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Graduate Catalog

Department of Communication

(585) 395-2511

Chairman and Associate Professor: Virginia M. Bacheler, MS, Syracuse University. Professor: Floyd D. Anderson, PhD, University of Illinois. Associate Professors: Fredric Powell, PhD, Michigan State University. Assistant Professors: Matthew Althouse, PhD, Louisiana State University; Joseph L. Chesebro, EdD, West Virginia University; Alice Crume, PhD, Bowling Green State University; Carvin Eison, MA, Visual Studies Workshop, SUNY Buffalo; Donna Kowal, PhD, University of Pittsburgh; Katherine Madden, PhD, Pennsylvania State University; Bill W. Reed, PhD, University of Michigan; Josie Tullos, JD, University of California.

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The Master of Arts program in communication provides a broad survey of several discrete areas within the discipline, as well as an in-depth concentration in a selected area. Upon completion of the program, students will be qualified (1) to take up or continue careers in the communication professions or (2) to enter a doctoral program in communication. It is anticipated that students will enter the program with a broad diversity of backgrounds and with equally broad interests and needs. The program is constructed with the greatest possible flexibility to be responsive to this diversity. Graduate courses are offered in the areas of interpersonal communication, organizational communication, mass communication, and rhetorical theory and criticism. Because many communication graduate students are fully employed part-time students, all required courses in the program are offered as evening classes.

Admission
Matriculation in the Master of Arts in Communication program may be secured by application to the Office of Graduate Admissions. To qualify for admission, an applicant must submit the following as part of the self-managed application:

  1. transcripts of all undergraduate and prior graduate work, and
  2. letters of recommendation from three persons in a position to assess the applicant's potential for significant academic achievement.

At least a 3.0 undergraduate grade point average on a 4.0 scale and a "B" average in the undergraduate major and/or in undergraduate communication courses are normally required.

An undergraduate major in communication is not required. However, applicants without undergraduate background in communication are required to take their full programs of graduate study in communication courses. Those admitted as matriculated graduate students are expected to begin their study in the summer following their acceptance.

Degree Requirements
The Master of Arts in Communication requires the following:

1. Required credits of graduate study: A minimum of 30 credits (if electing the thesis option) or a minimum of 36 credits (if electing non-thesis option) of study beyond the bachelor's degree with at least 15 credits at the 600 level or above. At least 12 credits must be earned in seminar courses 691 through 698. Seminar courses may not be taken by directed study, independent study or by transfer credit.

2. Required courses: The following courses, totaling 15 credits, are required of all matriculated graduate students:

   
Credits
a. CMC 600

Communication Research Methods (CMC 600 should be the first course for all matriculated graduate students and is a prerequisite for all CMC 600- and 700-level courses.)

3
b. CMC 691 Seminar in Rhetorical Criticism
3
c. CMC 692 Seminar in Rhetorical Theory
3
d. CMC 694 Seminar in Mass Communication
3
e. CMC 697 Seminar in Interpersonal Communication
3


3. Areas of specialization: In addition to the five required courses, each student will select additional elective courses by advisement. Those who select the thesis option will need additional courses for a minimum total of 30 credits, including six credits for CMC 798: Thesis; non-thesis option students will be required to complete at least seven additional courses for a minimum total of 36 credits.

  1. Communication electives (3-;7 courses)
  2.   CMC 510 Speakers, Campaigns and Movements
      CMC 511 Rhetorical Criticism
      CMC 513 Non-verbal Communication
      CMC 515 Public Communication in Administration, Business and the Professions
      CMC 517 20th-century Political Rhetoric
      CMC 518 Cross-cultural Communication
      CMC 519 Problems in Freedom of Speech
      CMC 532 Public Relations Campaigns
      CMC 563 Mass Communication and Society
      CMC 568 Law of Mass Communication
      CMC 572 Group Leadership
      CMC 573 Theories of Communication
      CMC 577 Organizational Communication
      CMC 579 Conflict Resolution Through Communication
      CMC 583

    Communication Training and Development

      CMC 592 Theories of Persuasion
      CMC 596 Contemporary Broadcast Issues
      CMC 693 Seminar in Organizational Communication
      CMC 797 Project in Communication
      CMC 798 Thesis

  3. Independent-study options are available to study areas or develop projects not available through regular course work. Students are ordinarily permitted to take a total of three hours of independent study (CMC 699 Independent Study in Communication) as part of their program of graduate study. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the graduate faculty.

  4. Students with strong undergraduate backgrounds in communication may elect to take by advisement one or two courses in disciplines other than communication. Students electing the thesis option may take three credits (out of 30) and students electing the non-thesis option may take six credits (out of 36) in courses in other disciplines. Students without strong undergraduate backgrounds in communication must take their entire program of study in communication courses. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the graduate faculty.
  5. Students who wish to study film and video production, desktop publishing and related media may do so at the Visual Studies Workshop, located at 31 Prince Street in Rochester. For programmatic purposes, graduate courses taken at VSW are considered equivalent to communication courses and may be taken by all matriculated graduate students, even those without undergraduate backgrounds in communication. Students electing the thesis option may take up to three credits (out of 30) and students electing the non-thesis option may take up to six credits (out of 36) of course work at VSW. Such course work is to be carefully selected in consultation with the student's academic adviser.

Time Limit
After matriculation, a graduate student has five years in which to complete all degree requirements. With sufficient reason a student can request a leave of absence and/or extension of this time limit.

Communication Courses

CMC 510 Speakers, Campaigns and Movements. Surveys significant historical and contemporary speakers, persuasive campaigns and rhetorical movements, with special attention to the introduction of women to the speaking platform and to historical and contemporary spokespersons and movements on behalf of social and gender equality. 3 Cr.

CMC 511 Rhetorical Criticism. Covers the theory and methods of rhetorical criticism; the application of methods to rhetorical discourse; and the recognition of critical methods in critical studies. 3 Cr.

CMC 513 Non-verbal Communication. Develops an awareness of communication through channels in addition to spoken and written communication. Applies research, observations, and practical experience to the understanding and use of body, artifacts, space and time to communicate. Requires an original, experimental project based on research and field tests. 3 Cr.

CMC 515 Public Communication in Administration, Business and the Professions. Examines communication in various business and professional settings; and business and professional community needs. Requires students to read, understand and interpret for audiences various business and professional statements and data. 3 Cr.

CMC 517 20th-century Political Rhetoric. Surveys major 20th-century political speakers, campaigns and movements with an emphasis on contemporary movements for racial and gender equality. 3 Cr.

CMC 518 Cross-cultural Communication. Explores cultural similarities and differences affecting communication and intercultural competencies for interaction between cultural groups and individuals along gender, ethnic and national lines. 3 Cr.

CMC 519 Problems in Freedom of Speech. Examines the historical development of freedom of expression law, theoretical foundations for freedom of expression, and problems and conflicts dealing with freedom of expression. 3 Cr.

CMC 532 Public Relations Campaigns. Focuses on the treatment of an organization's public relations and information efforts, including situation analysis and research, program and campaign planning, development of communications materials and activities, and program management. Provides experience in planning and executing public relations and information campaigns and programs. 3 Cr.

CMC 563 Mass Communication and Society. Covers significant phases, issues and controversies in the historical development of mass communication in the United States. Emphasizes contemporary media relationships with, and impact on, intellectual, socio-political, economic and technological aspects of culture and society. Considers daily and other periodical press, radio, television and film. 3 Cr.

CMC 568 Law of Mass Communication. Focuses on legal aspects of mass communication. Emphasizes defamation, libel, privacy, privilege, contempt, copyright, fairness, the courts and other areas as related to mass media practices. Examines governmental regulations and self-regulatory codes. 3 Cr.

CMC 572 Group Leadership. Examines group processes, relationships and leadership in task-oriented groups such as committees, task forces and problem-solving groups. Analyzes group processes, agenda planning, motivating participation, conflict management, group leadership styles, and techniques. 3 Cr.

CMC 573 Theories of Communication. Examines classical and contemporary theories of human communication, and the research and practical applications of theory. Allows students to relate theoretical concepts to instances of communication behavior and identify salient communication theses. 3 Cr.

CMC 577 Organizational Communication. Integrates communication theories with practice of communication in organizations. Emphasizes communication roles and culture of organizations as a force in organizational philosophy and world view. Provides practice in diagnosing and improving organizational communication systems. 3 Cr.

CMC 579 Conflict Resolution Through Communication. Examines interpersonal conflict and its essential characteristics; evolution of the study of social conflict; perspectives from which social conflicts are viewed, including psychological, social psychological, sociological, economic, political and mathematical; the sources, conditions and consequences of social conflict within a given social setting; and skills of conflict management. 3 Cr.

CMC 583 Communication Training and Development. Introduces communication training with emphasis on practice in designing, facilitating, and evaluating a workshop presentation in an organizational setting. 3 Cr.

CMC 592 Theories of Persuasion. Provides an intensive study of classical and contemporary theories of persuasion and social influence. Gives attention to the application of theory to the practice of social influence. 3 Cr.

CMC 600 Communication Research Methods. Examines different research methodologies and techniques and their application in rhetorical, interpersonal, and mass communication research. This course is a prerequisite for all CMC 600- and 700-level courses. 3 Cr.

CMC 691 Seminar in Rhetorical Criticism. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Examines the development of rhetorical criticism and application of methodologies to particular problems of criticism. 3 Cr.

CMC 692 Seminar in Rhetorical Theory. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Examines classical and contemporary theories of rhetoric, with an emphasis on the epistemic functions of rhetoric and on the role of rhetoric in public, social and cultural contexts. 3 Cr.

CMC 693 Seminar in Organizational Communication. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Examines organizational communication. Specific topic announced in advance by the instructor. 3 Cr.

CMC 694 Seminar in Mass Communication. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Covers mass communication theory, research and practice; development in contemporary mass communication theory; and the social and cultural contexts of mass communication. Specific topic announced in advance by the instructor. 3 Cr.

CMC 697 Seminar in Interpersonal Communication. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Examines diadic, relational, family, small group, therapeutic, and/or negotiation communication. Specific topics will be selected by the instructor. 3 Cr.

CMC 699 Independent Study in Communication. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Designed individually through consultation between the student and instructor to suit the student's needs and interests, and the special competence of the instructor. Additional requirements may be established by the department. 1-;3 Cr.

CMC 797 Project in Communication. Prerequisite: CMC 600. Entails a substantial research, creative, or utilitarian project that serves to integrate and focus the graduate student's program of study. Acceptable projects can include limited historical, descriptive, or experimental research; applied communication activities with a clearly defined end product; or creative work demonstrating an under standing of theoretical communication concepts. An acceptable project is determined through consultation between the student and his/her advisor and other graduate faculty in the department and in the student's cognate area. 3-;6 Cr.

CMC 798 Thesis. Prerequisites: CMC 600 and the completion of 18 credits of course work with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Allows for the preparation and oral defense of a substantial research and writing project with tutorial guidance from the graduate thesis committee. 1-;6 Cr.

 

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