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Principles of Telecommunication Policy

TLEN 5210

Principles of Telecommunication Policy

Fall 2016

Distance / In-Class

David Reed

TUE THU 9:30 am - 10:45 am
Classroom: ECCS 1B12
Summer 2016


David Reed


TLEN 5210 provides a basic introduction to the information and communications policies and regulations governing how telephone, mobile, cable, and Internet providers offer their services to customers. Learn the key issues and principles that shape current telecommunications policy, engage in critical debate, and develop instincts for the appropriate regulatory models to be applied to new technologies.


TLEN 5210 covers these topics from an interdisciplinary perspective, emphasizing the significant intersection of technology, economics, and public policy in the telecommunications environment. The course is split into the following four parts:

Unit 1: Communications Policy – Review of past and present policies governing traditional delivery of telephone and data services
Unit 2: Wireless and Spectrum Management – Need and regulatory tools for regulating services dependent upon spectrum
Unit 3: Media Technology and Regulation – Review of past and present policies governing delivery of video over cable and broadcast networks
Unit 4: Broadband Topics – Survey of key policy topics shaping the future broadband transport and application ecosystem.


  • Understand the principles that serve as the foundation for current telecommunications policy
  • Gain expertise in current key policy topics associated with broadband networks including network neutrality, consumer privacy, Internet governance, and national broadband plans.
  • Learn to write and argue effective policy arguments.


  • Understand the core problems that telecommunications policies attempt to address
  • Learn the key laws and regulations shaping telecommunications policy in the U.S.
  • Develop a framework to critically evaluate the efficacy of past and current policy initiatives and how they can be improved
  • Write concise policy briefs that effectively establish and advance clear, well-reasoned positions on current policy issues and debates


Students should have some prior course work (either undergraduate or graduate) in microeconomics. Undergraduates must have senior standing.


Digital Crossroads: Telecommunications Law and Policy in the Internet Age (MIT Press, Second Edition, 2013), by Jonathan E. Nuechterlein & Philip J. Weiser.

Telecommunications Law and Policy (Carolina Academic Press, Third Edition, 2012), by Stuart Minor Benjamin, Howard A Shelanski, James B Speta, and Philip J. Weiser.


Web access and email required, with either PC or Mac with Microsoft Word.

Example Lecture: 

View an example course lecture




Any syllabus provided above may not be the most recent version. Please refer to the course syllabus provided by the instructor of this course.

Usually Offered: 

  • Spring
  • Summer

Previous Course Offerings

See up to the past five offerings of this course:
Semester Type Instructor(s) Schedule
Spring 2015 Distance / In-Class David Reed MON WED
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Spring 2014 Distance / In-Class David Reed MON WED
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

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