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Communication studies

Employers want skilled communicators.

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As a communication studies major or minor, you’ll learn how communication works in many contexts. You'll demonstrate skills in writing, speaking and multimedia. An Augustana liberal arts education will give you a strong foundation for developing communication and problem-solving skills.

Depending on your goals, you’ll choose a direction such as interpersonal and intercultural communication, health communication and public relations, propaganda and persuasion, or listening and leadership.

The faculty specializes in media studies, rhetoric, interpersonal communication, health communication, public speaking, professional and organizational communication. You’ll find close mentors for your specific career path.

The department also has a related major and minor in multimedia journalism and mass communication. A major for teaching speech communication-language arts is housed in the Department of Education.

What you'll learn

Communication competence

Communication competence

Read and listen carefully. Express ideas (writing or speaking) suited to the audience.

Critical thinking and information literacy

Critical thinking and information literacy

Judge and construct arguments, raise questions and define problems. Make a conclusion based on evidence.

Collaborative leadership

Collaborative leadership

Make decisions and act for the good of the community as a group.

Quantitative literacy

Quantitative literacy

Interpret, represent and summarize information. Use math and statistics to solve problems.

Intercultural competence

Intercultural competence

Understand real and imaginary similarities and differences. Use more than one perspective to view issues.


• Based on the strength of an Augustana education, more than 98% of communication studies majors applying to graduate school are accepted — nearly all with full scholarships or fellowships! Our graduates also pursue careers in business and industry, education and non-profit organizations.

• Communication studies majors have had internships in non-profit, for-profit and governmental organizations, including the Girl Scouts, Unity Regional Healthcare, Walt Disney World, Congress and the White House, and many more. Students also conduct research, and many present their projects at conventions of the National and/or Central States Communication Association.

• With its extensive media market and a strong public relations network, the Quad Cities is an excellent location for communication studies. Sports teams, public relations offices and non-profit organizations seek out Augustana students as interns. Other students intern abroad, most recently in Australia, England, Japan and Spain. $2,000 with Augie Choice supports each student’s internship, research project or study abroad.

On-campus resources include a multimedia lab; student-run radio station WAUG; the award-winning student newspaper The Observer; Fresh Films, a professional film studio; and WVIK–FM, Augustana Public Radio, broadcasting in western Illinois and eastern Iowa.

Recent graduates 

Genesis Li ’21 is in the Masters in Public Administration program at Cornell University, College of Human Ecology, in Ithaca, N.Y.

Evan Sammons ’20 is an alumni engagement and fundraising specialist at Augustana College.

Emily Graziano ’19 is the human resources coordinator at Mediafly in Chicago.

Rachel Reiter ’18 is a senior associate with Educare Marketing and Communications at Start Early in Chicago.

Nicolette Hampton '18 is the diversity and communications coordinator with Chapman and Cutler LLP in Chicago.

Tawanda Mberikwazvo ’17 is a multimedia professional and instructional designer with DIS-Visual Services at John Deere, Moline, Ill.

More Than I Imagined Haley DeGreve
“I never imagined I'd be studying communication or marketing. Augustana truly helped me find my passions.”
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Lauren Amella
More Than I Imagined Lauren Amella
“Dr. Kunde has shown me the importance of communication, and how just one word, gesture or clothing item can have so much meaning. ”
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Lauren Clapp
More Than I Imagined Lauren Clapp
“I never thought I would be doing research abroad, speaking at local and national conferences or graduating with two majors and a minor.”
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