As a M.A. student in the Department of Communication Studies, you will select one of two tracks of study: (1) Interpersonal and Health Communication or (2) Rhetorical Studies. After your first year of study, you will also need to determine if you will pursue the thesis or non-thesis degree option.
A. Coursework Requirements
The typical M.A. student takes 2 years to complete all degree requirements. Coursework required for the M.A. in Communication Studies include: (1) COMM 8200 (Rhetorical Theory), COMM 8500 (Interpersonal Communication Theory), COMM 8020 (Introduction to Graduate Studies), (2) COMM 8010 or COMM 8011 (Seminar in Communication Education), (3) either COMM 8300 (Rhetorical Criticism) or COMM 8700 (Empirical Research Methods), (4) two hours of COMM (Research Practicum), and several elective seminars.
The Graduate School stipulates that a M.A. student must complete a program of study which constitutes a logical whole and that the courses listed in the program of study must carry at least 24 semester hours of graduate credit, exclusive of thesis and research hours. At least one-half of this credit must be in University of Georgia courses open only to graduate students. At least 12 hours of course work must be in courses offered by the Speech Communication department, exclusive of research thesis hours. Transfer credit is not accepted.
B. Thesis vs. Non Thesis Options
The decision to pursue the thesis or non-thesis option is dtermined by the student in consultation with his or her advisor, typically in the spring semester of the first year of study. Those pursuing the thesis option will generate a unqiue written product or significant academic caliber. Those students pursuing the non-thesis option will take comprehensive exams in order to complete the degree.