Master of Arts in Communication

IMG_2344Review of applications begins on January 15, with priority for funding given to complete applications received by this date.

Start your application online here.

Admission Process

Review and selection of students for the upcoming academic year occurs between mid-January and mid-April. If you wish to receive first-round consideration for the coming year, you are advised to have your application complete by January 15th. Your application will be complete when it contains:

  1. A completed Graduate School application (online)
  2. Transcripts of completed undergraduate work
  3. Letters of recommendation from three persons familiar with your academic record (e.g., professor, supervisor, or teaching assistant)
  4. A report of your TOEFL score (if your undergraduate coursework was not conducted in English)
  5. An academic writing sample (e.g., a research paper written for a class, an excerpt of an undergraduate thesis)

Submission of an official transcript of your GRE scores (dates and sites of exams are available here) is optional.

You are responsible for monitoring the completion of your application in a timely manner. Please contact the Graduate Coordinator with any questions.


MA Program Requirements

A student selects and completes distributions in required courses, an area of interest, and electives. Students must complete 32 credit hours (33 if they are Teaching Assistants).

1. Core (20 or 21 credits, contingent on Teaching Assistant status):

Required Courses (11 credits):

CMJ 515 Mass Communication Theory (Credits: 3)
CMJ 600 Introduction to Graduate Study in Communication (Credits: 3)
CMJ 601 Seminar in Research Methods (Credits: 3)
CMJ 608 Communication Theory (Credits: 3)

One additional research methods course (3 credits):

CMJ 503 Critical Historiography of Rhetoric (Credits: 3), OR
CMJ 603 Seminar in Rhetorical Criticism (Credits: 3), OR
CMJ 604 Qualitative Communication Research Methods (Credits: 3)

Two CMJ seminars in specific “Area of Interest” (6 credits):

See list of courses under “Electives” below. “Area of Interest” courses must be approved by Advisory Committee.

Teaching Pro-seminar [required only for CMJ Teaching Assistants] (1 credit):

All Graduate Teaching Assistants are required to enroll in CMJ 602 in their first Fall semester.

CMJ 602 Teaching Communication in College (Credit: 1)

2. Electives (12 credits):

Departmental Electives:

CMJ 503 Critical Historiography of Rhetoric (Credits: 3) [if not used as methods requirement]
CMJ 506 Rhetorical Theory: Civic Tradition (Credits: 3)
CMJ 510 Critical Studies in Mass Communication (Credits: 3)
CMJ 520 Media History (Credits: 3)
CMJ 525 Propaganda and Political Communication (Credits: 3)
CMJ 545 Media Ecology (Credits: 3)
CMJ 580 Environmental Communication (Credits: 3)
CMJ 593 Topics in Communication (Credits: 3) [may be repeated with new content]
CMJ 602 Teaching Communication in College (Credit: 1) [if not used as TA requirement]
CMJ 603 Seminar in Rhetorical Criticism (Credits: 3) [if not used as methods requirement]
CMJ 604 Qualitative Communication Research Methods (Credits: 3) [if not used as methods requirement]
CMJ 605 Communication in Organizations (Credits: 3)
CMJ 606 Rhetorical Theory: Critical Tradition (Credits: 3)
CMJ 610 Seminar in Risk Communication (Credits: 3)
CMJ 695 Graduate Internship (up to 3 credits; approval required)
CMJ 698 Contemporary Issues in Human Communication (Credits: 3)

Outside Electives:

Up to 6 credits of elective coursework outside of CMJ may replace Departmental electives if (1) the courses are applicable to the student’s research interests, and (2) if the student receives unanimous approval from the student’s Advisory Committee.

3. Thesis Credits (Optional):

If MA thesis option is selected, 6 credits replace “Elective” coursework.

CMJ 699 Graduate Thesis (1-6/term, repeatable for 6 total credits)

Advisory Committee

In the first semester, students work with the Graduate Coordinator to identify an appropriate faculty advisor. Students then work with this faculty member in developing their plans for a program of study. During the first year, students also select their official Advisory Committee for either a thesis or a research paper and examination program. Three faculty are required for the Advisory Committee; at least two must be members the department Graduate Faculty.

Research Paper Option

Under this option, the student must prepare and present a research project. Although the research project is not as extensive as the thesis, the research paper must evidence critical thinking.  The student defends the research paper in an oral examination.

Thesis Option

Students electing the thesis option enroll in CMJ 699 for a maximum of six (6) credit hours. The student’s official Advisory Committee must approve a thesis prospectus prior to the student undertaking the research. After the thesis is completed, the student defends the research in an oral examination.


Questions about our graduate programs?

Please contact:

Graduate Coordinator
Department of Communication and Journalism
5724 Dunn Hall, Room 428
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469

E-mail: laura.rickard@maine.edu