The Communication Major

The department offers a Communication Major which seeks to produce theoretically informed graduates with the necessary practical and analytical skills for successful professional careers, including the ability to: think critically and express ideas clearly and creatively; perform close textual analysis of various forms of communication (written, visual, nonverbal); analyze historical and contemporary forces behind cultural identities and relationships; and, finally, analyze the structures and institutions that inform the relationship between media, technology and society. To achieve these goals, the department has developed three core curriculum areas for the Communication Major:

* Texts and Representation employs close analysis of various kinds of texts to investigate the specific ways in which they produce meaning. The core incorporates critical approaches and it studies the way these texts reinforce and challenge cultural perceptions and identity formations. It draws on areas of film studies, rhetorical criticism and new media studies.

* Identities and Relationships examines the formation of relationships and identities in different historical, cultural and communication contexts. Drawing particularly on the fields of relational communication, postcolonial studies, and critical race and ethnic studies, core courses in this area examine the power dynamics that characterize interactions and the formation of different types of identity.

* Structures and Institutions analyzes the political, economic and social forces that define the media landscape and the organization of media industries. Drawing particularly on the fields of political economy and media industry studies, core courses in this area examine the connections between communication and broader historical formations, such as the market, the state and civil society.


The major consists of ten (10) courses with a minimum of thirty (30) credits.

Required and Core Courses

Communication Studies (COMM 2900) is a required course that must be completed before taking any of the core courses. 1000 and 2000-level courses can be taken concurrently. COMM 2900 introduces students to the department’s theoretical underpinnings by exploring the three core curriculum areas of the Communication Major.

Majors must complete three core courses, one in each area of the curriculum, preferably by the end of junior year. These core courses include:

* In the Texts and Representation area, Film Analysis (COMM 3150) or Rhetorical Criticism (COMM 3250) or New Media Analysis (COMM 3350);

* In the Identities and Relationships area, Cross-Cultural Analysis (COMM 3140) or Interaction Analysis (COMM 3240);

* In the Structures and Institutions area, Technology Analysis (COMM 3160) or Media Analysis (COMM 3260).

Students who have an overall GPA of less than 2.50 when they declare the major must complete a 1000 or 2000 level course with a grade of C- or better before they will be allowed to enroll in a core course.


Of the six electives, two (2) must be completed at the 3000 level or above and two (2) must be completed at the 4000 level or above.

Honors Students

Students wishing to graduate with honors in Communication must take either the graduate seminar (COMM 6210 or 6220) or another 4000-level honors course, and complete an honors project/thesis. Students must register for the honors thesis with the Honors Program.

Undergraduate Advisor

The Department’s Undergraduate Advisor is Dr. Esra Ozcan,, 504-862-3043. Students wanting to declare the major or who need advisement must schedule an appointment through the main office. After advising for declaration of the major, the declaration form is signed by the advisor and routed to the Chair. Students pick up the form and return it to the campus advising office.

Communication Dept., Tulane U., 219 Newcomb Hall, 1229 Broadway, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5730