Communication Studies

Chairperson: Tony Osborne
 T. Osborne
Assistant Professors:
C. Bucciferro, A. Corey, E. Davis
Senior Lecturer:
G. Frappier
Lecturers: K. Morehouse, F. Slak

Courses for the Communication Studies major reflect a broad range of subjects that aim to foster the analytical and practical skills needed globally as modern communication platforms advance and diversify.  The Communication Studies curriculum emphasizes proficiency in public speaking, interpersonal communication, and writing.  This stress on eloquence is foundational to Jesuit Education, whose humanistic roots extend from antiquity to the Renaissance and into the present era.  Communication Studies thus reflects multiple philosophical and historical perspectives.  Communication Studies is the major of the future:  it bridges multiple fields while preparing students for a broad range of careers spanning advertising, marketing, journalism, new media, and other creative endeavors.  Communication Studies also prepares students for administrative roles in government, non-profit organizations, and private enterprise, as well as graduate studies in media research, law, journalism, business, education, cultural studies, and other humanities and social sciences.

Research has proven that the most successful people in any profession are exceptional communicators.  Therefore, the Communication Studies major stresses practical skills--grounded in conceptual understanding--to ensure that students are able to express themselves effectively in a variety of mediums.  The mass media, history, popular culture, politics, leadership, rhetoric, and current events provide the essential source material for a wide range of Communication Studies courses, whose content continually evolves to absorb innovative communicative practices and theoretical and scientific advances.

While Communication Studies courses have vast practical applicability, students also receive a firm theoretical base designed to develop their analytical powers and promote an appreciation and understanding of the complexities of the communication process, which, among other things, encompasses the creation of cultural identity through shared values, symbols, and narratives.

Communication Studies sponsors the annual John Quincy Adams oratory contest, a storied Gonzaga University tradition that is now a televised event.  Communication Studies is also home to the University’s nationally successful intercollegiate debate program, which has its own facility, Conway House.

The core curriculum or common body of knowledge of the College of Arts and Sciences consists of 59 to 62 credits which are common to and required of all degree programs in the College: the first 31 credits (of which there is a more complete description in the General Degree Requirements and Procedures section of this catalogue) form the University Core, while the remaining 28 to 31 credits are common to all Arts and Sciences degrees.
Students should attempt to spread the core curriculum over their entire fours years at Gonzaga.

  1. Thought and Expression (7 credits): ENGL 101, SPCO 101, and PHIL 101 (preferably in the same semester).
  2. Philosophy (9 credits): PHIL 201, PHIL 301, and  PHIL  400 level elective.
  3. Religious Studies (9 credits): RELI 100, 200, and 300 levels: one course from each level.
  4. Mathematics (3 credits): one MATH (not CPSC) course on the 100 level or above; NURS 320 is substituted for a MATH course for BSN students; MATH 203 fulfills this requirement only for students who graduate with certification in Elementary Education.
  5. English Literature (3 credits): ENGL 102 or 103H or 105 or 106.
  6. History (6 credits): HIST 101 and either HIST 102 or HIST 112 in their first year. If they are unable to complete all six 100-level HIST credits in their first year, HIST 201 or 202 may be substituted for one 100-level course after the first year.
  7. Fine Arts (3 credits): one course in either VART, MUSC, or THEA from courses approved by Dean of Arts and Sciences.
  8. Laboratory Science (4 credits): one course with laboratory in either BIOL, CHEM, or PHYS.
  9. Mathematics or Natural Science (3 credits): one course in either MATH, CPSC, BIOL, CHEM, PHYS, or ITEC.
  10. Literature (3 credits): one British or American literature course (ENGL 201 - 285).
  11. Social Science (6 credits): CRIM 101, ECON, SOCI, POLS, or PSYC: two courses from these departments.
  12. Foreign Language or Culture (3 credits): one course in any foreign language (classical or modern) or one (foreign culture) course approved by the Dean of Arts and Sciences.  Foreign-language speaking students from foreign cultures who have completed the nine English core credits at Gonzaga prior to their fourth year (last thirty credits) may petition the Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences for a waiver of the foreign language or Culture requirement..
  13. Social Justice (3 credits): One course on Social Justice issues related to experiences of difference (like race, class, gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation), from courses approved by the Dean of Arts & Sciences; (may be combined with other core or major requirements).