Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Studies

The Communication Studies program offers a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) at the Lawrence Campus. The program in Communication Studies at the University of Kansas is research intensive and primarily designed to train students for careers doing research and teaching in the field of human communication at institutions of higher education. More specifically, our graduate program expects students to focus on one of the department’s two primary areas of research, with a narrower focus on one or two of the subareas:

  • Relationships & Social Interaction, with an emphasis on digital media, interpersonal, intercultural, and organizational communication.
  • Rhetoric & Political Communication, with an emphasis on argumentation, democratic inclusion, digital media, political institutions, and public memory.

Across both areas of research, our department collectively focuses on communication as it relates to gender, race, social class, national identity, and other cultural indices. Moreover, the department offers training in qualitative, quantitative, and rhetorical methods.

Almost all Communication Studies graduate students are funded through the department as either Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTA) or Graduate Research Assistants (GRA), which both include competitive stipends, tuition coverage, and health care benefits. In addition, all GTAs and GRAs are provided annual travel assistance to attend academic conferences, and the department awards approximately $25,000 a year in graduate awards for research, teaching, and service.