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 Course1

Course Title Quarter Hours
DMA 402INTRO TO VISUAL COMMUNICATIONS PRINCIPLES4
or DMA 405 INTRO TO VISUAL COMMUNICATION TOOLS

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

Core Courses

Students are required to take all of the following (16 credits):

Course Title Quarter Hours
CMNS 570INTRODUCTION TO DIGITAL CMN4
DMA 525FOUNDATION OF DIGITAL MEDIA4
DMA 530DESIGN THINKING AND STORYTELLING4
MCS 575DIGITAL MEDIA ETHICS4

Elective Courses

Communication Digital Technology Electives

Students are required to take at least one elective course that focuses on digital technology from each of the following areas:

  • Media and Cinema Studies (MCS)
  • Journalism (JOUR)
  • Public Relations and Advertising (PRAD) 

Example Communication Digital Technology Electives

Course Title Quarter Hours
JOUR 503
REPORTING FOR CONVERGED NEWSROOMS
JOUR 504
MULTIMEDIA NEWS PRODUCTION
JOUR 506
NEWSCAST PRODUCING
JOUR 507
VISUAL COMMUNICATION
JOUR 509
JOURNALISM LAW AND ETHICS
JOUR 515
SPECIAL TOPICS IN JOURNALISM 1
JOUR 520
DATA JOURNALISM
JOUR 521
SPORTS PRODUCING
JOUR 522
MULTI-PLATFORM NEWS EDITING
JOUR 523
ONLINE SPORTS REPORTING
JOUR 529
ONLINE NEWS BUREAU
JOUR 531
JOURNALISM BY NUMBERS
JOUR 536
SPORTS BLOGGING
JOUR 537
FROM FRANKLIN TO THE INTERNET: A HISTORY OF AMERICAN JOURNALISM
JOUR 538
MASS COMMUNICATION IN THE DIGITAL AGE
JOUR 540
THE INTERNET, TECHNOLOGY, AND POLITICS
JOUR 542
SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE NEWS
JOUR 544
ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNALISM
JOUR 545
NEWS DOCUMENTARY
JOUR 588
REPORTING FOR 14 EAST MAGAZINE
MCS 520
TOPICS IN MEDIA STUDIES 2
MCS 530
NEW MEDIA AND CULTURE
MCS 541
AUDIO DOCUMENTARY
MCS 550
FANDOM AND ACTIVE AUDIENCES
MCS 542
TOPICS IN PRODUCTION
PRAD 521
PUBLIC RELATIONS MEASUREMENT AND DATA ANALYTICS
PRAD 550
INTEGRATED COMMUNICATION CAMPAIGNS
PRAD 562
MEDIA RELATIONS
PRAD 563
MEDIA PLANNING
PRAD 595
SPECIAL TOPICS IN PUBLIC RELATIONS & ADVERTISING 3

 Media Arts Electives 

Students must take two Media Arts electives from the College of Computing and Digital Media (CDM). These electives can be from Digital Media Arts (DMA) or other departments in CDM that have a media arts focus. 

Example Media Arts Electives

Course Title Quarter Hours
DMA 410
DESIGN WORKSHOP
DMA 445
360 VIDEO PRODUCTION
DMA 475
MOVING IMAGE WORKSHOP
DMA 480
WEB/MEDIA DELIVERY WORKSHOP
DMA 490
PORTFOLIO
DMA 527
CREATIVE PROCESS AND STRATEGY
DMA 535
STORYTELLING ACROSS MEDIA
EXP 440
DESIGNING PLAYFUL EXPERIENCES
EXP 442
DESIGNING INTERFACES FOR EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES
FILM 401
FUNDAMENTALS OF CINEMA PRODUCTION (FORMERLY DC 414)
HCD 450
THEORIES AND METHODS IN HUMAN-CENTERED DESIGN
SCWR 400
FOUNDATIONS OF SCREENWRITING (FORMERLY DC 501)
VFX 474
COMPOSITING I

Additional Electives

Students must also take four additional elective courses (two if student chooses the Master’s Project degree completion option, taking CMNS 594 and CMNS 595). These elective courses may be:

  • Any College of Communication graduate course
  • Any College of Computing and Digital Media graduate course
  • Any pre-approved outside elective (up to two electives from outside of the College of Communication or College of Computing and Digital Media can apply toward the degree)
  • Any course in another department/college at DePaul that is approved by the graduate advisor or graduate program director (up to two electives from outside of the College of Communication or College of Computing and Digital Media can apply toward the degree)

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 Pre-Approved Outside Electives

Course Title Quarter Hours
WRD 524
DOCUMENT DESIGN
WRD 525
WRITING FOR THE WEB
WRD 530
TOPICS IN PROFESSIONAL AND DIGITAL WRITING
WRD 531
DIGITAL STORYTELLING
WRD 532
CONTENT STRATEGY
WRD 533
WRITING ACROSS MEDIA
WRD 580
MARKUP AND TEXT ENCODING IN THE HUMANITIES

Art, Media, and Design 

Course Title Quarter Hours
ART 405
ADVANCED ART STUDIO
ART 427
DIGITAL ART
ART 460
WEB ART AND DESIGN
ART 461
PHOTOGRAPHY AND MEDIA ART
ART 489
VIDEO ART
ART 490
ADVANCED TOPICS IN ART, MEDIA AND DESIGN (topic approval required)

All electives listed on this page are examples. The lists are not exhaustive and the specific courses listed may not be offered every quarter. Please consult your advisor to determine how electives will apply toward degree requirements.

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

Digital Communication Reflection Paper

Students complete a comprehensive reflection paper during their final term in the program. This completion option is available to all students and does not come with any course credit. 

Digital Communication Capstone

In consultation with a faculty member in the College of Communication, the student should expand or develop a paper or project they have worked on in the program. This professor should have expertise in the area the student's paper/project is based. A meeting should be scheduled to discuss the requirements and design and agreement for the paper/project. Capstone does not come with course credit and is expected to take approximately 10 hours for the student to complete. 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 Thesis Project​​​

Two project/thesis courses (CMNS 594 and CMNS 595) replace two additional elective classes​. Students will enroll in CMNS 594 in the Winter quarter and  CMNS 595 in the Spring quarter of their final year. 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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