Degree Title and Name: Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Studies
Program Name and Number: Communication Studies - PH5360, PH5361, PH5362
Department/Unit: School of Communication Studies
Delivery Mode: Athens Campus
Term(s) of Entry: Fall
Program Overview: The doctoral program in Communication Studies (COMS) is designed for students who want to become excellent teachers, researchers, and/or practitioners in the Communication discipline. Across an array of contexts, faculty and students in COMS strive to understand messages, communication processes, and implications and/or outcomes of communicative events. We actively strive to inspire our doctoral students to become effective and ethical teacher-scholars. The School of Communication Studies expects its graduates to develop a specialist’s depth in the study of human communication as well as a generalist’s perspective. All doctoral students complete a common set of core courses and then proceed to take specialized courses relevant to their professional objectives.
The School offers the Ph.D. degree with primary areas of study in Rhetoric and Culture, Health Communication, and Interpersonal and Organizational Communication. These areas combine existing research areas while adjusting to the contemporary trends in the communication discipline. Doctoral students select their primary area, research courses, and electives in consultation with their program of study committee.
- Rhetoric and Culture (PH5360): Students in the Rhetoric and Culture concentration tend to specialize in the study of contemporary discourses on issues ranging from politics to sports. Students are exposed to a wide range of rhetorical theorists, as well as many interdisciplinary theorists. Courses and research projects in this area seek to help us understand how we participate as advocates in society and enable us to become better advocates.
- Health Communication (PH5361): Students in the Health Communication concentration address topics ranging from narrative approaches to understanding health to health message effects. Faculty scholars in this area have developed meaningful connections with the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, the College of Health Sciences and Professions, as well as several health related community advocacy organizations.
- Interpersonal and Organizational Communication (PH5362): Students in the Interpersonal and Organizational Communication concentration blend theory from both organizational communication and interpersonal communication to ask provocative questions about communication contexts ranging from traditional organizational settings to the classroom and more traditional interpersonal relationships.
Students with a strong background in Communication Studies or related disciplines are eligible to be selected as graduate assistants. Graduate assistants serve as instructors and/or teaching assistants in a variety of undergraduate courses, coach in our nationally recognized forensics program, and/or assist faculty with various administrative and scholarly projects.
The COMS doctoral program is designed to take approximately four years for full-time students.
Link to Program: http://www.ohiocommstudies.com/graduate
Link to Program Handbook: https://www.ohiocommstudies.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/COMS-Doctoral-Program-Handbook.6119.pdf
- 61 semester hours of non-dissertation credit
- An approved program of study (POS). An approved program of study must meet the following minimum requirements:
- COMS Doctoral CORE: All doctoral students in the School of Communication Studies are required to complete coursework in communication inquiry as well as an introduction to graduate studies in communication. This 13 credit hour core is comprised of COMS 7000 (Professional Seminar– Pedagogy), COMS 7005 (Introduction to Graduate Studies in Communication), COMS 7020 (Communication Inquiry 1), and COMS 7030 (Communication Inquiry 2).
- Primary Area: Students are required to complete coursework specific to their primary area.
- Students in the Rhetoric and Culture area must complete 20 hours of courses in that area, including COMS 8300 – Rhetorical Theory, COMS 8340 – Rhetorical Criticism, and 12 hours from the following courses:
- COMS 8350 – Studies in American Rhetoric
- COMS 8360 – Studies in Communication and Cultural Critique
- COMS 8390 – Topics in Rhetoric and Culture
- Students in the Health Communication area must complete 20 credit hours of courses in the Health Communication area. Students must take at least three of the following: COMS 8400- Health Communication in Organizations; COMS 8430 - Relational Issues in Health Communication; COMS 8450 - Health Communication Campaigns; or, COMS 8440 - Health Communication & Society. The remaining 4 to 8 credit hours may be fulfilled by completing courses selected from the following courses:
- COMS 8420 – Health Communication and Culture
- COMS 8460 – Persuasion & Social Influence
- COMS 8470 – Health Communication, Uncertainty & Risk
- COMS 8480 – Environmental Communication
- COMS 8490 – Special Topics in Health Communication
- Students in the Interpersonal and Organizational Communication area must complete 24 credit hours of courses in the Interpersonal and Organizational Communication area. These 24 hours are comprised of COMS 8200 – Foundations of Organization Communication and COMS 8210 – Foundations of Interpersonal Communication, as well as 16 credits from the following courses:
- COMS 8240 – Communication and Identity
- COMS 8250 – Communication in Personal and Social Relationships
- COMS 8260 – Communication Innovation & Organizational Change
- COMS 8270 – Narrative and Dialogue
- COMS 8280 – Topics in Advanced Interpersonal Communication
- COMS 8290 – Topics in Advanced Organizational Communication
- Research Competency: At least 15 credit hours of methods courses approved by the student’s POS Committee.
- Electives: Students in the Rhetoric and Culture or Health Communication areas must take 3 elective courses (9 CH Min.) approved by the student’s POS committee. Students in the Interpersonal and Organizational Communication area must take 2 elective courses (6 CH Min.) approved by the student’s POS committee.
- Dissertation Credits: All students must successfully complete the dissertation to obtain the Ph.D. A minimum of 12 semester hours are expected, and most students will exceed that number.
- Successful completion of the comprehensive examination
- Creation of a scholarly portfolio
- Successful completion of the dissertation
Culminating Experience: All students must successfully complete the dissertation to obtain the Ph.D. A minimum of 12 semester hours are expected, and most students will exceed that number.
Admission Requirements: Admission to graduate study is granted on the basis of a match between the student’s academic goals and the School’s primary areas of study, recommendations of those familiar with the student’s academic and other work, undergraduate and graduate grade-point average and class standing, scores on the Graduate Record Examination, submitted writing sample, and experiential and other informal learning experiences. International students from non-English speaking countries are required to submit a TOEFL score.
To be admitted unconditionally, a prospective student must have earned a bachelor’s degree or completed equivalent work (as approved by the University) at an accredited institution for direct admission into the COMS doctoral program.
International Students: This program permits full-time enrollment in residence at Ohio University, and an I-20 may be issued based on admission to this program.