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Communication Studies

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Undergraduate Studies

Communication plays a crucial role in shaping the world around us: From the most seemingly mundane interactions with friends and family, to presentations we give at work, to participation in democracy, to how we view ourselves and interact with communities and cultures, communication matters. Our communication contributes to the type of world we wish to live in. 

Undergraduates pursuing a BA or minor in Communication Studies will study the range of communication contexts, and get to know the ones that interest them the most in more depth. For instance, students may explore communication in families, friendships, schools, workplace groups, cross-cultural performances, non-profit organizations, social movements, politics, and the media, to name a few. Students will hone their practical communication skills, as they learn the foundation of ethical and effective communication. The topics we cover in our courses represent a wide range of interest, speaking to important issues that we all face in our personal, professional, and community lives.

This range is attractive to our majors and minors, who, in preparing for their futures, expect to change careers several times over, but know that no matter what career they choose, they will have to communicate in order to be successful. Studying communication offers excellent preparation for students interested in careers in education, counseling, law, politics, business, health care, non-profits, the arts, and many other fields. And our students know, too, that their ability to communicate will have a profound influence on the quality of their personal and public, as well as professional, lives.

Although Communication Studies addresses phenomena and artifacts that pervade our everyday lives, examining, interpreting, and critiquing these ubiquitous entities is not easy. In fact, it often leads students out of their comfort zones, asking them to look at the implications of the norms that govern communication in everyday life.  Specifically, students are encouraged to address issues such as race, class, gender, and privilege.  Students are also asked to look at particular events, standpoints, artifacts, and identities from a number of different angles, while reflecting back on their own identities and experiences.  Communication Studies seeks to complicate, understand, and change the norms that govern our daily and societal communication.  This major is marked by rigor and the ability to personally reflect and engage in a number of ways of understanding communication.

Note: Students who declared their minor prior to the 2012-2013 academic year may either complete the old minor requirements or the current minor requirements. Students declaring Fall 2012 and after must complete the current minor requirements. Links to both sets of requirements are included below.

Communication Studies Major Progress Review Form

Old Communication Studies Minor Progress Review Form

Current Communication Studies Minor Progress Review Form

Communication Studies Distinction

Communication Studies Internship Criteria and Application

Study Abroad Approval Process for Communication Studies Courses

Transfer Approval Process for Communication Studies Courses

View our informational brochure on the Communication Studies major.