The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater offers a Master of Science in Communication that features a highly flexible curriculum, wherein students complete 30 course credits divided between core coursework (6 credits), electives (21 credits), and a capstone course (3 credits). Through their elective course selections, students can (but are not required to) complete up to three certificates in advanced communication skills while earning their masters degree. The four certificate areas from which students can choose are Health Advocacy, Strategic Communication, Social and New Media, and Organizational Communication. Students choose which certificates to pursue based on their academic interests and professional goals, and consult with a faculty advisor in the selection of their classes and certificates. Students can also elect to take 21 credits of electives without earning a certificate, though they are encouraged to earn certificates through the program as it entails no additional cost. The Master of Science in Communication program has rolling admissions with six start dates per year.
The professional core for this program is comprised of two courses–Applied Communication Research, and either Technology, Globalization, and Communication or Written Communication for Diverse Audiences. From there, students select seven electives according to their interests and the certificates they wish to earn. Examples of electives include Health Communication and Public Policy, Practicing Advocacy and Influence, Strategic Planning, Crisis Communication, Social and New Media Messaging, Corporate Communication Topics, and Corporate Communication Administration.
The final course that students take in the program is the Professional Communication Capstone course. During this class, students assemble a digital portfolio that illustrates their progress in the program and their qualifications, with the intention of having a polished portfolio for job applications. During the Professional Communication Capstone course, students also complete reflective exercises to evaluate their professional and personal journey during their master’s program.
The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Online Master of Science in Communication
Department: College of Arts and Communication
Specializations/Concentrations: Optional Certificates in Health Advocacy Communication, Organizational Communication, Social and New Media, and Strategic Communication
Websites: Department and Program
Structure: Online program with no required campus visits
Instruction Methods: Program uses the Canvas learning management system and courses utilize asynchronous instruction
Campus Visits Required: No
Program Length: Program can be completed in as little as 12 to 18 months
Start Dates: Six starts per year: two per Fall, Spring and Summer terms
Curriculum and Graduation Requirements
Thesis Required: No
Capstone Options: Communication capstone, digital portfolio
Credits Required: 30 credits (10 courses)
Example Courses: Applied Communication Research; Technology, Globalization, and Communication; Written Communication for Diverse Audiences; Crisis Communication; Strategic Planning; Social and New Media Messaging; Health Communication and Public Policy
GPA Requirements: Minimum GPA 2.75 - cumulative or in last 60 credit hours of undergraduate program (students with a master's degree do not need to meet the minimum GPA requirement for admission)
Testing Requirements: GRE not required
Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree, written statement of goals, two letters of recommendation
Estimated Tuition*: ~$15,750 + fees
Cost per Credit Hour: $525 per credit
State Authorizations: Program accepts students from all 50 states