The Major in Communication develops the capabilities of each student by providing a balance between practical experience and theory. Flexible requirements allow the department to accommodate individual backgrounds, needs and interests. Students are encouraged to participate in internship programs to get on-the-job Communication experience.
The revolution in technology has given added importance to the study of Communication. Job titles and employment opportunities are changing so rapidly that the possession of transferable skills involving the creation, analysis, processing, and distribution of information is more important than ever.
In addition to providing training for specialists, the department strives to equip its students with the communication background necessary for their personal endeavors and career pursuits.
Like any Bachelor of Arts or Science program, the Communication program of study requires General Education courses as well as courses in the major. General academic policies and requirements for graduation are as follows.
The student must meet:
- All curriculum requirements, including General Education requirements, requirements in the major(s) or concentration(s), and, if applicable, requirements in the minor(s).
- The College Writing Requirement.
- The College Mathematics Requirement.
- A minimum of 120 credits, with a minimum of 30 taken at Rhode Island College. Of the 30 credits, a minimum of 15 must be in the major (12 of which must be at the 300 or 400 level).
- A minimum overall grade point average of 2.00 on a 4.00 scale.
Along with the General Education requirements, students desiring the Communication Major, may concentrate in the following areas:
The Journalism Concentration highlights news narrative, multimedia reporting, news ethics and writing for the newsroom. The program places a special emphasis on multimedia reporting in the digital era, leaving students well-equipped to write for both online and offline media platforms.
Journalism as a field values social justice, giving a voice to the voiceless, questioning and holding those in power accountable and the pursuit of truth. Journalism courses feature hands-on interviews with real sources, guest lectures from area journalists, and field trips to news events around the RIC campus and Providence. This is a practical, hands-on concentration that gives students the right tools to land a reporting job fresh out of college.
Public and Professional Communication
The Public and Professional Communication Concentration focuses on oral and written communication skills for people interested in management, government, or a profession dealing with people in public and interpersonal settings.
The Public Relations/Advertising Concentration is for students interested in a career in strategic communication: public relations, publicity, advertising, and to some degree, marketing. The focus is on facilitating communication for both an organization and its publics. Using both the theoretical and the applied, an internship is required to provide on-the-job experience.
Speech, Language and Hearing Science
Speech, Language and Hearing Science Concentration is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of speech, language and hearing. Our curriculum covers the core courses considered by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) to be prerequisites for graduate study. While an advanced degree in speech-language pathology or audiology is required by ASHA, our undergraduate program offers students the necessary background for graduate study. Many of our students go on the pursue advanced degrees.
The Media Communication Concentration prepares students for careers in radio, television, cable and entertainment industries. Students are encouraged to utilize the multi-media laboratory, and join student-run organizations such as The Anchor, the student newspaper; RICTV; and WXIN RIC Radio. Internships in local media outlets are encouraged.