Apr 13, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
    
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Communication, MA


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College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences  > Jack J. Valenti School of Communication  > Communication, MA

The Jack J. Valenti School of Communication at the University of Houston offers a Master’s degree in Communication directed toward professional success in both academic and nonacademic careers. The goal of the program is to produce graduate students who are able to move effectively into professional media positions, advance their current careers, teach in junior colleges or high schools, or enter into top doctoral programs.

To date, our school has placed graduates into top-ranked PhD programs as well as into nonacademic positions in both public and private institutions. Regardless of the career goal, the graduate program broadens each student’s communication expertise through courses that improve conceptual, applied, and research skills - all of which are critical for successful careers in today’s information-oriented and changing global society.

Areas of Concentration

Within the MA in Communication, there are four specializations from which a student must choose one. The four areas are:

  • Health Communication, which focuses on examining the symbolic and organizational processes by which people, individually and collectively, understand, shape, and accommodate to health and illness.
  • Journalism & Mass Communication, which focuses on the development of modern media systems and their impact on society, and examines ways in which the media contribute and respond to political, social and economic issues
  • Public Relations, which focuses on theory and research that is needed to help advancing practitioners assist organizations to communicate and strengthen relationships with their stakeholders. Emphasis is given to management issues relevant to products, services, image, and public policy issues.
  • Global & Intercultural Communication, which focuses on communication patterns and formats between and among people across national borders and cultures with the aim of understanding the transfer of knowledge, opinions, values, and culture across boundaries

For more information, contact: Dr. Lindita Camaj, Director of Graduate Studies, at lcamaj@uh.edu.

Admission Requirements


In addition to meeting the college graduate admission requirements, applicants to the communication program must have achieved an undergraduate degree in communication or related subfield or have completed at least 18 college-level hours in the field.

For details on the application process and required documentation, please visit: https://uh.edu/class/communication/graduate/how-to-apply/.

Admission Information

To be considered eligible for unconditional admittance, the student must:

  • Have earned a Bachelor’s Degree in an appropriate field from an accredited institution,
  • Have a minimum 3.0/4.0 Grade Point Average (GPA) in the last 60 undergraduate hours attempted, and
  • Have competitive scores on the GRE which are historically 153 or higher for the verbal portion, 153 or higher for math/quantitative portion in the current scoring system, and a 3.5 on the writing portion.
  • International students currently enrolled in an MA program with which we have an MOU may waive the GRE requirement

Students who have earned several grades of C or below in undergraduate communication
courses will not be deemed eligible for this level of admission.

Applicants not meeting the criteria for unconditional admission might be considered for conditional admission. Any student admitted conditionally must:

  • Have a GPA of at least 2.7/4.0 in the last 60 undergraduate hours attempted,
  • Have a GPA of at least 3.00 in undergraduate communication course hours
  • Have acceptable GRE scores, and
  • Have other application materials that suggest the student can succeed in the graduate program.

All materials in the application packet (letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, transcripts and GRE scores) are considered in admission decisions.

Conditional admittance requires that the student maintain at least a “B” average in the first 12 hours attempted in graduate school. Conditional students will have their status changed by the graduate studies advisor after 12 hours of coursework provided they have maintained a “B” average in the first 12 hours of coursework. Students cannot embark on the next stage of the MA program - the thesis option, the comprehensive exam option, or the applied project option - until they are granted unconditional status. This is normally conferred (1) if the student has completed all undergraduate deficiencies noted at the time conditional status was granted, (2) if the student has fulfilled all graduate degree prerequisites, (3) if the student has terminated all incompletes on her/his graduate record, and (4) if the student has maintained a minimum (3.0) GPA in the graduate program.

Degree Requirements


Credit hours required for this degree:

  1. Thesis Option - 30.0
  2. Comprehensive Exam Option - 33.0
  3. Project Option - 33.0

Thesis Option


All course work should be selected in conjunction with the graduate director, members of the thesis/comprehensive exam committees, and other professors in their areas of concentration.

Comprehensive Exam Option


All course work should be selected in conjunction with the graduate director, members of the thesis/comprehensive exam committees, and other professors in their areas of concentration.

The student must pass a comprehensive examination in the final term of the degree program.

Project Option


All course work should be selected in conjunction with the graduate director, members of the thesis/comprehensive exam committees, and other professors in their areas of concentration.

The student must complete a capstone project in the final term of the degree program.

Academic Policies


Policies on Courses

  1. NO course at the 3000 level or below are accepted for graduate credit.
  2. Only courses in which a grade A through F is awarded can be applied to the number of hours required for a degree. Courses with grades of U or S do not meet degree requirements, except for comprehensive examination credit, which does not count as hours required for graduation.
  3. All students admitted to graduate status must choose one of three options - the Thesis Option, the Applied Project Option, or the Comprehensive Exam Option - by the end of 12 hours, of graduate study. The requirements for each option are outlined below.
  4. Only one 4000 level course, with an additional research component, may be petitioned for consideration as graduate credit. Undergraduate courses taken to fulfill undergraduate deficiencies will not count as undergraduate courses credited to the graduate program. A petition must be submitted two weeks prior to enrollment and to allow for the multiple signatures required. The completion of a petition does notguarantee acceptance.
  5. For courses taken outside of Valenti School of Communication, a petition must be submitted two weeks prior to enrollment and to allow for the multiple signatures required. These hours should supplement the student’s area of concentration
  6. Special Problems Course: Students may enroll in one special problems course with an individual professor. A special problems course is 3 credit hours. The appropriate section number is available each term from the professor who will direct the study or from the graduate assistant. The student must complete a general petition form outlining the nature of the independent study, the product to be produced and evaluated, and how often student and professor will meet throughout the term. After the professor signs the general petition form, the student needs to submit it to the Director of Graduate Studies. The director of Graduate Studies must, before the last day of enrollment, have approved this petition. A student who fails to comply with this provision will be dropped from the state audit roll if the petition is not on file and approved by the twelfth class day. In no case may unapproved special problems hours be counted toward a degree.

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