The B.F.A. with a major in Communication with an emphasis on Organizational Communication or Interpersonal Communication prepares students for a wide variety of professional careers. Through the study of the theory and practice of communication, students in the Communication major gain expertise in the skills most valued in the 21st-century workplace. Students learn team leadership, decision making, critical and creative thinking, problem solving, presentational skills, persuasion, research, writing, technology, and intercultural communication by examining communication in multiple contexts. With the B.F.A. in Communication, students are prepared to move directly from the academic to the organizational environment. For information on careers in Communication, please visit the department website.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers conducts an annual survey, asking employers to identify the top skills they seek in college graduates. Of the top ten skills identified, nine are directly related to courses taught in the B.F.A. with a major in Communication. Similarly, for over four decades, the Fortune 500 list of most valued skills has been dominated by those taught in the Communication major.

Grade Point Average Requirement for the BFA with a Major in Communication 

Students who declare a major in Communication must earn a grade point average of 2.25 or better in all Area F courses. Any student who fails to earn a 2.25 or better in Area F courses will be asked to change majors or will be switched to an undeclared major status.

Selected Educational Outcomes

  1. The Communication major will demonstrate skill in the use of the materials, technology, and methods of communication and expression necessary to be global citizens.
  2. The Communication major will demonstrate understanding of the theories and practices of interpersonal, intercultural, organizational, and public communication.
  3. The Communication major will demonstrate skill in the analysis of the communication needs of clients and in the design and implementation of programs to satisfy those needs.

Examples of Outcome Assessments

The Department assesses the extent to which the program requirements create the desired outcomes by using a portfolio system. The completed portfolios will include designated assignments that will vary depending on course selection.

Requirements for the B.F.A. degree with a Major in Communication

with an Emphasis on Organizational Communication or Interpersonal Communication

Core Curriculum60
Core Curriculum Areas A-E (See VSU Core Curriculum)42
Core Curriculum Area F18
COMM 1110Public Speaking3
COMM 1500Introduction to Communication Studies3
COMM 1800Communication Technology3
COMM 2100Introduction to Communication Theory3
COMM 2300Interpersonal Communication3
COMM 2500Communication, Culture, and Community3
Senior College Curriculum60
Communication Core30
Communication and Values9
Argumentation and Advocacy
Persuasion
Communication Law and Ethics
Communication Analysis6
Applied Communication Research
Data Analytics for Communication
Workplace Skills9
Teams and Leadership
Conflict Management
Creativity and Communication Design
Social Media Applications6
Visual Communication and Aesthetics
Social Media Strategies
Emphasis: Select Interpersonal or Organizational Communication12
Interpersonal Communication Emphasis
Advanced Interpersonal Communication
Interpersonal Communication Capstone
Nonverbal Communication
Listening and Interviewing
Health Communication
Communication Across Difference
Organizational Communication Emphasis
Organizational Communication
Professional Communication
Organizational Communication Capstone
Crisis Communication and Negotiation
Communicating Globally
Guided Electives18
Total hours required for the degree120

The B.F.A. with a major in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations prepares students to enter a demanding field in which professionals routinely use critical thinking, analysis, decision-making, writing, communication design, strategic planning, project management, presentation skills, and technology. Public Relations professionals must be responsive to multiple and often competing demands in complex and diverse organizational environments. The program in Public Relations allows  graduates to work in a variety of fields, especially medical/health communication, nonprofit, corporate, and other contexts. Graduates can seamlessly move from the academic to the organizational environment. The B.F.A. with a Concentration in Public Relations is certified by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).

Students interested in pursuing Public Relations careers in the health care industry are encouraged to complete the Health Communications minor as part of their academic program.

Grade Point Average Requirement for the BFA in Communication with a Concentration in Public Relations

Students who declare a major in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations must earn a grade point average of 2.25 or better in all Area F courses. Any student who fails to earn a 2.25 or better in Area F courses will be automatically switched to an undeclared major status.

Selected Educational Outcomes

Students in the Public Relations concentration will:

  1. demonstrate skill in the use of the materials, technology, and methods of communication and expression to target messages to appropriate publics.
  2. demonstrate understanding of the theories and practices of public relations within the global marketplace.
  3. demonstrate skill in the analysis of the communication needs of clients and in the design and implementation of programs and campaigns to satisfy those needs.

Examples of Outcome Assessments

The Department assesses the extent to which the program requirements create the desired outcomes by using a variety of techniques. Examples of these assessments (and related educational outcomes) include:

  1. Writing: examining the quality of writing assignments in student portfolios from PREL 3220 and PREL 3240.
  2. Research: examining the quality of research assignments in student portfolios from COMM 3110, PREL 4200, and PREL 4230.
  3. Campaign Design: examining the quality of campaign analysis and design in student portfolios from PREL 3230 and PREL 4230.
  4. Integrated Communication: examining the quality of cohesive packaging of advertising, marketing, and public relations to promote a product or a cause from PREL 4220 and PREL 4230.

Requirements for the B.F.A. degree with a Major in Communication 

with a Concentration in Public Relations

Core Curriculum60
Core Curriculum Areas A-E (See VSU Core Curriculum) 142
Core Curriculum Area F18
COMM 1110Public Speaking3
COMM 1500Introduction to Communication Studies3
COMM 1800Communication Technology3
COMM 2100Introduction to Communication Theory3
COMM 2500Communication, Culture, and Community3
PREL 2000Introduction to Public Relations3
Communication Core18
COMM 2300Interpersonal Communication3
COMM 3031Communication Law and Ethics3
COMM 3111Applied Communication Research3
COMM 3311Teams and Leadership3
COMM 4111Data Analytics for Communication3
JOUR 3510News Writing3
Public Relations 21
PREL 3210Strategic Design for Public Relations3
PREL 3220Strategic Writing for Public Relations3
PREL 3230Public Relations Case Studies3
PREL 3240Strategic Design for Digital Media3
PREL 4200Public Relations Research3
PREL 4220Integrated Communication3
PREL 4230Public Relations Capstone3
PREL 3250Public Relations in Health Care3
or COMM 3211 Event Planning
Guided Electives18
Total hours required for the degree120
1

Students are encouraged to take COMM 1100 as part of their Area C requirement.