Oct 02, 2022  
2014-2015 General Catalog 
2014-2015 General Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Communication Studies (Graduate Program)

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For information regarding the UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAM, click here. 

Program Overview

Established in 1928, the LSU Department of Communication Studies is one of the oldest communication departments in the nation and the first in the South to develop a doctoral program. Situated in a research-intensive university, the department and its faculty strive to foster the intellectual growth of each student while also attending to their development in the areas of teaching and service. Our goal is to prepare graduate students for success in their chosen profession in an environment that is innovative, stimulating, friendly, and humane.

The program is based in three inter-related areas of research interest: Communication Theory, Performance Studies, and Rhetoric. Within and between areas, a broad range of courses is offered, and each student is encouraged to design a departmental-level academic course plan that fits his or her interests. Course emphases include: aesthetics; argumentation; classical and contemporary rhetorical theory; cognitive information processing; contemporary performance theory and practice; conversation analysis; critical cultural theory and practice; critical media theory and practice; family communication; ethnography; health communication; history of rhetoric; interpersonal communication; narrative theory; nonverbal communication; qualitative and quantitative research methods; performance history and historiography; performance of diverse literary, oral, and other materials; persuasion; performance art; political communication; rhetorical criticism; religious communication; tourism studies; and visual culture and rhetoric.


Renee Edwards, Chair
Loretta Pecchioni, Graduate Advisor
TELEPHONE 225-578-4172
FAX 225-578-4828
WEBSITE www.lsu.edu/cmst


All applicants for graduate study must submit their application and supporting materials through an online application site for the LSU Graduate School: www.lsu.edu/gradapply. Official transcripts, official test scores, and other materials that come from third-party sources must be submitted electronically or mailed to: Graduate Student Services, 114 West David Boyd Hall, Baton Rouge, LA 70803. All documents submitted by or on behalf of the applicant are stored electronically and departments have access to them.

To apply to the graduate program in Communication Studies, applicants are required to complete the online application form, which includes a Statement of Purpose, and submit official GRE scores and transcripts of all college work. International students whose native language is not English also must submit an acceptable TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE score.

The department also requires three letters of recommendation (on letterhead and signed) and a sample of scholarly writing – e.g., a term paper or a thesis chapter. A vita is welcomed but not required.

Applications for admission are received and evaluated by the department from September through May. Applications for admission and an assistantship are due by January 31 and awarded in February for the upcoming fall semester. All applicants must adhere to the application procedures and deadlines established by the LSU Graduate School and the CMST department.

The department accepts students into the program and awards assistantships based on the strength of the noted documents. Standards for admission are a cumulative GPA of 3.0+ on a 4.0 scale; a minimum score of 300 on the combined verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE; and as applicable, a TOEFL score of 550 or better. The writing sample should demonstrate and the letters address the applicant’s ability to do graduate level work. Additional admission factors also are considered, such as vacancies in the program and the compatibility of the applicant’s research interests with those of current faculty. Prospective students who do not meet the requirements may be admitted provisionally on a case-by-case basis.

Financial Assistance

The department awards approximately 25 teaching assistantships to new and continuing MA and PhD students each year. The assistantship requires students to teach or assist in teaching two courses per semester. Outstanding doctoral students may receive supplementary assistance from the LSU Graduate School or be awarded a Board of Regents or other fellowship. To ensure consideration for financial aid, a complete application should be submitted by January 31 prior to the fall semester the applicant wishes to enter.

Graduate Faculty

(check current listings by department by clicking this link)

Graham D. Bodie (M) • Listening and information processing, interpersonal communication, social support
Renee Edwards (M) • Interpersonal communication, research methods, message processing
Stephanie Houston Grey (7M) • Rhetoric and culture, science studies, aesthetics, trauma studies, identity
Rachel Hall (M) • History of visual culture, contemporary cultural theory and criticism
James H. Honeycutt (M) • Interpersonal communication, cognition, relational communication, mental imagery
Andrew King (M) • Rhetorical theory, political rhetoric, history of rhetoric
Bryan McCann (6A) • Rhetorical theory, cultural studies, social movements/communication activism
Loretta Pecchioni (7M) • Health communication, family communication, communication and aging
Tracy Stephenson Shaffer (M) • Performance studies, ethnography, popular culture and film
Patricia A. Suchy (7M) • Performance studies, film studies, Bakhtinian theory

The program offers an MA degree with a thesis or non-thesis option, a MA-PhD fast track program, and a PhD degree. All students develop a departmental-level academic course plan in consultation with and approved by their graduate committee. The committee consists of the student’s major advisor and at least two additional members of the graduate faculty such that the LSU Graduate School’s requirements for graduate committees are satisfied.


    Doctor of PhilosophyMaster of Arts

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