Skip Navigation
search: People | Departments | Penn State | Web
Penn State mark
Penn State mark
University Bulletin
Graduate Degree Programs

Communication Arts and Sciences (CAS)

Program Home Page

DENISE SOLOMON, Head of the Department
317 Sparks Building
814-865-5232

 

Degrees Conferred:

Ph.D., M.A.

 

The Graduate Faculty

 

Students may specialize in communication theory (communication sciences) or rhetoric (communication arts).

Admission Requirements

Scores from the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) are required for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to general Graduate School requirements stated in the GENERAL INFORMATION section of the Graduate Bulletin.

The minimum undergraduate preparation is 12 credits in communication studies/speech communication. Students who cannot meet this requirement in full may be admitted but must make up their deficiencies without credit toward the graduate degree.

Additionally, students with a 3.00 junior/senior grade-point average (on a 4.00 scale) and appropriate course backgrounds will be considered for admission. The best-qualified applicants will be accepted up to the number of spaces that are available for new students. Exceptions to the minimum 3.00 grade-point average may be made for students with special backgrounds, abilities, and interests. A student must have completed the master's degree before being admitted as a doctoral candidate.

Master's Degree Requirements

Students pursuing the M.A. degree in Communication Arts and Sciences must schedule a review of their program of courses during the first year of residence and receive approval by a duly constituted advisory committee.

A total of 30 credits, including 6 for the master's thesis and at least 12 other 500-level credits, is required. Candidates must schedule a proposal meeting in which their research plan for their thesis is approved by their committee. They are also required to present an oral defense before their committee.

Although typically discouraged, students in unique circumstances may apply to complete a nonthesis track. Students must apply in advance for acceptance in the nonthesis track and additional course credits will be required, among other differences from the thesis track.

Doctoral Degree Requirements

The communication and foreign language requirement for the Ph.D. degree may be satisfied by options selected from designated areas including, but not restricted to, foreign languages. Doctoral candidates must schedule a candidacy evaluation during their first year. Following completion of the language requirement and all courses from the program of study, doctoral candidates must take a comprehensive examination to determine their mastery and competence in the discipline of communication. After successful completion of the written and oral component of the comprehensive exam, doctoral candidates must schedule a proposal meeting at which the research plan for their dissertation is approved by their committee. Doctoral candidates must present a final oral defense of their dissertation before their committee.

Student Aid

In addition to the fellowships, traineeships, graduate assistantships, and other forms of financial aid described in the STUDENT AID section of the Graduate Bulletin, the following awards typically have been available to graduate students in this program:

EDWIN ERLE SPARKS FELLOWSHIPS IN THE HUMANITIES (8)
Available to beginning and continuing graduate students in one of the following graduate programs: Communication Arts and Sciences, Comparative Literature, English, French, German, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, and Spanish; stipend $15, 340 plus waiver of tuition. Apply to department before February 1.

Dual-Title Ph.D. in Bioethics (BIOET)

Degree Conferred Students electing to pursue this program will earn a degree with a dual-title at the Ph.D. level, i.e. Ph.D. in CAS and Bioethics.

Admission Requirements

Dual-title bioethics graduate students will first be admitted to their primary programs in accordance with the requirements stipulated by the Graduate School and the primary program. They will then be admitted to graduate study in the Bioethics program by an admissions committee consisting of faculty affiliated with the Bioethics program. Applicants should have a junior/senior cumulative average of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) and an appropriate background in undergraduate coursework. Prospective dual-title students will write a statement of purpose that addresses the ways in which their research and professional goals reflect an interest in interdisciplinary bioethics research. Requirements listed here are in addition to general Graduate School requirements stated in the GENERAL INFORMATION section of the Graduate Bulletin.

Degree Requirements

To qualify for a dual-title degree, students must satisfy the requirements of the CAS program in which they are primarily enrolled. In addition, they must satisfy the requirements described below, as established by the Bioethics program committee. Within this framework, final course selection is determined by the student, their CAS and Bioethics advisors.

Additional required course work
Seven required credits (BIOET 501, BIOET 502, and BIOET 590). At least three additional BIOET credits at the 500 level.

Eight additional credits from a list of approved electives at the 400 and 500 level, with at least two credits at the 500 level.

Courses available to fulfill requirements

BIOETHICS Courses (BIOET)
501. PERSPECTIVES AND METHODS IN BIOETHICS (3)
502. PERSPECTIVES IN MACRO-BOETICS (3)
503. ETHICS AND THE RESPONSIBLE CONDUCT OF BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH (3)
590. BIOETHICS COLLOQUIUM (1)
594. RESEARCH TOPICS (1-15)
595. INTERNSHIP (1-3)
596. INDEPENDENT STUDY (1-9)
597. SPECIAL TOPICS IN BIOETHICS (1-9)

Elective Courses

The list of elective courses will be maintained by the Director of the Bioethics Graduate Program in consultation with the Bioethics Program Committee. The list currently includes the following courses:

ANTH/BIOL 460 HUMAN GENETICS (3)
ANTH/BIOL 460H HUMAN GENETICS (4)
ANTH 471H BIOLOGY, EVOLUTION AND SOCIETY (3)
BB H 501 BIOBEHAVIORAL SYSTEMS IN HEALTH AND DEVELOPMENT: THEORY AND PROCESSES (3)
BB H 504 BEHAVIORAL HEALTH INTERVENTION STRATEGIES (3)
BB H 551 WORLD HEALTH PROMOTION (3)
BMH 490 BIOETHICS AND MEDICAL HUMANITIES CAPSTONE (3)
BMMB 509 ETHICS IN BIOMEDICAL SCIENCE (1)
CAS 453 HEALTH COMMUNICATION THEORY AND RESEARCH (3)
CAS 557 HEALTH COMMUNICATION (3)
CAS 562 QUALITATIVE METHODS (3)
FRNSC 561 ETHICS IN FORENSIC SCIENCE (1)
H ADM 539 HEALTH SYSTEMS ORGANIZATION (3)
H ADM 540 HEALTH ADMINISTRATIVE POLICY FORMULATION (3)
H ADM 541 HEALTH ECONOMICS AND POLICY (3)
H ADM 542 HEALTH CARE POLITICS AND POLICY (3)
H ADM 543 LONG-TERM CARE ADMINISTRATION AND POLICY (3)
H ADM 551 HEALTH CARE LAW (3)
H P A 401 (IL) COMPARATIVE HEALTH SYSTEMS (3)
H P A 510 HEALTH SERVICES FINANCING AND POLICY (3)
H P A 511 RESEARCH SEMINAR ON HEALTH SERVICES FINANCING AND POLICY (3)
H P A 520 INTRODUCTION TO HEALTH SERVICES ORGANIZATION AND DELIVERY (3)
H PA 521 RESEARCH SEMINAR ON HEALTH SERVICES ORGANIZATION AND DELIVERY (3)
H P A 540 EPIDEMIOLOGICAL APPLICATIONS IN HEALTH SERVICES RESEARCH (3)
H PA 541 POVERTY, RACE, ETHNICITY AND CHILD HEALTH (3)
H P A 545 INTRODUCTION TO HEALTH ECONOMICS (3)
H P A 822 CLINICAL ISSUES FOR HEALTH SERVICES MANAGEMENT (3)
H P A 836 HEALTH LAW (3)
HLHED 516 EVALUATION OF HEALTH EDUCATION AND PROMOTION PROGRAMS (3)
HLHED 552 CURRENT HEALTH EDUCATION ISSUES (3)
HLHED 553 MULTICULTURAL HEALTH ISSUES (3)
IBIOS 591 ETHICS IN THE LIFE SCIENCES (1)
NURS 464 (US;IL) DYING AND DEATH (3)
NURS 501 ISSUES IN NURSING AND HEALTH CARE (3)
NURS 580 EPISTEMOLOGY OF NURSING SCIENCE (3)
NURS 581 DEVELOPING THEORETICAL CONSTRUCTS RELEVANT TO NURSING (3)
NURS 587 ETHICS IN NURSING RESEARCH (1)
NUTR/S T S 430 (IL) GLOBAL FOOD STRATEGIES: PROBLEMS AND PROSPECTS FOR REDUCING WORLD HUNGER (3)
PHIL 403 ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS (3)
PHIL 418 ETHICS (3)
PHIL/STS 432: MEDICAL AND HEALTH CARE ETHICS (3)
PHS 570 HEALTH ECONOMICS AND ECONOMIC EVALUATION (3)
S T S 555 HUMAN DIMENSIONS OF NATURAL RESOURCES (3)
S T S 589 ETHICS AND VALUES IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY (3)
WMNST/BB H 458: CRITICAL ISSUES IN REPRODUCTION (3)

Candidacy

In order to be admitted to doctoral candidacy in the dual-title degree program, students must meet the Ph.D. candidacy requirements specified by the CAS program. During the candidacy process, the student will also be assessed for candidacy to the Bioethics program, and at least one member of the candidacy committee must come from the Bioethics program. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs may serve in a combined role.

Committee composition

In accordance with the Graduate Council's requirements, the doctoral committee shall contain at least four members. At least one of the committee members must be a faculty-member affiliated with the Bioethics Program, but graduate students are encouraged to have a second committee member so qualified. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs may serve in a combined role. If the committee chair does not serve in this combined role, the faculty member representing the Bioethics Program must be designated as co-chair of the committee. The Bioethics program representative(s) will be expected to participate in constructing and grading comprehensive examination questions that cover the secondary area of study. The outside member will be appointed in accordance with the Graduate School's Graduate Student Committee Procedures. The Graduate Council's current policy is that the Outside Member cannot have more than a 25% budgetary connection with either the graduate major program or the dual-title degree program.

Comprehensive exam

The faculty member (or members) affiliated with the Bioethics Program will be responsible for administering a portion of the comprehensive exam that will require the student to demonstrate an understanding of various theoretical and methodological approaches to bioethics, and an ability to apply them to issues and problems (including, where appropriate, practical problems) in their primary field.

Dissertation and dissertation defense

A dissertation on a bioethics-related topic or with a substantial bioethics component is required of students in the dual-title Ph.D. program. The bioethics-related topic of the dissertation or the bioethics component will be approved by the student's committee.

Courses

Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 599 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

COMMUNICATION ARTS AND SCIENCES (CAS) course list

 

Last Revised by the Department: Summer Session 2011

Blue Sheet Item #: 39-07-011

Review Date: 10/31/13

Faculty linked: 6/5/14

Search
CourseInfo

Look up course abbreviations

Course descriptions are stored in LionPATH, the University-wide student information system. Please visit the LionPATH Course Catalog to access current course descriptions. At that point, you will be leaving the University Bulletin website.



Skip Popular Searches
  1. Graduate Course Descriptions
  2. Graduate Programs
  3. Doctoral Degree Requirements
  4. Master's Degree Requirements
  5. Application and Admission Procedures
  6. Credit Certificate Programs
  7. General Information
  8. Tuition and Cost
  9. Intercollege
    Programs
  10. Academic Information and Procedures
Skip PDF and Print Options

Print Options