Texas State University-San Marcos
College of Fine Arts & Communication
M.A. - Communication Studies
Theory and research in communication have the potential to improve nearly
every element of human life. Scholars in communication studies investigate
communication processes as they occur among individuals, groups, organizations
Graduates of the master of arts in communication studies program at Texas State University-
San Marcos pursue careers applying communication research in profit, nonprofit and
governmental organizations; teach at the community college and university levels; and pursue
The program offers a comprehensive degree incorporating empirical and rhetorical
research methods. Students also may customize their programs by concentrating
on specialized areas. The program receives consistently high rankings in
surveys of master’s programs in communication studies.
Enrollment in most graduate courses is limited to 15 students.
This seminar format allows students to receive individual
attention and to explore research programs unique to their
own interests. Many classes are offered in the evenings to
accommodate working students. A member of The Texas State University System
Students may pursue a 36-hour master of arts degree culminating
in written oral and comprehensive exams or a 30-hour degree
that includes a thesis. After completion of two required
communication research methods courses, students can design
their own customized programs from one or more of the
following program areas:
Students with a focus on Organizational Communication
investigate the function, flow and structure of communication
in organizations in order to enhance organizational effectiveness.
Key courses include Organizational Communication and
Advanced Organizational Communication.
Students with a focus on Rhetorical Studies investigate the
power of symbols to shape perceptions and alter attitudes.
Courses in this area offer a broad overview of rhetorical theory
and rhetorical methods, and they allow students to focus on
rhetoric in specific contexts including Political Communication,
Organizational Rhetoric and Media Criticism.
Students with a focus on Communication Training and
Development explore the knowledge and skills needed to
enhance communication performance. Courses may include
Communication Training and Development, Organizational
Communication, and Advanced Organizational Communication.
A Certificate in Corporate Communication and Training is
also available to students who complete a prescribed ninehour
Students with a focus on Interpersonal Communication
investigate the role of communication in the development and
maintenance of human relationships. Courses in this area include
Interpersonal Communication as well as courses that allow
students to study interpersonal communication in a variety of
Students with a focus on Instructional Communication find a
broad array of courses that prepare them for a career in teaching.
Courses in this area include Instructional Communication and
Communication Assessment. Students are also encouraged to
take courses related to communication curricula typically found
in community colleges, such as interpersonal communication,
small group communication, public speaking and communication
fundamentals. In addition, students may select courses offered by
Texas State’s College of Education.
Facts & Figures
Master's College or University I
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