Core Course Curriculum

Program administrators have identified four, 3.00 credit-hour core courses that form a strong foundation for our master's degree. Students are required to take two of the three methods courses (COM 540, COM 541, COM 542), along with the required theory course (COM 561), listed below

Full-time students should register for these courses in their first year (fall and spring semesters). Part-time students should take the required Core Courses as they become available during their first three semesters. Semesters and years offered vary so consult the class schedule for the semester in which you plan to enroll. 

A note about transfer credits: No more than 9.00 credit hours may be accepted for transfer. Courses submitted for transfer are subject to approval of the Director of Graduate Studies and the Graduate School.


COM 540: Critical & Interpretive Inquiry in Communication  (Methods)
Theoretical foundations and analytical techniques in critical and interpretive communication research. Analysis of culture and power in communicative practices, texts, technologies, production, and reception. Historical, political economic, archival, contextual, interpretive, rhetorical, and cultural modes of analysis and critique are highlighted. Graduate standing required.

COM 541: Quantitative Methods  (Methods)
Introduction to research methods in applied communication. Knowledge of design, implementation, and analysis of various quantitative research methods.

COM 542: Qualitative Methods
Theoretical and practical dimensions of conducting qualitative research. Issues include asking good questions, field observation, ethics, focus groups, interviews, representation of data, analyzing texts and discourse, writing qualitative reports.

COM 561: Communication Theory
The role of theory in study of human communication. General social scientific theories as well as context-based theories including interpersonal, public, group, organizational and mass communication contexts.​