The term program refers to a formal agreement between the student, the department, and the Graduate School regarding the courses and other requirements which must be completed to receive a Ph.D. Programs in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Minnesota focus on understanding communication, and on its impact on individuals and groups in cultures here and abroad.
Rhetorical Studies includes rhetorical criticism, rhetorical theory and public address, mass media criticism, and the history of public address.
Interpersonal Communication focuses on social scientific research on communication. In addition, to taking courses in communication theory, research methods and statistics, students focus on organizational and small group, electronic media, new technologies, intercultural or personal communication.
Critical Media Studies approaches mediated communication as a cultural form that is socially influential, economically powerful, and politically significant.
Normally, students will take most of their "program" in one of two concentrations. But, the faculty requires that all graduate students take course work in both concentrations. No matter what concentration is chosen, interconnections among subfields of communication are emphasized.
The program for the Ph.D. is planned in conjunction with the student's adviser. The program is usually worked out with the adviser and filed in the Graduate School after about two semesters in residence as a Ph.D. student. It is assumed that all Ph.D. students will have previously completed an M.A. or its equivalent in Communication Studies.
While the requirements for the Ph.D. can be completed within three years after the M.A. is completed, many students take four academic years to finish.
Transfer credits must be graduate level work, approved by the student's adviser, the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS), and the Graduate School, and must be in Communication Studies or the student's approved minor or related fields.
The program requires no set number of course credits, but students are expected to submit programs consisting of at least 66 credits, which may include 12 credits from the M.A., an additional 30 credits of doctoral coursework, and 24 thesis-writing credits.
The 42 total course credit hours should include at least 12 credits in those research methods that are relevant for completing the degree and continuing a scholarly career. Under certain circumstances, foreign language courses may be used to satisfy this requirement. Communication Theory students must complete a minimum of four supervised research credits.
Detailed information about the Department's Ph.D. Requirements can be found here.