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Undergraduate Students

B.A. in Communication Studies

At WVU, students majoring in Communication Studies have the option to choose to study interpersonal, health, social media and communication technology, or strategic and organizational communication. Also, an Integrated Communication Studies track – designed to expose students to a more general communication education – is also be available. Students will work closely with their major advisors to choose the track that is appealing to them and matches their future career goals. A degree in Communication Studies opens doors to allow students to be successful in just about any career- from healthcare to human resources, from sales to social media, from image management to promotions. The new curriculum will make students with a B.A. in Communication Studies even more attractive to potential employers or graduate programs.

For more information on graduation requirements for the B.A. program, see the Undergraduate Catalog.

Program Goals

Our Department is dedicated to developing students’ critical thinking, reasoning, and decision-making skills with the intent of empowering students to construct and deliver context-specific messages in their relational, vocational, and community endeavors.

Students who complete undergraduate degrees in communication studies should be able to:
  1. Describe the major theories of human communication and apply them to various contexts.
  2. Critique communication messages from a social science perspective.
  3. Cite evidence of the impact of communication on human behavior in interpersonal and/or organizational contexts.
  4. Identify and describe the functions of media in a democratic society.
  5. Investigate the role of verbal and nonverbal messages in the human communication process.
  6. Examine the relationship between communication and culture.
  7. Design and evaluate effective strategies for social influence.
  8. Examine ethical issues in various communication contexts.
  9. Evaluate social science criteria to examine communication research.
  10. Analyze the role of communication in conflict and conflict management.

Areas of Emphasis

Health Communication
  • Facilitate your preparation for health-related careers by focusing on communication over the lifespan, health campaigns, mediated communication, and persuasion. 
  • Learn how to effectively design and evaluate health messages to be communicated, interpersonally, organizationally, and within the community at large.
  • Take courses in Health Communication, Communication Campaigns, Persuasion
  • Pursue careers in Community Relations, Physician Liaison, Healthcare Management, Volunteer Program Coordination, Campaigning, Public Health, Public Affairs, Government

Integrated Communication
  • Gain exposure to a generalist communication education. 
  • Tailor your degree program to enhance communication skills with your own goals and passions in mind with assistance from your advisor.
  • Take courses in a variety of different tracks that suits your career goals.

Interpersonal Communication
  • Develop your ability to investigate, identify, and enact effective behaviors in personal relationships such as family, coworkers, small group, friends, and romantic partnerships.
  • This knowledge complements fields that involve or focus on the betterment of these relationships.
  • Take courses in Interpersonal Communication, Dark Side of Communication, Family CommunicationPursue careers in Sales, Customer Service, Research, Non-profit Management, Fundraising, Advising, Management, Law

Social Media & Communication Technology
  • Gain expertise in the emerging role of social networking and social media, in human communication for interpersonal, instructional, organizational and strategic contexts. 
  • Be prepared to apply the theory of social media technology to meet personal and professional goals.
  • Take courses in Social Media in the Workplace, Effects of Mediated Communication, Computer Mediated Communication
  • Pursue careers in Media Planning, Social Media Coordination, Marketing, Event Marketing, Public Relations, Sales, Research, Advertising

Theory of Strategic and Organizational Communication
  • Develop your ability to successfully navigate any organization by improving your understanding of organizational communication, social media, small group dynamics, persuasion, and communication campaigns.
  • Take courses in Organizational Communication, Persuasion, Organizational Culture
  • Pursue careers in Management, Human Resources, Government, Mediation, Research, Law, Business Development, Training and Development
For a full list of classes and to learn more about the Communication Studies major, see the Undergraduate Course Catalog.