Thanks for considering the Communication Studies major at Viterbo University!
Welcome to the Communication Studies Department! Our goal is to
provide a quality liberal arts education while providing the skills and
experience you will need to compete effectively for jobs in the new
information economy. We are pleased that you have expressed an interest
in our program.
Who we are:
Currently, 48 undergraduates are majoring in communication
studies. Our students come from the Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois,
Iowa, and South American and Middle Eastern countries. Five faculty
members offer courses in the major.
What we do:
Students majoring in Communication Studies examine the
social, political, institutional, and mediated dimensions of human
communication practices and processes. In every course in the program,
students learn how these communication practices construct and
reconstruct meanings, enable and constrain social interaction, and
interact with institutional structures. Our students create visual,
digital, and verbal messages. They are trained in creative problem
solving, a process that focuses on analyzing audiences and adapting to
characteristics of receivers.
What you will learn:
Students choosing a major in Communication Studies develop
analytic and cognitive skills that enhance their capacity for critical
thinking, intellectual curiosity, and proficiency in critical,
interpretive, and social scientific methods of communication research.
Students demonstrate their command of this material by the capacity to
(1) Create and analyze visual and organizational messages, (2) conduct
independent inquiry and research, (3) locate and interpret primary
materials when formulating original, creative solutions, and (4)
communicate the results of research to diverse audiences, both visually
and verbally. The skills provided by the Communication Studies program
are desired by many organizations and professions. Our liberal arts
approach is essential for democratic citizenship in the twenty-first
How the program is structured:
In consultation with their advisor, students typically
concentrate their major course work in either Organizational
Communication (public relations or human resource management) or Visual
Communication (Graphics Design or Digital Media). The department
encourages students to complement their Communication Studies major with
either a minor in a related discipline or a supporting field, selected
in consultation with their department advisor.
What to do next:
As you consider our major and visit our web site, we invite
you to e-mail us and talk to our students. Our faculty have years of
experience working in their areas. We are skilled professionals who
creatively solve communication problems. We value practical skills and
we are keenly aware of the ethical uses of images and messages. In
addition to practical application of theoretical material, our faculty
members hold advanced degrees in their disciplines. We would enjoy
talking to you about our values-based education.
A brief letter or Web site cannot fully describe the
Communication Studies Department. I extend an invitation to you to
visit Viterbo University, stop by our offices, and see our media labs
(PC and Mac). We will be happy to meet with you to discuss your
personal situation. Feel free to contact me if you need additional
Ray Preiss, Ph.D.
Chair, Department of Communication Studies