Program of Study


M.A. Program

There are two options available for the Master of Arts degree:

Thesis Option

This option is designed for students who are interested in becoming researchers in the Communication Studies field, and/or view themselves as potential Ph.D. candidates. Students must satisfy a minimum 6-hour thesis requirement, with a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of coursework and final oral thesis defense.

Satisfactory completion of the following required courses:

851   Communication Research: Historical and Descriptive (3)
-OR-
852   Comm. Research: Experimentation and Quantitative Analysis (3)

One additional methods course (3)
859   Proseminar in Communication Studies (3)
899   Master's Thesis (6)

   b. At least 6 hours in each of the 2 areas of communication (12 total hours)

   c. 3 additional credit hours from any Communication Studies courses or from outside the department.

   d. Final Oral Examination (Thesis defense)

Non-Thesis Option

This option is designed for students who are primarily interested in acquiring knowledge and skills that they can apply in the areas of their professional activities. Students finish a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of coursework and then must pass a written and oral comprehensive examination. Specific requirements for the 2 non-thesis options are as follows:

Satisfactory completion of the following required courses:

  • 859   Proseminar in Communication Studies (3)
  • 851   Communication Research: Historical and Descriptive (3)
    -OR-
  • 852   Comm. Research: Experimentation and Quantitative Analysis (3)

   b. At least 9 hours in each of two areas of communication (18 total hours)

   c. 6 hours of electives

   d. General Examination. Each student must successfully complete an examination over the 2 areas of course work concentration. See the department's guidelines for MA examination logistics. The examination is structured as follows:

  • 1 hour written over content from COMS 859 and COMS 850
  • 2 hours written over the first major area of communication
  • 2 hours written over the second major area of communication
  • 1 hour oral examination