Communication Arts & Sciences
The Department of Communication Arts and Sciences offers two distinct programs: the Communication program and the Writing program. As described in more detail below, the Communication program offers a major and a minor in communication, with a choice of concentrations in interpersonal, organizational, and mass communication. The Writing program offers a minor in public and professional writing. Students interested in pursuing both programs may combine a communication major and writing minor or may propose a self-designed cross-program major.
The study of communication at Merrimack provides students with an interdisciplinary perspective that embraces the framework of the liberal arts. Course offerings in the program are structured with the understanding that communication is the basis for political negotiations, relational development and maintenance, family cohesion, and work success.
Merrimack and the liberal arts tradition ensure that students will have a clear understanding that communication fosters both self-expression and democratic compromise. In addition, the courses offered in the program explore the patterns of communication through Western Civilization in conjunction with the emerging trends of technological culture.
Communications Program Offerings
Our Communication Arts and Sciences Program offers majors:
- An interdisciplinary perspective that embraces the framework of the liberal arts, orienting the student in both humanities based and social science focused communication studies
- A core curriculum that extends through all major areas of communication arts and sciences while maintaining the latitude for individual exploration through electives.
- The opportunity to construct one’s own curriculum based on personal interests which may include interpersonal, organizational, nonverbal, visual, intercultural, health, persuasive and mass communication
- A program design that enables the graduate to incorporate both professional expertise for viable employment and academic excellence for graduate school application
- A nationally recognized faculty devoted to both teaching and scholarship
- An advanced and contemporary computer lab that meets the needs of a technology driven market
- A state-of-the-art video studio the connects students with the digitized formats used in current broadcast operations today
Communication Arts and Sciences encompass verbal and nonverbal language symbols which are spoken, enacted, heard, and seen. To foster an understanding of the breadth and depth of “human meaning making,” the communication studies program includes courses from the orientations of both the social sciences and the humanities. In so doing, it prepares students to pursue their chosen professional areas. These selections may entail career paths that focus on specializations such as interpersonal communication, organizational communication, intercultural communication, mass communication, or the study of persuasion and rhetoric. The major is designed to build a foundation upon which a student may pursue professional work in law and politics, media organizations, education, business, technological industries, health care or social services.
Regardless of a student’s chosen area of concentration, a major in communication arts and sciences at Merrimack provides each student with the understanding that the study of communication is essential to all of society’s major issues, concerns, and the construction of values. Whether one is communicating with one’s self or through a mass medium, the knowledge of communication principles will enhance that endeavor.
When the question “What did you do on your summer vacation?” comes up, one rising Merrimack senior has a killer answer:
I was in a gangster movie.
Raechel Tiffe, visiting assistant professor of gender and communication, public communication and mass communication at Merrimack College contributes to this OnPoint discussion at WBUR.
On March 27, a group of Merrimack students from the Communications Arts and Sciences Department visited the studios of the New England Sports Network, the main cable news broadcaster of the Boston Red Sox and the Boston Bruins.