2006 - 2007 Master of Professional Communication (MPC)

Program Goals | Objectives | Admission | Program Requirements | Academic Probation and Suspension Policy | Graduation Requirements | MPC Course Overview | Degree Requirements | Student-Designed Emphases | Course Descriptions

Faculty: Alan Bowes, Fred Fogo, Helen Hodgson (Program Director), Christine Seifert, Kim Zarkin

Program Goals

  • To enhance skills in a specific area of communication.
  • To develop an understanding of the use and application of technology essential in the communication field.
  • To develop a broader understanding of ethical and social responsibilities of professional communicators.
  • To improve oral and written communication skills.
  • To develop a deeper appreciation for effective visual design and enhanced abilities to apply design principles to communication pieces.

Objectives

The Master of Professional Communication (MPC) degree program and the related Graduate Communication Certificate curriculum are designed to prepare students as writers and communication experts for positions in business, industry, government, or other organizations where communication skills are a primary tool. Program participants have an opportunity to enhance their communication skills without interrupting their professional careers. People with undergraduate degrees in a variety of areas can enhance their professionalism within their current career path or prepare for new careers.

Building upon a core that provides a conceptual and historical framework in communication ethics, rhetoric, traditional and online writing, visual communication, and oral presentation, students in the MPC Program can elect an emphasis in writing or in another specialty area. Graduate Communication Certificates are available to those who wish to enhance or update their skills in a specific area of communication.

Admission to the Program

Admission to the program is based on an evaluation of undergraduate work and professional experience. Students may enter the program at the beginning of fall or spring semester or of the graduate summer term.

A candidate for admission must submit the following materials to the Office of Admissions:

  • A completed Application for Graduate Admission form with a $40 application fee
  • Evidence of a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university or a recognized international college or university
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  • A personal résumé detailing all job titles, work experience, duties, and related activities
  • A sample of professional writing or other writing as required by the admissions committee

When an individual’s file is complete, the application materials are evaluated by the MPC Admissions Committee. Once accepted to the MPC Program, the applicant must submit a $250 tuition deposit, which guarantees a place in the entering class.

Note: International students with baccalaureate degrees from countries other than the United States must present a TOEFL score of 600 or above.

Provisional Admission

Following a committee review of unofficial documents, students with completed baccalaureate degrees may be provisionally admitted to the program, pending receipt of official copies of all necessary documents and completion of the admissions process. These students will be permitted to register for one semester while on provisional status but must complete their files and gain full admission before continuing the program in subsequent semesters.

Program Requirements for the MPC Degree

Students are required to take a total of 38 credit hours, which includes either a writing emphasis or a unique emphasis developed by the student in consultation with a faculty advisor.

A grade of C is the lowest passing grade for all courses taken in the MPC Program. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, and students are required to earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in order to graduate. A minimum of 30 hours must be taken at Westminster College. Courses completed at other graduate institutions must carry a grade of B or better to be eligible for transfer credit.

Academic Probation and Suspension Policy

Students in the MPC Program are expected to maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0. Students whose cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0 will be placed on academic probation. Students placed on academic probation must earn a semester grade point average of at least 3.0 the next semester in which they enroll. Probationary students who fail to earn a semester grade point average of at least 3.0 that semester will be suspended from the MPC Program.

Probationary students whose semester grade point average is 3.0 or higher but whose cumulative grade point average still remains below 3.0 will continue on academic probation. Probationary students whose cumulative grade point average reaches 3.0 or higher will be returned to good academic standing.

Probationary students are required to meet with the MPC Program Director prior to enrolling for the upcoming semester.

Appeals for Readmission

Suspended students may petition the MPC Suspension Review Committee for readmission at any time prior to the beginning of the semester in which they wish to enroll; however, unless extenuating circumstances exist, suspended students are required to remain out of the college for at least one semester before appealing for readmission. Students who feel extenuating circumstances contributed to their failure to meet minimum grade point requirements may choose to appeal for readmission immediately following the suspension.

To appeal for readmission, students must submit a letter to Professor Helen Hodgson, MPC program director, giving evidence that supports the request for readmission. Petitioning students will be notified of the review committee meeting and will be given the opportunity to present their cases in person. Decisions of the MPC Suspension Review Committee are final. Students readmitted through the appeals procedure are placed on continued probation and must meet the minimum 3.0 grade point average requirement that semester.

Students who have been out of the college for more than two semesters must also submit an application for readmission to the Admissions Office. Students readmitted after more than two semesters will be required to meet program requirements for the catalog in effect at the time of readmission.

Graduation Requirements

Candidates for graduation should apply to the Registrar’s Office approximately two regular semesters prior to planned completion of graduation requirements. Applications for December graduation are due in September and applications for May and August graduation are due in October. Please see the Academic Calendar for more specific dates. Candidates are notified of remaining degree requirements within four weeks after applying for graduation.

To be eligible for a master’s degree or graduate certificate, students must satisfy the following conditions:

  • Meet all credit hour and other course requirements.
  • Maintain an overall grade point average of 3.0 or above.
  • Be enrolled at Westminster College during the semester in which they wish to graduate.
  • Maintain good academic standing.
  • Earn a grade of C or higher in all graduate courses.

Note: Only graduate-level coursework may be applied toward degree or certificate requirements.

The final responsibility for being informed about, and adhering to, graduation requirements rests with the individual.

MPC Course Overview

Because of the program’s orientation toward the practical, most courses incorporate some kind of field experience or contact with outside professionals. This might take the form of papers or projects based on existing situations in businesses, or it might involve working with real clients. Another possibility is the participation of speakers and practitioners from the local community in classroom situations.

Master of Professional Communication Courses

MPC 600 Communication Ethics and the Democratic Process

3

MPC 602 Rhetorical Theory and Practice

3

MPC 610 Professional and Technical Writing

3

MPC 611 Public Relations Writing and Planning

3

MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry

3

MPC 615 Writing for Business

3

MPC 616 Writing for Popular Publications

3

MPC 617 Writing for Peer-Reviewed Journals

3

MPC 618 Professional Editing

3

MPC 620 Organizational Communication

3

MPC 630 Visual Communication

3

MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing

3

MPC 636 Multimedia Systems

1

MPC 637 Web Design and Production

3

MPC 638 Digital Image Editing

3

MPC 639 Web Site Planning and Management

3

MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation

3

MPC 642 Project Planning and Management

3

MPC 652 Effective Presentations

3

MPC 653 Fundamentals of Oral Presentations

1

MPC 660 Publication Design

1

MPC 663 Grant Research and Writing

3

MPC 664 Proposal Writing

1

MPC 665 Public Relations Writing for Broadcast

1

MPC 666 Freelance Writing and Editing

1

MPC 668 Directed Studies

1-4

MPC 670 Special Topics

1-3

MPC 690 Field Project

3

MPC 699 Continuing Registration

0

MBA 510E International Marketing

3

MBA 593E Telecommunications and Integrated Information Systems

3

MBA 610C Data Analysis for Decision Making

2

MBA 645C Value Creation and Delivery

2

MBA 650C Leading in Dynamic Organizations

2

MBA 659E Special Topics in Management Information Systems

3

MBA 664E Organizational Development and Change

3

MBA 665E Strategic Marketing

2

MBA 670E Training and Development

3

MBA 672E Marketing Research

3

MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing

3

MBA 675E Database Management

3

MBA 677E Development and Future of Management Thought

3

MBA 694E Business Systems Analysis and Design

3

MTECH 631 Industry and Market Dynamics in Technology

2

MTECH 641 Organizations, Technology, and Society

2

Degree Requirements

Students must elect a writing or a student-designed emphasis:

Writing Emphasis

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

21

MPC 600 Comm. Ethics and the Democratic Process
MPC 602 Rhetorical Theory and Practice
MPC 610 Professional and Technical Writing
MPC 618 Professional Editing
MPC 630 Visual Communication
MPC 652 Effective Presentations
MPC 690 Field Project

3
3
3
3
3
3
3

II.

Writing Courses

9

Choose three of following seven courses:

MPC 611 Public Relations Writing and Planning (3)
MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry (3)
MPC 615 Writing for Business (3)
MPC 616 Writing for Popular Publications (3)
MPC 617 Writing for Peer-Reviewed Journals (3)
MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing (3)
MPC 663 Grant Research and Writing (3)

9







III.

Electives

8

Additional approved courses

8

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE WRITING EMPHASIS

38


Student-Designed Emphasis

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

18

MPC 600 Communication Ethics and the Democratic Process
MPC 602 Rhetorical Theory and Practice
MPC 610 Professional and Technical Writing
MPC 630 Visual Communication
MPC 652 Effective Presentations
MPC 690 Field Project

3
3
3
3
3
3

II.

Emphasis Courses

12

Students must complete 12 credit hours from their emphasis. See listing below for suggested student-designed emphases.

12

III.

Electives

8

Additional approved courses

8

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE STUDENT-DESIGNED EMPHASIS

38

Suggested Models for Student-Designed Emphases

The following models are suggestions for possible emphases. Students can substitute courses not included in these models, or they can design unique programs of their own choosing. All students who elect a student-designed emphasis will work closely with a faculty advisor to ensure that the courses selected represent an emphasis that is pedagogically sound.

Communication Management Emphasis

Courses totaling 12 credit hours:

MPC 620 Organizational Communication

3

MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation

3

MPC 642 Project Planning and Management

3

MPC 663 Grant Research and Writing

3

MBA 650C Leading in Dynamic Organizations

2

MBA 664E Organizational Development and Change

3

MBA 670E Training and Development

3

MBA 677E Development and Future of Management Thought

3

Information Technology Emphasis

Courses totaling 12 credit hours:

MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry

3

MPC 639 Web Site Planning and Management

3

MBA 593E Telecommunications and Integrated Information Systems

3

MBA 610C Data Analysis for Decision Making

2

MBA 659E Special Topics in Information Management

3

MBA 675E Database Management

3

MBA 694E Business Systems Analysis and Design

3

MTECH 631 Industry and Market Dynamics in Technology

2

MTECH 641 Organizations, Technology, and Society

2

Marketing Communication Emphasis

Courses totaling 12 credit hours:

MPC 611 Public Relations Writing and Planning

3

MPC 620 Organizational Communication

3

MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation

3

MPC 642 Project Planning and Management

3

MBA 510E International Marketing

3

MBA 645C Value Creation and Delivery

2

MBA 665E Strategic Marketing

2

MBA 672E Marketing Research

3

MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing

3

Multimedia Emphasis

Courses totaling 12 credit hours:

MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry

3

MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing

3

MPC 637 Web Design and Production

3

MPC 638 Digital Image Editing

3

MPC 639 Web Site Planning and Management

3

MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation

3

MPC 642 Project Planning and Management

3

MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing

3

Graduate Communication Certificates

Graduate certificates are provided as an alternative program of graduate communication study for individuals who meet the following criteria:

  • Currently possess a bachelor's degree and wish to pursue graduate certification in a specialized area of communication with or without the completion of an MPC degree.
  • Have earned an MPC degree but wish to update or enhance skills in a particular area.
  • Are enrolled in the MPC program but desire an additional specialization.

Certificate in Communication Management

Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

16

Courses totaling 16 credit hours:

MPC 620 Organizational Communication
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management
MPC 663 Grant Research and Writing
MPC 664 Proposal Writing
MBA 650C Leading in Dynamic Organizations
MBA 664E Organizational Development and Change
M BA 670E Training and Development
MBA 677E Development and Future of Management Thought



3
3
3
3
1
2
3
3
3

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN COMMUNICATION MANAGEMENT
(plus relevant prerequisite coursework)

16

Certificate in Information Technology

Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

16

Courses totaling 16 credit hours:

MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry
MPC 636 Multimedia Systems
MPC 639 Web Site Planning and Management
MBA 593E Telecommunications and Integrated Information Systems
MBA 610C Data Analysis for Decision Making
MBA 659E Special Topics in Management Information Systems
MBA 675E Database Management
MBA 694E Business Systems Analysis and Design
MTECH 631 Industry and Market Dynamics in Technology
MTECH 641 Organizations, Technology, and Society



3
1
3
3
2
2 - 3
3
3
3
2
2

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
(plus relevant prerequisite course work)

16

Certificate in Marketing Communication

Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

16

Courses totaling 16 credit hours:

MPC 611 Public Relations Writing and Planning
MPC 620 Organizational Communication
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management
MPC 665 Public Relations Writing for Broadcast
MBA 510E International Marketing
MBA 645C Value Creation and Delivery
MBA 665E Strategic Marketing
MBA 672E Marketing Research
MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing



3
3
3
3
1
3
2
2
3
3

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN MARKETING
(plus relevant prerequisite course work)

16

Certificate in Multimedia

Requirement Description

Credit Hours

I.

Required Courses

16

Six of the following nine courses:

MPC 614 Writing for the Computer Industry
MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing
MPC 636 Multimedia Systems
MPC 637 Web Design and Production
MPC 638 Digital Image Editing
MPC 639 Web Site Planning and Management
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management
MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing



3
3
1
3
3
3
3
3
3

TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN MULTIMEDIA
(plus relevant prerequisite course work)

16