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Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Communication

Today’s world needs critical thinkers, effective communicators, and ethical decision-makers. Tim Russert Department of Communication prepares you to rise to the challenge through academic exploration, lab experiences, and real world internships

Communication at John Carroll University

Giving words greater meaning.

A communication degree brings value to news organizations, marketing and PR firms, multinational corporations, law firms, non-profits, and more. While the demand for communication professionals is widespread, JCU’s program gives you impressive depth.

At John Carroll, you’ll:

  • Explore all areas of communication from social media to radio, integrated marketing to digital media, and more.
  • Develop the ability to think deeply about communication processes and how they relate to today’s most important issues.
  • Create, present, evaluate, analyze messages for effectiveness and ethics
  • Apply communication theories and perspectives to specific contexts.
  • Understand that effective communication can bring people together across cultural contexts, and know how to communicate with care and respect for others' beliefs.

During your degree journey, you’ll learn from experienced faculty,  participate in vibrant, small class discussions, and develop the critical thinking and learning skills that come with a liberal arts education. Upon graduation, your knowledge and experience will be an asset to your future career and life.

Communication Programs of Study

While pursuing the Communication major in the Tim Russert Department of Communication, you’ll select one of three concentrations, Communication Advocacy, Digital Media, or Integrated Marketing Communication. Each area is rich in theory and practice.

Our Communication major gives you the opportunity to develop leadership, advocacy, critical thinking, and excellence in writing, speaking, and performing. Your chosen concentration will deepen your knowledge and inform your career path.

Communication advocacy ensures that the most vulnerable have their voices heard, challenges erroneous claims, safeguards rights, expresses opinions, and advances policies. It is essential to social justice, law, public policy, sales, or any career where ethical, effective persuasion leads to success.

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Communication majors complete two breadth of interest courses to fulfill major requirements. These courses include:

COMM 301 Intercultural Communication

COMM 306 Conflict Negotiation

COMM 307 Organizational Communication

COMM 308 Small Group Communication & Leadership

COMM 309 Interviewing

COMM 310 Voices of the Outsider

COMM 311 Campaign Issues and Images

COMM 312 Narrative & Storytelling

COMM 313 Persuasion

COMM 314 Communication Analysis

COMM 338 The American Cinema

COMM 345 Diversity, Stereotypes, and Mass Media

COMM 349 Communication Law

When you minor in communication, you’ll learn and develop skills in interpersonal relations, organizational communication, journalism, rhetoric, public relations, broadcasting, and the Internet.

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Designed for digital marketing professionals or those who want to gain expertise in this growing field, this certificate can help you better understand the foundations of content creation. Through it, you’ll examine the fundamentals of branding, storytelling, copywriting, design, and production.

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Focusing on analytical and digital skill gaps, this certificate brings the real world of marketing into the classroom. You’ll significantly increase your digital marketing knowledge while learning skills that can be applied immediately.

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BA in Communication Program HighlightsReal World Russerts

Real World Russerts

Offered to all students majoring in communication,  this professional development program will help you make critical career connections. You'll have access to our alumni network, drawing on their insights through workshops, site visits, internship opportunities, and more.

Find Your Internship

Internships lead to greater experience, a competitive advantage, and even a future job. Our department has an impressive internship network in the Cleveland area – one of the country’s largest communication markets. Internships are available at major media outlets, including television, radio, newspapers, and cable companies; public relations and advertising agencies; and corporate and non-profit organizations.

On-Campus Experiential Opportunities

John Carroll offers ample opportunity to gain greater understanding and experience in your major. Make your voice heard on WJCU 88.7 FM or in one of our podcast studios, work on-camera or behind the scenes in JCU’s television studio, hone your journalism skills at The Carroll News, make your point on our Speech and Debate Team, or join a student/professional organization such as PRSSA or SPJ.

Featured Faculty

“Successful debate requires critical thinking and research, a true understanding of both sides of an issue, and the ability to calmly and eloquently articulate your point of view. Yes, this is a communications course, but I believe the skills acquired here will impact every student’s career and life.”
— Dr. Brent Brossmann, Ph.D., Associate Professor

Notable Alum

Tim Russert

Our namesake, Tim Russert '72

A beloved John Carroll alumnus, Tim Russert, class of ‘72, was one of the most trusted figures in the media. During his illustrious career, he served as the Washington Bureau Chief for NBC News and the face of the political talk show, “Meet the Press.”  In 2008, TIME magazine named Russert one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World, writing that he was “among the most astute, discerning and relentless pursuers of truth in the nation.” His legacy informs our department’s guiding principles; Inquiry, Integrity, and Involvement.

JCU Northeast Map

Communication Alumni Across the Region

John Carroll University alumni live, work, teach and support communities throughout the region from Northeast Ohio to Chicago, Indianapolis, Detroit, Columbus, Buffalo, Rochester, Pittsburgh, New York City, Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

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Support JCU This Giving Tuesday!

This #GivingTuesday, we celebrate the tight-knit community that John Carroll offers all of Blue Streak nation. Make a one-time gift of $25 or more to the Carroll Fund, and as a thank you, we'll send you a pair of limited-edition JCU socks. Click here to donate.
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