Undergraduate Program

The communication major prepares you for a variety of career opportunities as well as preparing you for graduate work. To become a communication major, you must be a student in good standing at WIU. This means that you need a grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or higher to declare a major in Communication.

Dr. Jorgensen

As a Communication Major you must complete:

  • WIU's General Education requirements
  • 42 credit hours of required and elective Communication courses
  • An approved minor.

Core Courses

There are five required core courses:

  • COMM 130, Introduction to Communication
  • COMM 247, Argumentation and Debate
  • COMM 309, Communication Theory
  • COMM 310, Qualitative Research in Communication
  • COMM 311, Research Design in Communication

Additionally, you will need to select two sequences of study from rhetoric, persuasion, interpersonal communication, and organizational communication for your additional required communication courses. (If you are majoring in Communication in the Quad Cities, you will only be able to select the interpersonal communication and organizational communication sequences.) Please consult with Jennifer Grimm, the Communication Academic Advisor, who will help you plan your communication major program of study.

Communication Sequences


The rhetoric sequence focuses on understanding the situation, the audience, and the speaker and how they influence persuasive messages. Specific areas of study in the rhetoric sequence are political style, the rhetoric of social and political movements, and the rhetorical discourse and controversies that occur in the public sphere.

Required courses are:

  • COMM 312 Rhetorical Theory and Criticism
  • COMM 441 Rhetorical Processes in Politics


The persuasion sequence focuses on the theory behind reinforcing, developing, and changing the attitudes and opinions of people. Topics such as advertising campaigns, political campaigns, and social movements are studied in this sequence’s courses.

Required courses are:

  • COMM 356 Introduction to Persuasion
  • COMM 456 Persuasive Campaigns

Interpersonal Communication

The interpersonal communication sequence focuses on the communication patterns used to initiate, maintain, escalate, de-escalate, and dissolve personal and professional relationships. The individual communication strategies that people use in relationships are of particular interest in this sequence.

Required courses are:

  • COMM 344 Interpersonal Communication
  • COMM 410 Theory and Methodology in Interpersonal Communication

Organizational Communication

The organizational communication sequence focuses on the form, structure, and use of communication in groups and organizational settings. Topics such as conflict management, superior and subordinate communication, and the establishment and maintenance of organizational culture are studied in this sequence’s courses.

Required courses are:

  • COMM 343 Organizational Communicationn
  • COMM 413 Advanced Organizational Communication

Recommended Minors

Selecting a minor usually depends on your interests and career goals. Currently, WIU communication students have selected minors in over 35 different departments that include Spanish, French, English, Journalism, Broadcasting, History, Sociology, Psychology, Political Science, Marketing, Women Studies, African American Studies, just to name a few. Please consult with Jennifer Grimm, the Communication Academic Advisor, who is knowledgeable of all of the  available minors and their specific requirements.

Course Descriptions

For more information on the Communication program and course descriptions, see the WIU Undergraduate Course Catalog.