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University of Oklahoma

Spring 2022 Advanced Programs - Advanced Programs Face to Face or Virtual - International and Area Studies

[IAS 5413] Global Migration & Media - 221

Anthony Spencer

Course Description

In the 21st century the world is more mobile than ever. Today more people cross borders than ever before. This course will expose students to key topics related to immigration in various regions around the world. Students will seek out and interpret the ways that media portrayals impact immigration and how immigration patterns influence that very media framing. In this class students will explore readings from media studies, anthropology, political science, and sociology to formulate a holistic understanding of contemporary immigration issues. This course seeks to break down stereotypes and create new perspectives on the global movement of people. 

Class Dates, Format, Location and Hours

DatesMarch 8 - 13, 2022
FormatFace to Face
Location for on-site courses100 Lilienthalallee, Building 104, Room 1, NATO Airbase Geilenkirchen, 52511, Germany
HoursTuesday - Friday 6:00-9:30 pm
Saturday and Sunday 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Last day to enroll or drop without penaltyFebruary 7, 2022

Site Director

NameMs. Taylor Corum
Office address/location100 Lilienthalallee, Building 104, Room 4, NATO Airbase Geilenkirchen, 52511, Germany 
Office hoursMonday- Thursday 0900 - 1600
DSN and CIV phoneDSN: 458-4098  or  CIV: 49-(0)2451-63-2208 

Professor Contact Information

Course ProfessorDr Anthony Spencer
Email; Please allow 2 business days (48 hours) for a response to emails and Canvas messages.
Virtual Office HoursBefore and after class

Textbook(s) and Instructional Materials

Student materials are available at the OU Bookstore Website at The website has book selling, renting, buying, returning, and order tracking capabilities. If you need help with an order, or if you have any questions contact the toll-free phone at 1-(855)-790-6637, agents are available from 9a – 5p (EST) Monday – Friday. Text prices are available online.

Required supplementary readings will be provided by the instructor

Expectations: I expect that you will read the assigned materials, participate in class, and turn in assignments on time.

Global Immigration & Media

Required Supplementary Readings

Alencar, A., Kondova, K., & Ribbens, W. (2019). The smartphone as a lifeline: An exploration of refugees’ use of mobile communication technologies during their

        flight. Media, Culture & Society, 41(6), 828-844.

Dekker, R., & Scholten, P. (2017). Framing the Immigration Policy Agenda: A Qualitative Comparative Analysis of Media Effects on Dutch Immigration Policies.

        The International Journal of Press/Politics, 22(2), 202-222.Hodosi, A. (2015).

        Perceptions of irregular immigrants’ participation in undeclared work in the United Kingdom from a social trust perspective. International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 35(5-6), 375-389.

Horst, C., Erdal, M.B., & Jdid, N. (2020) The “good citizen”: asserting and contesting norms of participation and belonging in Oslo. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 43(16), 76-95, DOI: 10.1080/01419870.2019.1671599

Ng, I., Choi, S.F. & Chan, A.L. (2019). Framing the Issue of Asylum Seekers and Refugees for Tougher Refugee Policy—a Study of the Media’s Portrayal in Post-colonial Hong Kong. Int. Migration & Integration 20, 593–617.

Ransford D., & McDonald, D. (2001). Writing Xenophobia: Immigration and the Print Media in Post-Apartheid South Africa. Africa Today, 48(3), 115-137. Retrieved May 17, 2020, from

Romero, D. R., & Mercado, A. (2018). Cleaning San Diego: Migration, geography, exclusion, and resistance. Ethnicities, 18(6), 825–842.

McKay, S. K., Semmler, S. M., & Kim, Y. Y. (2014). Local News Media Cultivation of Host Receptivity in Plainstown. Human Communication Research, 40(2), 188–208.

Spencer, A. T. (2018). Nicaraguan immigration to Costa Rica: Understanding power and race through language. In S.M. Croucher, J. Caetano, & E. A. Campbell. (Eds.), Companion to Migration, Communication, and Politics (pp. 266-281). Oxfordshire, UK: Taylor & Francis.

Vora, N. (2008). Producing Diasporas and Globalization: Indian Middle-Class Migrants in Dubai. Anthropological Quarterly, 81(2), 377-406. Retrieved May 31, 2020, from

Mediating Migration
Mediating Migration
by Hegde, Radha Sarma
Published by Polity Press
ISBN: 9780745646336

Course Objectives

  1. understand the current state of immigration around the world,
  2. explore the various identities and lived experiences of immigrants,
  3. critically dissect media portrayals,
  4. evaluate themes related to immigrant issues that are region specific,
  5. analyze the ways in which immigrant create media spaces.
  6. understand the types of migrants in today’s globalized world: immigrants, refugees, displaced persons, stateless persons, etc. 

Assignments, Grading and Due Dates

Assignment Descriptions:

Immigration Case Study:

Each student will research one migrant/immigrant/expat/refugee group in a particular country. The student will create a 3-4-page paper explaining how the group is defined (characteristics) and the pattern of the flow of the group’s immigration. The group may be defined by place of origin, religion, ethnicity, or language. She/he will also explore the social and political forces which have created the immigration flow. The student should cite a minimum of 4 scholarly sources in the paper. This assignment will form the basis for the final paper.

Immigration Case Study Presentation:

In a 5-7-minute PowerPoint or Prezi explanation the student will present the immigration case study. *Note the student should account for the instructor feedback from the written case study. The student will be graded both on content and presentation skills.

Media Analysis Paper:

This paper builds on the immigration case study presentation. Each student will further explore the group from the immigration presentation by finding a news story that covers this group’s representation in a particular medium. This will be your media artifact (what you are analyzing). The artifact can be a TV news report, podcast, newspaper/magazine article, Web article (from a news source), or a journalistic roundtable/debate.

The goal of this paper is to critically analyze the way a particular group is framed in the media. You should ask the following questions: How is the group portrayed? What are the socio/political forces that shape the portrayal? What could the media outlet do to make the coverage more accurate and inclusive? What are the potential political/social ramifications from this coverage? You will use the media artifact as a text but must seek out other sources to place the artifact in context. Students will have a minimum of 10 sources (8 must be scholarly) in their paper. Each paper will be 8-10 pages in length.

Participation/In-Class Activities:Each student will receive an individual grade based upon the quantity and quality of the responses to the readings and discussions initiated in the class. There will also be graded in-class activities. It is not possible to make up points for missed activities and discussion participation.

Class Schedule (Subject to Change)

Each assignment is listed in bold with the corresponding due date


No extra credit is offered in this course. Final grades are not “curved.” The point scale is based on 500 points possible and is as follows:

90 – 100         = A

80 – 89           = B

70 – 79           = C

60 – 69           = D

0 – 59 = F

AssignmentPoints EarnedPoints Possible
Immigration Case Study20
Immigration Case Study Presentation20
Participation/In-Class Activities 10
Media Analysis Paper50

Attendance Policy

Attendance and participation in interaction, individual assignments, group exercises, simulations, role playing, etc. are valuable aspects of any course because much of the learning comes from discussions in class with other students. It is expected that you attend all classes and be on time except for excused emergencies. Excused absences are given for professor mandated activities or legally required activities such as emergencies or military assignments. Unavoidable personal emergencies, including (but not limited to) serious illness; delays in getting to class because of accidents, etc.; deaths and funerals, and hazardous road conditions will be excused.

OU Writing Center

The OU Writing Center can provide assistance to students in a variety of ways. For more information you can use the following link:

Mental Health Support Services

If you are experiencing any mental health issues that are impacting your academic performance, counseling is available at the University Counseling Center (UCC). The Center is located on the second floor of the Goddard Health Center, at 620 Elm Rm. 201, Norman, OK 73019. To schedule an appointment call (405) 325-2911. 

For more information please visit


Attendance/Grade Policy

Attendance and participation in interaction, individual assignments, group exercises, simulations, role playing, etc. are valuable aspects of any course because much of the learning comes from discussions in class with other students. It is expected that you attend all classes and be on time except for excused emergencies.

Excused absences are given for professor mandated activities or legally required activities such as emergencies or military assignments. It is the policy of the University to excuse absences of students that result from religious observances and to provide without penalty for the rescheduling of examinations and additional required class work that may fall on religious holidays. Unavoidable personal emergencies, including (but not limited to) serious illness; delays in getting to class because of accidents, etc.; deaths and funerals, and hazardous road conditions will be excused.

If you are obtaining financial assistance (TA, STAP, FA, VA, Scholarship, etc.) to pay all or part of your tuition cost, you must follow your funding agency/institution’s policy regarding “I” (Incomplete) grades unless the timeline is longer than what the University policy allows then you must adhere to the University policy. Students who receive Financial Aid must resolve/complete any “I” (Incomplete) grades by the end of the term or he/she may be placed on “financial aid probation.” If the “I” grade is not resolved/completed by the end of the following term, the student’s Financial Aid may be suspended make the student ineligible for further Financial Aid.

Students are responsible for meeting the guidelines of Tuition Assistance and Veterans Assistance. See the education counselor at your local education center for a complete description of your TA or VA requirements.

OU faculty will submit grades online through ONE not later than 30 days after the course end date. Course end dates are approximately one calendar month after the final seminar date on this syllabus and are provided on the official scheduling website for reference.

Academic Integrity and Student Conduct 

Academic integrity means honesty and responsibility in scholarship. Academic assignments exist to help students learn; grades exist to show how fully this goal is attained. Therefore all work and all grades should result from the student's own understanding and effort.

Academic misconduct is any act which improperly affects the evaluation of a student’s academic performance or achievement. Misconduct occurs when the student either knows or reasonably should know that the act constitutes misconduct. Academic misconduct includes: cheating and using unauthorized materials on examinations and other assignments; improper collaboration, submitting the same assignment for different classes (self-plagiarism); fabrication, forgery, alteration of documents, lying, etc…in order to obtain an academic advantage; assisting others in academic misconduct; attempting to commit academic misconduct; destruction of property, hacking, etc…; intimidation and interference with integrity process; and plagiarism. All students should review the Student’s Guide to Academic Integrity at 

Students and faculty each have responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment. All students should review policies regarding student conduct at 

Accommodation Statement

The University of Oklahoma is committed to making its activities as accessible as possible. For accommodations on the basis of disability, please contact your local OU Site Director.

Adjustment for Pregnancy/Childbirth-Related Issues

Should you need modifications or adjustments to your course requirements because of documented pregnancy-related or childbirth-related issues, please contact the professor as soon as possible to discuss. Generally, modifications will be made where medically necessary and similar in scope to accommodations based on temporary disability. Please see

Title IX Resources

For any concerns regarding gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, stalking, or intimate partner violence, the University offers a variety of resources, including advocates on-call 24/7, counseling services, mutual no-contact orders, scheduling adjustments, and disciplinary sanctions against the perpetrator. Please contact the Sexual Misconduct Office at or (405) 325-2215 (8-5), or the Sexual Assault Response Team at (405) 615 -0013 (24/7) to report an incident. To learn more about Title IX, please visit the Institutional Equity Office’s website at 

Course Policies

Extended Campus (also and formerly known as Advanced Programs) policy is to order books in paperback if available. Courses, dates, and professors are subject to change. Please check with your OU Site Director. Students should retain a copy of any assignments that are e/mailed to the professor for the course. Neither duplicating services nor office supplies are provided.

Any and all course materials, syllabus, lessons, lectures, etc. are the property of professor teaching the course and the Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma and are protected under applicable copyright.

For more information about OU Extended Campus, visit our website at:

Statement on Respect

The classroom should provide a safe learning environment where students can express their views without fear of reprisal. That freedom of expression must be balanced by demonstrated respect for other’s viewpoints and appropriate and reasonable sensitivity, especially within the context of scholarly disagreement.  Disrespectful or uncivil dialogue (including, but not limited to, personal attacks, insults, or harassment) will not be tolerated.

Recording Devices/Phones/Computers

It is important for students to be fully present during class to fully benefit from lectures, discussions, and experiential assignments. Class sessions may not be tape-recorded. All telephones and pagers should be turned off or placed on silent mode. Computers may not be used during class. Students who require an exception to this policy should discuss exceptional circumstances with the professor.


Anthony Spencer, Ph.D.


• 2008 Ph.D. in Communication, University of Oklahoma

• 2003 Master of Journalism in media studies, University of North Texas

• 1995 Bachelor of Journalism in broadcast news, University of Texas

Current Positions

• Professor, Department of Communication/Latin American Studies, Universidad Americana

• Owner, ESA Explore Study Abroad

Frequently Taught Advanced Programs Courses

• IAS 5363 Cultures of Latin America

• COMM 6323 International Communication

• COMM 6383 Political Communication: War, Peace and Media

Major Areas of Teaching and Research Interest

• Intercultural/International Communication

• Media & Conflict

• Latin American Studies

Representative Publications

• Spencer, A. T. (2018). Nicaraguan immigration to Costa Rica: Understanding power and race through language. In S. Croucher & J. Caetano (Eds.), Companion to Migration, Communication, and Politics, Oxfordshire. UK: Taylor & Francis.

• Croucher, S. M., Spencer, A. T., & McKee, C. (2014). Religion, sex, and willingness to express opinions: A spiral of silence analysis of the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election. Atlantic Journal of Communication, 22(2), 111-123.

• Spencer, A. T. (2013). High-End Immigrants Create an Imagined Community in Costa Rica: Examining the Evolving Discourse in Ethnic-Minority Media. Human Communication, 16(1), 13-30.

• Spencer, A. T., Croucher, S. M., & Hoelscher, C. (2012). Uses and Gratifications Meets the Internet: A cross-cultural comparison of U.S. & Nicaraguan New Media Usage. Human Communication, 15(4), 229 - 240.

• Gerlich, R. N., Drumheller, K. D., Krista Rasco, R., Spencer. A. T. (2012) Marketing to Laggards: Organizational change and diffusion of innovation in the adoption of Facebook Timeline. Journal of Academy of Business and Economics, 12(3), 91-101.

• Spencer, A. T. (2011). Americans create hybrid spaces in Costa Rica: A framework for exploring cultural and linguistic integration, Language and Intercultural Communication, 11(1), 59-74.

• Spencer, A. T. & Croucher, S. M. (2008). Basque nationalism and spiral of silence: An analysis of public perceptions of ETA in Spain and France, International Communication Gazette, 70(2), 135-153.

Representative Honors and Awards Received

• 2011: Texas A&M System Teaching Excellence Award

• 2009: University of Oklahoma Department of Communication Qualitative Dissertation Award

• 2008: Intercultural Communication Research Award Dept. of Communication University of Oklahoma

Major Professional Affiliations

• National Communication Association, 2004-2012

• American Communication Association, 2009-2014

• Latin American Studies Association 2014