About Us

Students in the communication graduate program have access to as many areas of research as there are professors – everything ranging from mass communication processes and effects, social influence theory, multicultural communication, gender and communication, health communication, social consequences of new communications technologies, public argument, influence of the English language globally and social justice.

The communication master's program also offers an interdisciplinary curriculum which combines core courses in the study of communication with study in one of the following areas: English, political science, psychology or business administration.

The flexibility of the communication graduate program allows students to tailor their education to their professional and personal goals. This program is offered on campus and we offer an alternative on-line program for students who prefer an e-learning format. Learn more about e-learning >>

The graduate program in Communication leads to a Master of Arts degree.

Course work within the Department of Communication focuses upon symbolic processes in human communication in a variety of contexts including health communication, organizational communication, and mass communication. The program will provide a solid grounding in research, theory, message development, and analysis to prepare graduates for careers in education, business, mass media, and/or government.

Students receiving the master's degree from the Department of Communication must:

  • Have a thorough grounding in theories relevant to a particular area of interest, and have the ability to apply this knowledge to the solution of a variety of communication-related problems;

  • Have been exposed to a variety of research and analytical or critical methods, have a basic understanding of these, and have demonstrated a working command of at least one methodology; and

  • Have a basic knowledge of and appreciation for approaches to the study of communication from a variety of perspectives.


The department's M.A. program is based on the satisfactory completion of a minimum of 36 semester hours of credit distributed as follows:

1.  At least 24 hours of credit must be taken within the Department of Communication.

2.  Up to 12 hours of credit may be scheduled outside the department.  These courses must be approved by your advisor.

3.  The four required core communication courses are:

  • CMM 501 - Communication Research Methods
  • CMM 503 - Communication Research Seminar or CMM 502 - Rhetorical Criticism 
  • CMM 536 - Communication Theory & Models
  • CMM 517 - Organizational Communication or  CMM 571 - Mass Communication Processes & Effects

4. Each master’s candidate writing the thesis must schedule a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 6 hours of thesis credit credits.

Demonstration of satisfactory progress toward the degree includes the requirement that students maintain a minimum average of B (3.00) in course work. Students who fail to meet this requirement are either placed on academic probation and can be dropped from the program.  Students are permitted no more than 2 courses or six hours with grades of C or lower. Students who fail to meet this requirement are dismissed from the program.  Please note:  It is your responsibility to know if you have 2 or more Cs in graduate coursework.  If you are not sure, be sure to inquire before registering for additional classes.  This is of particular importance to students who have taken a grade of incomplete in one or more courses.  The office of graduate studies will make an effort to notify you by mail if you fall below the 3.0 GPA requirement.

Teaching Assistantships

Each year the Department of Communication offers 3 or 4 teaching assistantships to qualified students. These appointments include a monthly stipend, health insurance and tuition remission for their graduate coursework. Each teaching assistant has the opportunity to teach CMM 100 (Principles of Oral Communication) while completing his or her M.A. degree. These assistantships begin in the fall term each academic year. All application materials must be received by the Office of Graduate Admission Processing before March 9th. Unfortunately we do not have assistantships available at other times of the year.

Application Materials

Students interested in applying for a teaching assistantship must complete the application process and their application materials must be received before March 9th. In addition to applying to the graduate program, students interested in applying for an assistantship must also complete the application for an assistantship. A check list of the steps for applying for an assistantship are listed below.

Complete the University of Dayton Graduate School online application. Be sure to indicate on your online application form that you are interested in applying for a teaching assistantship. Please note that there are no research assistantships in the Department of Communication at this time.

Send official transcripts from all colleges and universities you have attended to the Office of Graduate Admission  Processing.

Send three (3) letters of recommendation from faculty members familiar with your academic work.  Be sure to use the recommendation form that can be found on the Graduate Admission website. Have the faculty member send the completed form to the Office of Graduate Admission Processing.  You need not send more than three letters of recommendation.  You may use the letters required for applying to graduate school in your application for a teaching assistantship.  However, be sure you indicate to the people writing for you that they should speak to your ability to teach if they have any insight into that area.

Have your scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) sent to the Office of Graduate Admission Processing. You will need to complete the verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing sections of the GRE. This is commonly called the general GRE. There is no subject test for communication. You can take the GRE at Sylvan Learning Centers by appointment.

Send a written statement of your educational and professional goals.  Be sure to address the following questions:
      a. Why are you interested in pursuing an M.A. in communication?
      b. What are your career goals?
      c. Why do you think you would be an effective teacher?
      d. Send a resume or CV.
      e. Submit a sample of academic writing, such as a research paper, published paper or thesis. 

Application materials can be obtained online here.  You may call (937) 229-2343 with any questions.

PLEASE NOTE:  Other forms of financial aid are not available through the Department of Communication at this time.  Grants or loans may be available to some students but they must be pursued through the office of financial aid.  You can contact the Office of Human Resources at the University of Dayton to see if there are any jobs available on campus.  Another option is to contact the staff in Office of Residential Services.  Residential services may hire graduate students to work as residential assistants for the various campus housing facilities.

Find Us

Department of Communication

St. Joseph Hall 121 
300 College Park 
Dayton, Ohio 45469 - 1410