Theory and Research Ph.D.

With the new grading policy in effect for spring 2020, courses toward the PhD in Communication may be taken S/NC.

The Ph.D. program prepares students to conduct original research on communication processes, their origins, and their psychological, political and cultural effects. Most of our doctoral graduates enter academic teaching and research careers, or communication-related professions that require research skills.

Students usually enter the program with strong interests in one of our three areas of special strength: Media Psychology, Political Communication, or Journalism, Media and Culture. Within the program, students tend to anchor in one area while exploring key empirical and theoretical concerns in the others. After a core curriculum of courses in quantitative and qualitative methods, statistics, and mass communication theory, each student builds a research specialization through advanced courses and seminars in Communication and related departments, research projects, teaching, and an examination in the area of concentration. These requirements are normally completed within four years, and the dissertation within six.