Jul 24, 2024  
2016-2017 Undergraduate and Graduate Academic Catalog 
2016-2017 Undergraduate and Graduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Communication, M.S.

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CIP Code: 8961 (090101-01)

The Master of Science in Communication degree program provides concentrations in Advertising, International Communication, Interpersonal/Organizational Communication, Mass Communication (Broadcasting and Journalism), and Public Relations. Each concentration incorporates substantial preparation in research and theory, and offers oppertunities for hands on experience.


Multiple criteria are used for admission to the communication graduate program. Applicants must submit satisfactory Graduate Record Examination scores prior to acceptance. The minimum requirements for regular admission into the program are a GRE socre of 287 overall and 145 on the verbal portion. The minimum grade-point average accepted is 2.8 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants also must submit official transcripts, three letters of recommendation, and examples of their writing. International applicants who do not hold a degree from a U. S. institution must provide proof of English language proficiency by submitting satisfactory TOEFL(minimum 100 on the internet-based exam) or IELTS (7) scores.

Applicants must submit transcripts showing satisfactory grades for 12 credit hours of communication courses appropriate for their concentration, or they must document equivalent professional experience. If an applicant lacks foundation courses or equivalent professional experience relating to the concentration in which he/she proposes to study, up to six credit hours of preparatory coursework will be required from among 300 and 400-level courses. Those courses will not count toward the M.S. degree.

Course Requirements

A Master of Science in Communication may be pursued through either one of two tracks: one terminates with a thesis and the other with comprehensive examinations and a professional oriented project. The thesis track requires 30 credit hours of which six credit hours must be supervised thesis research, CMCN 599 . Students completing the non-thesis track must complete 33 credit hours of which three credit hours must be a supervised professional research project. The project will be completed in directed individual study, CMCN 597  or CMCN 598 . Projects may include, but are not limited to, advertising or PR campaigns, documentary videos, corporate and organizational training seminars, and published multi-part series journalistic works. Written comprehensive examinations, and an oral defense of the same, are also required for non-thesis students.

All majors must complete a four-course core, preferably in their first two semesters:


If your transcript shows that you have passed an undergraduate communication law-and-ethics course less than three years old, you may substitute another graduate level course in communication.

Foundation Courses

In addition, each student must complete the foundation course(s) in his/her respective concentration:


Advisors may not waive required courses. If foundation courses fail to meet minimum enrollments and students are nearing graduation, students may be granted permission to complete this requirement in an independent study, CMCN 597  or CMCN 598 , with a faculty member qualified to teach the material.


All other registration must be in 400(G)-level (for seniors and graduate students) or 500-level and above (for graduate students only) courses. Majors may choose a maximum of three 400(G) courses. Project track students may take a maximum of four 400(G) courses. When taking a 400(G) course, graduate students will be expected to complete additional, graduate-level, work in addition to the work assigned to undergraduate students in the course. The remainder of the communication courses for a degree must be selected from among 500-level courses. A listing of 400(G) and 500-level courses is available elsewhere in this catalog. Please note: Some 400(G) courses may have undergraduate prerequisites that, if required by the instructor, will not count toward your degree. The Department of Communication accepts up to six hours of appropriate transfer credit. Students who have completed the required courses, but not a thesis or comprehensive examinations will register for CMCN 599 Thesis Research and Thesis , CMCN 595 - Professional Project  , or CMCN 899 Examinations Only , as a continuing registration course while those students are completing the thesis or the comprehensive examination requirement. Students must be enrolled in a communication course during the semester they complete their program.

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