Apr 24, 2024  
2012-2013 Catalog 
2012-2013 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Communication, BA

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Department of Communication, College of Humanities and Social Sciences

50 credits (plus minor)


Students contemplating a major in communication are encouraged to register as pre-majors with the communication department in Communication Facility 203.

Students who transfer to Western after completing an AA at a community college can enroll in upper-division communication classes as long as they meet the stated prerequisites. Students who enter Western as freshmen will enroll in required GUR classes and develop a GPA that is suitable to communication department majors.

Admission and Declaration Process

Students wishing to declare a major in communication must have completed at least 60  credits with a GPA of 2.5 or above. Students must submit a portfolio to the department (see below) in order to be admitted through a competitive selection process.

Admission to the major will, in part, be determined by the number of applicants and their qualifications in any given quarter. Cumulative grade point average (GPA) will be one of the major criteria for admission. In most quarters, the average GPA of successful applications is above 3.0. Other factors considered by faculty when selecting communication majors are writing samples, work and service experiences with diverse populations, reference letters, and seniority at WWU.

Before applying to become a Communication major, students must:

Once the above courses have been completed, students can submit a portfolio of their work on or before Monday of the fourth week of fall, winter and spring quarters. The faculty will then review the portfolios and announce the names of successful applicants before the end of each quarter. Students are allowed to make a maximum of two application attempts.

The portfolio will include the following items:

  • Transcripts of all college work completed to date
  • A letter of intent to major in communication
  • A résumé including course of study, work experience, recreational and avocational activities, internships, awards and honors, and public service activities
  • Two samples of the student’s collegiate writing assignments including best research paper or class project
  • Three letters of recommendation from employers, teachers, or supervisors
  • A proposed program of study which includes a statement indicating a chosen minor or a self-designed minor. (A self-designed minor is comprised of at least 25 credits and is acceptable only when the student has a clear educational goal that cannot be met within existing minors on campus. Requests to pursue a self-designed minor must include a written statement prepared by the student indicating the rationale for the self-designed minor and the courses selected.) 

Once admitted, communication majors whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.5 risk losing their major status. They will be warned of the risk in their first quarter below 2.5 and may be dropped from the major if their cumulative GPA is not 2.5 or higher in the subsequent quarter. 

Grade Requirements

A grade of C- or better is required for a student’s major or minor courses, and supporting courses for majors and minors.


Departmental Honors

A communication major who wishes to graduate with honors in communication must maintain a GPA of 3.5 in upper-division communication courses and successfully complete Com 492, Senior Thesis, under the direction of a faculty advisor. In addition, the student must provide evidence of excellence and extensive participation (from 2 to 6 quarters) in research, forensics, intercultural/international, or service activities, under advisement. A detailed list of courses and activities from which a student may earn departmental honors will be available from faculty advisors.

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