The communication major is an interdisciplinary study of messages, audiences, media, and persuasion. Communication students study the methodology, prevailing theories, history, and questions that define this field. They learn the following:

  • effective oral communication with a variety of audiences.
  • effective written communication with a variety of audiences.
  • analysis and interpretation of modern media.
  • analysis and composition of arguments and other persuasive discourses.
  • analysis and practice of ethical communication.
  • design and completion of research-based study.
  • application of the above to discipline or career specific concerns.

By choosing an appropriate minor, which is required for the communication major, students prepare themselves for graduate study or careers in entertainment, broadcasting, journalism, advertising, law, education, politics, non-governmental organizations, or public relations.

Communication majors must complete course work in these areas:

  • a sequence of six required core courses:

CM 101 Introduction to Communication Theory
CM 121 Fundamentals of Oral Communication
CM 221A Media and Society
CM 223 Argumentation and Debate
CM 303A Propaganda and Persuasion
CM 360A Media Ethics

  • two Communication elective courses (non-core courses numbered 300 or higher). Independent studies, internships, and Winter Term courses may not count as Communication electives.
  • two tools courses selected from the following list or approved by the mentor:

AR 101A Visual Problem Solving
AR 102A Drawing Fundamentals
AR 229A Photography as Image Gathering
AR 310 New Genre Art
AR 342A Introduction to Graphic Design
AR 343 Introduction to Computer Art
AR 346 The Art of Web Page Design
AR 348 Experimental Film and Video
CO 122 Analytic and Persuasive Writing
CO 201 Writing in the Garden
CO 202 Writing for Social Change
CO 328 Research Writing & Technology
CS 120M Computer Programming Concepts
CS 143 Intermediate Programming
CS 170A Videographics
FI 210A Introduction to Filmmaking
HD 207S Group Dynamics
TH 101A Human Instrument
TH 102A The Living Theatre
TH 163A Basic Acting
No more than one tools course may count toward both the Communication major and a second major.

  • a minor in one of the following disciplines (five or six courses): American Studies, Anthropology, Art, Art History, Biology, Chemistry, Classical Humanities, Computer Science, Coastal Management, Creative Writing, Environmental Studies, Film Studies, Geology, History, Human Development, International Business, International Relations and Global Affairs, Journalism, Law and Justice, Leadership Studies, Literature, Management, Marketing, a modern language, Marine Science, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Sociology, Theatre, or Women's and Gender Studies. (With the approval of the mentor and appropriate discipline coordinator, students may substitute a minor in a field not listed. No course work applied to the major may be counted toward the completion of the minor, with the exception of Media Ethics for the Journalism minor.)
  • Senior Comprehensive Course: CM 498 Communication Research

Many students supplement course work by undertaking internships locally or overseas.

A typical course sequence for a major in communication might be as follows:

First Years

  • CM 101A Introduction to Communication Theory
  • CM 121 Fundamentals of Oral Communication


  • CM 223 Argumentation and Debate
  • CM 221A Media and Society
  • Tools course
  • Course work for minori>


  • CM 360A Media Ethics
  • CM 303A Propaganda and Persuasion
  • CM elective
  • Tools course
  • Course work for minor


  • Course work for minor
  • CM elective
  • Senior Comprehensive Course
  • Internships

The Communication Minor offers a sequence of courses that engages students with the theoretical and practical dimensions of communication. In these courses, students will refine their understanding of how communication affects everyday public, professional, and private life. In addition, students will strengthen their skills in oral and written communication and develop literacy in their critical engagement with mass and digital media. The minor requires five courses. No more than one transfer course may count towards the minor.

Minor Requirements

A minor in Communication requires 5 courses, including 3 core courses:

  • CM 101 Introduction to Communication Theory
  • CM 121 Fundamentals of Oral Communication
  • CM 221A Media and Society

The minor may be completed by taking any other 2 courses with the CM designation with the exception of CM 498.