California Baptist University (CBU) offers an online Master of Arts in Strategic Communication degree through its Division of Online and Professional Studies (CBU Online). The degree program can be completed entirely online without visiting campus. Students use a variety of online learning technologies including Blackboard and Zoom to complete their degree. Blackboard, an online learning management system, allows students to access and review course information, submit assignments, converse with peers via online messaging and message boards, and communicate with professors.

The online Master of Arts in Strategic Communication requires 30 credit hours of study to complete. Students traditionally complete the program in as few as 12 months. Curriculum is divided across ten required courses, including a culminating capstone project. The program’s curriculum is designed to build professional skills in strategic communication, communication management, and research-informed leadership, while simultaneously teaching students how to blend a biblical worldview into contemporary communication theories and methods.

The program curriculum covers a wide range of strategic communication topics, including the principles of social influence and persuasion, communication campaigns, communication management and decision-making, and digital trends in strategic communication. All students follow the same ten-course sequence that is designed to teach students how to integrate communication theories into their communication strategies, as well as how to use advanced research methods to inform communication campaigns and best practices. The courses also emphasize the relationship between media communication and consumer psychology and behavior, and discuss the ethics around effective internal and external-facing rhetoric.

The final class is a Communication Capstone Project. This class requires students to apply the concepts they have learned in their courses to a strategic communication project that is relevant to their work setting and professional interests. With support from faculty mentors, students must design and implement a creative and compelling communication project utilizing the principles of strategic communication and graduate research methods.

California Baptist University (and CBU Online) is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior College and University Commission.

Online Master of Arts in Strategic Communication

Department: Department of Communication Arts / Online and Professional Studies
Websites: Department and Program

Program Format
Structure: Online program with no required campus visits
Instruction Methods: Program mainly asynchronous instruction
Campus Visits Required: No
Program Length: Program can be completed in 12 months
Start Dates: Six starts per year

Curriculum and Graduation Requirements
Thesis Required: No
Capstone Options: Communication capstone project
Credits Required: 30 credits (10 courses)
Example Courses: Advanced Communication Theory; Communication Research and Evaluation; Strategic Communication Programming and Campaigns; Digital Trends in Strategic Communication; Applied Communication Research; Social Influence and Persuasion

Application Requirements
GPA Requirements: Minimum GPA 2.75 (2.5 for conditional admission)
Testing Requirements: GRE not required
Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree in communication related field, bachelor's degree with relevant work experience, or a bachelor's degree with at least 5 years of management experience; 500 word personal statement; official sealed transcripts

Tuition Costs
Estimated Tuition*: ~$17,400 + fees
Cost per Credit Hour: $580 cost per unit

State Authorizations: Program does not accept students from Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin

*Estimated tuition is calculated by multiplying the cost per credit hour by the number of credits required to graduate. It does not include fees or other expenses.