Prospective Students

Letter from the Chair

The Department of Communication Studies is a top department at an internationally renowned university that is currently ranked #12 in the world. The Ph.D. in Communication Studies is highly selective, and provides unmatched opportunities for you to develop academically:  we offer five years of support to those admitted, emphasize mentoring and collaboration with faculty, provide additional research and travel support to our students, and offer a host of professional development workshops and events.

Ours is an interdisciplinary program with two major strengths: the social scientific analysis of Mass Media Effects and the humanities-based study of Media, Culture and Society.

What is distinctive about our program is that you receive broad training in both humanities and social science methods and traditions, and we then encourage you to choose the approaches that best suit your areas of interest, and especially promote the use of multi-methodological techniques. The program offers a solid foundation in communication studies while also permitting you to design a highly individualized program of study tailored to fit your needs and interests. The program will provide you with advanced knowledge of the latest research and theory in the field, a solid understanding of the major analytical approaches to communication studies, and opportunities to do original and collaborative research beginning in the very first year of the program. To see if our program is a match for your interests, see our research strengths.

The University of Michigan is a bustling, dynamic place, and Ann Arbor, consistently ranked one of the best places in the country to live, boasts an extraordinary range of cultural, social, and scholarly events and activities. Our graduate students are a lively bunch both on and off campus, and through the program they develop long-lasting friendships and collaborations.

Our world-class faculty share a strong interest in the media's ability to advance or undermine democratic processes and institutions, their role in shaping individual and group identities, their centrality to globalization, their industrial practices, how they are regulated, and their persuasive capabilities.  To see which professors might be the best match for you and your interests, see our faculty page.

Additional information for prospective students interested in our Ph.D. Program in Communication Studies can be found within the program overview.

On behalf of the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Michigan, we look forward to working with you!

Susan Douglas, Chair
Department of Communication Studies