Welcome to the Communication Studies Department at Cal Poly, home to more than 200 student majors and minors.
The modern discipline of Communication Studies can be traced to the academies of ancient Athens, where the study of discourse as a means of sharing information and gaining influence formed the core of the academic curriculum. Understanding the process of human communication is no less important in the Information Age than it was in the Golden Age of Greece and Rome. Contemporary courses in Communication Studies focus on the theory and practice of human communication in a variety of contexts: interpersonal, intercultural, instructional, organizational, political, in dyads, in small groups, and in the mass media.
The general mission of the Communication Studies degree program is to facilitate students in developing their ability to reason critically, to speak and write effectively, and to understand and appreciate the influences of culture upon their lives. The discipline specific mission of the curriculum is to enhance understanding of the nature, processes and effects of human communication. Multi-dimensional in its approach, the discipline uses the rich resources of both the humanities and the social sciences in exploring the human capacity for speech - when, where, why, how, and with what effect people interact through language and extra-linguistic symbols - and focuses on the theory and practice of human communication in a variety of contexts: interpersonal, intercultural, instructional, organizational, political, in dyads, in small groups, and in the mass media. The Communication Studies major leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree that prepares students for graduate work or careers in a wide variety of occupations that place a premium on excellent communication skills. The Communication Studies minor is designed to complement other majors in the university through a series of required and elective courses addressing various facets of human communication.