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Students taking group selfie outside on campus.


If you’re fascinated (and sometimes confused) by the way you and your friends interact—on social media, in person, across different technologies and devices—and if you want to know more about how humans tell stories, share news, and try to change each other’s minds, you’ll fit right in as a Communication major at McDaniel.

Degree Types
Major , Minor
Complementary Programs
Distinctive Requirements
Professional Preparation
Real-world Projects

Whether face-to-face or mediated, Communication is the means by which individuals create their identity, interact with other people, and interpret the world around them. Communication professionals look at how individuals interact to create and interpret verbal, nonverbal, and visual meaning.

Real-world Applications

Our media studies program teaches you to:

  • Design messages for specific audiences
  • Understand the legal, historic, economic and cultural roles of mediated institutions
  • Interpret mediated messages of all kinds

Our research program teaches you to:

  • Conduct a social science research study
  • Find and interact with high-quality information

Future Career Paths

Communication majors pursue careers in many fields, including:

  • Media (publishing, television, radio, internet sites, the film industry, advertising, public relations and event planning)
  • Business (sales, customer service, human resources, marketing, lobbying, public relations),
  • Law (mediation),
    Government (public information, conflict negotiation, campaigning)
  • Education (recruitment, alumni affairs, student advising, teaching)

Recently, students from McDaniel’s Communication & Cinema department have found internships or career placements at places like:

  • ASPIDA 360 (marketing)
  • Horizon Health (public relations)
  • Johns Hopkins University (public information)
  • MD Office of Tourism (social networking)
  • News 12 New Jersey
  • Under Armour
  • WBAL-TV (Production assistant)

Distinctive Courses

COM 1102 - Introduction to Communication: Interpersonal

A broad historical and theoretical introduction to the study of human communication in the context of face-to-face and small group interaction. Homework and classroom participation put a strong emphasis on writing and speaking.

CIN 2401 - Audio Production

This lecture/lab is an introduction to the concepts and techniques necessary to record, edit, mix, and master quality audio for cinema, radio, television, and the web. Emphasis on basic audio signal flow; the evolution of audio art and technology; and how dialog, sound effects, ambience, and music serve the narrative process.

This course examines the relationship between pop culture texts, the media used to propagate them and the dominant culture in which both exist. Using critical theoretical tools, students examine media content and pop culture formations. Topics include an historical overview of critical social theory, and the ways identities are formed in and in reaction to popular music, film, and television.

COM 3221 - Gender in Communication

This course examines current research from a critical cultural theoretical perspective on the role gender plays in communication, and how communication works to construct the notions of masculinity and femininity. Considering gender construction particularly in relation to power, we look at, for example, how language helps enshrine ways we talk and think about the sexes, how gendered behaviors like masculine violence and feminine submission become institutionalized, how pop culture and advertising circulate the messages of appropriate gendered behaviors throughout the media, and how cultural institutions like family, schools, sports, religion and the workplace reinforce gendered communication.

Senior Capstone

Sharina Taveras-Lopez, a Communication and Spanish major from Providence, R.I., studied the relationship and communication between children and their divorced parents for her capstone, “Stop the arguments, I want happiness!”

Communication Program Requirements

Special Opportunities

Dakota standing in WBAL-TV station


The department is closely linked to McD-TV, the campus television station, and WMCR, the campus radio station. For those interested in media and broadcasting, both venues give you the opportunity to gain experience and enhance your skills.

The McDaniel Commitment in Action

The McDaniel Commitment—a series of opportunities guaranteed to all students—provides enhanced mentoring and coaching, and ensures every undergraduate student completes at least two meaningful experiential learning opportunities.

Four people stand on the Baltimore Ravens stadium end zone.

With NFL photography, Communication major develops her career Communication major in the field

For the 2023-24 football season, senior Grayson Jons captured the action at Baltimore Ravens home games as a live content correspondent for the National Football League (NFL) — and some of her work has gone viral. The Communication major and Marketing minor has seamlessly paired her academics with her freelance photography during her time on the Hill.

Portrait of Dr. Erin Watley

Faculty Spotlight Erin Watley Professor

"Now, my work in intercultural communication has shown me that you cannot fast forward to the 'let's hold hands and sing kumbaya' cultural celebration until you deal with the tough parts. And learning to understand and communicate about culture in connection to power, privilege, and systems of oppression is HARD. In my classes we get into the hard stuff with culture. We survive. Then we tell others what we did... I also use media and pop culture along the way to prove how relevant and necessary these skills are."

Meet Two Green Terrors

Alumna Lauren Avery '14 throwing the first pitch at an Orioles game.

Impressive Outcomes Lauren Avery ’14 Post-Graduation Home Run

Communication major Lauren Avery ’14 knows how to "go big or go home" when it comes to marketing, having worked along the East Coast for large events and with brands like Pepsi and the Baltimore Orioles ever since she graduated from McDaniel.

Headshot of Atticus Rice

Reflections from a then-senior Atticus Rice '19 Getting Involved on Campus

Atticus Rice crossed the country from Portland, Oregon, to major in Communication and Political Science with a specialization in American Politics and Law. As co-editor-in-chief of the McDaniel Free Press, he worked with a team to increase the number of print issues and overhaul organizational policies and structure to help achieve the goal of delivering the news the McDaniel community deserves to know.