Curriculum: Bachelor of Arts in Communication

July 01, 2022
60 - 120
August 22, 2022
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curriculum icon Curriculum at a Glance

A BA Communication degree is versatile and our curriculum reflects that range. Once admitted, you’ll work with your academic advisor and program director to build your unique curriculum guide based on your career goals and specific interests.

To receive a BA in Communication, there are certain requirements that need to be obtained.  These requirements include:

  • A minimum of 45 credit hours in communication coursework.
  • A minimum GPA of 2.0 in communication coursework.

Below is a sample of the courses offered in the Bachelor of Arts in Communication online degree program.

Introduction to Effective Speaking

This course introduces the principles of and practice in composition and presentation of speeches. Topics include speaker and audience relationship, organization of speeches, active listening skills, use of appropriate language, use of technology as an enhancement of speech, managing speech anxiety and developing a natural verbal and nonverbal delivery style.

Business Communication

This course introduces foundational business communication principles and practices. Students will learn to analyze different communication situations; to plan and design oral and written communications; to communicate effectively using appropriate formats, styles, and technologies; and to apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills in order to achieve desired communication objectives.

Introduction to Interpersonal Communication

Introduction to theory and practice in interpersonal communication. Topics include verbal and nonverbal communication, perception, listening, emotions, relationship development, conflict and power. Focus is on the development of an understanding of fundamental interpersonal dynamics and basic skills.

Introduction to Rhetorical Theory

This course is a survey of rhetorical and critical-cultural theories, definitions, characteristics and history from ancient Greece to present. Students will be equipped to understand and analyze public discourse in light of the speaker, medium, message and context. Students will learn to identify their own world view and how this impacts communication in everyday life.

Introduction to Communication Theory

This required course for majors is designed to review historically significant communication theories by genres and traditions. The course also explores the meta-theoretical foundation of communication theory and explores the key differences between scientific and interpretive worldviews and their respective research methodologies and resulting scholarship.

Communication Research Methods

This course introduces students to the major methods used in conducting Communication research from a social scientific perspective. The course explores the purposes and goals of social science research, issues and obstacles in conducting research with human subjects, and uses of social science research in advancing knowledge of human communication. Specifically, the course addresses:(a) the use and analysis of surveys, experiments, interviews, and focus groups, (b) validity and reliability issues in conducting social science research, and (c) ethical issues in conducting research with human subjects.

Communication & Social Justice

This course will count toward fulfilling the diversity/inclusion requirement for the communication major. The course explores discourses of social justice in U.S. society. The foundational premise of this course is that effective citizenship requires not only political awareness but also an ethic of care for one another that builds community. The distinctive communication emphasis is on messages - how they are developed and what they mean. In order to move from individual citizen to an engaged community there must be a recognition of the link between public discourse and treatment of those with marked differences. Specifically, the course will explore how cultural nuances, racial stereotypes, prejudices, and misperceptions lead to miscommunication and social injustice while also splintering communities. In this course we will investigate concepts related to the complexities of race, class, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, religion, age, and disability. It is a highly interactive and engaging conceptual overview of controversial scholarly and popular literature, national discussions, and mass mediated images pertaining to culture, identity and public discourse. Finally, the course will touch upon the dynamic nature of globalization and its symbiotic link to authenticity, voice, space, and agency since national boundaries are increasingly permeable.

Intercultural Communication

This course introduces students to a broad spectrum of historic and current intercultural theories and practices. Students will build an understanding of fundamental ways to apply theory in community settings by participating in one of four experiential options designed to create understanding of the societal causes of addiction, hunger, homelessness, poverty, and social marginalization. The application of intercultural communication theory in community settings enables students to understand the nature of equality and the development and perpetuation of inequality through interlocking systems of oppression, privilege, and power. Coursework addresses issues of race, ethnicity, class, sex, religion, ideology, gender identity, sexual orientation, and disability.


This course introduces students to ways in which communication processes and practices contribute to the enactment, production, consumption, and organization of sport. In addition, the course examines ways in which sports communication both reflects and shapes personal identity (race, ethnicity, class, sex, religion, ideology, gender identity, sexual orientation, and disability), community, culture, politics, and other dimensions of human experience. Students will be exposed to theories drawn from interpersonal, organizational, mediated, and public communication that are relevant to communication and sport from player, fan, consumer, and societal perspectives; and will also examine a number of topical case studies within sports to understand the nature of equality and the development and perpetuation of inequality through interlocking systems of oppression, privilege, and power.

Organizational Identity, Image, and Issue Management

This course integrates theories of organizational communication and Public Relations by demonstrating how the communicative management of identity, image, and issues engages a variety of stakeholder groups. Students will contemplate the conceptual and theoretical foundations of organizational identity, image, and issues. Rhetorical processes for establishing legitimacy, socializing members, managing organizational culture, marketing images and brands, advocating issues and values, managing crises, repairing images, and managing image attacks will be analyzed.

Communication Ethics

The course focuses on multiple approaches to communication ethics. Students will learn a variety of ethical concepts and systems, and will apply those concepts in diverse communication settings and contexts (interpersonal, group, organizational, political).

Communication Theory

An examination of the process of theory construction in communication -- how communication theories are built up from philosophical assumptions and then become a tool for scholars to explore research questions. The course considers philosophical issues, genres of theory, and current theoretical trends.

Media and Technology

This course explores significant economic, political, cultural, social, and civic issues connected with the convergence of digital media. Students will study a variety of digital media and examine how digitalization has changed cultural patterns of media consumption, distribution, and production.

Theories of Interpersonal Communication

The course compares and contrasts interpersonal communication from the perspective of individually-based, interaction-based, and relationship-based theories for a variety of relationships, including friendship, romance, family, and workplace. Students will explore and critique the methods used to conduct research on interpersonal communication processes and examine how interpersonal communication creates, sustains and alters relationships.

Environmental Communication

The course provides students with an in-depth understanding of the emerging field of environmental communication. Course topics include the constitutive and instrumental dimensions of environmental communication, the dimensions and formation of the environmental self, the role of environmental communication in the formation of culture, and the nature of environmental advocacy efforts and campaigns. Students will consider the impact environmental communication plays and of their role as consumers in contemporary society through a variety of assignments, including field-based observation and participation.

Advanced Public Speaking

Advanced Public Speaking is a course that explores practices and develops skills in areas such as audience adaptation, advanced communication strategies, organization, use of technology, active listening, verbal and nonverbal delivery. This course will help students refine their speaking skills and ready them for professional settings.

Communicating About Health, Environment and Science

This course surveys theoretical and applied dimensions of communication issues pertaining to environmental, health, and science issues facing contemporary society. Students will learn about the symbolic and material dimensions of environment and health issues, ways in which risk is evaluated and communicated in a variety of contexts, and about the parameters of scientific argument in various technical and political arenas.

Communication in Problem-Solving Groups

This experiential course covers the basic principles and theories of small group communication. Students will learn to identify behavioral outcomes of others and analyze, adjust and improve on their own communication skills. Students will be equipped to demonstrate understanding of group participation variables including: individual roles, leadership, goal achievement, conflict management, power dynamics, decision making, impact of personal image and business, social and system's theory models.

Introduction to Mass Communication

This is a basic course designed to examine the role of media in contemporary political and cultural contexts. It will cover historical perspectives on the development, nature, and functions of mass media in society, and will deal with governmental regulations, ethical issues, ownership, audience response, professional versus personal use, and career pathways.

Introduction to Public Relations

Introduction to Public Relations is an introduction to the history, theories and practices of the public relations profession. The ethics of PR, and PR as a process that is integral to successful organizational functioning, will be explored. Students will also develop some of the writing, planning and organizational skills of a PR professional.

Event Planning & Fundraising Management

Special event production utilized as a fundraising management tool is a blend of art and science needed to build awareness, increase member support and raise gifts for non-profit, health and education clients. This course will introduce the fundamentals of resource development: philosophy of philanthropy and the various motivations for giving; process (research, planning, cultivation, solicitation, stewardship & evaluation); and best practices by which managers can utilize event planning to develop an effective fundraising program. Through case studies and guest lectures, students will learn the essentials of how to create high quality events including developing objectives, invitation/marketing materials, selecting and negotiating price with venue and service providers, volunteer management, design, budget, logistic, publicity and promotion strategies and tactics.

Interviewing for Communication Careers

Interviewing for Communication Careers exposes students to the wide range of career choices available in the communication major through in-depth self analysis, research and guest lectures by professionals. Students will prepare a complete portfolio; write a five year career plan;and improve their interviewing skills through mock interviews and activities encompassing employee, employer and persuader perspectives.

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The University of Cincinnati is one of the first institutions to offer online courses. Innovation in education is at the forefront of what we do. We have expanded the convenience and quality of our online learning to online degree programs. Today, we offer nearly 100 degrees from undergraduate to doctoral programs.

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