Undergraduate | Communication Studies | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

Student tabling communication studies table


Your Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Communication Studies* at SIU can prepare you for a career in business, the arts, social services, government, education, or industry. Your ability to effectively communicate is essential to your potential career success. In our department you can develop the flexible, practical skills you will need after graduation. You learn from nationally recognized faculty in small classes. In our department you’re a name, not a number.

Students in communications classWhat is Communication Studies? The simplest answer is that it is the discipline that studies how humans communicate. Communication Studies is concerned with messages and meaning, with why and how people communicate, with the tools and methods people use, and the consequences of their interaction. We balance practical application of skills with critical and theoretical understanding. We look at the contexts of interaction too—everything from family dynamics, to business and social environments, to mediated and global cultures.

We’ll help you develop your communication abilities. In our program you can choose one of six areas of communication studies specializations: intercultural communication, interpersonal communication, organizational communication, persuasive communication, performance studies, or public relations.

The Department of Communication Studies offers courses in the history, theory and application of communication. These courses reflect liberal arts, humanities and social science traditions as approaches to theory and application. The department also sponsors co-curricular activities in debate, forensics, performance studies (oral interpretation), and public relations, all of which are open to non-majors. English is the language of instruction in the Department of Communication Studies and proficiency in written and oral English is required of all students in Communication Studies. To meet the requirements for a major in the Department of Communication Studies a student must demonstrate the following basic skills: the ability to deliver effective oral public presentations; the ability to write clear, correct English prose; the ability to communicate effectively at the interpersonal level as well as in groups; and the ability to understand and apply communication theory and research. These communication competencies may be demonstrated by completing the major program and any one of the specializations described below and by receiving no lower than a C grade in courses listed in the required core and as required in the student’s chosen specialization. Under certain circumstances, a student may elect to demonstrate a competency by passing a proficiency examination administered by the Department of Communication Studies.

*Note: Degrees completed starting Summer 2015 will be granted as Communication Studies; degrees prior to that term will be granted as Speech Communication.