Texas Tech University

Master of Arts Communication Studies

MA Program TTU

OUR GENERALIST PROGRAM IN COMMUNICATION STUDIES builds a broad foundation of communication theories, methods, and research exemplars. Coursework includes rhetorical, organizational, interpersonal, and intercultural studies with the central aim of better understanding, explaining, and questioning human communication.

WE ARE RECOGNIZED AMONG THE BEST MASTER'S PROGRAMS in the country, according to a study published in Communication Education.

GRADUATES OF OUR PROGRAM ENTER DIVERSE career paths via health care, business, education, entertainment, ministry, nonprofit, consulting, law, and public service realms. Additionally, a number of students continue into doctoral studies and go on to become university professors.

*Please note that within our college, Communication Studies is distinct from Mass Communication. The program in Communication Studies does not focus on the mass communication arenas such as PR, advertising, journalism, radio, or digital/electronic media. Instead, we focus predominantly on research, writing, theory, and philosophy using a variety of research approaches to study interpersonal, intercultural (both social scientific and critical perspectives), organizational (systems, small groups, entry and exit, for profit and not-for-profit, etc.), and rhetorical (philosophical, critical, feminist, and pop culture) communication. 


The Master of Arts in Communication Studies offers advanced study of human communication in face-to-face, public, and mediated contexts. Students are encouraged to pursue research interests in organizational and small group communication, intercultural and interpersonal communication, instructional communication, and/or rhetoric and public affairs. Ultimately, the program aims to foster and promote a theory of engaged living.

The M.A. degree prepares students for a career in a wide array of arenas, including but not limited to, non-profits, start-ups, corporate contexts, and educational institutions. Alternatively, many students elect to continue their studies and matriculate into Ph.D. programs.

The M.A. in Communication Studies is a 36-hour program; it includes three core courses: (1) COMS 5310, (2) COMS 5300 or COMS 5306, and (3) COMS 5301 , COMS 5305, or COMS 5307 . Graduate teaching assistants are also required to take COMS 6307.

To complete the degree requirements, students choose from among various options: a traditional monograph thesis, two publishable papers thesis, a praxis report, or qualifying exams.


To do well in the COMS master's program, we suggest you have at least 12 undergraduate hours in Communication Studies or a related field. At least 9 of these hours should be in non-forensics areas (other than Speech and Debate competition)

The GRE is optional through Summer 2025.

Communication Studies Faculty

Check out our faculty in their COMS Faculty Bios. 

Funding Opportunities

The Department of Communication Studies offers competitively funded positions in the form of graduate teaching assistantships (GTA) for in-person students. In a GTA position, students work 20 hours per week, typically assisting with the public speaking course or as a research assistant, and this waives about half of tuition and fees and allows for the in-state tuition rate. The assistantship provides a stipend (currently, $11,000) for nine months (Spring/Fall semesters) for up to four long semesters. 

International Student Applicants

This is a helpful link for International Prospective Students. International students will be responsible for purchasing Texas Tech's mandatory international student health insurance (currently around $3,200 per year). The department does not cover this expense. It will be deducted from a student's graduate teaching assistantship stipend. You can read more about the insurance online.

Contact Our Graduate Director

Jenna LaFreniere, Ph.D. 
Associate Professor & M.A. Communication Studies Program Director
(806.834.2808) jenna.lafreniere@ttu.edu 
Media & Communication Building, Room 1009

Apply Now!