To study communication at Texas A&M University is to be involved in one of the largest, fastest-growing, and most nationally ranked programs in the country. Whether just entering the university as a freshman or pursuing high-level graduate work as a doctoral student, everyone who studies at the Department of communication is actively involved in the study, research, and practice of communication to become better scholars, citizens, and professionals. The Department of Communication offers a Ph.D and Direct Admit M.A./Ph.D. at the graduate level and three undergraduate degrees, the B.A. in Communication, the B.A. in Telecommunication Media Studies, and the B.S. in Telecommunication Media Studies.
Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication (COMM-BA) provides the theoretical, historical, and practical tools by which students describe communication phenomena, interpret them, evaluate them, and when appropriate, transform the world around them. Communication provides students with a broad liberal arts education while at the same time focusing on vital communication skills such as public speaking, argumentation, and technical communication, as well as other communication proficiencies, such as small group interaction, interviewing, rhetorical criticism, research skills, blogging, and communication technology literacy. Students use their communication skills to become leaders in business, non-profit, social, religious and political contexts. Some students pursue advanced degrees in communication, law, business, or religion while others take communication-related positions in marketing and sales, training and human resources, public relations, communication media, or prepare for teaching careers.
The Bachelor of Science degree in Communication (BS-COMM) harnesses the power of collaborative communication to solve problems through the very essence of this degree, communication intervention. Communication intervention is the skill of collaborating with others effectively to modify outcomes, conditions and processes while also preventing harm with the goal of transforming system functioning. It draws from a transdisciplinary Liberal Arts and STEM knowledge base. It is a critical key to analyzing and addressing 21st century challenges. We address problem-solving by integrating the critical thinking and perspective taking skills embraced by the Liberal Arts with the analytical and quantitative proficiencies of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math.) The Bachelor of Science in Communication provides a marketable set of skills aimed toward communication intervention in areas such as business, health communication, media, politics, non-profits and social issues. In addition to core curriculum required by the University and the State of Texas, Bachelor of Science students will take foundation coursework in the social scientific study of communication and intervention, communication technology, communication research methods, acquisition, analysis and visualization of data, team facilitation and collaboration, and the design, implementation and assessment of communication interventions.
Bachelor of Arts degree in Telecommunication Media Studies (TCMS-BA) focuses on media industries, technologies, and communication systems in cultural and historical contexts, their audience processes and effects, and social implications of the media. Students take courses that address media industries, law and policy, technology and society, media audiences, processes, and effects, and the theory, history, and criticism of media, culture, and communication. The curriculum is designed to educate citizens for a productive future in a changing world. Our students may become industry leaders, government regulators, spokespeople, politicians, writers, artists, activists, and informed citizens.
Bachelor of Science degree in Telecommunication Media Studies (TCMS-BS) overlaps considerably with the curriculum of the Bachelor of Arts degree, but is more directed and emphasizes developing quantitative skills in contrast to the more flexible, liberal arts media-oriented degree. A degree in Telecommunication Media Studies is useful in a broad variety of careers, from media and telecommunication industries, through communication-related positions in business, government, or non-profit organizations, to higher education.
Journalism Studies offers a broad education that emphasizes critical thinking, effective communication and strong writing skills. In addition to the courses in Journalism, students are required to have two minors – one in the College of Liberal Arts and one in another college.
The program admits approximately 25 students a year, most of them as entering freshmen. High school students interested in majoring in Journalism Studies at Texas A&M should submit an application through ApplyTexas as soon as possible after that year’s application process opens.
By the junior year, each COMM or TCMS student will choose a minor. Descriptions of minors may be found at catalog.tamu.edu Choose Undergraduate Catalog, and then the College that offers the minor.
Courses in the Journalism Studies interdisciplinary program provide a background in reporting, from interviewing to on-line records searches, and writing, from deadline news stories to longer analytical and feature pieces.
Video production for the web is an integral part of news writing in Journalism Studies, along with the opportunity for specialized, advanced writing classes in political reporting, blogging and literary nonfiction.
Students round out their education with an internship in a professional setting, such as a newspaper, magazine or television station, and wrap up with a senior seminar that couples their journalism studies with their broader education in the liberal arts.
This is a program where the teachers and the advisor stand ready to help students, not only with course offerings and scheduling, but with individual career and education advice. It’s a program that is large enough to be diverse and competitive, but small enough that the professors know the students by name.
By providing that type of well-rounded education, interaction and opportunity, Journalism Studies at Texas A&M will be in the forefront of preparing journalists for the future.