Program Overview

Why an online master’s in communication technology?

The way we communicate is changing rapidly. For those working in communication careers, embracing technology — and technological change — is imperative for career success. Point Park University is offering students the blend of theory and practice that they need to succeed in the communication fields of today and tomorrow with the online Master of Arts in Communication Technology degree. Named one of the 2017 Most Affordable Online Colleges for a Master’s in Communications, Point Park’s online master’s in communication technology program offers a nurturing community of peers and professionals where students can prepare for tomorrow’s workforce.

Curriculum Overview

Focused on career preparedness, the online master’s in communication technology curriculum fosters relevant skills in this evolving field, including multimedia, graphic design, social media, integrated marketing and search engine optimization. Each of our courses is developed and taught by professionals with years of industry expertise to provide students with real-world knowledge and experience that they can easily apply to the workplace. Our supportive environment is designed to help working students succeed, with personal attention and flexible classes.

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  • Next Start Date:January 7, 2018
  • Est. Program Length:2-3 Years
  • Credit Hours:36 Hours
  • Course Length:8 Weeks
  • Cost Per Credit:$595
 

Available Concentrations

Applied Practices

With an emphasis on the role and impact of technology in our society, the applied practices concentration offers students training in visual communication, web publishing and global communication. This program is ideal for those interested in a Ph.D. program, but still maintains career-focused courses.

Social Media

Social media has fundamentally altered the communication field, and this concentration seeks to train students to take advantage of it. With courses in analytics, strategic communication and campaign planning, you will be prepared to build a career in this growing area.

Core Courses (12 credit hours)
  • JOUR 515 – Communication Theory
  • JOUR 518 – Communication Law & Regulation
  • JOUR 519 – Media Ethics & Responsibilities
  • JOUR 593 – Applied Mass Communication Research Methods
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Course Description
This course surveys contemporary theories in the field of communication including theories of mass communication, media and society, media content, new media, social construction of technology, and the impact of media on audiences. Theories and models originating both in the social sciences and the humanities are examined.
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Course Description
Study of contemporary and classic cases related to state and federal law of freedom of the press and freedom of speech. Problems caused by efforts by government to control mass media and the freedom of government/public information also are addressed. Not open to the student with credit in JOUR 418. This course may be waived based on previous professional experience and/or academic work. Any waived course must be replaced by elective credits.
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Course Description
Students examine mass communication professionals’ characteristics and work environments. Students also examine ethical issues presented in the modern media, including their historical contexts and practical ramifications. The course compares and contrasts ethical standards and systems with professional processes and practices, and legal principles. Not open to the student with credit in JOUR 412. This course may be waived based on previous professional experience and/or academic work. Any waived course must be replaced by elective credits.
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Course Description
Analysis and application of social scientific research methods used by academic researchers and/or in industry and professional research, especially surveys, polls, content and textual analysis, controlled experiments, focus groups, in-depth interviews, case studies, ethnography, and cultural/critical studies. Students also learn the structure, purpose, and philosophy of mass communication theory, and tailor homework assignments and term papers to their own professional/industry interests.
Applied Practices Concentration (12 credit hours)
    Choose two of the following courses:
  • JOUR 511 – Visual Communication Technology
  • JOUR 513 – Social Media
  • JOUR 516 – Technology Mediated Comm
  • JOUR 517 – Global Communication
  • JOUR 545 – Communication, Technology & Culture
  • Choose two of the following courses:
  • PHOT 501 Digital Photo Editing
  • JOUR 529 Video Production and Editing
  • JOUR 507 Desktop/Electronic Publishing
  • JOUR 550 Web Publishing and Editing
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Course Description
Application of visual communication theories to the analysis, interpretation, and critical assessment of visual messages. Examines the implications of various means of creating, manipulating, and disseminating visual messages. Course topics include but are not limited to visual language, semiotics, visual rhetoric, visual ethics, and visualization strategies for professional communicators. Enables students to develop a range of visual communication competencies.
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Course Description
This course will provide students the conceptual and technical understanding of the power and philosophy of social media. The course will specifically focus on how social media is changing media, business, journalism and government in fundamental ways. Upon completion of this course, students will have practical knowledge in the use of social media tools and building and maintaining an online community as well as a solid foundation in writing and reporting for social media. Dual listed with JOUR 306.
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Course Description
The information and communication technologies revolution generates a flow of global communications 139 that transcend national boundaries. This course focuses on the emergence and growth of communication channels and networks that operate on a global scale. Emphasis is placed on the opportunities for human communication brought by globalization, such as opening new communicative spaces, increasing social interconnectedness, adding platforms for participation, and challenges associated with the global – local divides. Enables students to improve their ability to communicate and use technology effectively and appropriately in an increasingly globalized world.
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Course Description
Examination of technology mediated communication with special attention to the role of communication technology in diverse settings ranging from interpersonal to group communication, organizational communication and business communication. Emphasis is placed on strategies for communication problem solving in mediated contexts.
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Course Description
This course is for students who wish to attain a comprehensive vision of communication and broaden their perspectives across the traditional fields. It explores the intersection of communication, technology and culture with a focus on six major areas: information, networking, socialization, identity, entertainment, and globalization. Covers issues such as technological determinism, social shaping of communication technologies, identity formation, cultural transnationalization and globalization.
Course Description
Students will learn to use electronic photo and graphics editing tools such as a slide and negative scanner and industry standard software such as Photoshop. As the photojournalists move out of the darkroom and into the electronic newsroom, these skills will be increasingly vital to their careers. Not open to the student with credit in PHOT 350.
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Course Description
Intermediate field video pre-production, production and post-production concepts and techniques are developed and applied. Students combine fundamentals of all three phases of the production process into a unified system of video planning, creation, construction, and feedback. Prerequisite: JOUR 528 or permission.
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Course Description
Using Macintosh and PCs for desktop publishing. Emphasis on technical skills, design and creativity in producing professional publications. Beginning skills taught, advancing to projects involving newsletters, newspaper and magazine pages, advertisements and brochures, as time permits. Not available to the student with credit in JOUR 407.
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Course Description
This course will provide technical background for those students in the Digital Media field. Students will incorporate Web design theory and technical skills to create a series of Web products, including graphics, animations, and Web pages. Students will learn the current practices of Web publishing, which may include HTML, Flash, PhP coding, and the use of Content Management Systems. Upon completion of this class, students will have a variety of Web design pieces to add to their portfolios.
Social Media Concentration (12 credit hours)
  • JOUR 513 – Social Media
  • JOUR 522 – Social Media Crisis & Strategic Communications
  • JOUR 564 – Social Media Analytics & SEO
  • JOUR 573 – Social Media Campaigns
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Course Description
This course will provide students the conceptual and technical understanding of the power and philosophy of social media. The course will specifically focus on how social media is changing media, business, journalism and government in fundamental ways. Upon completion of this course, students will have practical knowledge in the use of social media tools and building and maintaining an online community as well as a solid foundation in writing and reporting for social media.
×
Course Description
This course will provide students the conceptual and technical understanding of the power and philosophy of social media. The course will specifically focus on how social media is changing media, business, journalism and government in fundamental ways. Upon completion of this course, students will have practical knowledge in the use of social media tools and building and maintaining an online community as well as a solid foundation in writing and reporting for social media.
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Course Description
This course will teach students how to prove return on investment (ROI) to clients by understanding and evaluating analytics. In addition, students will learn search engine optimization best practices to further increase a brand’s social media ROI. Students will have a deeper understanding of the principles and how to measure and prove the ROI of social media and a working knowledge of various industry-standard analytics tools. Students will write social media reports for clients based on ROI and analytics results.
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Course Description
Students will research, write and implement advanced social media concepts including analytics, advertising, activism, influencers and budgets. Social media for journalists will be emphasized. Students will either work directly with business or nonprofit clients to plan and execute a social media campaign or publish an advanced social media journalism project.
Electives (6 credit hours)
    Choose two of the following courses:
  • JOUR 503 – Writing & Editing in the Journalistic Style
  • JOUR 520 – Print Graphics
  • JOUR 530 – Creativity & Managing Creative People
  • JOUR 536 – Advertising and PR Graphics
  • JOUR 538 – Integrated Marketing Communications
  • JOUR 540 – Freelance Communications and Consulting
  • JOUR 551 – Graduate Internship I
  • JOUR 595 – Special Topics (by approval)
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Course Description
A laboratory course that combines techniques of journalistic writing and editing. This is for the graduate student who has earned a bachelor’s degree in a discipline other than journalism or those required to, or wishing to polish their skills in writing and editing on a professional level. Graduate students who have professional experience, undergraduate credit for or pass departmental examinations in journalistic writing and editing may be granted a waiver for the course.
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Course Description
This course provide students with advanced planning, design and production techniques for creating and enhancing persuasive editorial design. Students will use industry standard software combined with solid theory in targeting and reaching audiences. Students will conceive and create designs for promotional campaigns, including newsletters, brochures, magazine spreads and marketing collateral. Prerequisite: JOUR 307
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Course Description
Explores students’ own creative abilities. Includes exercises to increase creativity; examines the creative process and how it works; and explores various techniques for managers or supervisors of creative people in advertising and PR work.
Course Description
This course provides students with advanced planning, design and production techniques for creating and enhancing persuasive communications. Students will use industry standard software, combined with solid theory in targeting and reaching audiences through creative and persuasive messages. Students will conceive and create and apply designs including logos, stationary systems and graphic standards for a variety of organizations. Prerequisites: JOUR 307
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Course Description
The students will study marketing theory, case studies, specific applications to communications programs, and they will develop a complete marketing communications plan for a client.
Course Description
This course provides fundamental instruction in the basics of operating as an independent communications consultant or freelance journalist. This course is appropriate for students interested in starting a communications consultancy and/or those interested in pursuing freelance writing or editing opportunities while working full time. Topics will include: developing a communications business, research, planning, marketing and networking for success, and will be related to current issues, trends and employment opportunities.
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Course Description
Student must have completed 15 credit hours toward the degree and prerequisite courses or practical experience for eligibility. A minimum of an average of 15 hours a week (a total of at least 225 hours) must be 142 worked in a media-related position. Regular reports and periodic conferences with the instructor are required, as well as a final report. A total of six credits in internships may be earned toward the degree. Other specific criteria are published and applicable.
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Course Description
Courses are offered in specialized topics including branding, government lobbying, international advertising, media relations, history of public relations and advertising, high school journalism, alternative and minority media, community and citizen journalism, and others. Students may elect to take several JOUR 595 courses as long as the topics differ.
Thesis OR Professional Track Requirement (6 credit hours)
    Thesis Track
  • JOUR 597 – Thesis I
  • JOUR 598 – Thesis II
  • Professional Track
    Choose two of the following courses:
  • JOUR 591 Directed Readings
  • JOUR 592 Publication Project
  • JOUR 594 Directed Research
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Course Description
The student works with a faculty committee of three on a topic and research for a major paper that will require two terms for completion. A proposal and committee chair must be approved before registration. Development of a bibliographic essay, outline, and research method(s) are emphasized in the first semester. Writing a fully documented original thesis of not less than 90 pages using the American Psychological Association’s (APA) style is the goal for the second term. In order to participate in graduation ceremonies in the Spring, Thesis I must be completed by April. For the diploma to be dated that year, Thesis II must be completed before the last day of the following term. JOUR 597 and JOUR 598 may be Pass (“P”), Fail (“F”), or Incomplete (“I”) depending on progress in Thesis. Student with Incomplete (“I”) in JOUR 598 must continue work by enrolling in JOUR 599 for one regular academic term only. Prerequisite for JOUR 597:JOUR 593.
×
Course Description
Application of visual communication theories to the analysis, interpretation, and critical assessment of visual messages. Examines the implications of various means of creating, manipulating, and disseminating visual messages. Course topics include but are not limited to visual language, semiotics, visual rhetoric, visual ethics, and visualization strategies for professional communicators. Enables students to develop a range of visual communication competencies.
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Course Description
The student will read, summarize, and critique six selected books, at least four of which must be scholarly, in a significant area of mass communication not otherwise covered in the curriculum, then synthesize them into a major paper comparing and contrasting them in multiple ways. A faculty member must oversee the project, a proposal for which must be approved by that faculty member and the program director. Final paper’s text must be at least 20 pages. May constitute three of the six hours of the candidate’s required research obligation. Only students with Incompletes must continue work by enrolling in JOUR 599 for only one regular academic term. 144 Prerequisite: 18 credits.
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Course Description
The student earns credit for off-campus work on an investigative, interpretive series in a medium such as print, a media script, publications/advertising campaign, or other significant project. Proof of intended implementation is required. A faculty member must oversee the project, a proposal for which must be approved by that faculty member and the program director. May constitute three of the six hours of the candidate’s required research obligation. Only students with Incompletes must continue work by enrolling in JOUR 599 for only one regular academic term. Prerequisite: 18 credits.
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Course Description
The student works with one faculty member on a comprehensive research project in an area of inquiry that is not available through any course offered at Point Park University. A formal paper of at least 40 pages, plus notes, references, and appendices, culminates the study. Students must have the approval of the faculty member expected to supervise the study and the program director prior to registration. May constitute three of the six hours of the candidate’s required research obligation. Only students with Incompletes must continue work by enrolling in JOUR 599 for only one regular academic term. Prerequisite: 18 credits, including JOUR 593.

Students applying for entry into Point Park University’s Master of Arts in Communication Technology online program must meet the following requirements:

  1. Complete the online application.
  2. Submit official transcripts.
  3. To submit your transcripts, print and complete the official transcript request form and fax it to 1-800-473-2512.
  4. Submit letters of recommendation from current or former professors or employers.
  5. Submit a resume and/or examples of professional work in mass communication professions.
  6. Submit a 500-word statement explaining your motivation and expected benefit in attaining this degree.

Career Outcomes


Public Relations Specialist

Public relations specialists help to shape and influence the perception of a company or organization. Those in advanced roles often hold managerial responsibilities such as shaping campaigns, supervising support staff, serving as a main contact for members of the press and searching for clients. The role can be found across a number of sectors and industries.

Technical Writer

Technical writers write materials such as instruction manuals, maintenance instructions and journal articles that help explain technical information to the public. They often work in teams with technology experts to better understand their subjects. Those in advanced positions may work on increasingly complex projects, supervise staff or may even decide to go into freelance.

Marketing Manager

Marketing managers oversee the design, promotion and execution of marketing campaigns and work to produce interest for certain products or services. Those in advanced roles may have expanded responsibilities such as developing new business opportunities, finding innovative ways to expand messaging or analyzing marketing research for application to an entire company or organization.

Broadcasting Technician

Broadcast technicians operate and manage electrical equipment for various media outlets including radio, television, live and recorded music, and cinema. They may specialize in certain types of systems or areas such as sound mixing, broadcasting, sound engineering, recording or field technology. Advanced broadcast technicians often work as supervisors in increasingly larger and more prominent markets.

Market Research Analyst

Market research analysts help companies understand the market conditions that impact the sales of products and services. They may forecast trends, measure the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, and gather and analyze consumer data, among other responsibilities. Market research analysts in advanced positions serve in leadership roles and perform increasingly complex technical research.

Next Steps

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Official Transcripts

Print and complete the Transcript Request Form and fax it to 1-800-473-2512

Download Transcript Form