• Course Delivery
    100% Online
  • Total Credits
  • In-State Tuition Per Credit
  • Out of State Tuition Per Credit

Communication Studies

Graduate Certificate

The IU Online Graduate Certificate in Communication Studies provides graduate-level instruction in communication strategies, practices, and techniques. It teaches practical communication skills needed in professional, academic, and personal contexts, such as presenting information, arguing a position, promoting a cause, presenting information via social media, designing targeted messages, and managing relations and conflicts.

As a student in the program, you develop innovative strategies for teaching communication, employ effective and ethical communication practices, and apply critical perspectives to production and consumption of media messages.

The program is taught by IUPUI, IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest, IU South Bend, and IU Southeast. 

Of Special Interest for Dual-Credit and Community College Instructors

In addition to providing a program of study in communication studies at the graduate level, the IU Online Graduate Certificate in Communication Studies meets the Higher Learning Commissions (HLCs) instructor qualification standards, which require instructors to hold a masters degree in their area of instruction or a masters degree in another discipline, plus a minimum of 18 credit hours of discipline-specific graduate coursework. 

This stand-alone certificate provides the HLCs requisite number of discipline-specific graduate credits for those who already hold a masters degree.  

Your IU Online Graduate Certificate in Communication Studies prepares you for such careers as:

  • Communication dual-credit teacher (high school) 
  • Communication instructor (community college)
  • Communication professional in an organization or institution
Certificate Requirements

To earn the Graduate Certificate in Communication Studies, you must complete 18 credit hours.

Requirements are broken down as follows: 

  • Communication pedagogy course (3 cr. hours)
  • Communication in context courses (9 cr. hours)
  • Communication in media course (3 cr. hours)
  • Communication elective course (3 cr. hours)


To be accepted to this program, you must have:
    NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states
    To apply to this program:

    Applicants to the Graduate Certificate in Communication Studies must hold a bachelor’s degree.

    Applicants must submit a 250-word statement that briefly describes their background and that explains their goals for entering this degree program.

    Application Deadlines

    Rolling admissions. Application review will begin upon receipt of all required application materials.


    • ALL core courses are listed here. You will select from among these courses to fulfill degree requirements. Credits
    • CMCL-C 502 or SPCH-S500Intro to Communication Theory 3 Credits
    • CMCL-C 545Communication Pedagogy3 Credits

      Focuses on critical, theoretical, philosophical and strategic approaches to problems of pedagogy in communication and culture.

    • CMCL-C 594 Communication and Conflict Management in Organizations 3 Credits

      This seminar-format course examines the communication exchanges that facilitate conflict management within organizational contexts. Specific attention is focused on negotiation and mediation; however the communication of alternative means of conflict and dispute resolution are also discussed. In addition, students are introduced to methods for assessing conflict interaction in organizations.

    • CMCL-C 606Media Criticism3 Credits

      Study of the main schools and methods of media criticism.

    • CMCL-C 610 Identity and Difference 3 Credits

      Political, social, and cultural dimensions of identity and difference. Interrogates the production of marginal and dominant identities (e.g. racial, sexual, colonial) and the emergence of new forms of identification.

    • COMM-C 510Health Provider-Consumer Communication3 Credits

      This course is designed to teach communication skills and practices related to health care talk, by examining transactional communication within health care contexts. Topics covered in this course focus directly upon interpersonal dialogue between health care providers and patients.

    • COMM-C 528Group Communication and Organizations3 Credits

      This seminar-format course examines the ways in which informal groups and communication networks facilitate a variety of organizational processes (i.e. socialization, diffusion of innovation). Emphasis is placed on developing theoretical understanding of informal groups in organizations as well as on methodological issues involved in studying communication networks in organizations.

    • COMM-C 544 Advanced Relational Communication3 Credits

      An introductory course in interpersonal communication. Applications of communication theory/research in such areas as relational culture and relationship development. Includes a scholarly project on a real relationship, and applications of research to areas such as pedagogy and couple/family therapy.

    • COMM-C 582 Advanced Intercultural Communication 3 Credits

      Exploration of issues related to the intercultural communication process. Consideration of the role of social, cultural, and historical contexts in intercultural interactions. Examination of the relationship between culture and communication from the socio-psychological, interpretive, and critical perspectives.

    • COMM-C 592 or CMCL-C 592Advanced Health Communication3 Credits
    • COMM-C 593Family Communication3 Credits

      Applications of theory and research on the role of communication in creating and maintaining marriages/committed couples and families.

    • SPCH-S 500 Intro to Grad Studies and Research 3 Credits

      Bibliographical resources, methods of research and professional writing in speech.

    • SPCH-S 627 Studies in Cross-Cultural Communication3 Credits

      The study of cross-cultural communication in theory and practice.

    • SPCH-S 633 Studies in Interpersonal Communication 3 Credits
    • SPCH-S 640 Studies in Organizational Communication 3 Credits

      Critical examination of quantitative and qualitative research in the area of organizational communication. Emphasizes decision making, superior-subordinate interaction, communication not works and climate and organizational culture. Focuses on critical assessment of research.

    Tuition & Fees

    Cost for Indiana Residents
    • Per Credit Hour
    • Tuition: $320.00
    • 3 Credit Hours
    • Tuition: $960.00
    Cost for Out of State Residents
    • Per Credit Hour
    • Tuition: $450.00
    • 3 Credit Hours
    • Tuition: $1350.00

    -Additional fees will apply.

    -This program is ineligible for financial aid.

    What's it like to be an IU Online Student?

    • Earn an IU education from wherever you are

      When you enroll in an IU Online program, you take IU classes, taught by the same faculty who teach on our campuses.

      It's the flexible, affordable way to get the IU education you deserve without putting your life—or career—on hold.

    • Get the support you need to succeed

      As a student in an IU Online program, you'll have the opportunity to engage with and seek help from your professors and peers, just as you would in a campus-based program.

      You'll also have access to a variety of academic and other support services that you can call on when you need additional assistance. You're an important part of the IU community and we're dedicated to ensuring you have the resources you need to thrive in your online program.

    • Reap the rewards for decades to come

      No matter what field you're in, an IU degree or certificate can improve your chances of earning a promotion or pay raise.

      You'll also earn skills that will help you to achieve success for the foreseeable future, whether you're seeking to complete an advanced degree in your current field or switch career paths altogether.

    • Take the first step toward a more rewarding future