Chair: Professor Ford (Communication Studies).
Communication Studies: Professor Hardig; Associate Professors Ozley, Wang; Instructor Walker.
Mass Communication: Professor Cofield; Associate Professor Finklea; Assistant Professor Dean; Instructors Deavours, Vest.
Department Contact Information
Dr. Sherry Ford, Chair
The Department of Communication facilitates opportunities for students and faculty to develop and apply functional knowledge of relevant theory, which is necessary for successful storytelling and effective creation and management of meaning in a variety of contexts (e.g. personal, professional, public.) The department places particular emphasis on using best practices and innovative technologies to ensure interdisciplinary understanding; media and informational literacy; informed and engaged citizenship; cultural awareness; and effective ethical written, oral, and visual communication.
All students seeking an undergraduate degree at UM must complete a core General Education curriculum that includes courses in English, history, mathematics, the natural sciences, social sciences, fine arts, oral and written communication, and personal development.
The minimum requirements can be found in the General Education Credit Hour Requirements section of the Academic Programs and Policies page.
The department supports the General Education Core requirements by offering COMS 101 (or 102 ) which is required for all undergraduate students. MC 100 and MC 325 applies toward the Humanity and Fine Arts requirement.
Experiential Approach to Learning
Effective communication must be active. One learns only by applying classroom theories in real-time situations. Thus, communication majors are encouraged to engage in a number of experiential learning opportunities including collaboration with other programs across campus, service learning, undergraduate research, internships, study away, and hands-on learning outside the classroom, such as livestreaming athletic events, attending academic conferences, and event planning. Majors get hands-on experience in our new state-of-the-art television studio producing newscasts, entertainment programs, and music shows. Majors also have access to a wide range of media production gear for class and experiential learning projects.
Majors in the Department of Communication are encouraged to seek out internship opportunities to gain valuable real-world experience, network with professionals, and build their portfolios. Up to six hours of approved internship credit can be counted toward the degree. Contact your academic advisor for Communication Studies or Internship Coordinator for Mass Communication.
Communication Studies and Mass Communication are housed in Strong Hall, a state-of-the-art facility that began operations in Fall 2017. Majors in both programs learn their craft on industry-standard, digital equipment and receive personal instruction and guidance from the Communication faculty. Strong Hall ensures that the Department of Communication’s long history of preparing graduates for successful communication careers will continue.
Each communication program includes a student club or honorary society: Lambda Pi Eta for Communication Studies; The National Broadcasting Society, Broadcast Education Association, and Alpha Epsilon Rho for Mass Communication. Students who meet the grade-point requirements and who desire to become actively involved should contact the student club or honorary society advisors for details.
The Department of Communication reserves the right to retain examples of student work for instructional, publicity or recruiting purposes. Similarly, each program of the department reserves the right to use photographs, video/DVD and audio recordings of student productions in any departmental promotional material, including University-related websites and social media platforms.
The Department of Communication offers Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees in Communication Studies (COMS) and Mass Communication (MC). Courses in the Department of Communication are three (3) credit hours unless otherwise noted.
Minors are available in Broadcast Production , Communication Studies , Digital Filmmaking , Multimedia Journalism , Public Relations , and Social Media Administration .
Courses in Communication
Every class is not offered every semester. It is strongly recommended that students arrange their schedules around courses in the major.