Professional Communication Major: Business and Strategic Communication Option (B.S.)

The Bachelor of Science in Professional Communication hones the skills of analytical thinking, compelling writing, effective persuasion, and clear expression to prepare graduates to work in an information-based economy and to be engaged citizens of a media-driven culture. The major is well-suited to students interested in careers or further studies in such areas as public relations, public service, nonprofit advocacy, and corporate communications. Courses provide students the opportunity to study fundamental theory and multiple sectors of practice in the discipline of communication and to prepare to contribute to public and private enterprises that consistently need to convey messages effectively, manage information appropriately, and respond ethically and effectively to opportunities and to crises.


Degree Requirements

Minimum Credit Requirement: 120 credits
Minimum Residency Requirement: 30 credits must be taken at UNH
Minimum Cumulative GPA: 2.0 is required for conferral*
Core Curriculum Required: General Education Program
Major, Option and Elective Requirements as indicated.
*GPA: Major and any state certification GPA requirements may be higher and are indicated in program details.
A minimum grade of C- is required in all Major coursework. Students are allowed a maximum of two course overlaps. Overlaps can be used between Major, Minor, and General Education requirements with only one overlap being utilized between the Major and Minor. Please note that Option requirements are considered part of the Major. Students must complete 16 upper-level credits in majors within the College of Professional Studies, Online.

General Education Program Requirements

A minimum grade of D- is required in all General Education coursework. Students are allowed a maximum of two course overlaps. Overlaps can be used between Major, Minor and General Education requirements with only one overlap being utilized between the Major and Minor.

All General Education requirements, including CRIT 602 Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking and IDIS 601 Interdisciplinary Seminar, must be taken prior to the capstone.

ENG 420The Writing Process4
COM 460Interpersonal Communication and Group Dynamics4
COM 480Visual Communication4
CRIT 501Introduction to Critical Inquiry4
Select one of the following:4
Math for Our World
Knowledge of Human Behavior & Social Systems4
Knowledge of the Physical & Natural World4
Knowledge of Human Thought & Expression4
CRIT 602Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking4
IDIS 601Interdisciplinary Seminar4
Total Credits40

Writing Program Requirements

All bachelor's degree candidates are required to complete four writing intensive courses as part of the University Writing Program Requirements as follows:

The Writing Process
One Writing Intensive course in the Major
One Writing Intensive course at the 600-level or above
One Additional Writing Intensive Course

Writing Intensive courses are identified with the label "Writing Intensive Course" in the "Attributes" section of the course description and/or a W following the course number.

Major Requirements

Prior to capstone enrollment, students are expected to complete the majority of their required major courses along with CRIT 602 Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking and IDIS 601 Interdisciplinary Seminar. Students should consult with their advisor regarding specific major courses that may be completed with their capstone. Academic Advisor approval is required for registration to be processed.

Major in Professional Communication
Foundation Courses
COM 440Persuasive Communication4
COM 460Interpersonal Communication and Group Dynamics4
COM 465Communication Theory2
COM 480Visual Communication4
COM 535Visual Media Production4
Intermediate Courses
COM 590Professional Communication4
COM 665Media and Strategic Communication4
Advanced Courses
COM 707Communication for Training and Performance Improvement2
Option in Business and Strategic Communication
COM 565Strategic Communication4
COM 710Managerial Communication4
LD 600Becoming an Effective Leader4
Select two of the following:8
Grant Writing
Leadership Theory
Organizational Behavior
Digital Storytelling and Brand Management
Integrative Capstone
COM 797Integrative Capstone: Project in Professional Communication4
Total Credits52


Open electives are courses students will need to take in addition to their general education and major requirements in order to satisfy the remaining credit totals for their programs. Open electives are defined as any credit course offered by the College not already included in the student's general education, major, option or minor. Students will need 120 credits total to graduate with a bachelor's degree from the Online Division of the College of Professional Studies.

This degree plan is a sample and does not reflect the impact of transfer credit or current course offerings. UNH CPS Online undergraduate students should develop individual academic plans with their academic advisor during their first year at UNH.

Sample Course Sequence

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
COM 440 Persuasive Communication 4
ENG 420 The Writing Process 4
General Education Course 4
Elective 4
COM 465 Communication Theory 2
MTH 402
Math for Our World
or Statistics
or Pre-Calculus
COM 480 Visual Communication 4
CRIT 501 Introduction to Critical Inquiry 4
Second Year
COM 460 Interpersonal Communication and Group Dynamics 4
COM 535 Visual Media Production 4
General Education Course 4
Elective 4
COM 565 Strategic Communication 4
COM 590 Professional Communication 4
Genearal Education Course 4
Elective 4
Third Year
COM 665 Media and Strategic Communication 4
CRIT 602 Advanced Critical Analysis and Strategic Thinking 4
APST 705
Grant Writing
or Leadership Theory
or Organizational Behavior
or Digital Storytelling and Brand Management
Elective 4
LD 600 Becoming an Effective Leader 4
COM 707 Communication for Training and Performance Improvement 2
MGMT 566
Organizational Behavior
or Grant Writing
or Leadership Theory
or Digital Storytelling and Brand Management
Elective 4
Fourth Year
IDIS 601 Interdisciplinary Seminar 4
COM 710 Managerial Communication 4
Elective 4
Elective 4
COM 797 Integrative Capstone: Project in Professional Communication 4
Elective 4
Elective 4
 Total Credits120
Students will have the opportunity to:
  • Survey foundational theories of communication relating to individuals, groups, and mass media.
  • Create and deploy distinct messages suited to specific audiences and situations, in written, verbal, and digital formats.
  • Compose, design, and deliver targeted and engaging presentations.
  • Identify and respond to complex communication practices and challenges within organizations, and effect strategic improvements thereto.
  • Analyze and critique rhetorical strategies and communication methods specific to cultural and industry norms.
  • Employ an understanding of the impact of cultural differences on communication in a global context.
  • Integrate individual reflection on questions of ethics and citizenship, particularly in digital contexts, to include the personal and professional ramifications of netiquette, digital footprint, and digital citizenship.
  • Demonstrate aptitude with research methods, both quantitative and qualitative, as these inform and are applied in the field of professional communication.
  • Develop specialized knowledge and skill in a specific aspect or professional practice within professional communication.