Students majoring in communication engage in a thoughtful exploration of how the construction of messages, communicator characteristics, and contextual factors influence professional and personal lives. The Bachelor of Arts in Communications program at GCU provides opportunities for scholarship in organizational, political, mass mediated, interpersonal, and intercultural communication contexts. The organizational emphasis allows students to focus on communication skills directly applicable to public relations, political communication, human resources, sales, and marketing. This program, like the greater GCU community, embodies Christian virtues in the way people communicate with each another. Faculty act as guides, collaborators, and mentors as students find their purpose.
Students who earn their degree in communication work in a wide variety of contexts. Students at GCU learn the skills necessary to be competitive in both profit and nonprofit sectors. Common careers for communication majors with an organizational emphasis are public relations specialists, corporate trainers, campaign managers, community action directors, account executives, sales representatives, and human resource coordinators.
General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University's General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.
|Competency||Requirements||GCU Course Options||Total Credits|
|University Foundations||Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community. Students with fewer than 24 credits will fulfill the University Foundations requirement with a specified lower-division course. An upper-division selection will be made available to students that enter the university with more than 24 credits.||UNV-103/303, University Success: 4 credits||4 credits|
|Effective Communication||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 6 credits||ENG-105, English Composition I: 4 credits
UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4 credits
|Critical Thinking||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments. Students are required to take 8 credits of intermediate algebra or higher mathematics.||MAT-134, Applications of Algebra: 4 credits
MAT-260, College Geometry: 4 credits
|Global Awareness, Perspectives, Ethics and Humanities||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate a global perspective and an awareness and appreciation of the scope and variety of literary works as expressions of individual or broader human values. Graduates will demonstrate information literacy which will enable them to locate and analyze information from a variety of sources.||CWV-101, Foundations of a Christian Worldview: 4 credits
PHI-105, 21st Century Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 4 credits
|Social Sciences||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life, as well as examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods, social structures, and cultures.||SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4 credits
PSY-100, Psychology in Everyday Life: 4 credits
|General Education Electives||Minnesota students must complete TEN (10) more credits, which may be taken from any of the following content areas: Communications/English, Math/Natural Science, Humanities, Social Science||ENG-106, English Composition II: 4 credits
COM-263, Elements of Intercultural Communication: 4 credits
|Course #||Course Title||Course Description||Credits|
|COM-100||Fundamentals of Communication||This course is an introduction to the field of communication with emphasis on the history of communication study, relevant communication theories guiding current research, the contexts in which communication occurs, and issues faced by students of communication. The course focuses on introducing students to various communication models as well as theories and skills in interpersonal communication, small group communication, mass communication, intercultural communication, and public communication.||4|
|COM-222||Small Group Communication||This course examines the principles and processes of small groups and the development of skills for participation and leadership in small group settings, as well as practice in problem solving, decision making, critical reasoning, and information sharing.||4|
|COM-263||Elements of Intercultural Communication||This writing-intensive course focuses on improving communication among people with different racial, ethnic, cultural, and minority backgrounds. Students explore verbal and nonverbal communication behaviors in a variety of communication media and contexts. Communication styles, rituals, and traditions are explored through an examination of mass media, family structure, religion, politics, education, social life, art, and literature.||4|
|PHI-305||Ethical Thinking in the Liberal Arts||This course considers the role that ethical thinking plays in the liberal arts. Topics are set in historic, literary, artistic, political, philosophical, religious, social, and scientific perspectives. The impact and contributions of leaders in these fields are also considered.||4|
|COM-355||Communication Research Methods||This course provides an overview of the concepts, methods, and tools for communication research design, implementation, interpretation, and critical evaluation in communication research. Prerequisites: ENG-106, COM-100, and MAT-144.||4|
|COM-312||Conflict and Negotiation||This course is designed to introduce the concepts and theories relevant to understanding conflict communication and the negotiation process. In this course, students are introduced to various elements of conflict and negotiation communication across a variety of contexts including interpersonal, organizational, and international. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to analyze power dynamics in relationships, identify conflict styles and tactics, and apply intervention techniques in contexts that are relevant to their future relationships and careers.||4|
|COM-451||Relational Communication||This writing-intensive course focuses on the communication processes in personal relationships such as romantic relationships, family relationships, and friendships. Through quantitative and qualitative methods and other theoretical perspectives, students in this class examine the expression and interpretation of messages in everyday personal interactions as well as significant relational events. Students also explore communication processes involved in developing, maintaining, and dissolving relationships, how communication impacts partners and their relationships, and how to improve relational quality or individual wellbeing through communication.||4|
|COM-362||Argumentation and Advocacy||This course introduces students to the relationship between argumentation and advocacy as well as the role of worldviews in shaping the arguments surrounding relevant social issues. This course presents the concepts and skills related to the study of argumentation. Students are introduced to the principles and elements of argumentation in everyday communication across contexts, as well as the skills necessary in constructing and evaluating written and oral arguments.||4|
|COM-370||Principles of Public Relations||This course investigates the principles and theories of public relations. Students receive an overview of the function and practices of the growing public relations industry in both profit and nonprofit contexts. This course examines the relationships between the public relations practitioner and various groups including clients, consumers, employees, and media.||4|
|COM-456||Organizational Communication||The course covers historical and contemporary organizational theory and application across organizational contexts of corporate communication, team/small group communication, and interpersonal communication. Organizational theory and application topics, including leadership, are covered within each major area. Prerequisite: COM-355.||4|
|COM-472||Training and Development||This course is designed to help students develop an understanding of training and development in an organizational setting with a particular focus on teaching communication skills and learning the art and science of designing, developing, delivering, and evaluating training and development programs. Training and development as a career field is a significant focus. Prerequisites: COM-355.||4|
|COM-475||Communication Campaigns||Communication campaigns use a myriad of persuasive strategies to reach a specified audience. This course emphasizes the theoretical art of persuasion and strategic applications in communication campaigns. Students analyze a variety of social, political, environmental, health, and marketing campaigns. Additionally, students design and institute a communication campaign of their choosing. Prerequisite: COM-355.||4|
|Required Course Total Credit:||48|
|General Education Requirements:||44|
|Open Elective Credits:||28 credits|
|Total Degree Requirements:||120 credits|
This program is offered in the following formats or locations:
The dynamic capabilities of GCU’s online curriculum offer considerable flexibility and convenience for career oriented professionals who are pursuing their educational goals. Full time faculty members, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Our small class sizes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Classes begin frequently.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.