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Master of Arts in Professional Communication Online

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Program Overview

Enhance your communication skills and learn the application of professional communication to effectively reach a variety of audiences with the 100 percent online Master of Arts in Professional Communication. This practice-oriented program is ideal for those working for any company requiring audience messaging capabilities in advertising and public relations campaigns, social media content creation, internal organizational analysis, media production and more.

$13,500 Total Tuition
As few as 12 months Program Duration
36 Credit Hours

Interact one-on-one with distinguished faculty in dynamic courses with topics like advertising and public relations strategies, pop culture, social media, and professional writing and presentation and gain skills applicable to any industry. Offering projects tailored to your professional goals, this program helps you apply what you learn immediately.

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In this program, you will:

  • Study the impact of technology and social media on the communication process as well as how outlets like YouTube, TV, advertisements, gaming, etc. influence identity and collective understanding
  • Complete an integrated social media plan with objectives, strategies, tactics and key performance indicators
  • Explore advanced issues in advertising and public relations and how practitioners respond to and manage events
  • Learn the fundamentals of qualitative and rhetorical research methods and have the opportunity to write up your own studies from question formulation through interpretation and conclusion
  • Complete either a Thesis or Capstone Project demonstrating knowledge gained in the program

This program prepares you for roles such as:

  • Public Relations Manager
  • Internal Communications Manager
  • Marketing Consultant
  • Political Campaign Manager
  • Marketing Communications Manager
  • Social Media Content Creator
  • Social Media Specialist

Have questions or need more information about our online programs?

Tuition

SUU offers students the opportunity to earn their online degree with affordable, pay-as-you-go tuition, which includes all fees.

Tuition breakdown:

$375 Per Credit Hour
$13,500 Total Tuition

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Program Per Credit Hour Per Course Per Program
M.A. in Professional Communication $375 $1,125 $13,500

Calendar

The Master of Arts in Professional Communication is delivered in an online format ideal for working professionals, conveniently featuring multiple start dates each year. Choose the start date that's best for you.

Now enrolling:

Next Application Deadline
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Term Start Date Application Deadline Document Deadline Registration Deadline Tuition Deadline Last Class Day
Spring A 01/13/20 12/30/19 01/06/20 01/08/20 01/10/20 03/08/20
Spring B 03/09/20 02/24/20 03/02/20 03/04/20 03/06/20 05/03/20
Summer A 05/04/20 04/20/20 04/27/20 04/29/20 05/01/20 06/28/20
Summer B 06/29/20 06/15/20 06/22/20 06/24/20 06/26/20 08/23/20

Ready to take the next step toward earning your degree online? Begin your online application today!

Admissions

At SUU, we’ve streamlined the admission process to help you get started quickly and easily. Please read the requirements for the M.A. in Professional Communication online program, including what additional materials you need and where you should send them.

Online Application
Bachelor’s Degree
Writing Sample

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You must meet the following requirements for admission to the Master of Arts in Professional Communication program.

  • Submit graduate application and $60 non-refundable application fee
  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited university
  • Official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended
  • Minimum 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA
    • Full Admission
      • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or in the last 60 hours (whichever is higher) AND
      • Combined GRE score of 290 on the verbal and quantitative sections and 4.0 analytical writing score OR
      • GRE waiver—meet one condition below
    • Conditional Admission
      • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.7 or in the last 60 hours (whichever is higher) AND
      • Combined GRE score of 280 on the verbal and quantitative sections and a score of 3.5 on the analytical writing section OR
      • GRE Waiver—meet one condition below
    • Submit official GRE scores
      • The GRE may be waived if the applicant meets one of the following conditions:
        • 3 or more years of professional communication experience in appropriate field or industry; a resume is required to substantiate work history OR
        • 3.7 overall undergraduate GPA or in the last 60 hours
    • Three references to be provided on the online application form
    • Letter of Intent
      • This is a brief (500-word limit) description of the applicant’s goals and expectations in pursuing a graduate degree
    • Writing Sample from previous coursework or professional activities; 1,000-word minimum may be met through one or multiple samples (should not exceed 3,000 words)

Official transcripts, test scores and other documents should be sent directly from the granting institution(s) to:

Email address
gradapps@suu.edu

Mail address
Admissions Office
Southern Utah University
PO Box 8008
Cedar City, Utah 84720

Courses

The Master of Arts in Professional Communication online curriculum is comprised of 36 credit hours including 18 credit hours of core courses plus a capstone and 18 elective credit hours.

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COMM 6000: Communication and Professional Development

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students learn to successfully navigate graduate education, engage in research and professional activities, and prepare portfolios and resumes/CVs. Targeted to student needs at various stages in the program.

COMM 6010: Applied Communication Theory

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Using communication theory in real life. Introduction, research, and written articulation of both basic and advanced concepts of theories examining the role of applied and professional communication in human, organizational, social media, strategic, and mass media contexts.

COMM 6020: Qualitative Communication Research

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students learn the fundamentals of various qualitative and rhetorical research methods, with their associated theoretical bases and specific applications. These methods include: 1) generic, metaphor, narrative, and Burkean criticism; 2) ethnography and participant observation; 3) semi-structured interviewing; and 4) grounded theory. Students have the opportunity to conduct and write up their own qualitative/rhetorical studies from the start (formulating research questions) to finish (interpreting the findings and drawing appropriate conclusions).

COMM 6030: Quantitative Communication Research

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students will use relevant statistics to summarize data and explain certain human behaviors. Focus is on matching appropriate statistical tests to a given situation and providing relevant interpretations rather than on calculating the numbers. Using the IBM SPSS statistics program, students will apply their knowledge to modern-day research and practical problems related to communication professions.

COMM 6040: Professional Writing and Presentations

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students will strengthen and enhance writing and presentation skills with careful attention to advanced language use required in various professional communication contexts. Students will create training sessions, press releases, digital resumes, website, social media, and marketing materials to help organizations manage their public face as well as learn how to establish and maintain their personal professional image in various contexts.

Students must select one Capstone Course.

COMM 6900: Masters Capstone Thesis

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

A capstone experience demonstrating the ability to complete a professional thesis in consultation with a graduate committee. Students conceive, research, and produce a thesis in a relevant area of communication.

COMM 6910: Masters Capstone Project

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

A capstone experience demonstrating the ability to complete a professional project.

COMM 6110: Mediated Communication in Relationships

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

The study of interpersonal communication through technology-mediated contexts. This course will explore the adoption, usage, and management of new technologies people use to communicate and interact with each other, as well as examine how the different types of mediated communication technologies affect the communication process.

COMM 6140: Pop Culture Messages

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Examines influential texts (e.g., YouTube, TV, Film, Advertisements, Music, and Gaming) that students consume daily. Focuses on the ways these discourses create identity and collective understanding. Explores message forms and their implications for critical thinking and consumption.

COMM 6150: Visual Literacy and Application

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Students will explore an image's narrative on multiple levels (ironic, indexical, and symbolic meaning) and understand how our image comprehension and construction are inextricably linked to the visual languages of advertising and photojournalism. Using eye-tracking and VR technology, students will also learn how to measure attention to entire visual messages and intra-stimulus attention allocation to specific messages.

COMM 6210: Advertising and Public Relations Strategies

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Discusses advanced issues in advertising and public relations and how practitioners respond to and manage issues and events, with emphasis on recent research and theoretical developments, case studies, and experimental approaches.

COMM 6230: Professional Social Media

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Examines the strategic use of major social media platforms. Topics include blogging, search engine optimization, content creation, storytelling, corporate messaging, and uses and development of visual content. Students will complete an integrated social media plan with objectives, strategies, and tactics with key performance indicators and measurement.

COMM 6240: Current Issues in Communication

Duration: 8 weeks   |   Credit Hours: 3

Current issues in communication discussing contemporary communication topics varying by semester. Repeatable with different topics up to 18 credits toward the master's degree. Check with department for upcoming topics.

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