Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies: Major of Distinction (Thesis Track)

The Major of Distinction is an academically rigorous program for students who wish to construct an interdisciplinary curriculum that meets their individual interests across the SMC departments. In the Major of Distinction, each student works individually with a faculty advisor from a relevant SMC department to build a curriculum that goes beyond the offered tracks. The student completes five courses, four of which must be at the 3000 or 4000 level, and in the senior year completes a two-semester thesis. A student in the Major of Distinction must have completed three semesters of a foreign language (or equivalent with the approval of the Director of Communication Studies) by the time of graduation. If appropriate to the student's research, an advanced methods or theory course may be required by the student's faculty advisor.

Students apply for a Major of Distinction in the second semester of their sophomore year. To be considered, students must be on schedule to complete their Foundational and Core Communications courses by the end of their sophomore year. Also, students must have earned at least a 3.5 cumulative grade point average (GPA) in their Foundational and Core Communications courses along with a 3.25 overall GPA. Students must submit an application to the Director of Communication Studies that includes a statement of student's interest, a proposed curriculum, and a support letter from a full-time SMC faculty member willing to act as student's faculty advisor.

Once accepted into the Major of Distinction and in consultation with his or her faculty advisor and the Director of Communication Studies, each student constructs his or her own curriculum. The curriculum must contain five courses, four of which must be at the 3000 or 4000 level, and include courses from at least three of the SMC majors. Courses selected should be designed to lead to the senior-year thesis.

Summary of Requirements

The degree of Bachelor of Arts may be conferred upon a student majoring in Communication Studies by the recommendation of the faculty and upon satisfactory completion of a minimum of 124 semester hours (s.h.) of credit with a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 overall and in the major.  Students must meet:

  1. University requirements
    • All students are required to complete the General Education (GenEd) curriculum.
    • All students must take a minimum of two writing-intensive courses in the major at Temple University.
  2. School of Media and Communication requirements.
  3. Minimum of 42 s.h. in Communication Studies.
  4. Each course that fulfills a requirement for the major must be passed with a C- or better.
  5. Maximum of 27 s.h. in any one SMC department may be counted toward the degree.
  6. A maximum of 4 s.h. of Internship credit may be counted toward the degree.
  7. A maximum of 8 s.h. combined of Independent Study and/or Special Projects may be counted toward the degree.
  8. No more than 8 s.h. in Kinesiology and Dance activities courses.
  9. Students may participate in study away programs.
  10. Transfer students are required to complete a minimum of 24 s.h. of major courses at Temple.
  11. Communication Studies majors may minor in established SMC minors. The Communication Studies student who declares a minor must complete the entire program requirements for both the major and the minor.  Courses listed for both the Communication Studies major and SMC minor will only apply towards one of the curriculums.  If the class is part of an array of courses, students will be required to take a different course to satisfy the major requirement.

Communication Studies: Major of Distinction (Thesis Track) Requirements

  1. All Communication Studies majors must take the following two foundation courses:
    CMST 1111Communication and Public Life3
    MSP 1021Media and Society3
    Total Credit Hours6
  2. All majors will take five additional core courses. Students will select one course each from the categories below (15 credits). Students should plan to meet the prerequisites for courses in their selected track (see below) by taking appropriate core courses.
    Core Courses
    CMST 2111Communications Seminar 13
    Communication Theory
    Select one of the following:3
    Introduction to Media and Society
    Introduction to Advertising
    Journalism and Society
    Introduction to Media Theory
    Research Methods
    Select one of the following:3
    Introduction to Advertising Research
    Journalism Research 1
    Media Research 1
    Analysis
    Select one of the following:3
    Introduction to Art Direction: Visual Communication
    Media Popular Culture 1
    Public Speaking
    Honors Public Speaking
    Cross-Cultural Perspectives
    Select one of the following:3
    Global Communication and Leadership
    Intercultural Communication
    Total Credit Hours15
    1

    Course has prerequisites.

  3. In the Major of Distinction, each student works individually with a faculty advisor from a relevant SMC department to build a curriculum that goes beyond that offered by the established tracks.
    Major of Distinction Coursework21
    One SMC course at any level3
    Four 3000+ SMC courses12
    CMST Thesis Hours6
    Language Proficiency
    Language 1001 level
    Language 1002 level
    Language 1003 level

Suggested Academic Plan

Please note that this is a suggested academic plan. Depending on your situation, your academic plan may look different.

Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies: Major of Distinction Track

Requirements for New Students starting in the 2016-2017 Academic Year

Year 1
FallCredit Hours
CMST 1111Communication and Public Life3
MSP 1021Media and Society3
ENG 0802, 0812, or 0902Analytical Reading and Writing [GW]4
Foreign Language 1001 level4
COMM 1001SMC Freshman Seminar1
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
Select one of the following (Communication Theory):3
Introduction to Media and Society 
Introduction to Advertising 
Journalism and Society 
Introduction to Media Theory 
IH 0851 or 0951Mosaic: Humanities Seminar I [GY]3
GenEd Quantitative Literacy Course [GQ]4
GenEd Breadth Course3
Foreign Language 1002 Level4
 Term Credit Hours17
Year 2
Fall
CMST 2111Communications Seminar3
Select one of the following (Analysis):3
Introduction to Art Direction: Visual Communication 
Media Popular Culture 
Public Speaking 
GenEd Breadth Course3-4
GenEd Breadth Course3
Foreign Language 1003 Level3
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
Select one of the following (Research Methods):3
Introduction to Advertising Research 
Journalism Research 
Media Research 
Select one of the following (Cross-Cultural Perspectives):3
Global Communication and Leadership 
Intercultural Communication 
IH 0852 or 0952Mosaic: Humanities Seminar II [GZ]3
GenEd Breadth Course3
GenEd Breadth Course3
 Term Credit Hours15
Year 3
Fall
One Writing-Intensive SMC Course - any level3
One 3000-4999 SMC Course3
GenEd Breadth Course3
Electives7
 Term Credit Hours16
Spring
One 3000-4999 Writing-Intensive SMC Course3
One 4000-4999 SMC Course 3
GenEd Breadth Course3
Electives7
 Term Credit Hours16
Year 4
Fall
Thesis Hours3
One 3000-4999 SMC Course3
Electives9
 Term Credit Hours15
Spring
Thesis Hours3
Electives12
 Term Credit Hours15
 Total Credit Hours: 124