College of Communication > Academics > Digital Communication and Media Arts > Graduate Program > Digital Communication and Media Arts (MA) > Digital Communication Concentration

Digital Communication Concentration

Course Requirements ​

The Digital Communication track requires an Introductory Competency course (4 credit hours) plus 13 courses (52 credit hours): four core courses and nine elective courses and a degree completion option.

Introductory Competency Course*​

Students choose one course:

*Evaluation of the Introductory Competency course will follow standard CDM practice. All or part of the Introductory Competency course may be waived if a student has the equivalent academic background, or can demonstrate core technology competency.

Students may take an additional competency course as a Media Arts elective.

Core Courses

Students are required to take all of the following:

Digital Elective Courses

Students are required to take at least one elective course that focuses on digital technology from each area: MCS, JOUR, and PRAD. Students must take two media arts electives (from the College of Computing and Digital Media). Students must also take four additional courses (two if student chooses the Master’s Project degree completion option, taking DMA 695 and CMNS 595), either from another College of Communication graduate program, the College of Computing and Digital Media, the pre-approved outside electives, or in another department/college at DePaul. Outside electives must be approved by graduate advisor or program director.

Example Communication Electives (with digital technology focus)

* Topics must be approved by graduate program director. Some examples of topics include: Alternate Reality Gaming, Communication and Technology, Complex Narratives, Creativity in Practice, Digital Media Campaigns, Mass Communication in the Digital Age, Race, Class, & Gender In the Digital Age, Teaching Media Literacy.

** Topics must be approved by graduate program director. Some examples of topics include: Brand and Business Impact of Digital Media, Content Strategy for PR and Advertising, Creating Effective Social Media, Creative and Critical Thinking, Data Driven Marketing (Big Data), Digital Media Campaigns, Digital and Social Media for PR, Social Media and Culture.

Example Media Arts Electives

Pre-Approved Outside Electives

Students will have the option to take​ pre-approved elective courses in either Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse (WRD) or Art, Media, and Design (AMD) as part of their additional electives, allowing students to develop an enriched focus.​

Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse

Art, Media, and Design

Students who want to switch between DCMA tracks should be aware that some completed courses in one track may not count towards the requirements of the other. If a student is considering switching tracks, they should consult their advisor and graduate director for assistance.

Completion Options

Comprehensive Exam​

Students complete a three-part comprehensive exam based on questions derived from a minimum of one College of Communication core course (CMNS 570 or MCS 575) and two additional courses pulled from either the other core course and/or from the College of Communication elective courses.

Graduate Scholarly Paper/Project

In consultation with a  faculty member in the College of Communication (a professor with whom the student has had a class), the student should choose a paper or project they did for that professor’s course. This paper/project should be something to which the student wishes to expand upon or devote more time. This option is available to students holding a 3.5 GPA or higher and who have completed at least 10 courses (40 credit hours) in their program.

Master's Project​​​

Two project courses (DMA 695 and CMNS 595) replace two additional elective classes​. Students will enroll in CMNS 595 in the quarter they defend their project. The student will create an original project (i.e., web- or film-based projects, or projects related to professional or educational organizations) and a 30- to 40-page accompanying written report/analysis. This option is available to students holding a 3.7 GPA or higher and who have completed at least 6 courses (24 credit hours) in their program.​

Grade Requirements

All students are required to maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.000 in their coursework. If a student's cumulative GPA falls below 3.000, the student will be allowed to complete an additional 16 credits or 3 quarters (whichever comes first) to attain the 3.000 minimum GPA. If the cumulative GPA remains below a 3.000 at the conclusion of this time period, the student may be dismissed from the program. The student's cumulative and term GPAs along with overall academic performance will be factored into the dismissal decision. ​


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