Curriculum - MAC

Master of Arts in Communication (MAC) - (30 credits)

15 credits of Core Courses:

  1. COM 605: Managerial Communication (3 cr)
  2. COM 610: Organization Communication (3 cr)
  3. COM 640: Public Relations (3 cr)
  4. COM 660: Applied Research Methods (3 cr)
  5. COM 689: Communication Capstone (3 cr) OR COM 690: Thesis

15 credits of Elective Courses:

  1. BUS 602/COM 602: Managerial Economics and Finance (3 cr)
  2. BUS/COM 617: Strategic Human Capital Management (3 cr)
  3. COM 620: Intercultural Communication (3 cr)
  4. BUS/COM 622: Global Communication
  5. COM 625: Mediated Document Design (3 cr)
  6. COM 630: Effective Professional Communication (3 cr)
  7. COM 635: Integrated Marketing Communication (3 cr)
  8. COM 645: Web Development for Organizations (3 cr)
  9. COM 646: Organizational Change and Leadership (3 cr)
  10. BUS/COM 648: Problem Solving & Crisis Management (3 cr)
  11. COM 650: Language Choice / Com Bar (3 cr)
  12. COM 655: Public Relations Strategy (3 cr)
  13. COM 657/658/659: Seminar Topics (1 – 3 cr)
  14. COM 685: Internship (1 - 3 cr)
  15. BUS/COM 681: Technology Management (3 cr)
  16. COM 691/692/693: Independent Study (1 - 3 cr)

COM/BUS 602: Managerial Finance (3 cr)

The course focuses on basic economic and financial principles required to operate a business.  Analysis techniques are quantitatively applied to examine the health of a business through the use of financial statements.  Also, managerial decision making applications are presented from the point of view of a firm (microeconomics). Utilizing the capstone simulation model and Comp-XM exam students will learn to analyze an organization’s financial wellness. Upon completion of the course, the student will predict the cumulative effect of changing business inputs on key operating metrics, such as, inventory and labor costs, along with overall costs and revenue. 

  • CLO 1: Examine the fundamental accounting and financial terminology and principles used in operating a firm.
  • CLO 2: Identify and apply the tools used to analyze the financial performance of an organization.
  • CLO 3: Analyze and recommendation capital budgets and capital asset acquisitions.
  • CLO 4: Utilize forecasting techniques in the development of financial budgets.
  • CLO 5: Analyze and predict the results of a business simulation model.


COM 605: Managerial Communication (3 cr)

This course provides a basic overview of managerial communication processes in organizations. Course topics include: verbal and nonverbal communication, dyadic and organizational communication, intercultural communication, small-group interactions, conflict resolution, and the roles and relationships when managing negotiations, participating in meetings, and working in teams, as well as conducting interviews. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to describe, analyze, and explain key concepts, roles, and relationships in managerial communication practices.

  • CLO 1: Describe, analyze, and explain key concepts in managerial communication practice.
  • CLO 2: Assess the relationship between managerial practice and one’s own communication skills.
  • CLO 3: Evaluate the ethical implications of issues in managerial communication as they relate to the development of integrity and ethical conduct in the field.
  • CLO 4: Synthesize and demonstrate an understanding of the interpersonal and intrapersonal competencies at play when working in teams.
  • CLO 5: Present findings in the context of professional speaking and writing using a mediated technology to enhance oral presentation.  


COM 610: Organization Communication (3 cr)

This course offers a study of organization systems and the discourse culture within organizations, including consideration of relevance of communication to leadership and management operations, networks, and organizational climates and cultures. Students will learn about organizational cultures, dynamics, and communication flow in the organization. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to identify leadership roles in organization, plan and coordinate managerial and communication strategies, and be will ready to serve in an executive role in an organization.    

  • CLO 1: Describe, analyze, and explain key concepts in organizational communication theory and practice.
  • CLO 2: Appraise the relationship between organizational theory and business practice.
  • CLO 3: Evaluate the ethical implications of issues in organizational communication as they relate to the development of integrity and ethical conduct in the field.
  • CLO 4: Synthesize and communicate effectively with others in a team environment.
  • CLO 5: Present findings in the context of professional speaking and enhance oral presentationwriting using a mediated technology to.


COM/BUS 617: Strategic Human Capital Management (3 cr)

This course focuses on the development and execution of an integrated, systematic, and strategic approach to human capital management. In this course, students will analyze the functions of HR in order to determine the best use of human capital in an organization. Upon completion of this course, students will design a strategic HR model to improve and organization’s efficiency and effectiveness.

  • CLO 1: Identify the current state of human capital management in reference to both strategic and operational timeframes.
  • CLO 2: Analyze HR functions that influences an organization’s human capital.
  • CLO 3: Design a strategic plan for an organization’s human capital.


COM 620: Intercultural Communication  (3 cr)

This course examines the theories and models that govern the interactions among cultures with the aim of enhancing communication flow between them. In this course students will study commonalities, differences and variations in cultural practices and their impact on intercultural exchanges in business, education and media systems. Students will examine and assess the various definitions of cultures, subcultures, emerging cultures and in particular evaluate the new media impact on culture change. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to understand and explain intercultural communication theories and models, compare and contrast media systems across cultures, and build effective two-way communication channels. 

  • CLO 1: Explain cultural context and its impact on intercultural communication.
  • CLO 2: Understand and apply intercultural communication theories to case studies and real-life scenarios.
  • CLO 3: Identify and discuss the commonalities that exist between cultures.
  • CLO 4: Develop two-way communication channels between organization and the cultures it serves.
  • CLO 5: Develop a literature review and a research proposal that can be executed for a conference or journal manuscript.


COM/BUS 622: Global Business Communication (3 cr)

This course concentrates on the relevance of global intercultural communication, its relationship to corporate culture communication, and their significance for global business in the new tensions between globalized and indigenous populations. These topics are examined from a business and communication perspective. Upon completion, students will determine the usage of basic cultural and professional competencies in business interactions.

  • CLO 1: Classify the differences among a wide range of cultures according to established cultural value and communication variables.
  • CLO 2: Identify intercultural communication concerns and corporate culture communication. concerns
  • CLO 3: Analyze global organization cases.
  • CLO 4: Develop intercultural corporate culture and corporate culture communication skills, communication competencies, and points of view needed by professionals working in a globalized business context.
  • CLO 5: Choose an ethical basis for making communication choices in a complex, culturally diverse, globalized business world.


COM 625: Mediated Document Design (3 cr)

This course will examine how information technologies affect communication in a variety of settings while focuses principles of document design used in mediated contexts. Students will learn how to use visual communication theory in planning, designing, and revising effective print and on- line documents for domestic and international recipients. The course includes a module on mobile media in relation to instant document creation. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to design effective communication messages based on communication theory, develop social media postings, and produce visual communication relevant to an organization’s objectives.

  • CLO 1: Analyze rhetorical principles and characteristics of printed document design.
  • CLO 2: Analyze integrated marketing communication principles and characteristics of online document design.
  • CLO 3: Evaluate the functions and impact of message visuals and verbal format on recipients’ perceptions including typography, spacing, and color in document design.
  • CLO 4: Evaluate existing print documents, web sites, and social media outlets applying the theoretical foundations of learned throughout the course.
  • CLO 5: Produce a professional print document, applying the knowledge you have gained.
  • CLO 6: Produce a professional web site, applying the knowledge you have gained.


COM 630: Effective Professional Communication (3 cr)

 This course focuses on presentation skills based on organizational theories and practices, as well as discussions on emotional intelligence. Students will examine and apply classic and contemporary accounts of effective presentations, facilitating meetings, and developing communication skills related to businesses. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to facilitate meetings, plan and organize events, and prepare and deliver professional presentations.

  • CLO 1: Demonstrate an understanding of emotional intelligence and explain how it can be used effectively in business.
  • CLO 2: Demonstrate effective speaking and communication skills relevant to business.
  • CLO 3: Assess and create the appropriate business correspondence and reports for given situations.
  • CLO 4: Apply effective team working skills.


COM 635: Integrated Marketing Communication (3 cr)

This course examines underlying theory and best practices in communicating brand narratives that foster brand awareness, preference, and loyalty via an integrated marketing approach. The course will integrate advertising and marketing strategies to build optimal marketing communication programs. Students will examine developments in the integrated marketing communication field in light of their long-term potential, relevance to the target audience, and impact on marketing objectives. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to develop a comprehensive marketing communication campaigns, be able to do in-depth SWOT analysis, craft creative and persuasive content and provide means for campaign’s assessment.

  • CLO 1: Develop integrated marketing communication strategic plans.
  • CLO 2: Integrate effective strategies to create and design advertisements and promotional materials based on relevant marketing objectives. 
  • CLO 3: Analyze the ethical and appropriate use of integrated marketing communication strategies to assure the integrity and transparency of the organization to its target audiences.
  • CLO 4: Evaluate new developments in the integrated marketing communication field.


COM 640: Public Relations (3 cr)

This course examines the history of the profession, characteristics, skills, and ethics required of a public relations practitioner, and necessary communication methods to engage in the two-way dialogue between an organization and its targeted publics. Students develop a baseline knowledge of public relations research, planning, communication and assessments of communication campaigns and programs. Upon completion of this course students will define, plan, communicate, and assess a public relation case.

  • CLO 1: Demonstrate an in depth understanding of the theoretical foundations of public relations.
  • CLO 2: Demonstrate analytical and integrative knowledge of current and traditional public relations role models as practiced in the US and in the world.
  • CLO 3: Compare and contrast inter-cultural differences as practiced across cultures.
  • CLO 4: Differentiate between ethical and unethical behavior in the practice of public relations.
  • CLO 5: Develop social media goals, objectives, strategies and tactics in order to deliver a successful campaign projects.


COM 645: Web Development for Organizations (3 cr)

This course reviews digital information technologies for the communication manager to help design web content and structure relevant to organization’s communication needs. Students explore issues in relation to text, image and animation through a series of weekly projects. Students will learn how to design relevant messages to the variety of organizational publics, which reinforce principles of visual communication while creating a substantial website. Web content development will receive particular attention to secure the relevance of content and format to meet organizational objectives. Upon the completion of this course, students will be able to develop message content, strategy and visuals for the website of their respective organizations. Pre-requisite COM 610, COM 625 or MAC Director’s consent.

  • CLO 1: Construct basic structure of websites relevant to their organizations.
  • CLO 2: Plan web content strategy based on communication theory and visual communication techniques.
  • CLO 3: Develop practice-websites implementing the theoretical and applied components of communication theory including methods of analysis.
  • CLO 4: Critique ethical and moral issues related to web content and design including fairness, privacy, and transparency.


COM 646: Organizational Change & Leadership (3 cr)

This course explores the means by which leaders of organizations can affect the change process. Students will study various theories of the change process and the role of leader influence in affecting change. Assessment will be conducted through case study analysis, interactive engagement with course readings and participation in course discussion modules, and a final comprehensive assessment of the role of a leader in affecting change in an organization. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to understand the organization’s culture and dynamics, be capable of working with different styles of leaders, create a two-way communication channel between leaders and managers, as well as monitor and predict change in an organization’s operations. Pre-requisite COM 610, 640.

  • CLO 1: Demonstrate how to effectively influence  organizational change while remaining sensitive to ethical and moral issues.
  • CLO 2: Analyze organizational performance and provided strategies for improvement.
  • CLO 3: Design a communication plan using relevant research methods.
  • CLO 4: Compare and contrast various communication roles within and outside the organization including different cultures.


COM 648: Problem Solving and Crisis Management (3 cr)

This course covers the strategies and tactics for solving problems and managing conflicts and crises in business. Through case study engagement and the development of alternative thinking, students develop crisis management competencies relevant to problem solving for increasingly globalized business contexts and communication skills for the new media environment. Upon completion of this course, students will develop crisis management templates and make use of web resources that will enable organizations to respond to problems in a globalized business environment. Material covered includes trauma and post-incident management, effective crisis communication, disaster response, media training, social media engagement as a crisis communication tool, business recovery and innovation as a problem-solving tool.

  • CLO 1: Determine vulnerable areas in an organization and identify potential crisis situations.
  • CLO 2: Effectively measure communications with employees, stakeholders, media (both new and traditional), and the public before, during and after a crisis.
  • CLO 3: Develop techniques for analysis and problem solving of real world crises through the use of Harvard Case Studies.
  • CLO 4: Create a Crisis Management Plan for an organization that identifies potential crises and provides written procedures for mitigating or resolving crises.


COM 650: Language Choice - Communication Barriers (3 cr)

Speaking the same language does not necessarily mean that people understand the message similarly. Students will analyze communication barriers related to syntax, relevance of the message to the public, selective exposure, perception and retention, redundancy, entropy and certainty in inter-personal, small group, and mass communication. Students will further analyze cases in language choice used in social media. Upon the completions of this course students will be able to diagnose and analyze sources of communication barriers in organizations, reduce the occurrence of such barriers, be versed in doing communication audits, manage rumors and adverse communication internally and externally.

  • CLO 1: Diagnose and analyze communication barriers in the organization.
  • CLO 2: Provide solutions to communication barriers within the organizations’ departments.
  • CLO 3: Create a better  communication environment in the organization.
  • CLO 4: Examine cultural, ethical, and moral issues in their diagnostics and treatments of communication barriers. 


COM 655: Public Relations Strategy (3 cr)

This course enables students to apply public relations theories and models when creating an effective campaign strategy. Using relevant research methods, students will learn how to define, plan and implement an integrated public relations program to solve an organization problems, prevent problems and to facilitate the positive flow of communication inside the organization and with its external publics. Students will develop a public relations campaign for a selected client organization that is either internally or externally targeted to a specific audience. Upon the completion of this course, students will be able to develop advanced public relations campaigns, develop effective media communication objectives and strategies, and create responsive strategies to address social media messages and responses. Pre-requisite COM 640, COM 660 or MAC Director consent.

  • CLO 1: Demonstrate and understanding of the theory and principles involved in public relations strategy.
  • CLO 2: Demonstrate expertise in public relations theory and principles through strategic development of an awareness, education, or informational campaign for an organizational client.
  • CLO 3: Design and create mediated messages to address various publics using traditional and non-traditional media channels.
  • CLO 4: Employ advanced knowledge in problem-solving and campaign planning and implementation.
  • CLO 5: Describe how moral and ethical principles are integrated in message structure, design, and delivery. 


COM 657: Seminar Topics (1 - 3 cr)

Participant chooses topic courses from the varied selections offered. Examples of topic courses include Technical Writing, Fund-raising for the Non-profit, Interpersonal Communication, Social Media Studies, Customer Relationship Building and Maintenance, International Media, Writing Grant Proposals, and Mass Communication, etc. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to address emerging communication issues and subjects, be ready to serve a professional contemporary communication role in organizations and be able to distinctively compete in a novelty demanding job market.

  • CLO 1: Demonstrate an understanding of and explain the core theoretical and practical components of the course.
  • CLO 2: Design and develop projects and applications relating to course materials.
  • CLO 3: Demonstrate a sense of social responsibility in their discussions and projects.
  • CLO 4: Compare and contrast what they are learning with materials from other courses in the program.


COM 660: Applied Research Methods (3 cr)

This course prepares students for the process of conducting research. Students learn to document work in an appropriate academic form, conceptualize and develop practical and scholarly references relevant to their project. Students design and develop an appropriate research methodology for their final project. Projects may include communication campaigns, case studies, training workshops, communication audits, or business solutions to communication problems encountered by organizations. Additionally, students learn the fundamentals of quantitative and qualitative research methods. At the end of this course, students will have an understanding of various research methods, how to investigate their research questions, and how to prepare for their final research project campaign (COM 689 for MAC majors). Prerequisites: At least 18 credits of prior course work or consent of Program Head. Course may not be transferred in or applied towards a second degree.

  • CLO 1: Identify a viable project research focus in the intersection among (a) a specific communication issue, (b) an organizational context in which the issue arises, and (c) relevant theories and research.
  • CLO 2: Apply search competencies when using library catalogs, key communication databases, and other relevant resources.
  • CLO 3: Understand and distinguish among major qualitative and quantitative research methods.
  • CLO 4: Apply ethical standards for the protection of human subjects in designing a research project.


 COM 685: Internship (1 - 3 cr)

This course reinforces the core concepts of the MAC/MMC program curricula. Students work in the field related to their communication studies. Learning outcomes for this field experience follow the standards as published by the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS), that include 1) knowledge acquisition, integration, construction, and application, 2) cognitive complexity, 3) intrapersonal development, 4) interpersonal competence, 5) humanitarianism and civic engagement, and 6) practical competence. For MAC graduates, this course may be taken for up to 3 credits. For MM/C majors the internship experience is embedded in their program of study.

  • CLO 1: Reflect on the knowledge gained through the field experience.
  • CLO 2: Apply concepts learned in didactic courses into field practice. 


COM 689: Communication Capstone (3 cr)

This course enables students to complete the degree program by producing a project designed to solve a communication problem that draws on theoretical and applied skills, literature, and research presented in coursework. The project must reinforce core competencies developed from curricular study and apply this knowledge to the project design under faculty guidance and within an approved framework. All work must have an application component. Students can develop a comprehensive communication campaign for a client to enhance corporate image, provide communication strategy for dealing with customers and the like of projects which serve a communication objective. Pre-requisite or concurrent with COM 660. Course may not be transferred in or applied towards a second master’s degree. Upon the completion of this course, students will be able to create a comprehensive project which provides a communication solution to a business problem. Students will be able to define, analyze and craft communication programs to solve, improve or facilitate business needs.

  • CLO 1: Analyze and critically evaluate ideas, arguments, and points of view for a synthesized communication project report.
  • CLO 2: Correlate ethical behavior to credibility as a dimension of character in professional conduct.
  • CLO 3: Express oneself professionally both orally and in writing.
  • CLO 4: Apply factual knowledge (terminology, classifications, methods, and trends) relevant to a selected concentration of study within the discipline of communication.

 COM 690: Capstone Thesis (3 cr)

Students complete the degree program with individualized learning by developing and researching a thesis reinforcing core concepts from the curriculum and applying that knowledge and skill under faculty guidance within an approved framework. For students in the thesis degree program. This 3 credit course may be repeated at variable credit until the thesis is defended.

  • CLO 1: Apply ethical and sound research skills in the development and execution of a communication research thesis.
  • CLO 2: Apply exceptional written and verbal communication skills in the defense of an approved MAC thesis.

COM 691: Independent Study (1 - 3 cr)

This course reinforces the core concepts of the MAC program curriculum. Students work with faculty to explore an approved topical area of the MAC in further depth.

  • CLO 1: Apply ethical and sound research skills in the development and execution of a communication research topic.
  • CLO 2: Apply exceptional written and verbal communication skills in the presentation of an approved MAC course topic.