Communication (M.A.)


Dr. Peggy Lewis, Director of Media Studies (program chair)


Trinity’s Master of Arts in Communication Program provides graduate education in communication leading to the Master of Arts (M.A.) degree for working individuals who are seeking to advance their understanding of communication and enhance their career possibilities. The program is committed to the scholarly and intellectual development of the diverse community in the Washington metro area through the process of life-long learning in the discipline of communication.

The Program provides students with a strong foundation in communication history, theory and research while offering areas of emphasis in the study of communication as it relates to media and politics and organizations in general. Underlying all aspects of the program is an appreciation of the current technological revolution and its profound influence on communication.

The Program requires 36 credits (twelve 3-credit classes). Courses are offered in an accelerated format in the evenings and on weekends. Significant individual study and guided independent learning throughout each course are required to meet the objectives of each course and the overall goals of the program. Students normally take three courses per semester and complete their degree in two academic calendar years (21 months), although students may elect to complete the degree in three academic calendar years by taking two courses per semester.


Required Courses (36 credits)

ALL of the following courses:

INT 501 SPS Transitions Seminar for Graduate Students
INT 601 Intro to Research Design and Methods
COM 600 Communication History
COM 601 Communication Theory
COM 603 New Communication Technology

SEVEN elective Communication courses in the student’s area of interest, chosen in consultation with the faculty advisor.  Five of these electives must be graduate-level courses in Communication; the remaining two electives must also be at the graduate level but should be courses taken outside of the Communication program.

ONE degree capstone course:

COM 699 Graduate Capstone in Communication

Program Policies

Graduate students in communication should refer to the academic policies governing graduate students in the School of Professional Studies.

Comprehensive Assessment:
The Communication Program requires students to complete a comprehensive assessment in the Capstone Seminar.  The comprehensive assessment will include the preparation of a communication research project on a topic approved by the professor. Students must earn a grade of “B” or better on this project to complete the program.

Cross-tallied Courses:
Unless noted otherwise, courses that are cross-tallied represent identical courses offered with a different program prefix. Students may not enroll in or receive credit for more than one iteration of a cross-tallied course even in different semesters.

Grades in Graduate Courses:
Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 to graduate and no more than one grade of “C” may appear on their transcript.

Elective Courses:
All courses must be at the 400-level or higher to count toward the degree.  Students must take two courses outside of the Communication Program.

Pass/No Pass:
Graduate students may not take courses on a Pass/No Pass basis; courses taken Pass/No Pass do not fulfill certificate requirements.

TELL Policy:
TELL credits are not applicable toward the degree.

Transfer Policy:
Students may transfer up to 6 graduate credits from other appropriately accredited institutions of higher learning toward the degree with approval from their faculty advisor. Associations recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHEA) confer appropriate accreditation; these associations include but are not limited to regional accreditors.

Course Descriptions

COM 501 Rhetorical Criticism
COM 515 Management Communication
COM 525 Intercultural Communication
COM 535 International Communication
COM 550 Women in Organizations
COM 560 Small Group Communication
COM 570 Publicity and Media Relations
COM 575 Communication and Conflict
COM 582 Leadership
COM 585 Organizational Communication
COM 588 Gender and Communication
COM 592 Speechwriting
COM 600 Communication History
COM 601 Communication Theory
COM 602 Communication Research
COM 603 New Communication Technology
COM 610 Seminar in Political Communication
COM 680 Topics in Mass Communication
COM 691 Communication Internship
COM 699 Graduate Capstone in Communication