The Graduate Studies Committee (GSC) develops, updates and maintains the rules, policies and degree requirements for the graduate program in Communication Studies. This information is available to students via the Graduate Student Handbook which is updated yearly and posted here for reference.
Graduate students must abide by the rules, policies and degree requirements established at the time of their first semester in the program.
Our graduate program is student-tailored. Students develop a plan of study in consultation with advisory committees of their choosing. Ordinarily, an M.A. program is complete in 2 years, a Ph.D. in 4 years Students who complete an M.A. program in the department and would like to continue at UT-Austin must apply through the department for admission into the Ph.D. program. As the quality of the dissertation may be jeopardized when it is completed out of residence, and the increasing specialization within the various areas of communication, we encourage most students in the doctoral program to create a 4 year Ph.D. work plan.
Current Graduate Student Handbook
Comprehensive Exam Instructions
Goal of the Doctoral Degree
The doctoral program in Communication Studies at the University of Texas is devoted to increasing understanding of the processes and effects of communication. As a result, doctoral students may specialize in one of several academic concentrations.
The doctoral program in Communication Studies at the University of Texas is devoted to increasing understanding of the processes and effects of communication. As a result, doctoral students may specialize in one of several academic concentrations:
- Interpersonal Communication
- Organizational Communication
- Rhetoric, Language & Political Studies
The goal of the doctoral program is to prepare students to conduct original research extending human knowledge in all of these areas of Communication Studies.
The Doctoral degree is seen by faculty members as a research degree; completion of the doctoral program assumes a willingness and capacity on the part of students to conduct original research in a chosen area, and a receptivity to a well-rounded education in Communication Studies. The Department's philosophy is to produce specialists in Communication Studies who:
- have a broad understanding of their discipline
- can contribute importantly to scholarly dialogues with their colleagues in the discipline
- articulate the tenets of their discipline throughout the academic community
- are capable of imparting and applying their insights to the public through teaching and service.
Before the doctoral degree is awarded, students are expected to:
- achieve mastery of a body of literature pertinent to the student's major area of interest and necessary supportive area,
- obtain proficiency in a research methodology appropriate to the focus of the student's research program,
- acquire basic teaching skills necessary to teach courses in the student's major area of interest,
- demonstrate a minimum understanding of at least one other area in Communication Studies outside of the student's individual academic concentration.