Master of Arts Degree in Communication

Tailored to Your Interests, Goals and Background

The J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication graduate program prepares students for intellectual, artistic, professional and ethical leadership in a complex technological and multicultural world. It uses a core of common knowledge, values, and communication skills to improve understanding of communication as a cultural and social process and to develop the skills necessary for success in constantly changing information environments.

Students can specialize in one of two areas: Communication Professions and Society, or Digital Communication Strategies.The master’s program takes an integrative approach that emphasizes how contemporary communication practices, technologies, and professions intersect, and encourages students to learn from one another’s specialized interests.

The Communication Professions and Society specialization focuses upon deeper skills of analysis and research in communication and prepares students for advanced roles in their careers or for doctoral studies.The Digital Communication Strategies specialization focuses upon the planning and use of communication technologies and prepares students to work as leaders in their professional fields.

Program Requirements

Thesis Program (Plan A)

Students must complete 24 credit hours of course work plus 6 credit hours of thesis work (a total of 30 credit hours). Students must also submit an approved thesis and are required to give an oral defense of their thesis.

Non-Thesis Program (Plan B)

All students are admitted to the thesis program (Plan A), but may transfer to the non-thesis program (Plan B) with the approval of the program director.

Non-thesis program students must complete 30 credit hours of course work, 3 credit hours of practicum and 3 credit hours of an approved professional project (a total of 36 credit hours).

Thesis (Plan A) Requirements:

COMM 6001

Communication Theory in Context

3

COMM 6002

Communication Research in Action

3

COMM 6250

Communication as Ethical Practice

3

Specialization courses

12

Electives 1, 2

3

Thesis

6

Total Credit Hours

30

 

1

Electives may include any course at the 5000 or above including Communication Professions and Society proseminars and Digital Communication Strategies courses. Students may also choose courses in other departments selected in consultation with advisers.

2

Students may choose to take COMM 6964 Communication Practicum for elective credit.  COMM 6964 Communication Practicum may be repeated for up to 6 credits.

Non-Thesis (Plan B) Requirements:      

COMM 6001

Communication Theory in Context

3

COMM 6002

Communication Research in Action

3

COMM 6250

Communication as Ethical Practice

3

COMM 6964

Communication Practicum

3

Specialization courses

12

Electives 1, 2

9

Professional Project

3

Total Credit Hours

36

 

1

Electives may include any course at the 5000 or above including Communication Professions and Society proseminars and Digital Communication Strategies courses. Students may also choose courses in other departments selected in consultation with advisers.

2

Students may choose to take COMM 6964 Communication Practicum for elective credit.  COMM 6964 Communication Practicum may be repeated for up to 6 credits.