Lynn University offers an online Master of Science in Communication and Media through its College of Communication and Design. The program can be completed fully online without any in-person campus visits. Lynn University’s program is unique in that it requires an iPad to access course materials and educational applications. Students receive an iPad as part of the program’s fees and get to keep the iPad when they graduate. The program is designed for media and design professionals, as well as visual design practitioners and scholars interested in learning about applying technology and new media strategies in today’s rapidly changing media environment.
The Master of Science in Communication and Media requires 37 credit hours of study to complete, divided between 36 class credits and a one-credit orientation seminar. Students may select from three online specializations: Digital Media, Media Studies and Practice, and Strategic Communication. For all three specializations, the curriculum is divided between 18 credits of foundational classes and 18 credits of specialization classes (plus the one orientation seminar). The six-class foundational coursework examines the history of communication and media, media and culture, communication theory, persuasion and social change, communication technologies, and how to present and perform in front of the camera.
The Digital Media track introduces students to foundational concepts in communication, media theory, and research methodologies. Students complete weekly experiential projects in order to reinforce the concepts that they learn and develop applied skills in content and media production and delivery. Coursework covers broad topics within the digital media field, including video production, digital photography, motion graphics, and animation, as well as the central theories and history of media design and dissemination. Example classes include courses in digital photography aesthetics, special topics in digital media, digital storytelling, image-making as expression, and motion graphics. After completing their 18 credits of specialization courses, students in the Digital Media track must submit a digital portfolio of course assignments to a committee of program faculty for review as their culminating experience requirement.
The Media Studies and Practice track explores advanced theories in communication and media theory and research and their relevance to national and international media practices and projects. The program’s courses teach students about media law and ethics, research methods to establish optimal media strategies and evaluate their performance, visual communication practices, and social media strategies. Students also learn about the international media arena and conduct comparative analyses between the journalistic approaches of different countries’ news and media outlets.
The Strategic Communication track focuses on helping students develop strategic communication skills for organizational communication optimization as well as external-facing media and public relations. Students learn how to design research-informed communication campaigns, implement these campaigns, and evaluate their effectiveness. They also learn how to take a comprehensive media approach to further an organization’s mission statement, an approach that includes not only advertising and marketing, but also public relations, partnership-building, and social media management. Example courses include classes in crisis communication, special topics in strategic communication, and campaigns. Students are also required to complete a Strategic Campaigns Practicum, wherein they work with a real agency to create and deliver strategic and creative campaigns for organizations.
Lynn University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.
Online Master of Science in Communication and Media
Department: College of Communication and Design
Specializations/Concentrations: Specializations in Media Studies and Practice; Digital Media; Strategic Communication
Websites: Department and Program
Structure: Online program with no required campus visits
Instruction Methods: Program uses asynchronous instruction
Campus Visits Required: No
Program Length: Program can be completed in 12 months
Curriculum and Graduation Requirements
Thesis Required: No
Capstone Options: Digital Media specialization requires a digital portfolio
Credits Required: 37 credits (13 courses)
Example Courses: History of Communication and Media; Communication and Media Technologies; Media Law and Regulation; International Media; Media and Culture; Theories in Communication and Media
Degree Required: Bachelor's degree
GPA Requirements: Minimum GPA 3.0
Testing Requirements: GRE not required
Start Dates: Fall, Spring and Summer admission
Estimated Tuition*: ~$27,380 + fees
Cost per Credit Hour: $740 per credit hour
State Authorizations: Program accepts students from all 50 states