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Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Program in Communication and Information Studies

Piscataway, NJ


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Rutgers University-New Brunswick


Master of Communication and Media (MCM)

Rutgers University offers a Master of Communication and Media (MCM) program that prepares students for careers in a wide range of areas such as leadership and management, corporate communication, communication campaigns, communication research, journalism, digital media, organizational communication, strategic communication, public relations, marketing, advertising, non-profit communication, social media, corporate social responsibility, and corporate communication. It also prepares them for doctoral-level study.

The program attracts students with varied professional, educational, and cultural backgrounds. This gives them the opportunity to work within a diverse community that thrives in a collaborative learning environment.

Its 36-credit curriculum was designed with maximum flexibility to accommodate the needs of working professionals. Students can take 3 to 12 credits of courses per semester, which allows them to complete the program at their own pace. They can choose one of eight specializations or select courses from various specializations to focus on multiple areas of interest. They have the option of earning their degrees on a full-time or part-time basis, and they can complete courses on the weekends as well as on-campus, online, and in a blended format. Most MCM students work full time and MCM classes are at night or online to accommodate working schedules. The MCM degree can be earned in as fast as 15 months.

MCM Degree Specializations

Communication and Media Studies is a general specialization in which students take a self-designed course of study that draws across any MCM specialization as well as courses in other areas of the School of Communication and Information (SC&I). Courses in organizational communication, mediated communication, health communication, social interaction, knowledge management, and media studies are offered throughout the year. Many of these courses are cross-listed with the school’s Ph.D. program or Master of Information program.

Strategic Organizational Communication

The Strategic Organizational Communication specialization emphasizes theory-informed, research-based study of organizational process, structure, and interaction, as well as use of new communication technologies in organizational and societal contexts. Courses examine organizations in a variety of contexts including businesses, nonprofits, civil society, and government. This specialization may be especially appealing for those who have goals for careers in organizational leadership, corporate communication, advocacy, administration and/or management, training and development, consulting, change management, stakeholder relationship management, and social media management.

Electives in this specialization include:

- Organizational Leadership
- Organizational Decision-Making
- Interorganizational Relationships
- Organizational Change
- Organizational Training & Development
- Persuasion and Advocacy
- Collaboration and Conflict
- Global Organizations
- Virtual Organizing
- Work & Technology
- Knowledge Management Information Policy
- Competitive Intelligence
- Social Media

Digital Media (Available Fully Online)

The Digital Media specialization is intended for journalists and other media or communication specialists who wish to retool and gain understanding of 21st century media. This includes study of grassroots reporting and advocacy.  The specialization will ensure students are conversant in digital video capture, editing, and production as well as social media management. This specialization is completely online, although face-to-face or online electives in other specializations are available to these students.

Electives in this specialization include:

- New Media Law and Policy
- Critiquing Marketing Communications
- Digital Journalism
- Digital Advocacy and Persuasion
- Globalization
- Media and Social Change
- Digital media production and interface design (among other electives being developed).

Health Communication

The Health Communication specialization is intended for students who wish to specialize in various contexts related to community wellness and health interaction such as public health communication; facilitated provider-patient communication; health campaigns and advocacy; and community health and wellness.

Electives in this specialization include:

- Persuasion and Advocacy
- e-Public Health
- Community-Based Organizing
- Interpersonal Health
- Health Campaigns
- Mediated Health Communication
- Health Informatics
- Social Informatics
- Records Management

Students who have interests in health organizations may wish to combine study in this specialization with study in the Strategic Organizational Communication specialization.

Communication And Media Research

The Communication and Media Research specialization is intended for students who wish to take a more research-oriented course of study. It is also designed for those students who may wish to pursue a Ph.D. program after completing the MCM degree. These students have somewhat different requirements (9 credits of core; 3 credits of research practicum; 3 credits of teaching internship; 21 credits of electives and also a zero-credit Colloquium requirement). In addition to coursework, these students will be involved in empirical research with a faculty member; assist in teaching a course; and focus their study and capstone project with a research orientation.

Leadership Communication (Available Fully Online)

The Leadership Communication specialization emphasizes theory-informed, research-based study of the communication demands on leaders in this fast paced, complex organizational environment. We explore the competencies needed to be an effective communicator in all three main modalities:  one to one, one to many and various ‘e’ forms of communication. This specialization may be especially appealing for those who have goals for careers in organizational leadership, want to improve their personal leadership communication skills or add to their professional leadership/management credentials.

Electives in this specialization include:

- Organizational Leadership
- Inter-organizational Relationships and Stakeholder Communication
- Organizational Assessment
- Organizational Cultures and Diversity
- Dynamics of Global Organizations
- Organizational Change
- Effective Presentations
- Transmedia Storytelling

Public Relations (Available Fully Online)

This Public Relations specialization is designed for those public relations professionals to enhance their professional credentials or those who wish to enter this fast growing and dynamic profession. We explore the competencies needed to be an effective public relations practitioner in this dynamic, complex and social-driven environment. We offer you both the emerging theories of the practice of public relations as well as the skills you need to have to compete successfully in this profession. Many of our courses are taught by highly experienced senior public relations practitioners.

Electives in this specialization include:

- Public Relations Management
- Public Relations Strategy
- Public Relations Effectiveness and Analytics
- Media Ethics
- Social Media
- Reputation Management
- Digital Journalism
- Advanced Communication Analysis (PR Cases and Practice)

Organizations and Social Impact

The Organizations and Social Impact specialization is designed for those students interested in the dynamic area of corporate social responsibility. Changing beliefs about the role of business in   society in the past thirty years have increased the pressure on organizations to define how it addresses higher purposes beyond financial gain. The success of an organization depends on the quality of its relationships with different stakeholders including NGOs and governments. More specifically, an organization develops its activities through a stakeholder network, which affects and is affected by the organization’s behavior.

Therefore, the concepts of sustainability, organizational purpose and corporate social responsibility (CSR) are becoming more and more crucial. The specialization aims at defining CSR and how organizations create social impact. 

Electives in this specialization include:

- Communication and Society
- Redefining the Role of Business in Society
- Interorganizational Relationships and Stakeholder Communication
- Persuasion and Advocacy
- Communication Ethics
- Globalization, Media and Social Change
- Creating Social Impact: How organizations define their role in Society

GRE Waiver

As a progressive institution that values academic achievement, Rutgers University grants GRE waivers to applicants that meet one or more of the following requirements:

- Significant related full-time work experience (5+ years) that includes extensive writing
- A graduate degree in a field of social science or arts and sciences or other field that demands strong analytic skills and excellent writing 
- A cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.5

Faculty Members

Faculty members in the School of Communication and Information are excellent teachers, researchers, and practitioners. They emphasize original research and cutting-edge theory. They also focus on the knowledge and skills necessary to interpret and manage the complex communication, information, and media processes in today's digital world.

Richard Dool, DMgt is one of the school's distinguished faculty members. He's a teaching professor and the director of the MCM program. He has been teaching and publishing in the areas of leadership communication and organizational renewal and transformations since 2003. He's also a former Chief Executive Officer and Global Executive Leader.

Rutgers University

Established in 1766, Rutgers University receives top rankings for excellence in teaching, research, and service. In fact, "U.S. News & World Report" ranked Rutgers among the top 25 public universities in the nation and designated it one of the Best 100 Global Universities. ranked it within the top 150 universities in the world. Money Magazine ranked in the in Top 100 for Most Affordable Tuition. Also, ranked #5 for Best Universities for Veterans.

Rutgers University's main campus is located in New Brunswick, New Jersey in the northeastern region of the United States. It also has campuses in Newark and Camden as well as satellite locations throughout New Jersey and around the world.

Degrees & Awards

Degrees Offered

Degree Concentration Sub-concentration
Master of Communication and Information Studies (MCIS)

Degrees Awarded

Degree Number Awarded
Master's Degrees 16

Earning Your Degree

Part-time study available? Yes
Evening/weekend programs available? No
Distance learning programs available? No


Acceptance Rate



Application Fee - Domestic
applications accepted?
Applications processed
on a rolling basis?

Application Deadlines

Type Domestic International Priority date
Fall deadline February 1st February 1st Yes
Spring deadline September 15th September 15th No

Entrance Requirements

Exam Details
Master's Degree Exam GRE General Test

International Students

Exam Details
TOEFL: Required

Tuition & Fees

Calculator icon

Financial Support

Financial award applicants must submit: FAFSA
Application deadlines for financial awards February 1
Types of financial support available Fellowships
Institutionally-sponsored Loans

Student Body

Total Graduate Students
International Breakout (representing other countries)
Out-of-state students


Hispanic/Latino 2.56%
Black or African American 5.13%
White or Caucasian 71%
American Indian or Alaska Native Not Reported
Asian 7.69%
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander Not Reported
Two or more races Not Reported
Unknown 2.56%


Male (33%)
Female (66%)


Total faculty
Full-time - 23
Part-time - 0
Male (11)
Female (12)


Focus of faculty research: Communication processes and systems, information process and systems, human information and communication behavior
Externally sponsored research expenditures last year: 0

Location & Contact

Address 65 Davidson Road
Room 202
Piscataway, NJ  08854-8097
United States
Contact Dr. Laurie Lewis
Phone: 732-445-4636