Program Overview:

Major in Communication Systems

The major in communication systems combines the theoretical focus of communication studies with the practical skills of information technology, resulting in a program that prepares students to perform on the cutting edge of modern media systems. This program is highly flexible, emphasizing the interdisciplinary study and project work that are critical in a rapidly-changing field. With a communications systems background, students can enter the dynamic fields of the information industry, computer-mediated communication, management, public policy, mass media and a variety of other commercial and non-profit areas.

Program Goals

Graduates will be prepared to: 

  • Design and present effective messages, tailored to the needs of an audience
  • Analyze theories of organizational communication and employ rhetorical strategies
  • Demonstrate communication skills needed to effectively work with others individually and in group settings
  • Demonstrate effective leadership skills, utilizing group processes and communication networking in organizations
  • Develop foundational knowledge of technology and information systems
  • Analyze and solve organizational problem by appropriate uses of technology and communication strategies

Required Courses

Communications Foundation

  • COMM ST 102 Public Speaking
  • COMM ST 205 Theories of Persuasion
  • COMM ST 220 Theories of Argumentation
  • COMM ST 250 Leadership and Decision Making
  • COMM ST 270 Mediated Communication
Organizational Processes

4 of the following courses:
  • COMM ST 344 Interpersonal Conflict and Urban Change
  • COMM ST 360 Theories of Organizational Communication
  • COMM ST 361 Intergroup Communication
  • COMM ST 362 Professional Client Communication
  • COMM ST 363 Bargaining and Negotiation
  • COMM ST 364 Collective Decision Making and Communication in Organizations
  • COMM ST 365 Solving Problems in Applied Organizational Communication
  • COMM ST 374 Information and Communication Technology in American Society
  • COMM ST 385 Science, Technology, and Society

Computer Information Technology

  • CIS 130 Tools of the World Wide Web
  • CIS 212 Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming
  • CIS 313 Telecommunications and Computer Networks
  • CIS 317 Data Management
  • CIS 345 Information Security

Program Details

Because many courses in the major are taught by working professionals, communication systems students gain both a theoretical foundation in communication studies and technology and learn practical strategies for making use of that knowledge in the workplace. The technology challenges facing organizations are nearly always intertwined with communication needs. Individuals with a combination of communication expertise with proficiency with technology are invaluable in almost any professional environment.