Strategize and deploy effective communications in current-day digital environments, social media platforms, and crisis and persuasion scenarios.

Students will graduate with an understanding of information management, public relations, social media messaging, crisis communications and issues management, and advocacy -- all areas where organizations need expertise to manage their reputations and relationships. A communication specialization will lead graduates to careers in public affairs, political arenas, non-profit organizations, and internal and external corporate communications.

Courses In This Specialization

This program consists of five lower-division courses, for a total of 15 credit hours.

Students will learn public speaking and writing skills for use in the business world. Combining communication theory and skills, students will be able to strategically manage their own communication strategies for success in employment and career building. The course has three components: public speaking, managerial writing, and career growth. Students will master verbal strategies such as elevator pitches; traditional correspondence; electronic and social media writing; and career growth communication, including employment-seeking writing, portfolio building.

This course is also offered through SSA. Credits earned using this option will appear on transcripts with an “S” suffix.

In this class, students will learn about current-day work in persuasion and advocacy across health communication, corporate communication, human resources, advertising, public relations, interactive media, and media studies. To understand the relationships between theory, research, and practice, students will develop a campaign proposal that is grounded in both academic and original research. Students work collaboratively to create the proposal, which will be a professional document for a portfolio or can be developed as an applied project in advocacy within a field.

This course introduces students to the heart of strategic communication: organizational reputation and relationship management. Students will apply and expand theory to practice by learning how to make, justify, and assess the impact of organizational decisions on internal and external relationships, corporate image, reputation, ethics, and trust. This course is a replacement course for COM400 – Strategic Communication as of the 19-20 Fall Trimester. Students cannot receive credit for both of these courses. Recommended Prior Course: COM335

This course is also offered through SSA. Credits earned using this option will appear on transcripts with an “S” suffix.

This course teaches the important skills of distinguishing types of data and communicating scientific and mathematical information in presentations by visualizing data. Students will learn ways to systematically collect, analyze, and interpret data, then translate technical, data-driven information to a lay audience. Students will examine how data analytics contributes to the formulation of policy decisions and the subsequent communication to stakeholders. Students will recognize how analytics applies to return on investment (ROI) within any career or field. Students prepare presentations using narrative strategies to create compelling, interesting talks based on data.

This course examines the strategic use of social media for public communication. The course applies classic and contemporary theory to new media and technologies. Students will understand the practical knowledge and insights required to establish objectives and strategies, properly select social media platforms to engage publics, and monitor and measure the results of these efforts.

This course is also offered through SSA. Credits earned using this option will appear on transcripts with an “S” suffix.