Students admitted to the Master of Arts in Communications Program at Penn State Harrisburg must complete 36 credits, 21 of which must be at the 500 level in order to be granted the degree. Each student must complete and submit either a master’s project or thesis. The master’s project option (COMMS 580 Master’s Project in Communications, 3-6 credits) consists of a creative production with an accompanying scholarly essay. The thesis option (COMMS 600 Thesis Research or COMMS 610 Thesis Research Off Campus, 6 credits) consists of an original research paper that follows the guidelines established by the Graduate School Thesis Office (see The subject of the master’s project or thesis must be defined in conjunction with a faculty member, andevaluated by a committee of at least two faculty members, supplemented by outside consultants where appropriate. To register for the master’s thesis or project, a student must have completed COMMS 500 and COMMS 503 and must have earned at least 27 credits towards the Master of Arts in Communications.

Transfer of Credits

Transfer credits are limited to 9 equivalent graduate Communications credits with a grade of B or better taken within the last 5 years from an accredited institution. It must be the opinion of the reviewing faculty that these courses are equivalent in quality to those offered at Penn State Harrisburg. Credit will not be given for any course used to complete a previous degree.

Grade-Point Average and Time Limit

A 3.00 grade-point average will be required for successful completion of the degree.

A full-time student can expect to complete the program in four semesters, a part-time student in six or more semesters. All requirements for a master's degree for the M.A. in Communications (including acceptance of the master’s thesis or project) must be met within eight years of admission to degree status. Extensions may be granted by the Graduate School in appropriate circumstances.

This page is not a part of the official Penn State University Bulletin.