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Communication Studies MA |



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Strategic Communication

The focus of the Strategic Communication concentration is the critical thinking and analysis necessary to develop and implement communication strategies that advance an organization’s goals and mission. The curriculum will enhance your ability to identify and develop the best communication strategy in a given situation while also instilling creative and original approaches to solving communication problems. The curriculum will also better inform you about theories that are the basis for effective public relations and organizational communication.

Graduate students finishing the Strategic Communication concentration often go on to work in various areas (public relations, advertising, etc.) for large communication agencies or smaller niche communication organizations. Students may also find work as political lobbyists, research analysts, social media coordinators, crisis or risk communicators, creating health campaigns, or as organizational consultants. Students may also go on to enjoy careers teaching community college or in organizations as leadership or training and development consultants.

The Strategic Communication concentration also provides the necessary theoretical and methodological foundation for students to continue their education and research in doctoral programs across the country.

Recent Research

For the Strategic Communication concentration, the following research capstone projects have recently been completed by EIU students:


International image repair: Integrating culture into image repair discourse
Student: Nicole Mangiaracina
Advisor: Matthew Gill, Ph.D.

Dynamic crisis modifiers: BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill
Student: Catherine Bocke
Advisor: Matthew Gill, Ph.D.


Harnessing the power of social media: Understanding the use of social media for crisis communication
Student: Amanda Fountain
Advisor: Matthew Gill, Ph.D.

Ready, set, GROW! Planting the seeds for a targeted networking approach for rural businesses in Clark County, Illinois
Student: Nora Swalls
Advisor: Melanie Mills, Ph.D.