Apr 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

School of Communication

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences

Strategic Communication

Shuo Yao, Graduate Program Coordinator
Graduate Faculty

Graduate Program

The Master of Science in Strategic Communication allows Radford University students to prepare for many advanced career positions or for the pursuit of a doctoral degree. Students will be prepared to seek careers as communication professionals in human services and in management positions, as public relations specialists and as training/development coordinators.

Graduates of the program demonstrate a broad range of career possibilities. For example, our graduates currently hold positions in fields as diverse as health care, public relations, computer software, media, higher education, non-profit services and government. Additionally, students are prepared to pursue doctoral degrees. The degree provides a foundation of course work in both internal and external organizational communication and also allows students to focus their studies in their specific areas of interest.

Admission Information

The basic requirements for graduate study at Radford University are given in this catalog. General requirements and procedures for the Master of Science in Strategic Communication follow. Detailed requirements and procedures for the degree may be found in the Strategic Communication Graduate Student Handbook. (http://www.radford.edu/~comm/ home/)

In those cases where program requirements and procedures are more stringent than those of the Graduate College, the requirements and procedures of the program take precedence. It will be assumed that students are thoroughly familiar with the requirements and procedures stated in the above documents. The ultimate responsibility for meeting all stated degree requirements rests with the student. The dean and staff of the Graduate College, the graduate program coordinator and the graduate faculty are all available to guide, advise, help interpret policies and otherwise assist the student in meeting degree requirements.

Application materials provide a variety of information about an applicant’s skills, talents, background, experiences, career goals, motivation, commitment and potential for successful completion of the program. The Strategic Communication Admissions Committee will view each applicant’s admission file as an integrated package. No single item of information will be used to reject any applicant. The application information enables the committee to select a class of entering graduate students who individually and collectively have the potential to make substantial contributions to the professional and intellectual environment of the program, university and field. Admission is competitive.

In addition to meeting the minimum requirements for the Graduate College, the following application procedures are required:

  • Complete and submit the Application for Graduate Admission form, including official copies of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts. This requirement applies even if an applicant has not yet completed an undergraduate degree.
  • Provide at least three recent letters of reference.
  • Write a short essay (typed, double-spaced and limited to three pages in length) addressing the following issues:
    1. Upon what past experiences and interests do you base your present decision to apply to this graduate program?
    2. How does study for the M.S. in this program fit in with your short- and long-term goals and career aspirations?
    3. Is there any other information, not covered elsewhere in your application, that you would like to share with the program’s Graduate Admissions Committee?
  • Applicants whose native language is not English must also take the TOEFL or IELTS as a test of proficiency in written and spoken English and submit scores as part of their application materials.
  • A recent resume.

All of the above application materials should be sent online to: College of Graduate Studies and Research

Applicants to the graduate program are normally admitted for the fall semester; however, admission may be granted for the spring semester. An applicant who is applying for admission for the fall semester is recommended to have his or her application file completed by February 1. An applicant who is applying for admission for the spring semester is recommended to have his or her application file completed by October 15.

Graduate Assistantship Information

Graduate assistantships are available for the program in Strategic Communication. Because the degree focuses on the education and training of communication professionals and because those communication professionals may well be called upon to educate and train others in the workplace or the classroom, the primary duties of graduate assistants involve teaching.

The Strategic Communication faculty believe that all graduate assistants who teach should be provided with the best preparation possible for educating others. Thus, all teaching assistants are provided with a semester of training and practice under a designated mentor before those assistants are assigned teaching responsibilities. Typically, graduate assistants who complete their semester of training are assigned to work with the mentor in teaching communication courses. Before assuming any teaching duties, however, students must be approved for teaching assignments by the graduate faculty and the teaching mentor.

Applicants for admission who also wish to be considered for a graduate assistantship should write a letter to that effect addressed to:

Graduate Program Coordinator
Strategic Communication
Radford University
Box 6932
Radford, VA 24142

Letters requesting consideration for a graduate assistantship for the fall semester must be received by March 1. Letters requesting consideration for a graduate assistantship for the spring semester must be received by October 1. All graduate assistantships are competitive.

Accelerated Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Strategic Communication

The objective of the accelerated bachelor’s/master’s degree program in Strategic Communication is to provide a means by which exceptional undergraduate students at Radford University may complete the requirements for both the baccalaureate and master’s degrees at an accelerated pace.  

Eligibility: Students must have completed a minimum of 60 undergraduate credit hours and have at least 24 credits remaining in their undergraduate programs. Students must have a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.25 and have earned a minimum grade of B in both COMS 230 and COMS 231.  

Students must submit one letter of reference from a current School of Communication faculty member when they submit their initial application for the accelerated program.  This letter of reference can be used as one of the three required for admission into the graduate program.

The deadline for accelerated applications is November 15th for the Fall semester and April 15th for the Spring semester. Students must be accepted into the accelerated program the semester prior to when they begin taking 500 or 600 level courses.

For information on accelerated programs, see here . For more information contact the Department of Communication, the Graduate Admissions Office, or http://gradcollege.asp.radford.edu/index.html.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences