Mar 29, 2023  
2012-2013 General Catalog 
2012-2013 General Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

School of Mass Communication


Dean; William Dickinson Distinguished Professor

Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies and Administration; Thomas O. & Darlene Wood Ryder Professor

Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research; Thomas O. & Darlene Wood Ryder Professor

Associate Dean of Sponsored Research and Programs; George Nelson Professorship

211 Journalism Building
TELEPHONE 225-578-2336
FAX 225-578-2125

Mission of the Manship School

The mission of the Manship School of Mass Communication is to produce highly competent communicators with broad knowledge and training in the liberal arts and the media. The school promotes effective communication, critical thinking, and ethical responsibility. Overall, and especially in the graduate program, the school is committed to leading the study and practice of media and public affairs. Believing that media should reflect society and provide leadership to society, the school seeks diversity in its outlook, student body, and staff.

The Manship School of Mass Communication offers an undergraduate degree in Mass Communication (BAMC). For specific information concerning the undergraduate degree requirements for the Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication, refer to the curriculum on the following pages.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the Manship School is competitive. At a minimum, applicants must have completed at least 30 hours of college-level course work, including MC 2010 , Media Writing, with a course grade of “B” or better. Applicants presenting the highest qualifications will be accepted into the Manship School each semester of the academic year. Students with a 3.00 LSU GPA and a 3.00 cumulative GPA will be given priority for admission on a space available basis. Grade point average will remain the primary factor for admission, but secondary factors taken into account include the need to balance enrollment among the school’s areas of concentration, demographic diversity, demonstrated professional potential through work on high school or college media, or other life experiences that suggest a strong likelihood of success as a communication professional.

Application Process • Students should apply by the Friday of the final week of classes of the semester in which they will have completed the 30 hours of course work and earned a “B” or better in MC 2010 ; however, they may apply at any time after they have met the minimum criteria. Applications for admission to the Manship School must be submitted directly to the school’s main office. The school’s Application Review Committee will attempt to notify applicants of admission decisions prior to the first day of class each semester. Students who are denied admission may reapply for admission in a subsequent semester.

Transfer Students • Transfer students from another institution must meet university transfer admission requirements. Transfer students must complete a minimum of 12 hours of course work on the LSU campus with at least a 3.00 LSU GPA and a 3.00 cumulative GPA to be eligible for admission to the Manship School. All other admission guidelines and procedures described above also apply to transfer students.

Laptop Computer Requirement

Students declaring a major or minor in Mass Communication are required to have their own laptop computer with wireless Internet access upon entering the first Mass Communication class. Information regarding the type specifications and software may be obtained on the Manship website,, or from 211 Journalism Building.

Transfer of Credit from Other Institutions

In the Manship School, transfer credits accepted by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions shall be valid for degree credit only to the extent to which they satisfy courses in the curriculum of the school. Credit in mass communication courses in which grades of “D” have been earned is not accepted for transfer toward the degree requirements, if the course is taken outside the LSU System. Students enrolled in this school who wish to obtain credits from other colleges or universities (including other campuses of the LSU System), and who plan to use such credits toward degree requirements, should obtain prior approval in writing on a specific-course basis from the associate dean for undergraduate studies of the Manship School.


Students who were not registered at LSU for the preceding regular semester must file a formal application for readmission. Readmission to the Manship School is not automatic.

Degree Requirements of the School

To qualify for a bachelor’s degree in this school, a candidate must satisfy these requirements:

  • A minimum GPA of 2.00 (“A” = 4) on all work taken in the LSU System and on all work taken.
  • A minimum GPA in the major field (mass communication) of 2.00 (“A” = 4) on all work taken in the LSU System and on all work taken.
  • At least a “C” in any mass communication course. (In addition, for any mass communication course, a “C” or better is required in prerequisite mass communication courses.)
  • A minimum of 120 semester hours of degree credit.
  • A minimum of 30 semester hours in courses numbered 3000 or above.
  • Degree credit will not be allowed for more than nine semester hours of 1000 level mathematics courses below 1550.
  • A minimum of 30 semester hours in residence in the Manship School. The last year of work (30 semester hours) will be taken in residence in this school on the LSU campus.
  • A minor in a department other than mass communication. The minor will be defined by the minor department.
  • English proficiency– a “C” or better in ENGL 2000  or the equivalent.
  • Foreign language– a level of proficiency in one foreign language as required in the mass communication curriculum. Students should take a placement test and register at the appropriate level.

Students who have a native fluency in a language other than English may satisfy the foreign language requirement in one of three ways: (a) by completing the prescribed number of hours in the curriculum for the BA degree in a language other than English or their native language; (b) by taking a minimum of six hours in courses numbered 3000 or above in their native language; or (c) by taking nine semester hours of English and/or communications studies above the minimum requirements, as stated in the curriculum for the BA degree. (Only three hours may be earned in ENGL 2001 or ENGL 2002  to meet this requirement. Professional and specialized courses in speech may not be counted toward this requirement.)

Students who have a native fluency in a language other than English should consult credit restrictions in that language under the appropriate foreign language department entry in this section of the catalog.

Areas of Concentration

The Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication (BAMC) degree is conferred on students who complete a concentration in one of the following four areas: advertising, journalism, political communication, or public relations. All areas are fully accredited by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

The advertising concentration develops skills in marketing, research, media, and creative planning and execution. Graduates typically become involved in account development and management; media analysis, research, and sales; copywriting; advertising design; and sales promotion.

The journalism concentration develops skills in researching, interpreting, organizing, and reporting issues of vital importance to a democratic society. Students are cross-trained in the theory and practice of journalism for print (newspapers and magazines), broadcast (television), and new media (Internet). Graduates usually become reporters, editors, and producers.

The political communication concentration develops skills in interpreting and communicating information to mass media practitioners and other individuals involved in the political process. Students normally aspire to careers in public or governmental communication, political reporting, and political campaigns.

The public relations concentration develops skills and prepares future practitioners in planning and executing the building of relationships and coalitions to advance an enterprise. Graduates typically move to positions in media, governmental, investor, community, and employee relations; special events management; issues management; and public relations counseling.

General Education Requirements

General education requirements of the University are included in the curriculum for mass communication. For specific information concerning these requirements, see the “General Education Requirements ” section of this catalog.

Student Responsibility

Students in the Manship School bear final responsibility for selection of their academic programs and adherence to all published regulations and requirements of the school and the University. Each student must see a counselor for a final degree checkout during the semester prior to the semester in which the degree is to be awarded.

Ignorance of the rule is not grounds for waiving that rule.

Mass communication students are expected to be proficient in the use of English.

All written assignments must be type-written. Students must provide word processors for all of their assignments except those written in scheduled laboratories.

Mass communication majors must earn at least a “C” in any mass communication course. For any mass communication course, a “C” or better is required in prerequisite mass communication courses.


Students may choose any degree credit courses offered by the University consistent with their degree requirements. However, no more than 12 semester hours of ROTC or eight hours of kinesiology may be counted for degree credit.

Pass-Fail Option

Students may not elect the pass-fail grading option for courses within their major. Only the internship (MC 3998 ) and independent study ( MC 4999 ) courses are graded on a pass-fail basis.

Distance Program Credit

A maximum of 32 semester hours of credit in distance program credit is acceptable toward meeting degree requirements. Students who wish to have distance program credits accepted by the Manship School must make their registration in distance program courses a matter of record in the office of the dean in the school at the time of such registration.

Students registered in the school may enroll in a maximum of 19 semester hours of combined resident and distance program course work during a regular semester. They may enroll in a maximum of 12 semester hours of combined resident and distance program work during a summer term. Students may not be enrolled in distance program course work the semester they intend to graduate. Depending on the distance program course, a special time limit may be imposed by the dean’s office.

Minor Field Requirements

Students in other majors may apply to declare a minor in mass communication after completion of 30 semester hours of course work and successful completion of MC 2010 . Those who have completed 30 semester hours with at least a 3.00 GPA and MC 2010  with at least a grade of “B” will automatically be allowed to minor in mass communication. Students who do not meet both of these standards will be allowed in the minor on a space available basis.

Students minoring in mass communication must complete 18 semester hours in the Manship School of Mass Communication. Mass communication minors must earn at least a grade of “C” in any mass communication course taken as part of the minor. For any mass communication course, a grade of “C” or better is required in prerequisite mass communication courses.

Practical Media Experience

Mass communication students gain considerable practical experience to supplement classroom instruction. In some courses, students work on news and advertising assignments for The Reveille, for the campus radio station, KLSU, and for the campus television station, Tiger TV. Students in advanced reporting courses acquire experience with the Baton Rouge Advocate and other local media.

Placement Services

Students in the Manship School may use the services of the University’s Career Services. These services include counseling, job-seeking skills workshops, job search handbooks, résumé service, career days, and on-campus recruiting and interviews.

Study Abroad

Students in the Manship School are encouraged to participate in the study abroad programs administered by the Office of Academic Programs Abroad and the International Student Exchange Program. Students who participate in these programs must receive school evaluation of the courses to be taken. In addition, students must make an appointment with a counselor to ensure that degree credit will be granted upon return to LSU.

National Student Exchange

LSU cooperates with a number of other universities throughout the U.S. in an exchange program. Students may spend one year (usually the junior year) at another university at little or no more cost than they pay at LSU. Additional information can be obtained from the Office of Academic Programs Abroad.

Manship School Student Government Association

The Manship School Student Government Association serves as a liaison between the Manship School’s undergraduate student body and the school’s dean. The association is also the official representative to the LSU Student Government.

Honor Societies

Students in the Manship School are eligible for membership in several national honorary organizations.

Founded in 1897 at the University of Maine, Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest, largest, and most selective honor society for all academic disciplines. Its chapters are on nearly 300 campuses in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. Each year, approximately 30,000 members are initiated. Some of the organization’s more notable members include former President Jimmy Carter, writer John Grisham, NASA astronaut Wendy Lawrence, and Netscape founder James Barksdale. The LSU Chapter was founded in 1930 as the 43rd chapter in the nation.

The mission of Phi Kappa Phi is to recognize and promote academic excellence in all fields of higher education and to engage the community of scholars in service to others. Phi Kappa Phi is unique because it recognizes superior scholarship in all academic fields, rather than restricting membership to a limited field. Juniors in the top 7.5 percent and seniors and graduate students in the top 10 percent of their classes may be invited to become members of Phi Kappa Phi. New LSU Phi Kappa Phi members are initiated and honored in the spring semester each year and wear identifying ribbons on their academic gowns at commencement exercises. Additional information about the Society may be found at

Omicron Delta Kappa is the national leadership honor society for college students that recognizes and encourages superior scholarship, leadership, and exemplary character. Membership is awarded to undergraduate junior and senior students–and occasionally to students in graduate school–as well as to faculty, staff, and community members. Student membership candidates must rank academically in the upper 35 percent in the school/college and must demonstrate leadership. Membership in ODK is a mark of highest distinction.

The Honors Program

An honors program is available to Man-ship students. Requirements may be obtained from the Honors College, 205 French House. To best serve mass communication honors students, the Manship School offers honors courses, allowing students to take many of their honors hours within the Manship School. Non-honors students may take honors courses in the Manship School when space is available. The following courses are regularly scheduled Mass Communication honors courses: MC 2001 , MC 2011 , MC 2016 , MC 3003 , MC 3019 , MC 3081 , MC 4091 , MC 4096 , MC 4104 , MC 4112  and MC 4212 .

Departments and Curricula