This is an archived course. Visit the most recent syllabus.

Course Description

An historical survey of US radio and television through an examination of their technologies, their institutions, and their programming forms and a study of their impacts on American culture and society. The course begins with the advent of broadcasting in the post–World War I era, the introduction of television in the post–World War II years, and the evolution of broadcasting in the post-network era at the turn of the twenty-first century.

Time and Place

Mondays, 6:30 – 9:20 PM
Kiely Hall, Room 248
Section: MEDST 145–01 (8212)


Juan Monroy


Office Hours

G Building, Room 102-D
Mondays, 5:00 - 6:00 PM

Schedule an Appointment

Also available remotely on Google Hangouts by advance appointment.

Course Materials


The following textbook is available through online retailers, such as Amazon, through Textbookx, through Vitalsource, and on reserve at Rosenthal Library

Review Materials

Under each class, I will post on this site the following review materials:


We will not be using Blackboard for this course. Instead, consult the Course Website for the syllabus and Google Classroom for submitting assignments.

Google Workspace for Education

This course will use Google Workspace for Education using your QC CAMS (often referred to as the QC ID or QC Active Directory) account.

Below are instructions for how to activate your QC Google Workspace for Education account (titled “Step 1” below) and how to join our course on Google Classroom (titled “Step 2” below).

New Queens College students and students enrolled at another CUNY campus will have to take an additional, initial step (titled “Step 0” below).

About Google accounts

You can have more than one Google account. If you use Gmail, you already have a Google Account: this is your personal Google account. Google also offers organizations, businesses and educational institutions Google Workspace accounts for its users. Since you’re enrolled at Queens College, you have access to a QC Google Workspace for Education account.

You cannot access Queens College Google Workspace for Education using your personal Gmail or another Google Workspace account.

You can be logged into both accounts at the same time, but you will likely have to switch between accounts to access your QC Google Workspace for Education account versus your personal Google Workspace.

Step 0: Activate your QC Username

Students New to Queens College, Recently Transferred to QC, or Enrolled at another CUNY Campus.

You must first activate your Queens College username and email account at

The process takes about three (3) business days so please start this process as soon as possible.

Step 1: Activate Your QC Google Workspace for Education account

Information Technology at Queens College offers detailed instructions for activating (or claiming) your QC Google Workspace for Education account. The process comes down to four steps.

  1. Sign out of Google
  2. Go to
  3. Enter your qmail email address as your Google account (e.g.,
  4. From the QC authentication page, sign in with your QC ID credentials (e.g. jmonroy100) and your QC CAMS password. (If you’re having trouble contact the QC CAMS Help Desk at 718–997–4444.)
  5. Accept the terms of service.

You can now access your QC Google Workspace for Education account at

Your Google Google Workspace for Education username is the same as your qmail address (e.g.,

About Google Classroom

Google Classroom is a barebones, learning management system that you will use to submit your assignments and I will use to grade your work. We will not be using Blackboard.

I will also post announcements to Google Classroom instead of emailing everyone in class. However, you should use email to contact me, instead of the private commenting system in Google Classroom because it doesn’t work well.

Step 2: Join Google Classroom

Google has instructions for joining a course in Google Classroom. The process basically comes down to four steps:

  1. Go to Google Classroom.
  2. Sign in using your address as your Google account.
  3. Click the “+” to “Join class.”
  4. Enter the code I provided at the first meeting (for face-to-face classes) or via email (for online classes).

I highly recommend downloading the Google Classroom mobile app for iOS or Android. If you allow push notifications, you will immediately receive important announcements from me and learn when assignments are posted.

Use the QC Google Workspace for Education Apps

We will be using some QC Google Workspace applications in this class.

  • Google Docs is a cloud-based, word-processing application. It is comparable to Microsoft Word on your personal computer except that all your documents are stored in your Google Drive. Be sure you’re using your QC Google Workspace account, not your personal Google account. Download the Google Docs mobile apps for iOS or Android.
  • Google Meet is a video-based, communication platform used for remote office hours. Download the Google Meet mobile apps for iOS or Android.
  • Google Forms is a survey and data collection platform that we will use for quizzes in some courses. There’s a bug in Forms that requires you to authenticate using your QC Google Workspace account on a web browser if you navigate to the quiz from the Google Classroom apps. To avoid this bug, I recommend taking the quizzes on a desktop computer.
  • Google Drive is a cloud-based file storage platform. Your QC Google Drive offers unlimited storage, compared to 15 GB with your personal Google Drive. Download the Google Drive mobile apps for iOS or Android.


A majority of access issues can be resolved switching to your Queens College Google account. This article describes how to switch between Google accounts.

Another resolution that always works is to log out of all your Google accounts in your web browser and then logging back into your QC Google Workspace account at


This class consists of four components. You cannot satisfactorily complete this course without all four of these.

Attendance and Participation

Please be present in each class.

Each class session will form the basis of the material I expect you to know for the exams. We will cover the historical, technological, and economic context relevant to each communication medium. Although I will post review questions each week, they serve as poor substitutes for attending and participating in each week’s class.


Please read the assigned course material prior to each class. Consult the Course Schedule (below) for the required reading assignments.


All assignments must be completed on time in order to receive full credit. Late assignments will be penalized.


Exams are designed to reward regular attendance and diligent studying. Exams will be administered in class and must be taken at the specified date and time.



I will take attendance at every class meeting and consider it in the evaluation of student performance.

All absences, whether excused or unexcused, are counted equally. The maximum number of absences is limited to 30% of the number of class hours. Note: Absences are counted from the first day of class even if they are a result of late registration or change of program.

For in-person classes, regular attendance is required. Attend 85% of our class session and receive five bonus points added to your final grade. Students missing more than 30% of classes will not be permitted to take the final exam.

For synchronous courses, regular attendance is required. Attend 85% of our class session and receive five bonus points added to your final grade. Students missing more than 30% of classes will not be permitted to take the final exam.

This policy does not apply to fully asynchronous courses.

Verification of Attendance

You must be present or participating in class during the verification of attendance period. Otherwise, I will report you as not attending and you will be dropped from the class.

The verification period is as follows:

  • fall and spring semesters: the first three weeks of classes
  • summer and winter semesters: the first three days of classes

Academically-related activities include, but are not limited to:

  • physically attending a class where there is an opportunity for direct interaction between the instructor and students;
  • submitting an academic assignment;
  • taking an exam, an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction;
  • attending a study group that is assigned by the school;
  • participating in an online discussion about academic matter;
  • engaging in an online academically-related activity, or initiating contact with the instructor to ask a question about the academic subject studied in the course or ask a course-related question.

Note: Logging into an online class is not sufficient, by itself, to demonstrate participation in an academically-related activity by the student.

Professionalism in In-Person Classes

Digital devices are prohibited in in-person classes. Unfortunately, students in the past have failed to use computers, tablets, smartphones, etc. in a professional, responsible, or productive manner, and, as such, you are not allowed to use these devices in class after the first class session.

I recommend buying a spiral notebook, some nice pencils, and a portable pencil sharpener to do this.

Further, if I find you engaging in any other disruptive behavior, such as passing notes, instant messaging, chatting, photographing, or texting, I will remove you from the classroom and have you withdraw from the class.

Professionalism in Remote Classes

Students are expected to use proper language, wear appropriate attire, and be mindful of backgrounds that may or may not be distracting, offensive, or harassing to others when using virtual conference tools, such as Zoom.

Late Work

Please submit your work on time.

In some cases, late assignments due at the end of the term will not be accepted. In-class exams must be taken at the date and time listed below unless other we make other arrangements.

No assignments will be accepted after the assignment closes on Microsoft Teams.

“Incomplete” Grades

There are no incomplete grades for this class except in the case of a documented emergency in the final weeks of the semester. If you experience such an emergency, please contact me immediately, and we will work out a schedule for you to complete the outstanding work before the beginning of the following semester.

But aside from these circumstances, no late work will be accepted and no “incomplete” grades will be granted. If you have difficulty keeping up with coursework, consider giving yourself extra time to complete assignments, reducing your overall course load, and/or taking this class at a later semester.

No Extra Credit Assignments

There are no opportunities for extra credit. As a matter of fairness, your grade will be based on the work assigned to all students.


To maintain professionalism, always use your QC email account ( to email me, and also direct all emails to my account. This is the only way I can communicate with you, other than face-to-face meetings or via video conferencing.

CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity

The CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity, as adopted by the Board, is available to all students. Academic dishonesty is prohibited in the City University of New York and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion.

This includes the use of homework helper sites, such as like, or generative AI tools. These may not be used for class assignments. Students who use these unauthorized tools may be able to obtain an unfair advantage over other classmates. Gaining an unfair advantage is a violation of CUNY policy on academic integrity.

Use of Student Work

All programs in New York State undergo periodic reviews by accreditation agencies. For these purposes, samples of student work are occasionally made available to those professionals conducting the review. Anonymity is assured under these circumstances. If you do not wish to have your work made available for these purposes, please let the professor know before the start of the second class. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

Course Evaluations

During the final four weeks of the semester, you will be asked to complete an evaluation for this course by filling out an online questionnaire. Please remember to participate in these course evaluations. Your comments are highly valued, and these evaluations are an important service to fellow students and to the institution, since your responses will be pooled with those of other students and made available online, in the Queens College Course Information System. Please also note that all responses are completely anonymous; no identifying information is retained once the evaluation has been submitted.

Online Netiquette

Please maintain a professional demeanor when posting online. You can be respectful even when you have a difference of opinion. Treat others as you’d want to be treated yourself. Don’t type in all caps, as that is the online equivalent of shouting. If you need to emphasize a word or phrase, use italics.

Campus Resources

Counseling Services

The mission of Counseling Services is to enhance students’ academic, intellectual, personal, and social growth. Special attention is given to students’ health and well-being, with the aim of alleviating the effects of painful experiences, enhancing self-understanding and understanding of others, and fostering students’ pursuit of their goals. Counseling Services also presents workshops, training, and educational consultation to the college community.

For more information, contact Counseling Services website:

Reasonable Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities needing academic accommodation should register with the Special Services Office by emailing​. For more information about services available to Queens College students, visit the Office of Special Services website:

Technical Support

The Queens College Helpdesk, (718) 997–4444, is located in the I-Building, Room 151 and provides technical support for students who need help with Queens College email, CUNY portal, Blackboard, and CUNYFirst.

Help with Writing

One of the most important skills you will learn throughout your education is writing. If you cannot write, you will not succeed at communicating your ideas and will endanger your professional development.

The Writing Center at Queens College offers free assistance to students with writing. Please visit the center at least once for each writing assignment you have for your classes this semester. You can schedule a one-hour session or drop in to consult an on-duty tutor.



For each class, you will take a quiz on the reading materials. Each quiz is due by noon on the day of the relevant class, noted below and on Google Classroom.

  • Due on the day of class by 12:00 PM
  • Ten of twelve quizzes are required
  • No late quizzes will be accepted
  • Weight: 30%

TV Program Analysis

Surveying at least three episodes of a television program, analyze the content of the program and the cultural context in which it was produced.


Midterm Exam

The midterm exam is an in-class exam, consisting identification and short answer questions. The exam will cover the course material from the first half of the course.

Use the review guide to prepare for the exam, including surveying the format of the exam.

  • Monday, March 20, in class
  • Weight: 20%

Final Exam

The final exam is an in-class exam, consisting identification and short answer questions. The exam will cover the course material from the second half of the course.

Use the review guide to prepare for the exam, including surveying the format of the exam.

  • Monday, May 22, 6:15–8:15 PM
  • Weight: 30%


January 30 • Welcome

  • Buy the textbook: Only Connect, 4th edition.
  • Activate your QC G Suite account.
  • Join our course on Google Classroom
    1. Go to Google Classroom
    2. Click on the “+” to join the course
    3. Enter the code I provided in class.
  • Download the following G Suite apps for your mobile device and sign in using your QC G Suite account.
    1. Google Drive: iOS or Android
    2. Google Docs: iOS or Android
    3. Google Hangouts: iOS or Android
    4. Google Classroom: iOS or Android
  • Read Hilmes, Chapter 1, “Making History,” highly recommended

February 6 • Radio, 1880–1919: Wireless and Point-to-Point

  • Hilmes, Chapter 2, “Before Broadcasting”

February 15 • Radio, 1919–1926: Fighting for the Airwaves

Note: Because this class is scheduled on a Wednesday, we will not meet today in person. Instead, please complete the assignments listed below.

  • Hilmes, Chapter 3, “Broadcasting Begins, 1919 to 1926”
  1. Audition the recorded lecture: Radio, 1919–1926
  2. Watch Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio

February 27 • Radio as Industry, 1926–1940: Network and Commercial Radio

  • Hilmes, Chapter 4, “The Network Age, 1926 to 1940”

March 6 • Radio as Popular Culture, 1926–1940: Golden Age of Radio

  • Hilmes, Chapter 5, “Radio for Everyone, 1926 to 1940 ”
Radio Programs

March 13 • Radio, 1940–1945: Wartime Broadcasting

  • Hilmes, Chapter 6, “War at Home and Abroad, 1940 to 1945”
Radio Programs

March 20 • Midterm Exam

We will take our midterm exam today in class.

Use the review guide to prepare for the exam, including surveying the format of the exam.

March 27 • Television, 1945–1955: Electronic TV and “Radio with Pictures”

  • Hilmes, Chapter 7, “At Last Television, 1945 to 1955”
Television Programs
  • RCA and William J. Ganz Company, The Story of Television (1956)
  • “Clear Picture,” an excerpt from Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (Frank Tashlin, 1957)
  • The Philco Television Playhouse, “Marty,” May 24, 1953
  • Opening from Disneyland USA, October 27, 1954

April 3 • Television, 1955–1965: The Golden Age and the “Vast Wasteland”

  • Hilmes, Chapter 8, “The Domesticated Medium, 1955 to 1965”
Television Programs

April 20 • Television, 1965–1975: Consolidation and the Network Era

Note: This class is scheduled to meet on a Thursday. If you are unable to attend due to a scheduling conflict, please let me know before we adjourn for spring break.

  • Hilmes, Chapter 9, “The Classic Network System, 1965 to 1975”
Television Programs

April 24 • Television, 1975–1985: The Network Era and Competition

  • Hilmes, Chapter 10, “Rising Discontent, 1975 to 1985”
Television Programs
  • Gary Numan, “In Cars
  • Cosby Show, “Pilot Presentation,” September 20, 1984
  • Miami Vice, “Brother’s Keeper,” September 16, 1984

May 1 • Television, 1985–1995: Multichannel TV

  • Hilmes, Chapter 11, “The Big Change, 1985 to 1995”
Television Programs

May 8 • Television, 1995–2005: TV and Digital Convergence

  • Hilmes, Chapter 12, “Entering the Digital Age, 1995–2005”
Television Programs

May 15 • Television, 2005-Present: TV3 and Beyond

  • Hilmes, Chapter 13, “Baby, It’s You: Web 2.0, 2005 – Present,” and Chapter 14, “Conclusion: TV after TV.”

May 22 • Final Exam

We will take the final exam today, 6:15 – 8:15 PM, in class.

Use the review guide to prepare for the exam, including surveying the format of the exam.