Master’s Program Requirements

To receive a Master of Arts in Organizational Communication, applicants admitted to the program must complete each of the following course and program requirements: 2 core courses, 4 elective courses, and a capstone experience.

Core Courses – Two (2) courses

The following courses are required of all graduates of the master’s program:

COMS 7220 – Communicative Practices in Organizations (Fall Semester)

Interaction between organizational structure and communication within organizations. Emphasis on theoretical and methodological analysis. Primary focus on conducting major research project.

COMS 6100 –  Measurement Methodology in Communication (Spring Semester)

Measurement principles, instruments, and techniques in communication; problems and procedures in testing, measuring, and evaluating communicative attitudes and skills; development and availability of relevant standardized tests.

Additional courses – Four (4) courses

In addition to the above courses, a student pursuing the Master’s degree must complete 16 additional graduate hours (4 courses) approved by the COMS program administrator and a capstone experience. Courses will vary by instructor expertise and student interest.

Among the courses offered are:

COMS 6270 – Instructional Training & Development in Communication

Includes philosophies of organizational development; theories of instructional design, emphasizing stages of planning implementation, and evaluation; and communication training skills, including needs assessment and evaluation, writing objectives, application of communication content, and selection of instructional modes and resources–all investigated within business, professional, and governmental organizational contexts.

COMS 7230 – Communication and Information Diffusion

Analysis of major approaches to data and information diffusion systems on local, regional, national, and international levels. Emphasis on acquisition analysis and dissemination of data as information, including critical points of interface and interaction between a system and its uses.

COMS 5200 – Cross-Cultural Communication

Analysis of processes and problems of communication as affected by national cultures; effects of differences in languages, values, meaning, perception, and thought.

COMS 6230 – Gender and Communication

Explores variations in communicative behaviors related to biological sex and psychological gender. Examines female and male communication in intrapersonal, interpersonal, small group, public, and organizational settings.

COMS 6200 – Communication in Social Conflict

Roles of communication in conflict and conflict in communication. Communication strategies for reducing or managing conflict in social situations.

Capstone Experience (6 hours)

For the capstone experience, students must choose one (1) of the following options:

  • Comprehensive Examinations
  • Applied Project
  • Master’s Thesis

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Student Achievements

Publication News

Miller, J. L., Sandburg, S., & Kay, C. S. (Forthcoming). Diamonds in the rough: Claims, evidence, and reasoning in Facebook comments. 
American Behavioral Scientist.
Lippert, A., & Kay, C. S. (Forthcoming). Click for Dixie: Virtual plantation tours’ use of White nostalgia and directed narrative experience. Chapter proposal accepted for the edited collection, Subjectivities of Interactive Nostalgia

2017 Excellence in Service Award recipient, The National Society of Leadership and Success: Ohio University Chapter. Nominated by former students. Carson Kay was the only graduate student and the only humanities scholar awarded by the society.


Kay, C. S. (2018, January 29). Graduate school and you: Insight from a Viking alum. Invited Skype presenter to discuss the graduate school experience with Dr. Sam Nazione’s senior seminar communication course at Berry College.
Kay, C. S. (2017, November 16-19). The young judge’s dilemma: Examining the tension between established team friendship and objectivity in judging ‘cousin’ teams.” Paper presented at the 2017 National Communication Association Annual Convention, Austin, Texas.
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