Aug 18, 2022  
USC Catalogue 2022-2023 
    
USC Catalogue 2022-2023

School of Communication


Return to: USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism  

Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism (ASC) 305
(213) 740-0900 (academic inquiries)
(213) 740-3951 (administrative)
(213) 821-0770 (admission inquiries)
FAX: (213) 740-3913
annenberg.usc.edu


Director: Hector Amaya, PhD

Faculty

Walter H. Annenberg Chair in Communication: Willow Bay, MBA

University Professor and Annenberg Family Chair in Communication Leadership: Geoffrey Cowan, LLB

University Professor and Wallis Annenberg Chair in Communication Technology and Society: Manuel Castells, PhD

Chair in Cross-Cultural Communication: Josh Kun, PhD

Provost Professor of Communication, Journalism and Cinematic Arts: Henry Jenkins, PhD

Professors: Hector Amaya, PhD ; Jonathan D. Aronson, PhD; Sarah Banet-Weiser, PhD; François Bar, PhD (Associate Dean, Faculty Affairs); Manuel Castells, PhD; Geoffrey Cowan, LLB*; Nicholas Cull, PhD; G. Thomas Goodnight, PhD; Larry Gross, PhD; Thomas A. Hollihan, PhD; Andrea Hollingshead, PhD; Henry Jenkins, PhD (Journalism); Robert Kozinets, PhD (Journalism); Josh Kun, PhD (Journalism); Lynn C. Miller, PhD (Associate Dean, Research); Sheila T. Murphy, PhD; Dmitri Williams, PhD; Ernest J. Wilson III, PhD

Associate Professors: Michael Ananny, PhD (Journalism); Ben Carrington, PhD (Journalism); Christina Dunbar-Hester, PhD; Emilio Ferrara, PhD (Computer Science); Robeson Taj Frazier, PhD (Director, Doctoral Program); Hernan Galperin, PhD; Randall Lake, PhD; Jennifer Petersen, PhD; Patricia Riley, PhD ; Stacy Smith, PhD; Robin Stevens, PhD; Douglas Thomas, PhD; Jay Wang, PhD (Journalism); Diane Winston, PhD (Journalism)

Assistant Professors: Allissa Richardson, PhD (Journalism); Marlon Twyman II, PhD; Cristina Mejia Visperas, PhD; Lindsay Young, PhD

Clinical Professors: Daniela Baroffio, PhD (Director, Digital Social Media Master’s Program); David Craig, PhD (Director, Global Communication Master’s Program); Mathew Curtis, PhD; Daniel Durbin, PhD; Colleen M. Keough, PhD; Ben Lee, PhD (Co-Director, Communication Management Master’s Program); Mark Lloyd, JD; Karen North, PhD; Jillian Pierson, PhD (Director, Undergraduate Studies); Robert Scheer, BA; Paolo Sigismondi, PhD; Christopher H. Smith, PhD; Gordon Stables, PhD (Director, School of Journalism); Alison Trope, PhD

Clinical Associate Professors: Robert Banks, PhD (Director, Public Diplomacy Master’s Program); Carmen Lee, PhD (Assistant Dean, Excellence in Teaching); Brad Shipley, PhD

Clinical Assistant Professors: Carlos Godoy, JD, PhD; Hye Jin Lee, PhD; Nithya Muthuswamy, PhD; Jessica Neff, PhD (Co-Director, Communication Data Science Master’s Program); Courtney Pade, PhD (Assistant Director, Communication Management Master’s Program)

Lecturers: Rook Campbell, PhD; Kiranjeet Dhillon, PhD; Sean Kennedy, PhD (Director, Trojan Debate Squad); Frederick Nager, MBA (Interim Co-Director, Digital Media Management Master’s Program)

Research Professors: Jeffrey Cole, PhD (Director, Center for the Digital Future); Kate Crawford, PhD; Jerrold D. Green, PhD; Colin Maclay, PhD (Director, Annenberg Innovation Lab)

Adjunct Faculty: Stylés Akira, PhD; Shari Ross Altarac, PhD; Marcela Amuine; Kasia Anderson, PhD; Angela Barrick, MA; Morten Bay, PhD; Paul Bellezza, MFA; William Blum, JD; Robert Borg, MCM; Rafael A. Bracero, MPP, MBA; Stefanie Z. Demetriades, PhD; Mahta Emrani; Joshua Feldman; Laurel Felt, PhD; Mayanna Framroze, PhD; Adam Fratto, MFA; Chelsea Graham, PhD; Rich Guest, MBA; Leah Gunn, MCM; Brian Hirsch, MBA; Jeffrey Hirsch, MS; Jenny Houghton, MBA; Tom Kemper, PhD; Julianna Kirschner, PhD; Daniela Kon Lieberberg, MA; Monica Koyama, MCM; Lisa Kraynak; Andy Kubitz, MBA; Caroline Leach, MA; James Lee, PhD; Chris Lipp; Raymond A. Lutzky, PhD; Christie Ly, BA; Eric Markgraf, BA; Garrett Marquis, MPA; Cynthia Martinez, PhD; Julia M. Matthews, PhD; Andy Merkin, MBA; Brian Monroe; Adam E. Navarro, MFA; Ariela Nerubay Turndorf, MBA; Michael S. Overing, JD; Michael Park, PhD; Sabrina K. Pasztor, PhD; Otto Pohl, MS; Kelton Rhoads, PhD; Todd Richards; Catie Saralegui; J.D. Schramm, EdD, MBA; Aaron Settipane, MA; Drew Shackleton, MBA; Ted Skidmore, BA; Jeffrey L. Thompson; Simon Uwins, MA; Michael Wissot, MBA, MIM; Damon Woods, BA

Emeritus Professors: Sandra Ball-Rokeach, PhD; Peter Clarke, PhD; Walter R. Fisher, PhD; Janet Fulk, PhD; Margaret McLaughlin, PhD; Peter Monge, PhD*; A. Michael Noll, PhD; Philip Seib, JD (Journalism); Rebecca Weintraub, PhD

*Recipient of university-wide or school teaching award.

Degree Programs

The School of Communication offers programs of study leading to a BA in Communication as well as eight minors and five interdisciplinary minors. The School offers progressive degrees in Master of Science in Communication Data Science, Master of Communication Management, Master of Digital Social Media, and Master of Public Diplomacy; a Master of Science in Communication Data Science (joint program with the Viterbi School of Engineering); a Master of Communication Management; a Master of Science in Digital Social Media; a Master of Science in Digital Media Management; a Master of Arts in Global Communication (in conjunction with the London School of Economics); two Master of Public Diplomacy programs; and an MA and PhD in Communication. The Communication Management Program has established dual degree programs with the USC Gould School of Law and Hebrew Union College.

Undergraduate Degrees

The School of Communication offers programs of study leading to a BA in Communication and minors in Communication Policy and Law; Communication Technology Practices and Platforms; Cultural Diplomacy; Culture, Media and Entertainment; Justice, Voice and Advocacy; Media Economics and Entrepreneurship; Professional and Managerial Communication; and Sports Media Studies. It also offers interdisciplinary minors in Cultural Studies ; Global Communication ; Health Communication ; Law and Society ; and Photography and Social Change . Many communication majors pursue, with the school’s encouragement, a double major with another discipline or a minor to complement the major. Through careful planning, students can complete these options within four years.

Students must consult with an undergraduate academic adviser at least once each semester to explore course selections within the major, possible minors, general education offerings, and electives.

Admission

Admission is competitive. Fall 2021 first-year admitted students had an average GPA of 3.82 unweighted. Submission of SAT or ACT test scores is optional for the 2023-2024 academic year. Transfer students had an average college GPA of 3.77. For admission information and deadlines, refer to the USC Annenberg Admissions website. All transfer applicants must review the transfer admission application guidelines on the Annenberg Admissions website; contact the Annenberg Admissions Office for more information. USC exclusively uses the Common Application for freshman and transfer admission. Applicants must submit the Common Application and the USC Writing Supplement, both of which can be accessed at commonapp.org

Students currently enrolled at USC who wish to change their major to communication must file a formal application with all supporting documents through the Annenberg Student Services Office. Students who entered USC as freshmen or transfers must have 16 units completed at USC with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. The 3.0 GPA is a minimum standard and does not guarantee admission.

For current USC students, the application period is the first week of classes each fall, spring and summer terms. No applications will be accepted after the first week of classes.

Students who have not been admitted to the communication major or one of the minors may complete a maximum of 20 communication (COMM) units at USC. No further communication course work may be taken until the student is admitted. Students who complete the maximum number of units without gaining admission to the school will be advised to select another major. Students are encouraged to contact the Annenberg Student Services Office, ASC 140, (213) 740-0900, for advisement on change of major criteria and major requirements. In certain cases, students may be referred to Academic Counseling Services, STU 300, (213) 740-1741, to consult with an adviser to select another major.

Academic Integrity Policy

The School of Communication maintains a commitment to the highest standards of ethical conduct and academic excellence. Any student found responsible for plagiarism, fabrication, cheating on examinations, or purchasing papers or other assignments will be reported to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards and may be dismissed from the School of Communication. There are no exceptions to the school’s policy.

Curriculum Areas of Study

By design, the courses in the curriculum tend to cluster into different areas of study. These areas represent important foci in the communication discipline and are areas in which the school’s faculty possess special expertise. Four such areas of study are described below. They are not mutually exclusive, nor do they exhaust the curriculum; rather, they represent partially overlapping areas of unusual depth. Students may specialize in one of these areas or may design individual programs of study by choosing other combinations of electives that best meet their needs and career objectives. Students are encouraged to meet with their academic adviser as well as faculty members for guidance in this process.

Communication and Culture Option: This option will be attractive to a broad range of students whose careers have an international or multicultural dimension, from those interested in foreign service, travel and consulting to those seeking careers in media, culture and the arts. In addition, students taking this option will be well prepared for advanced graduate study. Courses emphasize: communication as an essential component of culture and cultural production; cultural forces that shape communication practices; cultural barriers to communication; gender and diversity issues in human and mass communication and cultural production; media representations of race, ethnicity and gender; the production of meaning in diverse modes such as art, religion, popular culture and technology; and cultural criticism.

Entertainment, Communication and Society Option: This option is for students who wish to pursue careers in the entertainment industry, as well as students interested in the relationship of communication and entertainment to popular culture, globalization, cultural studies, marketing, advertising and ethics. Students taking this option will be well prepared for graduate study; they will also be able to enter the entertainment industry with a grounding in the theory, roles, issues and effects of entertainment. Courses emphasize: the theoretical underpinnings of entertainment studies; the historical context of entertainment; the roles and effects of entertainment concepts in “high art” and popular culture; the impact of entertainment on politics; social media and advertising in an entertainment society; the blurring of marketing and entertainment and the effects of this on culture; the effects of entertainment in general and specifically on constructions of race and childhood; issues in the blurring of fact and fiction; ethical dilemmas; and the globalization of entertainment industries.

Media, Law and Politics Option: This option is designed for students who are interested in careers in government and public service, the law, and political and legal consulting, as well as advanced graduate study. Students examine communication processes in the public sphere and learn how to participate competently in these practices. Courses emphasize: the role of persuasion in the political and legal processes; the techniques used by individuals, institutions and social movements to influence public affairs; the history, design, implementation and evaluation of political campaigns; the role of public opinion; ethical issues in public communication, including the influence of media in the political and justice systems, the role of the First Amendment and the changing nature of freedom of expression in a mass-mediated environment, and problems of public participation.

Organizational and Interpersonal Communication Option: This option is most relevant to students interested in careers in business, management, human resources and development, corporate communication, and consulting, as well as advanced graduate study. Courses emphasize: interpersonal communication processes that affect and reflect personality, motives, beliefs, attitudes and values; communication’s role in the development, maintenance and disintegration of social, family and intimate relationships; managing interpersonal conflict; communication between superiors and subordinates and in teams; communication’s role in determining organizational culture; managing information in organizations; and the role of information technology in processes of globalization.

Progressive Degree Program

This progressive degree program allows USC students to complete a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in as little as five years. Students with a 3.0 overall GPA or higher in all classes taken at the university level are eligible to apply for admission to the degree program during their junior year, if a minimum of 24 semester hours will be completed in the final year of undergraduate enrollment. However, a 3.0 GPA does not guarantee acceptance.

Current students must attend a mandatory information session conducted by Annenberg Admissions and a member of the faculty before initiating the application process. Students admitted into the progressive degree program begin taking master’s level courses in their senior year and may complete the master’s degree in year five. For a full list of progressive degrees offered by Annenberg and for information on the application process, refer to the Annenberg website. For further details on progressive degree programs, see the Requirements for Graduation  page.

Other Programs

Debate Squad

The Trojan Debate Squad provides an opportunity for outstanding students (3.0 GPA or better), both communication majors and non-majors, to compete in an intensive intercollegiate laboratory setting. Whatever the student’s intended career, the skills he or she develops in research, critical thinking and oral advocacy will be invaluable. The team has an excellent record in team policy debate and is now also offering British parliamentary (worlds format) debating. The team competes at both regional and national competitions.

Honors Program

The School of Communication offers an 8-unit honors program for exceptional students. To qualify, students must have a 3.5 GPA both overall and in the COMM major after completing the core courses (COMM 200  or COMM 313 , COMM 206  or COMM 311 COMM 209  or COMM 309 , COMM 204  or COMM 322 , COMM 301  or COMM 305 , ASCJ 200  or ASCJ 210 ). To graduate with School of Communication honors, a student must maintain a 3.5 overall and COMM major GPA and receive at least a B+ or higher in the two honors courses. Students take COMM 495 Honors Seminar  (4 units) and COMM 497x Honors Thesis  (4 units). Contact an undergraduate adviser for further information and application forms.

Honor Society

Lambda Pi Eta is a national communication/journalism honor society that is open to students in graduate and undergraduate Annenberg programs. To be eligible, students must have a USC cumulative GPA and an Annenberg major GPA of 3.5 or higher. In addition, undergraduate students must have a declared communication, journalism or public relations major, and have completed (or currently be registered for) at least 60 units, at least 12 of which are in the major. Graduate students must have completed at least 12 units in the fields of communication, journalism or public relations.

Annenberg Career Development

The USC Annenberg Career Development Office has listings for paid and unpaid internships from around the country. Career advisers conduct mandatory advisement appointments for all sophomores and offer career workshops, guest speakers and mentoring opportunities. Students are advised to participate in internships before graduation.

Annenberg International Programs

Annenberg International Programs follows health and safety directives provided by the University and programs may be subject to suspension due to COVID-19 complications.

Spring Semester in Australia

This semester program offers students the chance to study at one of Australia’s premier universities, in one of the country’s most exciting cities. Students take communication courses that count for major credit at USC at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and can choose from a wide variety of elective courses. UNSW is located in Kensington, just south of the center of Sydney and its commercial hub. The program gives students the chance to explore mass media and communication in a challenging environment with a distinct worldview, very different from that of the United States. Students may earn a maximum of 12 USC units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program.

Fall and Spring Semester in Hong Kong

The semester program offers students the opportunity to learn about Chinese culture at the Chinese University in Hong Kong, a bilingual institution. The program also gives students the experience of living in Hong Kong where they can witness the “one country, two systems” experiment. Courses in English are offered in fine arts, literature, history, Japanese studies, intercultural studies, music, philosophy, computer science, anthropology, economics, international relations, as well as journalism and communication. For students interested in Chinese language, courses are offered in Putonghua (Mandarin) or Cantonese. Extracurricular activities include the opportunity to teach English in rural China, monthly dinner talks with Asian studies specialists and excursions to local areas of interest. Students may earn a maximum of 12 USC units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program.

Fall and Spring Semester in London

The semester program offers students the opportunity to study communication in London, the most important center of media in Europe. Many of the communication courses offered include British media guest lecturers and site visits. The program includes one-day visits to such places as Oxford, Cambridge and Liverpool. Planned activities within London include theatre and museum visits. Students may earn 16 units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program. Please visit the Annenberg International Programs website for more information on additional program requirements.

Spring Semester in New Zealand

Annenberg’s New Zealand program offers students the opportunity to travel to the Southern Hemisphere. Each spring, students can study at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT), a world-class institution that offers students the chance to take communication courses that count toward major credit at USC, all the while exploring the beautiful city of Auckland and the surrounding countryside. The AUT program offers communication students an exciting way to broaden their understanding of media and mass communication in a challenging environment with an outlook distinctly different from that of the United States and Southern California. Students may earn 12 units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program.

Spring Semester in Rome, Italy

Undergraduate students may spend a spring semester exploring how media, culture, history and politics are embedded within this iconic city and drive innovation there. Taking courses at a dedicated study center located in the heart of the historic city center in Rome, students meet communication executives and government policy-makers and gain exposure to Italian media, culture and civilization. The program also includes guided visits to museums and historical districts, as well as an overnight group excursion to Bologna. Students may earn 16 units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program. Please visit the Annenberg International Programs website for more information on additional program requirements.

Summer International Communication Studies — London and Paris

The International Communication Studies program (ICS) allows undergraduate students to study a range of approaches to public communication media across Europe.

Students divide the four-week course into stays in Los Angeles, London and Paris. In addition to regular class meetings, students discuss the interplay of current world issues and international media practices with communication practitioners from international news and public relations media, government institutions, private industry and global organizations.

Students enroll in JOUR 482  Comparative Media in Europe (4 units), which will count as 4 units of upper-division COMM elective credit. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program.

Alternative Spring Break Program – Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand or Mexico City, Mexico

In partnership with Annenberg Career Development, students develop first-hand insights into social impact, development and non-profits in Thailand or engage with influential industry leaders and media companies in Mexico City. A minimum USC cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for this program. Please visit the Annenberg International Programs website for more information on additional program requirements.

Graduate Internship Program – Berlin, Cape Town or Hong Kong

The Annenberg International Programs Graduate Internship Program allows graduate students the opportunity to explore the communication and journalism fields from a distinctively global perspective. Students have the opportunity to intern in one of the following three global cities: Berlin, Germany; Cape Town, South Africa; or Hong Kong SAR, China. The program takes place over the course of eight weeks during the summer semester. Students enroll in CMGT 591  and earn 1 unit of academic credit. Program dates and fees vary based on program city. 

For further information, contact Annenberg International Programs at (213) 821-1276, email ascintl@usc.edu or visit annenberg.usc.edu/international.

Graduate Degrees

Degree Programs

The School of Communication offers programs of study leading to a professional Master of Communication Management, an MA/MSc in Global Communication in collaboration with the London School of Economics, a Master of Science in Digital Social Media, a Master of Science in Digital Media Management, two Master of Public Diplomacy programs, and research-oriented Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Communication. The School of Communication also collaborates with the USC Viterbi School of Engineering to offer a  Communication Data Science (MS) , which gives students the opportunity to innovate at the intersection of communication and engineering. In addition, special programs enable students to earn dual degrees in Communication Management and Law (USC Gould School of Law) and in Communication Management and Jewish Nonprofit Management (Hebrew Union College).

The degree programs are designed to ensure that students are educated in substantive studies that constitute the discipline of communication and provide a basis for competing effectively in the job market.

All students seeking the degrees in Communication Management and Global Communication will take a range of courses that prepare them for successful professional management careers in communication-related businesses, organizations and fields.

All students pursuing the research-oriented degree (PhD in Communication) are required to take two theory courses that introduce them to inquiry in human communication and two research methods courses that acquaint them with the historical/critical and social scientific techniques available to conduct scholarly research. These requirements strengthen the student’s appreciation of the intellectual bases of human communication study and further the concept of a community of scholars and practitioners in the profession. Students specialize in one of seven available tracks: Groups, Organizations and Networks; Health Communication and Social Dynamics; Information, Political Economy and Entertainment; Media, Culture and Community; New Media and Technology; Political Economy of Global Communication; Rhetoric, Politics and Publics. In addition, students are encouraged to sample courses in the remaining tracks, thus obtaining an education of unparalleled breadth and depth.

Honor Society

Lambda Pi Eta is a national communication/journalism honor society that is open to students in graduate and undergraduate Annenberg programs. To be eligible, students must have a USC cumulative GPA and an Annenberg major GPA of 3.5 or higher. In addition, undergraduate students must have a declared communication, journalism or public relations major, and have completed (or currently be registered for) at least 60 units, at least 12 of which are in the major. Graduate students must have completed at least 12 units in the fields of communication, journalism or public relations.

Admission Requirements

Master of Communication Management, Master of Science in Digital Social Media, Master of Arts in Global Communication, Master of Public Diplomacy and Master of Public Diplomacy (Practitioner and Mid-Career Professional)

The school accepts students from a broad range of academic backgrounds in social sciences, humanities, physical sciences or professional schools. Some are employed or have work experience in communication-related fields. Others apply immediately after completing baccalaureate degrees.

Criteria: All applicants must submit the online USC Graduate Admission Application. The faculty admission committees consider many criteria in the admission selection process: the academic record and professional and work-related accomplishments are taken into account. The minimum criteria are the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree and a 3.0 GPA for all undergraduate and graduate work completed. The Master of Arts in Global Communication requires a minimum 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale) cumulative GPA or international equivalent for admission.

Applicants to the Global Communication degree program must apply to USC and the London School of Economics (LSE). Participation in this degree program requires that students simultaneously gain admission to LSE and USC. GRE or GMAT scores are not required for admission. All students will begin their studies in London at the LSE.

Procedure: Refer to the Annenberg Admissions website for degree program admission application guidelines and deadlines. Scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or Pearson Test of English (PTE) are required for applicants whose undergraduate degree was not completed in a country where English is the only official language.

Doctor of Philosophy

Students may enter from a variety of academic fields and majors. Applicants whose undergraduate work was in fields other than communication may be admitted on the condition that adequate preparation in directly relevant areas is evident. Completion of a master’s degree in communication is not required for admission to the Doctor of Philosophy.

Criteria: All applicants must submit the online USC Graduate Admission Application. The faculty admission committee reviews each application comprehensively. Three letters of recommendation from faculty qualified to comment on an applicant’s capacities for a rigorous program of study are required. Completion of a basic descriptive statistics course is recommended. In addition, a personal statement, transcripts of all previous college and university work attempted, a résumé and a sample of scholarly writing are required. The MA in Communication is earned as part of the PhD program.

Procedure: Admission is granted for the fall semester only. Refer to the Annenberg graduate application guidelines on the School website for complete details about graduate application requirements. Scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or Pearson Test of English (PTE) are required for applicants whose undergraduate degree was not completed in a country where English is the only official language.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Global Communication, Master of Arts in Communication and Doctor of Philosophy in Communication are awarded under the jurisdiction of the Graduate School. Refer to The Graduate School  section of this catalogue and the Requirements for Graduation  section for general regulations. All courses applied toward the degrees must be courses accepted by the Graduate School.

Programs

    Bachelor’s DegreeMinorMaster’s DegreeDual DegreeGraduate CertificateDoctoral Degree

    Courses

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