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Ph.D Program

Ph.D Program Mission

Graduate students in one of our classrooms in LNCO

The highest degree offered by the Department of Communication is Doctor of Philosophy. It requires advanced scholarly achievement and demonstrated proficiencies in independent research. The Graduate School outlines general university-wide regulations that govern the Ph.D. degree, but most of the specific requirements are established by the faculties responsible for administering the doctoral programs.

The Department of Communication's Ph.D. degree program is proficiency-based. Doctoral students must develop a proficiency in communication theory and research, and a minimum of two additional "substantive" areas (for example, Interpersonal and Critical Cultural Communication). Two foundation courses in communication theory and three methodology courses are required of all Ph.D. students. A minimum of 42 semester hours of course work beyond the masters degree is required of Ph.D. students. The program is designed to take 4 years but some students finish sooner, and some take longer. (Sample timelines can be found in the Graduate Student Handbook)

The topical areas supported by the department faculty cut across 5 areas of emphasis and can be individually tailored to your interests.  

Click here for more information on specific research areas represented in the department and a list of associated faculty.

For more detailed information about our program, please view our Department of Communication Graduate Student Handbook. And for information on how to apply to our program, please visit our How to Apply page. For a complete list of graduate classes offered through the Department of Communication, go to the General Catalog and look at the classes listed as 6000 level and above.

Last Updated: 1/18/17