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Master of Arts in Communication Studies

The Communication Studies Department offers a Masters of Arts degree in Communication Studies. Our program provides students with advanced instruction in the major theories and research methods in the academic discipline of communication. Our graduates typically go on to doctoral programs or become communication instructors at the community college level. We provide students with a broad foundation in the discipline of communication. As such, we do not offer areas of specialty, but students can take a variety of elective courses. To learn more about the program, see the University Catalog and List of Graduate Faculty.

Admissions Process:

Applications for Fall 2016 are due on February 15, 2016. We do not accept admissions for the Spring semester or consider late applications.

Applicants must complete a University Application using  CSU Mentor  AND a Department Application and Checklist by the February 15th deadline.

International students must apply to the University through International Admissions AND submit a Department Application and Checklist.

Admission Requirements:

1. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited 4-year college or university posted by the start of the Fall semester. The bachelor’s degree does not need to be in the field of communication. However, students with degrees in other areas may be asked to take several prerequisite courses.

2. For international students, either a TOEFL score of 80 (internet based version) or 550 (paper version), or other exam formats like the IELTS are accepted. For more information on international admissions, visit International Admissions. International applicants should apply through and be sure to submit an International Application for admission instead of the general graduate application. For more information about supporting application documents required by the university, international students should visit

3. Good fit with the department goals and faculty.

4. A minimum GPA of 3.0.

5. GRE scores of 292 with at least 146 verbal and 146 quantitative. If you took the GRE before 8/1/11, you need a combined score 900 with no less than 400 verbal and 400 quantitative.

Graduate Handbook:

For the policies and procedures of our graduate program, please visit the University Catalog and the Graduate Handbook.

Graduate Courses:

Each semester we offer required courses and two or three electives. The program is 30 units. Most students finish in 2 years by taking 2 or 3 courses per semester. For more information about courses, see the Course Descriptions in the University catalog.

531. Administering for the Forensic Program

541. Rhetorical Theory and Criticism

546. Communication Theory and Research I

590A. Theory and Criticism of Presidential Rhetoric

610. Seminar in Interpersonal Communication

611. Seminar in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

614. Gender and Family Research

620. Seminar in Organizational Communication

630. Seminar Intercultural Communication

633. Seminar in Interpretive Communication

634. Performance and Ethnography

635. Seminar in Communication Criticism

636. Seminar in American Public Communication

637. Seminar in International Public Address

639. Seminar in Communication and Popular Culture

640. Rhetorical Theory and Criticism

646. Communication Theory and Research II

648. Seminar in Language and Behavior

649. Seminar in Persuasion and Attitude Change

650. Seminar in Instructional Communication

Program Costs:

With the usual graduation plan, the yearly tuition and fees for in-state students is $6,302 and for non-residents is $11,882 (out of state tuition waivers maybe be requested). Tuition and fees are subject to change without notice. To understand how this breaks down into a cost per semester, please see the tuition schedule for the University here:


Students in good standing are eligible to be hired for teaching assistantships (TA). Typically, TAs receive a stipend of up to $14,400 per year. Additional funding opportunities may be available through our Centers and Programs. TAs perform a combination of duties, including assisting professors with large lecture courses, leading workshop sections, assisting with department programs such as the Hauth Center, interACT, or Speech and Debate, and, if qualified, teaching sections of introductory courses. A TA position provides a monthly stipend, but not a waiver for tuition or fees.

Frequently Asked Questions:

See our Masters FAQ for any other questions you may have.

If you have questions about the program or the admission process, please contact the graduate advisor, Dr. Jennifer Asenas at