Department of Communication

Contact Information: 
Campus Location: 1140 Behavioral Sciences Building (BSB) 
(312) 996–3187

Head, Zizi Papacharissi

The Department of Communication highlights the role of communication, media, and technology in creating relationships within human societies. Courses range from the personal through the international level and build responsible citizenship.

A degree in communication focuses on social science research, leading to several career paths, including market research, corporate relations, human resources, event planning, advertising, media writing, teaching, and government.

The core courses introduce fundamental concepts, theories, issues, and statistical methods in a variety of settings and build skills in reasoned argument, research, and critical thinking.

Subsequent courses integrate analysis and research, emphasizing observation, production, and consumption as critical processes in which students continually engage, while also emphasizing systematic inquiry that involves students in research activities. The courses foster critical understanding of the ways that individuals, groups, and societies create meanings about their worlds through communication.

Admission to the Major

Students may declare a major in Communication at any time. The first courses students should complete are the following, which are prerequisites for enrollment in many upper-level communication courses.

COMM 101Introduction to Communication3
COMM 102Introduction to Interpersonal Communication3
COMM 103Introduction to Media3


For Distinction, the requirements are a cumulative GPA of 3.25/4.00 and a departmental GPA of 3.50/4.00. For High Distinction, the requirements are a cumulative GPA of 3.25/4.00, a departmental grade point average of 3.50/4.00, and satisfactory completion of an advanced original research paper under the supervision of a faculty member of the student’s choosing. Questions regarding graduation with distinction may be directed to the department.