The Department of Speech Communication offers a nationally recognized program for graduate study. Students engage in the study of communication from its classical antecedents to contemporary areas of study including intercultural, interpersonal, media, organizational, and rhetorical studies. Situated within the liberal arts tradition, the department emphasizes the relation between the study of communication and the practice of civic engagement. The department houses the Center for Public Deliberation which is dedicated to enhancing local democracy through improved public communication. The CPD provides rich opportunities for graduate students to study and engage in civic communication.
The program is organized into three major areas of study.
1) Communication Studies. Using quantitative and qualitative methods professors and students in this area explore interpersonal, co-cultural, intercultural, and organizational communication.
2) Media Studies. Professors and students in media studies critically examine television, film, new media, and music.
3) Rhetorical Studies. Drawing on both traditional and contemporary theories of rhetorical discourse, professors and students assess a range of rhetorical texts including speeches, political discourse, architecture, photographs, and museums.
The program focuses on communication that individuals engage in our respond to when they are making decisions, solving problems, managing conflict, consuming mediated identities, or participating in public discourse.
Most students complete the MA in two years. They take at least 9 courses over four semesters and complete a thesis project.
We support many qualified students with teaching assistantships. TAs earn a stipend and teach 3 sections of public speaking a year.
New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education