2010 - 2011 Master of Professional Communication (MPC)

Objectives | Admission | Program Requirements | Academic Probation and Suspension Policy | Graduation Requirements | MPC Course Overview | Degree Requirements | Certificates | Course Descriptions

Faculty: Fred Fogo, Scott Gust, James Hedges, Helen Hodgson (Program Director), Christine Seifert, Rulon Wood, 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 the ethical and social responsibilities of professional communicators.
  • To improve oral and written communication skills.
  • To develop a deeper appreciation for effective visual design, and to enhance abilities to apply design principles to communication pieces.

Objectives

The Master of Professional Communication (MPC) degree program is designed to prepare students as writers and communication experts for positions in business, industry, government, nonprofits, and other organizations where communication skills are essential. Program participants have an opportunity to enhance their professional communication skills without interrupting their careers. People with undergraduate degrees in a variety of areas can develop important communication skills that can be applied to their current career path or that can prepare them for new careers. Some students will decide to pursue doctoral degrees after completing the MPC program.

Building upon a core that provides a conceptual and historical framework in communication ethics, visual communication, rhetoric, traditional and online writing, editing, web design, and oral presentation, the MPC program offers 11 two-course sequences that focus on particular aspects of communication. These sequences are grouped into four specialty areas--professional writing, communication and culture, multimedia and management, and strategic communication--and students may elect sequences in one or two of the specialty areas to develop a specialization.

Admission to the Program

See the Admission to the College section for admission requirements.

Program Requirements for the MPC Degree

Students are required to take a total of 40 credit hours. 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 31 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

See the Grading and Academic Standards section for graduate academic probation and suspension policies.

Appeals for Readmission

See the Grading and Academic Standards section for information on appeals for 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 clients in the community. Another possibility is the participation of speakers and communication practitioners from the local community in classroom situations.

Master of Professional Communication Courses

MPC 600 Communication Ethics and the Mass Media (3)
MPC 601 Visual Communication (3)
MPC 602 Rhetorical Theory and Practice (3)
MPC 603 Advanced Rhetorical Theory and Practice (3)
MPC 605 Communication Theory (3)
MPC 609 Basic Editing Principles (3)
MPC 610 Professional and Technical Writing (3)
MPC 615 Advanced Professional and Technical Writing (3)
MPC 616 Writing for Popular Publications (3)
MPC 617 Writing for Peer-Reviewed Journals (3)
MPC 618 Advanced Professional Editing (3)
MPC 619 Grant Research and Writing (3)
MPC 620 Organizational Communication (3)
MPC 621 Leadership Communication (3)
MPC 622 Intercultural Communication (3)
MPC 623 International Communication (3)
MPC 633 Writing for New Media (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 Advanced Website Design (3)
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation (3)
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management (3)
MPC 643 Public Relations Writing and Planning (3)
MPC 644 Integrated Marketing Communication (3)
MPC 645 International Public Relations (3)
MPC 646 Health Communication (3)
MPC 652 Effective Presentations (3)
MPC 656 Communication Law (3)
MPC 660 Publication Design (1)
MPC 661 Introduction to 2D Computer Illustration (1)
MPC 662 Introduction to Web Multimedia Production (1)
MPC 664 Field Project Proposal Writing (1)
MPC 665 Public Relations Writing for Broadcast (1)
MPC 666 Business Aspects of Freelance Writing and Editing (1)
MPC 668 Directed Studies (1-4)
MPC 670 Managing Issues and Crises in the Organization (1)
MPC 674 Electronic Information Retrieval (1)
MPC 675 Writing Public Science (1)
MPC 680 Special Topics in Professional Writing (1-3)
MPC 681 Special Topics in Communication and Culture (1-3)
MPC 682 Special Topics in Multimedia and Management (1-3)
MPC 683 Special Topics in Strategic Communication (1-3)
MPC 690 Field Project (3)
MPC 699 Continuing Registration (0)

Approved MBA Elective Courses

MBA 510E International Marketing (3)
MBA 610C Data Analysis for Decision Making (2)
MBA 645C Value Creation and Delivery (2)
MBA 650C Leading 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 673E Marketing Mistakes and Strategic Successes (2)
MBA 674E Special Topics in Marketing (3)
MBA 674EG Marketing of Innovative Products (2)
MBA 677E Development and Future of Management Thought (3)
MTECH 631 Industry and Market Dynamics in Technology (2)
MTECH 641 Organizations, Technology, and Society (2)

Degree Requirements

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 25
  MPC 600 Communication Ethics and the Mass Media
MPC 601 Visual Communication
MPC 602 Rhetorical Theory and Practice
MPC 609 Basic Editing Principles
MPC 610 Professional and Technical Writing
MPC 637 Web Design and Production
MPC 652 Effective Presentations
MPC 664 Field Project Proposal Writing
MPC 690 Field Project
3
3
3
3
3
3
3
1
3
II. Sequences 12
 

Choose four courses from one of the following sequences or two courses from two of the following sequences:

Professional Writing Sequence

Technical Writing

MPC 615 Advanced Professional and Technical Writing (3)
MPC 618 Advanced Professional Editing (3)
Writing
MPC 616 Writing for Popular Publications (3)
MPC 617 Writing for Peer-Reviewed Journals (3)
Specialized Writing
MPC 619 Grant Research and Writing (3)
MPC 680 Special Topics in Professional Writing (3)
.

Communication and Culture Sequence

Persuasion and Argumentation

MPC 603 Advanced Rhetorical Theory and Practice (3)
MPC 605 Communication Theory (3)
Organizational Communication
MPC 620 Organizational Communication (3)
MPC 621 Leadership Communication (3)
Diversity Communication
MPC 622 Intercultural Communication (3)
MPC 623 International Communication (3)
.

Multimedia and Management Sequence

Graphic Design
MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing (3)
MPC 638 Digital Image Editing (3)
New Media

MPC 633 Writing for New Media (3)
MPC 639 Advanced Web Site Design (3)
Project Management

MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation (3)
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management (3)
.

Strategic Communication Sequence

Public Relations

MPC 643 Public Relations Writing and Planning (3)
MPC 644 Integrated Marketing Communication (3)
Specialized Public Relations

MPC 645 International Public Relations (3)
MPC 646 Health Communication (3)
Project Management
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation (3)
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management (3)


III. Electives 3
  Additional approved courses 3
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE MPC DEGREE 40

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 Professional Writing

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 18
  MPC 615 Advanced Professional and Technical Writing
MPC 616 Writing for Popular Publications
MPC 617 Writing for Peer-Reviewed Journals
MPC 618 Advanced Professional Editing
MPC 619 Grant Research and Writing
MPC 680 Special Topics in Professional Writing
3
3
3
3
3
3
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN PROFESSIONAL WRITING 18
Plus relevant prerequisite coursework

Certificate in Communication and Culture

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 18
  MPC 603 Advanced Rhetorical Theory and Practice
MPC 605 Communication Theory
MPC 620 Organizational Communication
MPC 621 Leadership Communication
MPC 622 Intercultural Communication
MPC 623 International Communication
3
3
3
3
3
3
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE 18
Plus relevant prerequisite coursework

Certificate in Multimedia and Managment

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 18
  MPC 633 Writing for New Media
MPC 635 Design Principles and Desktop Publishing
MPC 638 Digital Image Editing
MPC 639 Advanced Web Design
MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management
3
3
3
3
3
3
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN MULTIMEDIA AND MANAGEMENT 18
Plus relevant prerequisite coursework

Certificate in Strategic Communication

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 18
  MPC 640 Communication Measurement and Evaluation
MPC 642 Project Planning and Management
MPC 643 Public Relations Writing and Planning
MPC 644 Integrated Marketing Communication
MPC 645 International Public Relations
MPC 646 Health Communication
3
3
3
3
3
3
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE CERTIFICATE IN STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION 18
Plus relevant prerequisite coursework