Communication

The Department of Communication offers work leading to degrees at the master’s and doctoral levels and participates in the interdepartmental concentrations in Black Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, Latin American and Latino Studies, and Survey Research Methodology.

The department goal is to produce scholars and researchers who will be critical consumers and producers of research about communication, whether in academic or applied settings, and who will contribute to the growth of knowledge in those settings.

At the master’s level, study and research are available in two general areas, media studies and cultural diversity. Because the areas intertwine, program emphasis is on breadth and integration. Inquiry in media studies ranges, for example, from journalism ethics to electronic media and computer-mediated communication. Cultural inquiry includes language and symbolic representation, critical theory, social inequality and racism, and cross-cultural differences.

At the doctoral level, the program focuses on communication and technology. Students develop thorough understanding of the field, expertise in its theories, skills needed to conduct effective research, and experience teaching in a university setting. They also acquire a specialty from among those recognized in scholarly societies and reflected in current research emphases among department faculty.

A signature feature of department programs is their flexibility. Students pursue individual and professional aims with guidance from an advisor, designing a course of study to reach their own educational goals. Because the department strongly encourages interdisciplinary work, students may study with scholars in allied disciplines.