Ithaca College


Master of Science in Communications

A minimum of 36 credits is required to complete the master’s degree program, including 18 credits of required coursework and 9 credits of the required elective courses, as listed below. The remaining credits may be selected, with the adviser’s approval, from the elective courses provided in the program. Candidates who wish to pursue a thesis may do so upon approval by the graduate committee. Up to 6 credits of related graduate work from an accredited institution may be transferred with approval of the candidate’s adviser, if the course grade is B or better and if the work was completed no more than three years before the request for transfer of credit.

Normally, full-time students can complete the 36-credit program in three semesters or in two semesters and two summer sessions. Applicants interested in part-time study are also invited. All coursework must be completed within six years of matriculation into the program.

Required Courses -- 18 credits

COMM 52000 Organizational Media Production
COMM 64000 Designing Systems and Messages
COMM 64100 Management of Organizational Communication, Learning, and Design
COMM 64300 Research Methods in Communication
COMM 64400 Communication, Learning, and Organization Theory
COMM 68000 Seminar: Theory in Practice

Required Elective Courses -- 9 credits

Media Production (select one)

COMM 54000 Visual Design and Organizational Presentations
COMM 57000 Corporate Communication Media
COMM 65700 E-Learning

Organizational Communication and Management (select one)

COMM 58000 Organizational Culture and Diversity
COMM 58500 Communication Technology and Organizations

Applications (select one)

COMM 53000 Communication Campaigns
COMM 53500 Learning Systems

Elective Courses -- 9 credits

COMM 51000/51100 Selected Topics*
COMM 54100 Contemporary Issues*
COMM 55000 Organizational Video Design and Production
COMM 56000 Online Learning and Collaboration
COMM 59000/59100 Internship
COMM 65000/65100 Independent Study*
COMM 69000/69100 Thesis (or any other remaining course in the program)

*May be used with permission of graduate chair to satisfy required electives

Pass/Fail Option

Degree candidates must take all courses that count toward the master of science in communications degree, whether required or elective, for a letter grade. The only exceptions are internships, which are only offered on a pass/fail basis.

Thesis Option

The thesis option is designed for students who wish to pursue theoretical or applied inquiry and make an original contribution to knowledge in the field of communications. Students must receive approval from the communications graduate committee and show evidence of a detailed plan as well as mastery of the skills, tools, and concepts needed to conduct the proposed study. Upon approval by the graduate committee, the student selects, with the chair’s approval, a thesis adviser and two additional committee members, who then evaluate a thesis proposal. An oral defense of the thesis is required. The thesis process is described in greater detail in the Graduate Program in Communications Thesis Guidelines, available from the graduate program chair.

Students enrolled in the thesis option who have completed all coursework except the thesis will be required to enroll in at least 1 credit of thesis each semester until they finish their degree. Students should work with their program adviser to plan an appropriate course and credit schedule. For international students this schedule will be reflected in the immigration paperwork.