Current Graduate Students

Current Students

In consultation with graduate faculty, graduate students develop a program of study to foster their own learning objectives and career goals

They are required to complete a set of core courses; and electives are recommended for the Professional (Organizational) Communication or Media Studies foci. Thesis and Non-Thesis options are available.

A Program of Graduate Study

In consultation with graduate faculty, graduate students develop a personalized program of study to foster their own learning objectives and career goals. They are required to complete a set of core courses; and electives are recommended for the Professional (Organizational) Communication or Media Studies foci. Thesis and Non-Thesis options are available.

  • Plan I is with Thesis. This plan requires a minimum of 33 hours of course work, of which 9 hours are three of the core courses (does not include COMM 6050 - Communication Graduate Capstone Experience) and six hours are Thesis credit.
  • Plan II is without Thesis and requires a minimum of 33 hours of course work, of which 12 hours are the core courses. With both plans, no more than six hours of graduate course work may be transferred from other universities to fulfill the degree requirements for the M.A. in Communication. With both plans, only three credits of COMM 9500 - Independent Study in Communication - Graduate and three credits of COMM 6020 Communication Research Practicum may be applied to the degree requirements as electives

Coursework Requirements

Plan I (THESIS - minimum of 33 hours credit) Note: Students accepted by graduate faculty for Plan I are not required to complete a Comprehensive Examination.

  • Three Core Required Courses (9 Credits)
  • Minimum of Five Graduate Elective Courses in Communication (15 Credits) 
  • One Graduate Level Course From Outside the Department (3 Credits)
  • Six Hours of Thesis Credit (6 Credits)

Plan II (NON-THESIS - minimum of 33 hours credit) Note: Students in Plan II complete a Comprehensive Examination in COMM 6050 - Communication Graduate Capstone Experience course on three content areas chosen by the student.

  • Four Core Required Courses (12 Credits)
  • Six Graduate Elective Courses in Communication (18 Credits)
  • One Graduate Level Course From Outside the Department (3 Credits)

Core Sequenced Requirements (Offered once each year as indicated)

  • COMM 5010: Introduction to Graduate Studies: The Communication Discipline and Theories (Fall) 
  • COMM 6030: Data Gathering (Spring) 
  • COMM 6040: Data Analysis (Fall)
  • COMM 6050: Communication Graduate Capstone Experience (Spring)
  • NOTE: COMM 6050 is not required with Plan I Thesis Option

General Elective Course Offerings

  • COMM 5050: Public Relations and Social Media
  • COMM 5100: Advanced Public Speaking
  • COMM 5150: Communication, Teaching, and Learning
  • COMM 5240: Seminar in Organizational Communication
  • COMM 5290: Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility
  • COMM 5330: Gender and Leadership
  • COMM 5690: Problems in Radio-TV and Film
  • COMM 5950: Seminar in Leadership and Organizational Change
  • COMM 5990: Diversity and Global Issues in Contemporary Organizations
  • COMM 6010: Privilege and Oppression in Popular Culture
  • COMM 6020: Communication Research Practicum (Instructor approval required)
  • COMM 6090: Emerging Communication Technologies
  • COMM 6100: Communication Competency: Theory, Assessment and Pedagogy
  • COMM 6140: Media Effects
  • COMM 6160: Communication, Training and Development
  • COMM 6250: Problems in Communication (Topics vary by semester)
  • COMM 6350: Critical Analysis of Popular Culture
  • COMM 9500: Independent Study in Communication - Graduate Level (Instructor approval required)

Recommended Electives for Media Studies

  • COMM 6350: Critical Analysis of Popular Culture (Recommended In First Year of Program)
  • COMM 6010: Privilege and Oppression in Popular Culture
  • COMM 6090: Emerging Communication Technologies
  • COMM 6140: Media Effects
  • COMM 6250: Problems in Communication (Creative Media Focus)

Recommended Electives for Professional (Organizational) Communication

  • COMM 5100: Advanced Public Speaking
  • COMM 5240: Seminar in Organizational Communication
  • COMM 5990: Multicultural Diversity and Workplace Communication
  • COMM 5950: Seminar in Leadership and Organizational Change
  • COMM 6090: Emerging Communication Technologies

Degree Progress Checklist

Degree%20Progress%20Checklist.doc

Independent Study Guidelines

COMM 6020 Communication Research Practicum

COMM 9500 - Independent Study in Communication

With both the thesis and the non-thesis degree plans, three credits of COMM 9500 Independent Study and three credits of COMM 6020 Communication Research Practicum may be applied to the degree requirements as electives. With the approval of the Graduate Director, a graduate student also may choose to take two 9500 courses OR two 6020 courses, rather than one of each.

The primary purpose of these two courses is to support graduate students, as they develop a personalized program of study to foster their own learning objectives and career goals for the M.A. degree. To accomplish the graduate students' goals, one or two of these courses may prove useful as their electives.

  • COMM 6020, Communication Research Practicum, is a project-based graduate course designed to involve students in communication research and/or creative work from the proposal stage through conference presentation, publication/production. Prerequisites: COMM 5010 and 5020 and/or instructor consent.
  • COMM 9500, Independent Study in Communication, is an individually developed and implemented project in communication. A student desiring independent study credit must present to the faculty a well-defined topic for the project. Prerequisites: Graduate status.

These two courses differ from one another in that COMM 6020 is primarily research-driven, including a major research component or a research study of the graduate student's choosing or developed in collaboration with a graduate faculty member. COMM 9500 typically focuses on teaching and pedagogy, or service, though it may involve some research. Topics for 6020 or 9500 may be initiated by a faculty member or by the graduate student.

COMM 6020 and 9500 both allow students an opportunity to explore educational opportunities outside the traditional classroom environment. They are not available as a substitute for core course requirements. Students may enroll for a research practicum or an independent study only after permission has been obtained from a Communication faculty member. The sponsoring faculty member provides the student with a permission number in order to register for either of the two courses. Learning objectives for 6020 or 9500 and a plan for their accomplishment are developed and agreed upon by the graduate student and supervising faculty member; the grade is determined by the faculty member.

Comprehensive Exams

In the spring semester before graduation - and after a student has completed (or is in the process of completing) all core course requirements - each M.A. student in Communication taking the Non-Thesis Option is required to complete the Comprehensive Examination. Registration for at least one credit hour is required during the Comprehensive Examination semester and students are encouraged to take COMM 6050 - Communication Graduate Capstone Experience in the same semester, as full support for completing the Comprehensive Examination is provided. The examination asks students to submit a 20-25 page (double spaced) paper in a take home format in which they are required (1) to assess how they were able to accomplish their academic/ professional/ personal goals through their course work and research, teaching, or other relevant educational experiences, and (2) to articulate how they see themselves translate what they've learned into their professional/ personal life after the degree is earned. The essay must draw on at least 4-5 courses and integrate at least 20 scholarly references. Your exam is due at 5PM on Friday of Week 6 of Spring semester to Dr. Kay Yoon at kyoon@uccs.edu

1.  Comprehensive Exam Prompts:

Coming soon!

2.  Oral Defense of the Written Exam:

In the Oral Defense, students have the opportunity to expand on their written responses and answer questions from the Examination Committee that consist of three faculty members. Oral Defenses are scheduled for Thursday and/ or Friday of Week 8 of Spring semester. Students may bring extensive notes to assist in discussing and defending their answers. At the conclusion of the Oral Defense, the student will be informed of the outcome of the Comprehensive Examination. A student who has provided acceptable written and oral responses will pass the examination. Students who do not provide adequate responses will be asked to revise their exam. Failure to provide an adequate answer in the second examination will result in the denial of the M.A. degree. 

Guidelines for MA Thesis Preparation

Guidelines%20for%20Thesis%5B2195%5D.pdf

Communication Graduate Student Activities Committee

A committee of Communication graduate students plans several social activities every academic year. The Communication Department hosts an on-campus “Welcome Reception and Convocation” to kick off the academic year in September. The Director of Graduate Studies hosts a “holiday treat exchange” in December. In May, all graduate students are invited to a Poster Conference at which graduating students present their capstone or thesis research projects, with refreshments provided by the Communication Department.

Throughout the academic year, a senior-level graduate student serves as a peer mentor for all Communication Graduate Students. The mentor conducts weekly office hours and is available by appointment to help any graduate student with any project, assignment, or challenging task in any graduate course.

Related Links

Graduate School Association