Communication Management

Overview

Communication is increasingly at the center of human activity and crucial to the success of individual professionals and their organizations. In such a technology-fueled, turbulent environment, the Master of Communication Management program teaches concepts and skills relevant to today’s communication professional. You will learn how to design and execute effective communication strategies and tactics across a range of settings, such as supporting a corporation in crisis to regain credibility, or crafting a compelling story for a non-profit organization, or researching new markets for an emerging brand. Throughout the program, you will enhance your critical thinking, presentation and writing skills, to be persuasive to colleagues and clients. USC Annenberg offers two delivery methods for this degree program:

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The on-campus Communication Management degree program is designed for recent college graduates and young professionals who want the traditional graduate school experience of attending classes on the USC University Park campus in Los Angeles. Courses are offered in the afternoon and evening and can be completed part-time.

Our innovative online Communication Management degree is designed for mid-career professionals with several years of work experience. By using the latest online education technologies, you will learn from the same USC Annenberg faculty who teach in the on-campus program and will engage in collaborative projects with professionals from varying communication fields. 

Areas of Focus

Communication Management is a broad field that encompasses many different specialties and disciplines. In the on-campus program, you may strategically hone in on a focus for depth and choose another area or two to develop breadth in your studies.  Each area has its associated courses.

Courses in the Communication Management program may be organized into five areas of focus below:

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  • Marketing Communication
    The Marketing Communication track focuses on the management of business communication with customers, clients and general consumers outside the organization. It is particularly valuable for individuals with career interests in marketing and sales, publicity and promotions, market research, marketing management, social marketing, advertising, public relations, public communication campaigns, and public or community affairs.
  
  • Media & Entertainment Management
    This Media and Entertainment track is for students who wish to pursue or expand careers in media and entertainment fields. Students will study the increasing complex possibilities afforded by the convergence and globalization of media and entertainment.
  
  • Health & Social Change Communication
    The Health and Social Change Communication track centers on how to influence positive behavioral and social change through effective communication messages and campaigns. Topics covered in the courses in this track include audience analysis, marketing communication and the selection of media channels. It is particularly valuable for individuals with career interests in the health, non-profit and public sectors.
  
  • International & Intercultural Communication
    The International and Intercultural Communication track is for students who wish to pursue or expand careers in international and intercultural communication management. Students will study the latest developments in communication technologies, organizations, industries, and markets in cross-national, cross-cultural contexts.
  
  • Organizational & Strategic Corporate Communication
    This track examines both the communication functions as well as the process of communication within organizations. It is particularly valuable for individuals with careers and/or career interests in human resource management, corporate communication, strategic planning, operations management, communication consulting, and other general management functions.
    
Curriculum

You may complete the degree program at your own pace. The fastest pace is four terms (fall, spring, summer and fall), taking two courses in the first term and up to three courses (with faculty approval) in subsequent terms. The slowest pace is one course per term (with or without summer sessions). However, most students complete the degree program in two years (without summer sessions). International students on an F-1 visa must enroll in a minimum of 8 units (two courses) each Fall and Spring semester.

The Communication Management (CMGT) program requires 32 units of course work. Each CMGT course is 4 units.

Required courses include:

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  • a foundational methods course (CMGT 540 – Uses of Communication Research) in the first semester
  • a foundational core concepts course (CMGT 501 – Communication Pro-Seminar) in the second semester

  • a capstone practicum course (CMGT 597a – Communication Research Practicum, 2 units; CMGT 597b, 2 units) in the penultimate and the final semesters
  
The remaining 20 units (5 courses) may be fulfilled with other CMGT courses in various areas of focus. Of the 20 units, up to 8 units may be taken outside the School of Communication (500-level courses in Journalism, Business, Cinematic Arts, and others). Courses are chosen with the approval of faculty advisors. 
How to Apply

Admission to the Master of Communication Management degree program is on a rolling basis and applications are accepted for the fall semester only.

Before submitting an application, please carefully review:

 

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Class Profile & Careers

Here’s a brief snapshot of where some of our recent Communication Management alumni are working:

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  • Invisible Children, Development Director 
  • Center for Discovery, PR and Community Relations 
  • Frank Magid Associates, Market Research Analyst 
  • First Advantage Corporation, Web Applications Developer 
  • Loyola Marymount University, Communications Manager 
  • Lucasfilm, University Relations 
  • Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Coordinator, International Marketing 
  • Korn/Ferry International, Director, Marketing & Communications
  • The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Campaign Coordinator
  • Sirius Satellite Radio, Producer
  • Disney Interactive Studios, Associate Brand Manager
  • Fox Interactive Media/MySpace, Sales Tactics Manager, Performance Marketing and Sales
  • Roll International, New Media Director
  • KPMG, Senior Communications Associate, West Area
  • Innovation Protocol, Manager, Brand Programs
  • AXIS The Multicultural Agency, Senior Account Executive
  • Hallmark Channel, Assistant, Corporate Communications
  • Interscope, Digital Product and Marketing Manager
  • Buck Consultants, Senior Consultant, Communications
  • NBC Universal, Manager, Online Marketing
  • Goldstar, Social Media and Community Manager
  • Terry Hines and Associates, Digital Marketing
Faculty

Communication Management faculty have a wealth of experience and knowledge to share.  Below are some of the key faculty who teach in the Communication Management degree program:

/images/faculty/weintraubr.jpg   Rebecca Weintraub
Director, Master of Communication Management Program; Clinical Professor, School of Communication

Expertise: Branding, Interpersonal Communication, Marketing, Organizational Communication
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Ben Lee   Ben Lee
Associate Director, Master of Communication Management Program; Clinical Associate Professor, School of Communication

Expertise: Economics and Entrepreneurship, Organizational Communication, Research Methods, Marketing Research

/images/faculty/baroffiobotad.jpg Daniela Baroffio
Assistant Director, Master of Communication Management Program; Clinical Associate Professor, School of Communication

Expertise: Gender Studies, Mass Media, Popular Culture, Race and Ethnicity, Marketing Research 

Dual Degrees

Two dual degree programs are offered for students who wish to expand their educational experience into other areas. A dual degree in Master of Communication Management / Jewish Nonprofit Management, and a Dual Degree in Law (J.D.) and Master of Communication Management. Below is more information on each program:

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Dual Degree in Master of Communication Management / Jewish Nonprofit Management

The dual degree program, Communication Management/Jewish Nonprofit Management, offers students the opportunity for advanced study of sophisticated communication processes and technologies in the context of the nonprofit arena. The program has been developed by the Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion’s School of Jewish Nonprofit Management (formerly the HUC-JIR School of Jewish Communal Service) to combine the study of communication theory, processes and technologies with postgraduate education in Jewish nonprofit management and leadership. The goal of this program is for graduates to perform more effectively in the nonprofit sector, having received specific training in areas such as organizational communication, media impacts and policy. Students of this program are admitted separately to each school. Four of the 52 required credits of graduate course work at Hebrew Union College are used to fulfill the School of Communication’s cognate option. In addition, the student will complete 24 credits of the school’s course work including CMGT 597, as well as the School of Jewish Nonprofit Management’s thesis requirements

 

Dual Degree in Law (J.D.) and Master of Communication Management

Academic training in law and in communication management provides a powerful background for careers in either business, entertainment or government life. The USC Gould School of Law and USC Annenberg brings these two dynamic fields into one comprehensive dual degree program. To take part in this dual degree program, you must be admitted to the Gould School of Law first. During your first year, you will enroll in law courses exclusively. Then, after applying to the Communication Management degree program, you will take courses during your second and third years of law school. You will complete both the J.D. and M.C.M. in the time normally required for a law degree alone. Students must complete 20 units (five courses) of communication courses at the School of Communication: one core class from the student’s preferred track; one method course; CMGT 597; and the remaining two courses may be from either core or elective offerings

 

Post-Master's Certificates

USC Annenberg offers post-Master degree certificates for professionals seeking to deepen their expertise in a field. The certificate course work gives students access to the latest knowledge and practices. Students also build relationships within a vibrant community of graduate students representing the next generation of professionals.

Students take 16 units of graduate course work, of which 4 units may be courses outside the School of Communication. These certificate programs below are for students who have already earned master’s degrees:

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  • Health Communication Management
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to pursue or expand careers in health communication. Students will study the most recent theoretical and practical developments in health communication, with a focus on understanding individual attitudes and behavior, as well as public health. One course must be from preventive medicine, public health, pharmacology or another health science program.

  • International & Intercultural Communication Management
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to pursue or expand careers in international and intercultural communication management. Students will study the latest developments in communication technologies, organizations, industries, and markets in cross-national, cross-cultural contexts.

  • Marketing Communication Management
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to pursue or expand careers in marketing communication. Students will study the latest developments in marketing communication knowledge and practices, covering new media, brands, and markets.

  • Media & Entertainment Management
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to pursue or expand careers in media and entertainment fields. Students will study the increasing complex possibilities afforded by the convergence and globalization of media and entertainment.

  • New Communication Technologies
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to deepen their understanding of new communication technologies’ impact on individual, organizations, and markets. Students will study foundational concepts and theories surrounding technologies, as well as the latest developments in the field.

  • Strategic Corporate & Organizational Communication Management
    This certificate program is for students holding Master degrees who wish to pursue or expand careers in corporate communication and communication consulting. Students will study organizational communication concepts and skills, and thier application to complex organizational problems.