Undergraduate Programs
Bachelor of Professional Arts
Communication Studies Major
Regulations effective January 1, 2007
The Bachelor of Professional Arts Communication Studies major is offered by Athabasca University's Centre for State and Legal Studies. The program encourages students to apply their professional knowledge within a national and international context of mass media and communication.

Enrolment Requirements

The BPA Communication Studies major is available to graduates of an approved two- or three-year communications-related diploma (e.g., public relations, advertising, journalism, multi-media, broadcasting, library and information studies, legal assistant, and marketing), a previous undergraduate university degree, or a minimum of two years of university coursework (with at least one year of professional practice relevant to the Communications Studies major), or equivalent from an accredited college, university, or institute of technology. For general information regarding the Communication Studies major, please contact the program advisor.

Prior Learning

Some students may qualify for

a) a maximum of 60 credits of Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) towards entry to this program, or,
b) a maximum of 30 credits towards senior credit once they are accepted into the program.

To learn more about PLAR opportunities within the Communication Studies program, please contact your program advisor or the Centre for Learning Accreditation.

Classroom Setting

In addition to completing BPA Communication Studies major through online and distance learning, students may have the option to take courses in a classroom setting. Contact your program advisor for a listing of grouped study courses.

Common Core

The common core courses may be taken at any time; however, students are encouraged to complete the common core courses early in their program. The common core addresses skills and knowledge that will help students succeed with the remaining degree requirements.

Program Learning Outcomes

Athabasca University has developed program learning outcomes that describe the career options that may be available to you upon graduating. For more information regarding this major, contact the program advisor.

To Bachelor of Professional Arts program.

  Common core courses 12
  Major courses 30
  Options 18
  Residency requirement. A minimum of 30 credits must be obtained through Athabasca University. 30
  Maximum Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition credits *see Prior Learning above
  Major Courses (30 credits)
  Required Major Courses (9 credits)  
CMNS 301 Communication Theory and Analysis (3)
CMNS 302 Communication in History (3)
CMNS 401 Cultural Policy in Canada (3)

And 21 credits selected from the following list *
(minimum of 12 credits at the 400 level).

*Note: Students may use any CMNS course to meet the 21 credits required in this area. (added Nov/09, retroactive to Sept. 1 2007)

CMNS 308 Understanding Statistical Evidence (3)
CMNS 311 Mass Media and the Law (3)
CMNS 321 Computers and Human Experience (3)
CMNS 358 Popular Culture and the Media (3)
CMNS 370/371 Individual / Group Projects (3)
CMNS 380 Corporate Communication (3)
CMNS 385 Media Construction of Social Movements and Issues (3)
CMNS 402 International Media Systems I —The Americas (3)
CMNS 410 Audience Effects Research (3)
CMNS 419 Digital Storytelling (3)
CMNS 420 Children and Media (3)
CMNS 421 Being Online (3)
CMNS 423 The Television Age (3)
CMNS 425 Film and Genre (3)
CMNS 445 Directed Readings in Communication Studies (3)
CMNS 450/451 Individual / Group Projects (3)
POEC 302 Introduction to Political Economy (3)
POEC 393 Canada and the Global Political Economy (3)
POLI 309 Canadian Government and Politics (3)
SOCI 435 Theories of Social Change (3)
  A senior research methods course, e.g., SOSC 366 Research Methods in the Social Sciences (3)



Option Courses (18 credits)

18 credits from any discipline (a maximum of three credits allowed at the junior (200) level).


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 • Information effective Jan. 1, 2007 to Aug. 31, 2008.
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