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Students with a bachelor’s degree may pursue a Graduate Certificate in Communication. This may be beneficial for those who need continuing education beyond the bachelor’s degree for advancement or promotion in their field. In addition, the Graduate Certificate in Communication meets the requirements of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) for those instructors who have a master’s degree in another discipline and need an additional 18 graduate credit hours in communication in order to teach communication courses. Students will take the prescribed 18 hours in the field by enrolling in the master’s program as a non-degree seeking student. Upon completion, students will receive the Graduate Certificate in Communication and may choose to enroll in the PSU Department of Communication Master of Arts Degree program and then complete the remainder of the MA curriculum. All courses included in the Graduate Certificate are transferable to the degree-seeking MA curriculum.

Additional information

  • Application Procedure
  • Time-Limit
  • Courses

Applicants follow the standard procedures for applying to the PSU Communication Graduate Program and must meet the same requirements for acceptance into the Graduate Certificate program.

The Graduate Certificate in Communication is designed to be completed within a 12-month period with courses taught online. However, students may choose to take the courses in an order other than suggested and/or may choose to take some of the classes in a hybrid or face-to-face format. At present time, there is no time limit for completion of the Graduate Certificate in Communication program. There is a six-year time limit for completion of the Master of Arts Degree with a Major in Communication.

*No grade lower than a B may be counted toward the 18-hour Graduate Certificate in Communication program requirement.

Curriculum (with suggested semester of enrollment for completion within 12 months)*

  • COMM 721 Philosophy and Ethics of Mass Communication (Summer)
  • COMM 726 Media Analysis and Criticism (Summer)
  • COMM 785 International Communication (Spring)
  • COMM 755 Organizational Communication (Spring)
  • COMM 775 Case Studies in Strategic Communication (Fall)*
  • COMM 884 Readings in Communication (independent study in communication theory) (Fall)

*COMM 740 Topics in Communication (independent study/requires approval of instructor) or COMM 795 Issues in Communication may be taken instead of COMM 775 Case Studies in Strategic Communication under special circumstances in order to facilitate the 12-month completion deadline.

About Communication Department

The Department of Communication offers Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degrees within a collaborative and collegial environment. Our top-ranked faculty are highly active in their professions and emphasize the importance of fusing theory with applied skill. We have more than 250 majors across the six emphasis areas of communication education, human communication, media production, multimedia journalism, strategic communication, and theatre. The department stresses an integrated and active approach to learning. Please explore our website and let us know if you have any questions. 

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