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The School of Communication Studies

The School of Communication Studies (COMS) offers a liberal arts education, emphasizing the scientific and artistic bases of communication. The school is firmly committed to providing quality instruction in the theoretical bases of human communication and the application of theory in specific contexts. The core courses combine theory and practice as students study the historical and conceptual foundations of the field of communication. An historical understanding of communication theory is useful but insufficient in a globally competitive world, so the major in communication studies also equips students with the competencies most prized by employers: strong oral and written communication, effective interpersonal and group communication, critical thinking, meeting planning, and problem-solving/decision-making (Booher, 2003).

Students complete a rigorous academic program consisting of courses in theory, research methods, presentations, and engaged learning practica. Elective courses in the school complement the required courses and expand the students' repertoire of competencies and skills. Enhancing the core and concentration-specific classes are courses in a related area, the study of other cultures, and contemporary technology. Students identify the means of completing the related area by working one-on-one with their academic advisors. The related area is an opportunity for students to "customize" their career interests in ways that set them apart from their peers when undertaking internship or job searches.

A bachelor's degree in communication studies is perfect preparation for a career in corporate training, foreign service, law, politics, labor relations, human services, campaign management, event planning, account representation, sales, or survey research. All told, the major is designed to augment students' lives and careers through a clearer understanding of the effects of communication and messages in their professional and personal lives.