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Graduate Program | Degrees | Requirements

Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Mass Communications: Telecommunications Track

The Department of Telecommunications, in cooperation with the School of Journalism, offers a doctoral program in mass communications.

Course Requirements

A minimum of 90 credit hours, including

  1. the core consisting of T501 Philosophy of Inquiry in Telecommunications, T502 Introduction to Research Methods in Telecommunications, T503 Telecommunications Theory, and T504 Introduction to Telecommunications Policy Studies with a grade of at least a B in each course;
  2. T600 Proseminar in Telecommunications Research for four semesters;
  3. 12 credit hours in a methodology area;
  4. a minimum of six courses in the Department of Telecommunications if student is transferring 16-30 credits, eight courses if transferring 1-15 credits, and 10 courses (at least four completed after receipt of the M.A.) if student has an M.A. from this department;
  5. completion of a minor as required by the minor department;
  6. no more than 6 credits of independent study; and
  7. no more than 15 credit hours in the dissertation.
  8. a Program of Study listing all courses toward the degree, approved by the student’s Advisory Committee.


B (3.0) average or above. Any semester’s work averaging less than B will result in the student’s being placed on academic probation. Accumulation of three individual course grades of C (2.0) or lower for graduate credit will result in dismissal of the student from the program. The departmental Graduate Committee evaluates each student’s progress toward the degree every semester.

Advisory Committee

Each student will receive initial guidance from a faculty member assigned by the Director of Graduate Studies. During the second semester, each student will select a three-member Advisory Committee that will be responsible for approving the student’s Program of Study, administering the final exam, and granting approval for the degree. At least two members of the Advisory Committee must be from the Department of Telecommunications. Students who fail to select an Advisory Committee or construct a Program of Study by the end of the second semester in the program will be considered to be making inadequate progress toward the degree.


Consistent with University Graduate School policy, each student must have at least one minor subject. Course work in the minor must be approved by the student's advisory committee and must meet the requirements of the minor department.

Research Skill Requirement

12 credits of appropriate research skills courses approved by the student's advisory committee (see number 3 under "Course Requirements" above).

Qualifying Examination

Written and oral, covering the methodology area, the core, the minor, and the student's individualized areas of specialization.

Teaching or Research Requirement

Students normally serve at least one year as associate instructors or research assistants. This requirement will be waived only when, in the opinion of the departmental chairperson, unusual circumstances justify such action.

Final Examination

Oral, primarily a defense of the dissertation. Administered by the student’s Advisory Committee.