Master of Arts in Communication

Enhance your career prospects with our Master of Arts in Communication.

The Master of Arts in Communication (MAC) program provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the field of communication through hands-on experiences, small group analysis and applied coursework. With access to state-of-the-art facilities and a small student-to-faculty ratio, the MAC program prepares students for careers and advancement in the vibrant field of communication.

Why earn your MAC at Bellarmine?

Our courses are taught by full-time faculty members who blend class work and discussion with real-world application and field experiences, to create an optimal learning environment that teaches to the future of this dynamic industry. Students will apply communication theory to contemporary organizational and social issues, and they’ll explore ethical and legal issues related to communication across all media. If you want to study in an industry that is changing the way the world works, then check out Bellarmine’s Master of Arts in Communication!

Program Highlights

The Master of Arts in Communication curriculum includes 21 hours of required courses with options for the remaining 9 hours to complete the 30-credit hour degree. Of the remaining 9 hours, students may choose 3 topics courses or a combination of topics courses, a thesis, an internship practicum or an independent study (upon approval of the Dean). Students may also apply for professional portfolio credit or transfer credit from other accredited universities.

Our MAC program is designed to accommodate both full-time students and working professionals. Full-time students will enroll in the fall term and take four courses in the fall and spring terms, followed by two courses over the summer. Part-time students may enroll in the spring or fall terms, and will take one or two courses per term until they've completed the 10-course program.

At Bellarmine University, we value real-world experience and applied problem-solving. As a result, we require students in the program to gain practical experience via projects and/or professional work experience.

Faculty Profiles

Here is a quick snapshot of a few of our faculty members. Read profiles of all of our distinguished faculty.

Kyle Barnett

Kyle S. Barnett, Ph.D.
Kyle Barnett’s research focuses on media history, cultural industries, and sound practices across media.

His publications include “Furniture Music: The Phonograph as Furniture,” in the Journal of Popular Music Studies, “The Selznick Studio, ‘Spellbound’ and the Marketing of Film Music,’ in Music, Sound and the Moving Image, and chapters in several book anthologies. Barnett is a former co-editor of the Velvet Light Trap, graduate editor and columnist for Flow, Antenna and In Media Res. Barnett serves as faculty adviser for Bellarmine Radio. His forthcoming book is Record Cultures: the Transformation of the U.S. Recording Industry (University of Michigan Press, February 2020).  

Barnett’s undergraduate courses include: Media and Society; History of Broadcasting; Film and TV Studies; The Film Musical; Popular Music and the Recording Industry; and Sound Studies. His graduate courses include Introduction to Media Studies and Cultural Industries.

Moira O’Keeffe, Ph.D.

Moira O’Keeffe, Ph.D.

Teaching/research interests: Visual communication, film and media studies, science in popular culture, digital media.

Moira O’Keeffe’s research deals with the cultural influence of popular entertainment media. Currently, she is interested in exploring how science is portrayed in popular contexts. She also works in the areas of visual communication and digital media studies. Dr. O'Keeffe's publications include "Science Fiction and the Big Questions," forthcoming from the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, "Lieutenant Uhura and the Drench Hypothesis: Diversity and the Representation of STEM Careers," published in the International Journal of Gender, Science, and Technology, and “Evidence and Absence: Documenting the Desaparecidos of Argentina” published in Communication, Culture and Critique.

Michael LaRocco, Ph.D.

Michael LaRocco, Ph.D.
Dr. LaRocco’s academic research and his creative work as a filmmaker and media artist investigate the evolution of film and video technologies and their application in media practice. His recent publications include articles in Film History and Spectator, and his current book project traces the evolution of digital video camera technology across various communities of practice, from home video to Hollywood.

Prior to his work in academia, he taught media study and production extensively at community-based organizations, art centers, and schools in Chicago, and served for many years on education advisory boards for the Chicago International Film Festival and the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. He is an active member of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies and recently served on the screening committee for the Peabody Awards.

As a media producer, he trained at esteemed documentary production company Kartemquin Films and has since worked with many clients both behind the camera and in the editing room, including the Lollapalooza Music Festival, filmmaker Ondi Timoner/Interloper Films, Asylum Entertainment, Oxford University, the Chicago Tribune, and the Bebe Miller Dance Company.

Academic areas of interest: Film and television history, theory, and aesthetics; Media technology; Production studies; Practice-based theory; Virtual/augmented reality; Video games; Film and media education; Film, video, and music production; Heavy metal music and culture.

Shawn Apostel, Ph.D.

Shawn Apostel, Ph.D.
A graphic designer by trade, Dr. Apostel formerly served as the Communication Coordinator for the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity at Eastern Kentucky University from 2010-2013, and the Information and Graphics Specialist for the City of Toccoa from 2008-2010.

Dr. Apostel's research interests include teaching with technology, applied creativity, digital ethos, e-waste reduction, and visual communication. He is chair of the Visual Rhetoric Panel for the South Atlantic Modern Language Association and serves as a reviewer for various journals and conferences. His work is published by IGI Global, CCDigital Press, Lexington Books, New Forums Press, and Computers and Composition Online. His co-edited book Online Credibility and Digital Ethos: Evaluating Computer-Mediated Communication was published by IGI Global in December, and his co-authored book Teaching Creative Thinking: A New Pedagogy for the 21st Century will be published by New Forums Press this Spring.

Early Entry Dual Enrollment

This program offers an opportunity for all undergraduate students to complete their undergraduate degree (BA or BS degree) along with a Master of Arts in Communication in four and a half to five years. Students who meet admission requirements (grade point average of at least 3.2 and pre-requisite scores of B or higher in PHIL 101 and MATH 200 or 205) may be admitted to the MAC program in the second semester of their junior year and begin taking graduate-level classes at the beginning of their senior year. The MAC courses take the place of up to 12 credits of undergraduate free, unrestricted, elective credits.

Health Care Concentration

Concentrations are not required for the Master of Arts in Communication. However, students can elect to complete a Health Communication Concentration in MAC by choosing three elective courses below:

  • HLTH 602 Communication & Technology in Health – every spring
  • HTLH 631 Health Behavior Theory – every summer or fall
  • HLTH 635 Designing & Planning Health Promotion Programs – every fall
  • HLTH 637 Program Evaluation & Statistics – every spring
  • COMM 644 Internship (Healthcare Comm focus)

Tuition and Fees

The Masters in Communication is a 10-course, 30 credit hour program that can be completed as a full-time or part-time student. Visit our Graduate Tuition Rates page for the most up-to-date tuition and fees information. Books and classroom supplies are additional expenses.

Funding Assistance
As a degree seeking student in the MAC program, students should be eligible for federally supported forms of student aid. Financial aid questions should be directed to the Financial Aid Office at Bellarmine University (finaid@bellarmine.edu or 502.272.7300).

Admission Requirements

The GRE is not required. Candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree and provide official transcripts. For information about the application process, please visit our Admission Requirements page.

Transcript Review

We can provide fast feedback about your transcript(s) and pre-requisite coursework. Simply complete the form below by attaching unofficial copies of your transcript(s).

Contact Info

James Standard, Senior Graduate Admission Officer
502.272.8351
jstandard@bellarmine.edu

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