Majoring in Communication Studies
What is Communication Studies?
Communication Studies is a discipline that involves the investigation and practice of face-to-face, small group, organizational, public, print, and mediated messages. Effective communication has long been recognized as the hallmark of an educated person and is vital to social and career success. The U.S. Department of Labor identifies listening, speaking, creative thinking, decision making, problem solving, reasoning, self-esteem, sociability, self-management, and integrity as qualities for outstanding job performance. Majoring in Communication Studies develops all of these skills.
What kinds of courses would I take?
Besides meeting the general education requirements, a student majoring in Communication Studies will take foundational course work in Public Speaking, Interpersonal Communication, Intercultural Communication, Communication Research Methods, and Examining Communication. Depending on career interests, a student will choose from one of three areas of study: Interpersonal Communication, Leadership and Public Advocacy, or Organizational Communication. Students will take five courses in their selected area of study and three additional communication courses as electives.
What is the Interpersonal Communication Area of Study?
Students studying Interpersonal Communication focus on communication in human relations. Students develop competencies that allow them to explore human interactions, assess barriers to communication in relationships, and acquire communication skills necessary for successful personal and professional development. Study in this area prepares students for careers in social and human services such as counseling, public administration, health service management, and the ministry.
What is the Leadership and Public Advocacy Area of Study?
Students studying Leadership and Public Advocacy focus on the importance of communication in a democratic society. Students develop competencies that allow them to understand the public deliberative process, to assess and create messages, and to enhance their leadership skills. Study in this area prepares students for careers in law, government, media, international relations, speech writing, lobbying, campaign direction, public information, or elected office.
What is the Organizational Communication Area of Study?
Students studying Organizational Communication focus on the importance of communication in business and professional settings. Students develop competencies that allow them to understand communication in professional organizations, develop professional communica-tion skills, and to train others to communicate effectively in professional settings. Study in this area prepares students for careers in personnel recruitment and management, sales, corporate communication, development, fundraising, and employee orientation and training.
What about Internship opportunities?
Communication Studies majors complete an internship as their capstone experience. The internship enables students to gain professional experience while applying the theories and skills they have learned in class. Interns have both an on-site and faculty supervisor to oversee and guide their work.
Are there student organizations related to the major?
Many of our majors join the National Communication Association Student Chapter (NCASC). NCASC is the national professional organization for communication scholars and individuals whose jobs or career goals are related to communication. The student chapter here at BU offers monthly meetings that feature professionals who discuss topics such as interviewing, internships, résumé writing, career development, and graduate school.
Take a look at the courses in the major:
Communication Research Methods
Interpersonal Communication Area of Study
Gender Issues in Communication
Conflict Management and Resolution
Leadership and Team Building
Leadership and Public Advocacy Area of Study
Understanding Social Influence
Argument and Analysis
Media and Visual Culture
Organizational Communication Area of Study
Organizational Communication Theory
Computer Applications for Professional Communicators
Communication Training in Organizations
Communication for Business Professionals
Issue and Image Campaigns
How do I get more information?
Dr. Kara Shultz, Chairperson, Department of Communication Studies
1103 McCormick Human Services Center, Bloomsburg University, Bloomsburg, PA 17815
(570) 389-4712, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Department website: http://departments.bloomu.edu/csta