Communication M.S.

Program Rationale:

Graduate study in communication is designed to provide students with academic experiences that enable them to evaluate, develop, shape, and change the communication environment within organizations (organizational communication), as well as between organizations and their target audiences (public relations), using traditional and contemporary media technologies.

Program Learning Outcomes:

Students will be expected to:

  • understand communication processes, internal and external, of an organization;
  • demonstrate the ability to write appropriately in both academic and professional settings;
  • employ research methods in the diagnosis of communication problems within organizations and between organizations and their target audiences, including those resulting from intercultural differences;
  • apply problem-solving, decision-making, and negotiation strategies in complex relational situations within organizations;
  • examine the use and impact of information, communication, and new media technologies in the design and evaluation of public relations, strategic communication campaigns, and other organizational applications; and
  • develop and practice sound and ethical reasoning.

Admission Requirements:

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education.

Applicants seeking admission to the M.S. in Communication program must present an undergraduate average of B (3.00). Students with an undergraduate GPA of 2.70 through 2.99, or who have been out of school for five years and possess significant professional experience, may apply to be considered for conditional acceptance. Students who meet the above requirements should submit an Application for Graduate Admission, official transcripts, and an application fee directly to the Graduate Recruitment and Admissions Office.
 

Additional Materials Required:

Applicants must submit a current resume, a writing sample comprised of 500 to 1,000 words which expresses their goals for graduate study and future professional aspirations.  These documents must be sent directly to the chair of the Department of Communication. No action will be taken until all of the above materials have been received.

Contact: 860-832-2690


 

    Course and Capstone Requirements

    The program comprises two sections, a 12-credit core of foundational courses and 18-21 credits of advisor-approved directed electives. A capstone experience consisting of Plan A (6-credit Thesis) or Plan B (Comprehensive Examination) or Plan C (Special Project) is required for graduation.

    Core Courses

    COMM 500Introduction to Graduate Studies in Communication

    3

    COMM 503Research Methods in Communication

    3

    COMM 501Theories of Human Communication within an Organizational Context

    3

    or

    COMM 505Persuasive Communication

    3

    COMM 504Campaign Monitoring and Evaluation

    3

    or

    COMM 507Campaign Planning

    3

    or

    COMM 510Public Opinion Research

    3

    Total Credit Hours:12

    Please note that COMM 501 (or) COMM 505 are required; please also note that COMM 504 (or) COMM 507 (or) COMM 510 are required.  COMM 510 is Public Opinion Research and was approved in Spring 2016. 

    Directed Electives

    COMM 450Communication Skills for Training and Development

    3

    COMM 451Environmental Communication

    3

    COMM 454Communication and Social Change

    3

    COMM 506Case Studies in Public Relations

    3

    COMM 508Public Relations Writing Strategies

    3

    COMM 522Corporate Communication

    3

    COMM 539Advanced Public Relations and Social Media

    3

    COMM 543Intercultural Communication

    3

    COMM 562Communication and Relationship Management

    3

    COMM 585Special Topics

    3

    COMM 586Graduate Field Studies in Communication

    3

    COMM 590Independent Study

    1 TO 3

    Total Credit Hours:18-21

    Capstone

    Total Credit Hours:0-6

    Plan A:

    COMM 590Independent Study

    1 TO 3

    and

    COMM 599Thesis

    3

    or

    Plan B:

    Comprehensive Examination

    or

    Plan C:

    COMM 597Special Project

    3

    Total Credit Hours: 33

    To complete degree requirements, students have the option of a thesis (Plan A) or a comprehensive examination (Plan B) comprised of a written exam followed by an oral exam or a Special Project (Plan C). Programs will be designed jointly by the departmental advisors and the students to provide the greatest educational and career opportunities.