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Communication Major/Minor (B.a./B.S.)

Program Description

Communication is much more than just the written word. Communication is also verbal or non-verbal, and it takes place at both an interpersonal and mass scale. With the University of Utah’s Communication program, students learn how to be effective communicators for all different types of audiences. Communication is a diverse discipline and offers a variety of skills to prepare students for their careers.

The program has focus areas in four sub-fields of communication, allowing students to tailor their degree to best fit their strengths and interests: these focus areas include Strategic Communication (public relations, advertising, integrated marketing), Journalism (digital, broadcast, print), Communication Studies, or Science, Health, Environmental, and Risk Communication. Through a combination of theoretical and technical training, the Communication program allows students to develop a comprehensive portfolio to market themselves to the industry.

The Student Experience

The Department of Communication offers students many enrichment opportunities, such as internships and part-time work in professional settings. If you want to network and spend time with fellow communication students, be sure to join one of the department’s many clubs and organizations: the John R. Park Debate Society in Salt Lake City allows members to practice debate skills in a friendly, competitive environment, while the Absolute Communication agency both at UAC and Salt Lake City is a student-run advertising and PR company affiliated with the U that allows students to gain experience in the communications industry.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of the Communication program have found work as editors, communication directors, marketing and sales managers, and radio and video producers. Careers in publishing (as a writer or editor), advertising, and the media (as a broadcaster, journalist, or reporter) are also possible. Work for the government as a lobbyist, campaign manager, or town manager, or in the nonprofit sector as a grant writer or program coordinator. With additional education, students can also become lawyers, advisors, and professors.


Communication Major (BA or BS)

Degree: The official degree is a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Communication.  A student’s diploma and official transcript will read “Communication”. 

Major Sequences: Students will choose to complete one of four sequences:

Strategic Communication— PR, Marketing, and Advertising 
Journalism— online, broadcast, print 
Communication Studies— interpersonal, organizational, rhetoric, argumentation, cultural/media

Science, Health, Environmental, and Risk Communication 

Please note that sequences are not emphases and do not print on diplomas or transcripts.    

Major/Sequence Requirements: Each sequence is 14 Communication courses and all 14 Communication courses must be passed with a ‘C’ or better. 

Students must complete a total of 122 credit hours to earn their Bachelor’s degree.  40 of those credit hours must be upper division (3000-level or higher).  Students may need to complete additional courses outside of general education and major requirements in order to meet total required hours.

Course Changes: Since Fall 2017, these courses have changed:

COMM 3505, Introduction to Media Business and Ethics is now COMM 1500 (same title). This course was previously COMM 3505, Living in a Media World.  Please note that these courses are all the same.  If you have taken any of these courses and successfully passed it with a 'C' or better it fuflills the major requirement.  

COMM 4580, Strategic Communication Theory & Practice is now COMM 2580 (same title).     

Declaration: Communication students are able to officially declare the major once they have obtained a 2.75 University of Utah cumulative GPA and have successfully passed at least one University of Utah Communication course with a ‘C’ or better.  Major declaration can be completed by clicking here

Catalog Year: A student’s catalog year (major requirements) is determined by when the major is officially declared.  Major requirements are subject to change at the beginning of each academic year and therefore it is very important for students to be aware of their catalog year and know how they can access it.  Students will be required to complete the set of requirements that are associated with their catalog year.  For example, if a student declares their major at the beginning of the spring 2017 semester they would be completing the requirements associated with the 2016-2017 catalog year.  Once a student if officially declared they are not subject to any new changes made to major requirements.


Major Requirements

**Students declaring the major Fall 2019 and after will be declared into an official emphasis and that emphasis will print on transcripts.  Please note that if a student is declared in a prior Catalog Year (2015, 2016, 2017, or 2018) they will continue to work on previous sequences**  

How to find your catalog year: CIS >> Student Profile >> Catalog year located under your Declared Communication Major. 

2019 MAJOr requirements2017 AND 2018 major requirements

2016 major requirements2015 MAJOR REQUIREMENTS


Communication Minor

This minor will serve students who are interested in pursuing knowledge of public relations, advertising, marketing, event planning, and campaign design/evaluation to compliment majors outside the Department of Communication. The minor will help students understand branding, media buying, copywriting, and other skills related to the professional practice of public relations, advertising, marketing, and event planning.  Courses examine strategic communication writing (e.g., press releases, media kits), graphic design (e.g., Adobe Creative Suite), account planning, and both theoretical and applied strategy.

Please note that Strategic communication minor is only available to students majoring outside of the Department of Communication.

Minimum Minor Hours: 18

Admission Requirements

  • 2.75 cumulative U of U GPA in at least 9 credit hours
  • Complete a COMM course with “C” or better

Graduation Requirements

  • “C” or better in COMM Courses


Required Courses

Here is the list of Enforced Pre-Requistes. Follow the link

Foundational Courses

Complete 6-8 Credit(s)

Skills, Theory, and Methods Courses

Complete 6-7 Credit(s)

One of the courses must be COMM 3710  or COMM 5710 .


Choose 1 course:

Communication Electives

  • Choose any additional Communication course, including those form the lists above 3-4 Credit(s)
Last Updated: 9/24/20