This 30-credit program focuses on the theory and research of critical communication and social change within global contexts. Students are provided a foundation in communication for social change, global communication, and research methods. Students go further in depth through a wide range of elective courses in categories that include communication for social change, global and intercultural contexts, contemporary social issues, and research skills. 

Students complete a thesis, which enables them to apply their knowledge, understanding, critical analysis and research skills to a specific research project.

This program prepares students for leadership positions in agencies and organizations working in social change, globally and in the United States and for graduate education toward a Ph.D. in global communication and social change. 

Admission Requirements

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  • The School's official application
  • An $85.00 non-refundable application fee
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • 500-work typed statement of academic and professional goals
  • Official transcripts of all college work, both undergraduate and graduate.
    • Note: In addition, international applicants must send a copy of their diploma for all degrees earned, and all documentation that confers their degree, with English translation.
    • Note: All transcripts must be the original document, forwarded directly from the University: Xerox copies, true copies, notarized copies and other types of copies are not acceptable.
  • Official TOEFL or IELTS scores
    • Note: Only for international applicants
  • Copy of current passport.
    • Note: Only for international applicants. The name entered on the graduate application must exactly match your name as it appears on your passport.
  •  CV / resume

Curriculum Requirements

COM 621Research Design and Proposal Writing3
COM 622Communication and Social Change3
COM 623Global Communication3
COS 645Intercultural Communication: International Perspectives3
Elective in Contemporary Social Issues 3
Students will take a total of three credits from the list of courses below.
Advanced Medical Anthropology
Medical Sociology: Issues in Research and Theory.
Sociocultural Foundations of Global Health
Hospital Ethnography
People, Plagues, and Pandemics
Climate Change and Public Health
Introduction to Weather and Climate
Climate Change
Special Topics
Economics of Natural Resources
Fieldwork in Coastal Management: Tourism, Conservation, and Development
The Science of Actionable Knowledge
Water Resources in China and Vietnam: Science and Policy
Citizen and Participatory Science
Marine Conservation Outreach
Theoretical Practical Issues in Exploration Science
Health Applications of Geographic Information Systems
Sustainable Cities
Sustainable Food Systems
Population, Sustainability and the Media
Global Environment Politics
The Environmental Movement: Groups, Beliefs and Values
Contemporary Representations of the Environment
Nature, the Anthropocene, and Visual Culture
Environmental Justice Storytelling
Advanced Graduate Colloquy in Black Feminist Theory and Praxis: Major of 7 Black Feminist Thinkers
Immigrant Refugee Health
Introduction to Critical Theory
Readings in Critical Theory
LGBTI Politics
Race Relations: Social Psychological Perspectives
Theories of Race and Ethnic Relations
Special Topics and Current Issues in Race/Ethnic Relations
Other courses by approval
Elective in Communication and Social Change Scholarship3
Students will take a total of three credits from the list of courses below.
Social Media Strategies
Strategic Communication in Health Care
Science Documentary: Autism
Podcast Storytelling
Internet and Media Activism
Designing Games for Impact
Designing and Producing Messages
Visual and Narrative Theories
Special Topics in Communication (Special Topics relevant to Communication and Social Change)
Global Health Communication (Global Health COmmunication)
Other courses by approval
Elective in Research Methods3
Students will take a total of three credits from the list of courses below.
Foundations of Quantitative Communication Research Methods
Qualitative Research Methodologies
Advanced Quantitative Communication Research Methods
Theories and Methods for Mass Communication Research
Structured Research and Practice in SoC Consultancy
Directed Readings
Communication Studies Practicum
Essentials of Research in Social and Behavioral Sciences
Program Evaluation
Community-Based Participatory Action Research
Qualitative Research Methods
Evaluation Research
Applied Policy Analysis
Public Program Evaluation
Special Topics in Political Theory and Methods
Other courses by approval
Elective in Global and Intercultural Communication Contexts3
Students will take a total of three credits from the list of courses below.
Global Issues and Filmmaking
National Cinemas
Organizational Culture
Latin American Journalism and Media Systems
Special Topics in Journalism and Media Management (Latinx and the Media)
International Public Relations
Special Topics in Communication
Advanced Graduate Seminar
Community Well-being and Change: Theory and Practice
Multicultural Communities in a Globalized Society
Transnational Social Movemen
Politics, Societies, and Cultures of Latin America and the Caribbean
Global Cultures: Religion, Communication, and Security
Other courses by approval
COM 810Master's Thesis6
Total Credit Hours30

All elective courses must be approved by your faculty advisor.


Only three credits of special topics, independent study, directed reading,  practicum, or the like, are permitted.


Students are required to take a total of 12 elective credits.

Sample Plan of Study

COM 622Communication and Social Change3
COM 623Global Communication3
COM 621Research Design and Proposal Writing3
COS 645Intercultural Communication: International Perspectives3
COM 810Master's Thesis6
Total Credit Hours30

Program Mission Statement

Our MA in Communication for Global Social Change will educate students to understand how to critique and to construct communication interventions designed for the benefit of people and communities, local and global. Through grounded scholarship, students will learn to listen and combine learning from academic research and lived experiences in order to engage in intentional communication practices for social change.

Evaluation builds from critical analyses situating problems and solutions within social, cultural, political, economic and technological contexts, as well as from methodological expertise guiding assessment and planning. Critical analyses build from foundations in interdisciplinary approaches to studies of power and marginalization, given inequities across race, gender, orientation, and other key dimensions of identity including and importantly their communication contexts. Social concerns, considered within their global contexts, include those relevant to public health, climate change, migration, social justice, sustainability, and other emerging issues.

Program Goals

To promote:

  • Knowledge and understanding of communication and social change
  • Application of research skills
  • Consideration of global and intercultural communication contexts
  • Knowledge and understanding of a contemporary social issue   

Graduates will be prepared for professional work as well as for doctoral studies. Specifically, graduates will be able to contribute to:

  • Agencies and organizations working in social change, globally and in the United States
  • Positions relevant to the design and assessment of communication interventions
  • Graduate education toward a PhD, to lead advances in global social change

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate foundational expertise in critical communication theory and research, particularly as it relates to global communication and social change.
  • Students will signal understanding of communication and social change within a global communication context, recognizing social, cultural, political, economic, and technological domains.
  • Students will demonstrate research skills including the ability to diagnose social problems across multiple levels (systemic, community, etc.), in order to critique and to assess communication interventions as well as to design and to implement them based on these diagnoses.
  • Students will display an understanding of a designated contemporary social issue, such as health, climate change, migration, or social justice.
  • Students will be able to apply their knowledge, understanding, critical analysis and research skills to specific research through completion of a written master's thesis.