Communications Major and Minor

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Fast Facts: Communications Major and Minor

  • Select from four different concentration tracks
  • Unique focus on intercultural communication as well as interpersonal communication
  • Vast array of internship opportunities
  • Preparation for a variety of versatile career options
  • Students have the opportunity to participate in the London Theatre and Literature study abroad program.

Tuition: Visit our Tuition and Fees page for more information.

Become an effective communicator

The study of communication is the study of messages, from the interpersonal level to mass-mediated forms. The College of St. Scholastica prepares its Communications students to design, adapt and analyze messages that are targeted to specific audiences in a variety of settings. The students enrolled in this program will be able to create and critique persuasive arguments and conduct important industry-related research.

The Communications major understands the rights and responsibilities of communicators as well as the historical and contemporary contexts of the field. Our school has crafted a comprehensive Communications program that prepares students to:

  • Develop exceptional writing and analytical skills
  • Become proficient in digital literacy
  • Formulate and evaluate persuasive arguments
  • Fulfill personal and career goals by being able to recognize, analyze and work to resolve legal, ethical and social issues related to professional practice
  • Interpret rhetorical situations and respond accordingly

The program is designed for students with a wide range of interests. This is achieved by offering four distinct concentration tracks that allow students to tailor their studies to better achieve their unique career goals. Areas of concentration include:

Prepare for career success

Clear and effective communication is essential in this digital age - and our program prepares students for success after graduation through courses in intercultural communication, media literacy, film, argumentation, persuasion and many others. Internship credits are not always required (and depend on the chosen concentration), although opportunities abound for Communications majors. These experiences provide students with invaluable real-world opportunities as they work with area businesses to enhance their portfolios and general industry repertoires. Program alumni have interned at radio stations, public arts commissions, television stations, advertising agencies, professional sports organizations and a number of other professional environments. The spectrum of job opportunities in the field of communications is constantly expanding as people in every industry can benefit from the skills garnered from this degree. Graduates of the Communications program have gone on to pursue fulfilling careers as journalists, lawyers, lobbyists, photographers, sales representatives, publishers, film producers and directors.

Locations

Our Bachelor's degree in Communications is offered exclusively on our Duluth campus.

Pair with a language

Boost your brain power and give yourself a competitive edge in our global economy by pairing your major with a language. St. Scholastica offers programs and courses in American Sign Language, French, German, Latin, Ojibwe, Russian and Spanish.

Sample curriculum

Here are some classes you could take as part of this major or minor. Please note that you would not necessarily need all of these courses to fulfill a major or minor. This list doesn't include general education courses. Be sure to create your course plan in consultation with your advisor.

Course Creation Center

Expand and Collapse Coursework

Expand and Collapse CTA 1114 - Media Literacy

Analyzes the relationship between media and society through the interaction of technology, business, audiences, culture and government. Through lecture, discussion, field trips and other in-class activities, the course reviews the history and theories of mass communication as they relate to specific media.

Expand and Collapse CTA 2240 - Intercultural Communication

Employs lectures, documentaries, assigned readings, role playing and research to understand the cultural forces that determine communication behaviors. The course prepares the student to enter another specific culture and communicate more effectively.

Expand and Collapse CTA 3445 - Argumentation

Examines the elements of persuasive speaking and argumentation. Begins with persuasive presentations and progresses to the formal study of argumentation framed by the Toulmin model of reasoning. Using this model, students will study the four primary types of warrants and the four primary types of argumentative claims. The class concludes with the argument of cases.

Expand and Collapse CTA 4414 - Media Criticism

Applies a variety of critical-theoretical perspectives to consider issues of media production, texts and audiences. Prerequisite: CTA 1114 or consent of instructor.

Expand and Collapse CTA 4445 - Persuasion

Studies persuasion from its early Greek roots through contemporary social scientific studies. Various theories of attitude change will be addressed. Prerequisite: Acceptance into the Communication or Advertising/ Public Relations major or minor; exception made by department approval.

Expand and Collapse ENG 2105 - Investigative Writing

Explores theory and practice of research skills in preparation for writing an article-length essay, report, review of literature, literary or cultural critique, memoir, etc. Focus on developing a proposal, producing a working bibliography, developing an outline or focus statement, writing drafts, and using discipline-specific formats as appropriate. Excellent preparation for McNair students and liberal arts majors intending to pursue graduate school as well as others interested in investigative writing.

Expand and Collapse Concentrations

Expand and Collapse Communication Studies

Expand and Collapse CTA 2201 - The Film as Art

Traces the evolution of nonfiction (documentary) and fiction film forms from 1895 to the present; summarizes research describing persuasive effects by means of lectures, screenings, assigned readings and oral presentations.

Expand and Collapse CTA 2301 - World Cinema

World Cinema examines a wide variety of artistically acclaimed non-Hollywood films from around the world both through stylistic and cultural analysis. We will engage films in this course by situating them within particular artistic film movements and unique socio-historical contexts. We will examine the collaboration and collisions of art and politics through both classic and contemporary films. Movies will be screened in their native languages with English subtitles. Films will be viewed through the critical lens provided by interactive lecture/discussions, screenings, written work, and assigned readings.

Expand and Collapse Film Studies

Expand and Collapse CTA 3301 - Film Topics

Film Topics engages a changing variety of advanced issues of cinematic representation and genre discussion in Film Studies at an Upper Division level with a Writing Intensive focus. Topics change annually, but course requirements remain the same. Readings are advanced and students write about films, meetings, proposals, draft revisions and an in-class writing workshop. The goal is to engage advanced topics in Film Studies through writings and discussions linking film form and content. The ethics of representation is a key focus of discussion along with formal analysis of ‘how’ identities are aesthetically represented.

Expand and Collapse CTA 4220 - Great Filmmakers

Studies the life, significant work, and unique artistic choices made by different historically significant film directors. The directors studied can be considered auteurs insofar as they establish consistent artistic signatures as authors of films while successfully working within the restrictions of the film industry.

Expand and Collapse Media Studies

Expand and Collapse ART 1124 - Basic Design

Studies the elements and the principles of design and their application to fine art and commercial art. Various media are used to experiment with both two- and three-dimensional structures.

Expand and Collapse CTA 2307 - Digital Photography

Introduces digital image making. Students work with digital SLR cameras and the latest photographic software to produce an entirely digital portfolio. Composition and visual aesthetics are emphasized. Digital SLR cameras are provided by the school.

Expand and Collapse CTA 4555 - Internship

Done in a professional business setting or other appropriate setting related to the student's field of interest. The student is supervised by a site supervisor. Evaluation of performance will be completed by the site supervisor, internship advisor and student. Students may obtain additional information about internships from the CTA chair. Prerequisite: Acceptance into the Communication or Advertising/ Public Relations major or minor; exception made by department approval.

Expand and Collapse Theatre Studies

Expand and Collapse CTA 2150 - Acting for the Stage

Acting actually has very little to do with "acting." Modern approaches to acting are based on an individual's responding realistically to imaginary situations. Much of this beginning course will focus on relaxation and concentration exercises as well on as exercises which tap the imagination and help to release the emotional reactions appropriate for a scene. Students will perform monologues and scenes as well as improvisations.

Expand and Collapse CTA 2250 - Introduction to Stagecraft

Introduces modern set-building used in theatre technology. Students develop knowledge of sound and lighting equipment properties, power tools, drafting skills, production budgets and material used to produce a realized production.

Expand and Collapse CTA 3301 - Film Topics

Film Topics engages a changing variety of advanced issues of cinematic representation and genre discussion in Film Studies at an Upper Division level with a Writing Intensive focus. Topics change annually, but course requirements remain the same. Readings are advanced and students write about films, meetings, proposals, draft revisions and an in-class writing workshop. The goal is to engage advanced topics in Film Studies through writings and discussions linking film form and content. The ethics of representation is a key focus of discussion along with formal analysis of ‘how’ identities are aesthetically represented.

Expand and Collapse ENG 3300 - Creative Writ: Fict & Nonfict

Explores the reading of appropriate fiction and writing of short weekly pieces and a final short story. The class includes presentations on technique. Students need not be English majors. Work from this class is often published in the St. Scholastica literary journal, Out of Words.

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  • "My degree gave me the education to break down arguments, take apart concepts and reconstruct ideas in a manner that fits the purpose. I use the information I learned through my communications major on a daily basis.”

    – Ilsa Peterson, ‘06