Pace University’s Dyson College of Arts and Sciences offers an online Master of Arts (M.A.) in Communications and Digital Media. This fully online program requires no campus visits, and uses the Brightspace learning management system to provide students with both asynchronous and synchronous instruction. This program is tailored to those interested in careers working in media production and advertising, as well as managerial and leadership jobs in the private sector.
The degree program offers three starts a year, in the fall, spring, and summer terms, and students can complete the program in as few as 18 months if they take courses over the summer. To earn the M.A. in Communication and Digital Media, students are required to complete 36 credit hours of course work, made up of eight, four credit-hour courses, and a four credit-hour internship or thesis. All students are also required to successfully complete a written comprehensive exam.
Students who choose the thesis option can either write a traditional, long form research paper or they can propose an applied project of comparable rigor. Thesis students meet with the program director the semester prior to the semester they intend to complete their thesis (or project) in order to choose a topic for their research study. The program director also provides guidance to help students construct their thesis proposal and appoints a faculty member to advise each student on their particular paper or project.
Alternatively, students who opt for an internship meet with the program director and a Career Services counselor, who help students secure interviews for potential positions. Once students secure an approved placement, they work with their internship supervisor to determine the responsibilities for their internship. Students must complete a total of 160 hours of work and submit a portfolio of their internship work in order to earn credits for their internship.
Students complete four required courses that address research methods and writing skills — Industry Communications Theory and Practice, Writing for Organizations, Effective Speaking for Industry Professionals, and Communication Research. When choosing electives, students have the option of choosing between one of two concentrations: Digital Filmmaking and Media Production, and Social Media and Public Relations. Students who choose not to select a concentration, complete the remaining credit requirements by selecting electives from either concentration track.
In the Digital Filmmaking and Media Production concentration, students receive hands-on training in a range of media production techniques, from content creation to video editing. Example elective courses include: Creative Writing for Media Professionals, Media Innovation, Editing Aesthetics, Industrial Media Production, Media Law, Digital Video Field Production, and more.
The Social Media and Public Relations concentration focuses on developing advanced skills for professionals interested in communication management and corporate communication. The curriculum of this concentration includes courses on leadership, social networking, and digital communications. Electives include: Media Relations, Corporate Communication and Responsibility, Digital Communications Leadership, Organizational Communications and Social Responsibility, Multi-Platform Communications, and more.
Pace University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
Online Master of Arts in Communications and Digital Media
Department: Dyson College of Arts and Sciences
Specializations/Concentrations: Optional Concentrations in Digital Filmmaking and Media Production, and Social Media and Public Relations
Websites: Department and Program
Structure: Online program with no required campus visits
Instruction Methods: Program uses asynchronous and synchronous instruction using the Brightspace learning management system
Campus Visits Required: No
Program Length: Program can be completed in as few as 18 month
Start Dates: Three starts per year: Fall, Spring, and Summer
Curriculum and Graduation Requirements
Credits Required: 36 credits (9 courses)
Thesis Required: No
Capstone Options: Thesis or internship plus a comprehensive exam
Example Courses: Industry Theory and Practice; Writing for Organizations; Effective Speaking for Industry Professionals; Media Relations; Creative Writing for Media Professionals; Industrial Media Production; Media Law; Effective Web Architecture and Communication Design
GPA Requirements: Minimum undergraduate GPA 3.0 is preferred
Testing Requirements: GRE not required
Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree; two letters of recommendation; resume; personal statement; portfolio
Estimated Tuition*: ~$35,820 + fees
Cost per Credit Hour: $995 per credit hour
State Authorizations: Program accepts students from all 50 states