The MPS in Strategic Communications is a 30-credit program of study designed for working professionals who are seeking advanced education in strategic communications to enhance their careers, to support organizational goals and objectives, and to aid in developing and implementing strategic communications plans and campaigns for organizations and clients.

Course List - Master of Professional Studies in Strategic Communications

Prescribed Courses (18 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Research Methods in Strategic Communications COMM 530 Provides students with an understanding of the methods and practices used to conduct effective research in examining practical and theoretical questions in strategic communications. 3 credits
Strategic Communications: Theory and Implementation COMM 531 A comprehensive overview of professional strategic communications by examining key theoretical and conceptual fundamentals of persuasive communication, attitude formation and change, and mass communication, while examining applied implications that affect the strategic communications industry. 3 credits
Strategic Communications Industry COMM 830 Provides students with an overview of the merging of the advertising, public relations, and corporate communications industries. 3 credits
Digital Media Analytics COMM 831

An overview of the methods for collecting, analyzing, and utilizing audience data for digital media.

Prerequisite: COMM 530, COMM 830

3 credits
Ethics and Decision Making in Strategic Communications COMM 833

Investigates transparency, digital ethics, diversity, and mass-communication ethics as they apply to the development and application of communications strategy and content.

Prerequisite: COMM 830

3 credits
Strategic Communications Campaigns COMM 834

This capstone course requires students to apply the knowledge they have acquired in all the other foundation courses to develop a strategic communications campaign on behalf of a professional client.

Prerequisite: COMM 530, COMM 531, COMM 830, COMM 831, COMM 833

3 credits
Additional Courses (6 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Social Media Communications COMM 835

Focuses on two areas: an in-depth understanding of the social media impact on strategic communications; and how to make best use of social media tools.

Prerequisite: COMM 830

3 credits
Reaching Multicultural Populations with Strategic Communications COMM 837

Explore the economic, political, and social impact of culture and race in our society, socio-economic differences, trends within various multicultural communities and groups, and how traditional and new media are reaching these communities.

Prerequisite: COMM 830

3 credits
Strategic Communications Law COMM 838

This course examines how the First Amendment applies to strategic communications, the basic tenets of advertising regulation, privacy issues including the collection and use of personal and geolocation information, intellectual property issues including the use of trademarks and copyrights, and the role of self-regulation in a global communications environment.

Prerequisite: COMM 830

3 credits
Advanced Digital Media Analytics COMM 839

Prepares students to demonstrate their competency and ability to navigate the digital media ecosystem and to develop, implement, administer, and evaluate digital marketing campaigns.

Prerequisite: COMM 530, COMM 830, COMM 831

3 credits

Electives (6 credits)

Student must take at least six additional elective credits from any Penn State World Campus course(s) – this includes 400-level courses and all elective courses listed above.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.