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Graduate Catalog 2012-2013

School of Communication

Norman C. Mintle, B.A., M.A., Ph.D.
Dean, School of Communication
Associate Professor

Cecil V. Kramer, Jr., B.S., M.A., M. Div., D.Min.
Associate Dean, School of Communication
Professor of Communication Studies

William Mullen, B.A., M.Div., Ph.D.
Chair, Department of Communication Studies
Professor of Communication Studies

Faith Mullen, B.A., M.A., Ph.D.
Director, Master of Arts in Communication Studies
Professor of Communication Studies

RESIDENTIAL FACULTY
Professor
Kelly, C.; Kramer; Martin, C.; Mullen, F.; Mullen, W.; Pruitt; Schwartz

Associate Professor
Allison; Beavers, L.; Mintle, N.; Smith, A.T.; Widgeon


Master of Arts in Communication Studies (M.A.)

PURPOSE
The Master of Arts in Communication Studies, a 36 hour program, is an advanced communication degree that invites students to study and practice context-specific communication competencies, communication theory, and research that will enhance their individual communication abilities as they participate in leadership roles in media, ministry, business and education, while also preparing them for further graduate work in communication and related disciplines. The goal is to develop communication knowledge and expertise within the Christian worldview essential for functioning in a variety of communication contexts.

PROGRAM LEARNING OUTCOMES
The student will be able to:

  1. Integrate communication theory and practice with a Christian worldview;
  2. Critically analyze and apply communication theory and scholarship; and
  3. Conduct and present communication research using appropriate methods and scholarly writing.

PROGRAM SPECIFIC ADMISSION PROCEDURES
In addition to the general admission requirements, specific admission procedures to the M.A. in Communication Studies are as follows:

  1. Earned baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an institution accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (e.g., SACS, TRACS, ABHE, etc.)
  2. Applicants should hold a 3.00 GPA for undergraduate study. Applicants close to the requirement may be considered for enrollment in the program on a probationary basis but will not qualify for Graduate Assistantship positions.  These students are required to take and pass GRST 500 – Introduction to Graduate Writing in their first semester.
  3. Applicants are required to submit one faculty recommendation.
  4. Applicants must submit a “Written Statement of Purpose”, a one-page summary explaining why an advanced degree in communication is desired.
  5. Applicants must submit a personal information questionnaire.

TRANSFER CREDIT
A maximum of six (6) hours of transfer credit, including credit from a degree on the same academic level previously earned through Liberty University, may be applied to the degree.

GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS
In addition to other regulations governing graduation as stated in this Catalog, M.A. in Communication Studies graduates must:

  • Complete 36 total hours.
  • A minimum of 30 hours must be completed through Liberty University, not to include credits from a prior degree earned through Liberty.
  • Coursework includes 12 hours concentration in contextual communication studies, 18 hours of electives in communication strategies, and 6 hours in research.
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00. Students may repeat up to six hours of coursework under the repeat policy.
  • No more than two grades of C may be applied to the degree.
  • No grades of D may be applied to the degree.
  • Thesis or Thesis Project required.
  • Students must complete all work for the degree within five years of initial enrollment of the program.
  • All Resident students are required to enroll in and pass GRST 500 in their first semester.
  • Submit a Graduation Application to the Registrar’s Office at the beginning of the final semester.

The faculty may change the requirements for the receipt of the M.A. in Communication Studies, as well as the courses offered, at any time. A student will be subject to the graduation requirements of the Catalog at the time of the student’s enrollment. A student who is not enrolled for a semester and who is later permitted to continue coursework will be subject to the graduation requirements of the Catalog at the time of the student’s re-enrollment or resumption of classes.

LAMBDA PI ETA HONOR SOCIETY
Lambda Pi Eta (LPH) is the National Communication Association’s official honor society at four-year colleges and universities. As an accredited member of the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), Lambda Pi Eta has active chapters at four-year colleges and universities worldwide. LPH represents what Aristotle described in The Rhetoric as three ingredients of persuasion: logos (Lambda), meaning logic; pathos (Pi), relating to emotion; and ethos (Eta), defined as character credibility and ethics. Lambda Pi Eta recognizes, fosters, and rewards outstanding scholastic achievement while stimulating interest in the communication discipline. 

To be eligible for admission, master’s students must meet the following criteria:

  1. Complete 12 hours of graduate credit-hours (18 quarter hours) in communication
  2. Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5 for all courses taken
  3. Currently be enrolled as a student in good standing, as determined by the institution’s policies.

Interpersonal and Organizational Communication Studies Concentration

PURPOSE
The M.A. in Communication Studies with a concentration in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication allows students to concentrate their study on communication in personal and organizational contexts with special emphasis being given to the understanding, practice, and application of modern communication approaches.

This concentration is designed for students who want to concentrate their study on communication usually practiced in one-on-one, family, group, or professional interaction in the workplace. Students who plan on communicating or continuing their study in fields of counseling, ministry, business communication, family communication, or related areas will find a resourceful base for practicing communication in these contexts and preparing for further academic achievements.


Program of Study

(M.A.) Master of Arts in Communication Studies (36 hrs) Interpersonal and Organizational Communication Studies Concentration
Program Options: Resident Format
Area 1 - Contextual Communication Studies (12 hrs)
COMS 520 Communication Theory 3
Choose three of the following courses:
COMS 522 Interpersonal Communication Theory and Practice 3
COMS 524 Small Group Communication Theory and Practice 3
COMS 622 Organizational Communication Theory and Practice 3
COMS 624 Intercultural Communication 3
Area 2 – Communication Strategies (18 hrs)
Choose six courses from the following electives and/or you may substitute any 500/600 level COMS course from other COMS concentrations listed in the course catalog including one of the courses not already taken in Area 1:
COMS 550 Communication Education Theory 3
COMS 552 Leadership Communication 3
COMS 554 Argument and Persuasion 3
COMS 556 Audience Analysis and Measurement 3
COMS 558 Listening and Nonverbal Communication 3
COMS 560 Communication and Conflict 3
COMS 562 Web-based Communication 3
COMS 564 Family Communication 3
COMS 568 Creative Communication 3
COMS 618 Visual Rhetoric 3
COMS 652 Organizational Communication Consulting 3
COMS 654 Communication and Change 3
COMS 656 Media Strategies 3
COMS 697 Special Topics 3
Area 3 – Research (6 hrs)
COMS 680 Communication Research Methods 3
COMS 690 Thesis Defense 1 3

Any thesis student who is not ready for enrollment in COMS 690 after completing COMS 680 may be required, as determined by the student’s thesis chair, to take COMS 689 Thesis Proposal and Research, and may be required to repeat COMS 689 until deemed ready for enrolment in COMS 690.


Media and Communication Studies Concentration

PURPOSE
The Media and Communication Studies concentration is for students wishing to concentrate their study on communication approaches and methods used in the media. Individuals desiring to develop an understanding of media management should choose this concentration.


Program of Study

(M.A.) Master of Arts in Communication Studies (36 hrs) Media and Communication Studies Concentration
Program Options: Resident Format
Area 1 - Contextual Communication Studies (12 hrs)
COMS 530 Mass Media Theory 3
Choose three of the following courses:
COMS 532 Approaches to Media Technologies 3
COMS 632 Politics and Media 3
COMS 634 Religion and Media 3
COMS 638 Media Management 3
Area 2 - Communication Strategies (18 hrs)
Choose six courses from the following electives and/or you may substitute any 500/600 level COMS course from other COMS concentrations listed in the course catalog including one of the courses not already taken in Area 1:
COMS 550 Communication Education Theory 3
COMS 552 Leadership Communication 3
COMS 554 Argument and Persuasion 3
COMS 556 Audience Analysis and Measurement 3
COMS 558 Listening and Nonverbal Communication 3
COMS 560 Communication and Conflict 3
COMS 562 Web-based Communication 3
COMS 564 Family Communication 3
COMS 568 Creative Communication 3
COMS 618 Visual Rhetoric 3
COMS 652 Organizational Communication Consulting 3
COMS 654 Communication and Change 3
COMS 656 Media Strategies 3
COMS 697 Special Topics 3
Area 3 - Research (6 hrs)
COMS 680 Communication Research Methods 3
Choose one of the following:
COMS 690 Thesis Defense 3*
COMS 691 Project 3*
*Any thesis student who is not ready for enrollment in COMS 690 or 691 after completing COMS 680 may be required, as determined by the student’s thesis chair, to take COMS 689 Thesis Proposal and Research, and may be required to repeat COMS 689 until deemed ready for enrolment in COMS 690.

DEGREE COMPLETION PLANS (DCP)
The Degree Completion Plans for the M.A. in Communication Studies are available online at http://www.liberty.edu/dcps.



Highlighted text indicates a change from the official version of the catalog.