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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Communication Studies

Communication Studies Students

Department of Communication Studies

Ph.D. in Communication Studies

Hopeful. Challenged. Motivated.

Immerse yourself in the study of communication contexts, develop your skills as an educator, and design your own research through our rigorous Ph.D. program.

What sets our program apart?

  • All of our Ph.D. students are fully funded for 3 years
  • Focus on your teaching in a way that honors your commitments and passions 
  • Support from faculty mentors in designing your own research
  • Personal guidance throughout your professional development, including teaching and publishing
  • Faculty who practice a wide range of creative methodologies
  • A growing, vibrant community committed to making the University of Denver a more inclusive, active campus through student government and leadership positions
  • Work toward community-driven goals with partners on and off campus

"The communication studies department trains students to be engaged scholars, teachers and community members. They emphasize producing top-notch scholarship, considering ethics in all of the communication contexts in which we study and participate, and using our knowledge and skills to enrich our communities." - Richard G. Jones (Ph.D., '16)

Focus on Teaching

We embrace the art of teaching.

Our goal is to empower you to become the best educator you can be. To do so, we share our creative methodologies and classroom teaching experience as much as our subject matter expertise.

We understand that graduate students in our program are more than mere assistants—they are instructors in their own right. For this reason, we call our teaching Ph.D students Graduate Teaching Instructors (GTIs), and we work to foster their development as passionate, skilled educators.

"I was impressed with the multitude of resources available to me, the opportunity to teach while taking classes, and the ability to accomplish research alongside some of the top scholars in the field. Choosing to attend the University of Denver for my doctoral work was one of the best decisions I have made in my academic life." - Daniel S. Strasser (Ph.D., '16)

Small Group Tutorials

Based on student feedback, we designed tutorials—two-credit-hour experiences limited to three students per group—to enhance student-faculty collaboration and help you develop your teaching practice. Alongside faculty experts, you will prepare a paper for presentation or a syllabus for class.

Review our current course listings


Students normally take two four-credit courses per quarter, for a total of 30 quarter hours per year.

Time to completion

Full-time students entering the program with a master's degree typically complete the program in 4 years.

Full-time students entering the program with a bachelor's degree typically complete the program in 7 years.  


Students typically receive full funding through a limited number of Graduate Teaching Instructorship positions.  Learn more on our Admission & Scholarship page.

Please contact us if you have more questions regarding our graduate programs.