he is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Phoenix, Chapman University, DeVry University, Capella University, Vermont College and American Intercontinental University. For two years he was a member of the Board of Advisors for the International Medical Education Program at Cambridge University School of Medicine. He is on the Board of C2C Institutional research Review Board. He also is a member of the Board of Directors for Divine Spark, a non-profit Native American organization. He has held academic faculty and administrative positions at Cal Poly, University of San Francisco, Hood College, The Union Institute, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, The University of Texas Southwestern School of Medicine, University of Alabama, California School of Professional Psychology and Texas Christian University, among others. He received his B.A. (Honors) and M.A. from California State University, Sacramento and his Ph.D. from Texas Christian University. He was awarded a NIH Clinical Postdoctoral Fellowship at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Hospital and a subsequent fellowship at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dallas. He is the author of a number of articles and invited addresses in the fields of management, clinical and organizational psychology, neuroscience, and adult education.


If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me one of my communication numbers. I hope you enjoy and profit from the class with both professional and personal growth.


"Our thoughts create our reality. The stronger meaning of such a statement is that we indeed are co-creators of our world and that ultimate cause is to be sought not in the physical, but in consciousness."

-Willis W. Harmon