McMicken College of Arts & SciencesMcMicken College of Arts & SciencesUniversity of Cincinnati

McMicken College of Arts & Sciences

Master's Degrees

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The field of communication promotes the effective and ethical practice of human communication. The discipline is interested in how audiences interpret symbolic meaning and the social, cultural, political, and economic dimensions of speech and language in context. Communication studies draw from humanistic, social scientific, and aesthetic inquiry to investigate how people use messages to generate meanings within and across various contexts, cultures, channels, and media.

As represented by the National Communication Association, the discipline is “Dedicated to fostering and promoting free and ethical communication.” NCA “promotes the widespread appreciation of the importance of communication in public and private life, the application of competent communication to improve the quality of human life and relationships, and the use of knowledge about communication to solve human problems” (

Teachers and scholars in the Department of Communication at the University of Cincinnati focus on media, rhetoric, public communication, interpersonal, public relations, and organizational communication. Topics include media effects, health and environmental communication, risk and science, leadership and advocacy, social and personal identity, new media, politics, and more.


Quick Info

Program Code


Real-World Learning Components

Optional internship(s), Research


2 years

Admission Criteria

Highly competitive


Main Campus


McMicken College of Arts and Sciences


Dr. Heahter Zoller, Graduate Program Director
Phone: 513-556-4468

Career Possibilities


Non-profit management

Corporate Communication Specialist

Training and Employee Development

Higher Education – Student Affairs, Study Abroad

Public Affairs/Public Relations Officer

Market Research Manager/Focus Group Moderator

Development Officer (Non-profit fundraising)

Events Planning

Community Outreach Associate

Environmental Campaign Manager

Health Educator

Pharmaceutical Sales

Scientific and Technical Writing

Science Journalism

Environmental Mediator/Negotiator

Crisis Management

Political Advocacy

Political Campaigns

Additional career options are listed on the Center for Exploratory Studies website.

Major Details


The Master of Arts in Communication prepares students for future excellence at the Ph.D. level or for careers in their chosen profession. This two-year degree provides a comprehensive foundation in communication studies and flexibility to adapt the program to your goals. 


The program involves a two-year program of study that includes the following elements:

  1. Students are required to complete 33 credit hours of course work in order to graduate.
  2. To graduate, students must complete 4 required courses, 4 Communication electives and 9 maximum thesis or praxis hours.
  3. The minimum number of hours for a full-time load for graduate students receiving assistantships and/or scholarships is 12 hours of graduate course work per semester.
  4. During the first year in the program, full-time students take the four required communication graduate courses, two Communication electives, and two sections of Introduction to Graduate Studies. During the second year in the program, students will enroll in at least three elective courses, thesis or praxis hours, and a one-hour Academic and Professional Preparation course. Students who need to take 12 hours have several options to complete their hours.
  5. Students complete a Masters Thesis, an independently developed and executed research project, or a Praxis Project, an applied study based on work or field experience. The thesis or praxis research project can involve a variety of approaches and methods, including experimental, survey, observation/participation, fieldwork, or critical-textual.
  6. The Department assigns a faculty member to serve as an advisor for each first-year student. Students are responsible for identifying a faculty member in the Department who will serve as their thesis or praxis adviser, and for forming a thesis or praxis committee.
  7. The Department generally provides two years of funding for students who receive a graduate assistantship position when admitted to the program. Assistantships are assigned for students starting in the Autumn semester. Students who receive GA teaching positions will enroll for a one-credit course Communication Teaching Practicum in Autumn and Spring semesters of the first year.


These tools assist students to identify course requirements and individual progress toward completion of academic programs. It is important to utilize these resources with personalized guidance from a UC academic advisor regularly to ensure timely graduation..

My Degree Audit - for confirmed and current students

My Transfer Course Equivalencies - for students considering transfer to UC

UC Schedule of Classes - search course availability and descriptions

Curriculum Guide Versions:

UC Advantages and Special Opportunities

Why UC?

  1.    Rated one of the best masters only Communication programs in the country
  2.    Small program means strong faculty- student relationships
  3.    Top scholar faculty in organizational, political, environmental, media, and health communication
  4.    Graduates are placed in top doctoral programs and exciting professional positions
  5.    Graduate Assistantships are available in teaching or research

Our two- year program includes:

  • 24 credit hours of course work, plus 9 credit hours of thesis/praxis project
  • 4 required courses in communication theory and research
  • Multiple options for electives that allow you to customize the program
  • The Master’s Thesis allows you to design and execute independent research
  • The Praxis Project allows you to apply classroom learning to professional experience
  • Strong mentorship through faculty advising

Special Programs

The Department of Communication at the University of Cincinnati promotes knowledge of human communication through research, teaching, and service. We are located in an urban center within a large research university, which provides a dynamic context for connecting theory and practice.

Our award-winning faculty members share a distinctive focus on contemporary social problems. Research centers on understanding issues of voice, identity, public participation, and advocacy/leadership across communication contexts including interpersonal, organizational, political, organizational, rhetorical, environmental, health, and mediated communication.

Admission Requirements

A cover letter stating the desired term of admission and indication of full-time or part-time status along with description of academic goals
Official academic transcripts
Verified GRE

3 letters of recommendation

Application Deadlines


The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.