About the Department
The present Department of Communication and Journalism at the University of Maine was established in 1994 by the merger of the former Departments of Speech Communication and Journalism & Mass Communication. With 9 full time faculty and over 375 undergraduate and graduate majors, the department is one of the largest in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
The Department’s primary educational mission is to offer challenging liberal arts degree programs that include the personal and professional practices and the social contexts of communication, mass communication, and journalism. Through the study of human communication we seek to understand and to improve the human condition. The Department fulfills this liberal arts mission through its undergraduate programs in Communication, Mass Communication, and Journalism, and through its graduate programs in Communication and Mass Communication.
The communication curriculum prepares undergraduate and graduate students for communication in the twenty-first century. The B.A. degree prepares students in the theory, research, and pragmatics of communication, whether the communication occurs between persons, in small groups or organizations, or in public and aesthetic contexts. The M.A. program, based in both the rhetorical and social science traditions in communication, prepares students for independent and active approaches to seeking, critiquing, and creating knowledge about communication processes and practices. Both the B.A. and M.A. programs provide a broad foundation for advanced study and for employment as communication specialists.
Firmly grounded in the liberal arts, the undergraduate Mass Communication degree provides students with the background in theories and research issues necessary for graduate study, as well as a broad understanding of the roles of media in society to prepare students for careers in the media. The graduate M.A. program prepares students for professional management leadership positions in mass communication and for further graduate work in the discipline, in law, and in related disciplines.
The undergraduate Journalism major offers students strong oral and written expression skills, a firm grasp of public affairs, and a broad foundation in the liberal arts. The program also encourages media literacy and productive relations with media institutions. The Journalism degree requires coursework that prepare students for print, broadcast and digital broadcast news journalism careers in Maine and nationwide. The major also prepares students for graduate study in related communication fields, law, the humanities and social sciences.