Speech Communications Degree Programs and Courses

See what programs and courses are available in speech communications. Learn about the field and what courses you'd take as part of a degree program. Learn more about areas of specialization and advanced education options in the field. Schools offering Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Degree programs in speech communication prepare students for a range of communication positions in fields such as marketing, journalism, and education. This broad field of study encompasses methods of effective oral and written communication along with investigations of interpersonal and group communication. Programs are available at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Courses Courses include interpersonal communication, public speaking, rhetoric, research methods, intercultural communication
Degrees BA, MA, Ph.D. in Speech Communication
Programs Available program options include study abroad programs and research emphases

How Does Speech Communication Affect My Life?

Communication is central to every aspect of society. Whether you're bridging communication over cultural barriers, negotiating a conflict or running a marketing campaign, you need to know how to express your thoughts effectively. The more you understand communication techniques, the more you'll understand the messages of others around you. For example, with communications knowledge, you'll be able to identify the rhetorical strategies used in newspaper articles, advertisements and political speeches.

After completing a speech communications program, you may find employment in the non-profit, business, advertising and public relations fields. Career opportunities will vary based on your specialization and experience. Examples of some possible career titles include the following:

  • Fundraiser
  • Business analyst
  • Event planner
  • Marketing representative
  • Debate coach
  • Reporter

What Courses Will I Take?

In a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication degree program, you can expect to polish your presentation and speaking skills through courses in both interpersonal and public communication. Core courses may cover persuasive theories, public speaking and cultural diversity. To prepare for speeches, you have to conduct research; as a result, you'll also be introduced to research methods and criticism.

Some programs offer specializations in such areas as public relations, corporate and interpersonal communication. Public relations courses will concentrate on potential campaigns. You'll learn how to plan and implement them in political and nonprofit settings. If you're interested in training and promoting teamwork in a business setting, you can take courses in group communication, interviewing and organizational theories. Interpersonal communication relates to family dynamics and nonverbal relations.

How Do I Decide Between Programs?

If you're interested in communication between cultures, consider a school that has a study abroad program. You'll have the opportunity to study interracial and intercultural communication in a real-world setting. Similarly, you may want to pursue internships at nonprofit organizations or in the government.

If you're interested in going to graduate school, consider schools with research opportunities available to undergraduates. Research topics can include the relationships between communication and new technology, health, cultural and organizations. Alternatively, if you're deciding between graduate programs, look for schools that offer research and teaching assistantships.

Regardless of your ultimate career goals, every speech communications major can benefit from student organizations and speech development centers. Student clubs and organizations can be a great opportunity to network with other students and with working professionals. You can get feedback and public speaking practice through speech centers along with workshops and assistance with presentation technology.

How Can I Continue My Education?

Master of Arts in Speech Communication degree programs may also have specializations in health communication or rhetorical studies, though more emphasis is placed on research at this degree level. Graduates with a master's degree may find employment as educators or consultants. Some programs have thesis and non-thesis options.

A Doctor of Philosophy in Speech Communication degree program requires four years to complete. Most programs are based in research and require doctoral candidates to pass written and oral exams and a dissertation. Graduates may work as researchers or teach at the college level.

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.

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