PhD Programs in Speech Communications

A Ph.D. program in speech communications teaches you empirical research methods and theoretical knowledge for teaching and research. Learn about program requirements and career options. Schools offering Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Courses Will I Take in a Ph.D. Program in Speech Communications?

A Ph.D. in Speech Communications program can advance your knowledge of communication theories and principles in a broad range of contexts, including government and business settings. You also might build your critical thinking and problem-solving skills related to speech and rhetoric. Your curriculum may include classes like the following:

  • Methodologies of rhetorical criticism
  • Interpersonal communication theory
  • Language and communication behavior
  • Conflict
  • Public communication

In addition to graduate coursework, you usually will complete supervised research, teaching and dissertation hours. Dissertation topics are completed in your area of specialization, which might include communication studies, rhetoric studies or interpersonal communication. Your original dissertation prospectus must be presented to and approved by a committee at your college or university. Doctoral coursework and your dissertation typically will take 3-4 years beyond a master's degree to complete.

Common CoursesInterpersonal communication theory, conflict, public communication, language and communication behavior
PrerequisitesMaster's degree, coursework in research methods and rhetorical criticism, a comprehensive exam may be required
Online Availability Hybrid and fully online options available
Career OptionsProfessor in speech communications, media or marketing consultant

What Are the Prerequisites?

Ph.D. programs typically require you to hold bachelor's and master's degrees in speech communications or a related field. If you don't have a master's degree in speech communications, you'll often need to complete prerequisite coursework in research methods and rhetorical criticism. Prior to Ph.D. candidacy, you'll likely have to pass comprehensive exams to demonstrate your competency.

What Are My Online Options?

Online Ph.D. programs in speech communications are rare; however, you can find hybrid programs that offer some classes online. Distance education courses tend to mimic on-campus classes; however, online courses typically can be viewed anywhere at any time. Your program is likely to utilize online learning technology, such as a classroom management system and e-mail. You'll probably communicate with teachers and classmates through chat rooms and discussion boards.

What Can I Do With My Ph.D.?

A Ph.D. is the highest level of education offered in speech communications. Programs are designed to provide you with the scholarship and research expertise needed for teaching and research positions at colleges and universities. With a Ph.D., you also should be qualified for administrative and management roles with communications organizations. Additionally, you might find a management or consultant position in communications, media or marketing.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Michigan State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: East Lansing
  • University of Oklahoma Norman Campus

    Campus Locations:

    • Oklahoma: Norman
  • North Dakota State University

    Campus Locations:

    • North Dakota: Fargo
  • University of Illinois

    Campus Locations:

    • Illinois: Champaign
  • University of Southern Mississippi

    Campus Locations:

    • Mississippi: Hattiesburg
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

    Campus Locations:

    • North Carolina: Chapel Hill
  • University of Denver

    Campus Locations:

    • Colorado: Denver
  • University of Colorado Boulder

    Campus Locations:

    • Colorado: Boulder
  • University at Buffalo

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: Buffalo
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: Troy