Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies, Persuasion Track


Our Persuasion Track is designed for students interested in careers that involve a great deal of personal interaction and influence. Courses of instruction will deepen your understanding of argumentation, persuasive techniques, public speaking, and help you improve your knowledge and skills in intercultural and social media contexts.

Courses on this track include the core communication courses as well as intercultural communication, presentational speaking, interviewing, argumentation, persuasion, social media campaigns, and new communication media. Classes in presentational speaking, argumentation, and persuasion will develop your public speaking skills beyond the basic skills learned in CMST 1545. Social media and new communication media will prepare you for advancements in communication specifically related to the use of new media for persuasion.

In addition to learning how to present ideas effectively in person-to-person and mediated contexts, students also learn skills relevant to persuading people and developing arguments, which will prove to be essential in careers in sales, customer service/relations, marketing and/or advertising. In intercultural communication, students will learn how to effectively adapt to culturally diverse audiences when preparing and delivering persuasive messages.

This degree prepares students for several career paths (see below), but also leads students to advanced areas of study. For example, graduate study in communication will prepare you for a life of research and teaching in areas such as argumentation (and debate), persuasion, and public speaking. 

Students majoring in communication studies must successfully complete all core courses and one of the specified tracks for a total of 39 semester hours in CMST. Students must complete 18 credits of 3000- and 4000-level courses in the CMST major. Students must also complete all requirements for a Bachelor of Arts degree, including the completion of an approved academic minor. 

YSU 1500Success Seminar1-2
or SS 1500 Strong Start Success Seminar
or HONR 1500 Intro to Honors
General Education Requirements
ENGL 1550Writing 13-4
or ENGL 1549 Writing 1 with Support
ENGL 1551Writing 23
CMST 1545Communication Foundations3
Mathematics Requirement (e.g., MATH 2623, STAT 2625)3
Arts and Humanities (6 s.h.)6
Natural Sciences (2 courses, 1 with lab) (6-7 s.h.)7
Social Science (6 s.h.)6
Social and Personal Awareness (6 s.h.)6
Foreign Language Requirement
Foreign Language 1550 (or FNLG 1505)4
Foreign Language 2600 (or FNLG 1506)4
Major Requirements
CMST 2600Communication Theory3
CMST 2630Social Media Literacy3
CMST 2655Communication in Groups and Organizations3
CMST 2656Interpersonal Communication3
CMST 3700Designing Communication Research3
CMST 4899Senior Project3
Persuasion Track
CMST 2610Intercultural Communication3
CMST 3746Presentational Speaking3
CMST 3754Argumentation and Advocacy3
CMST 3756Interviewing3
CMST 4850Social Media Campaigns3
CMST 4851New Communication Media3
CMST 5860Persuasion and New Media3
Minor Requirements (note that some minors require more than 12 credits)12
Electives (note that students must complete 39 hours of upper division courses; 37xx and above)23
Total Semester Hours120-122
Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
YSU 1500
Success Seminar
or Strong Start Success Seminar
or Intro to Honors
CMST 1545 Communication Foundations 3
ENGL 1550
Writing 1
or Writing 1 with Support
MATH 2623 Quantitative Reasoning 3
GE: Social & Personal Awareness 3
 Semester Hours13-15
CMST 2600 Communication Theory 3
CMST 2630 Social Media Literacy 3
CMST 2656 Interpersonal Communication 3
ENGL 1551 Writing 2 3
GE: Lab Science 4
 Semester Hours16
Year 2
CMST 2655 Communication in Groups and Organizations 3
CMST 3746 Presentational Speaking 3
FNLG 1550 Elementary Foreign Language 4
GER Social & Personal Awareness 3
GER Natural Science 3
 Semester Hours16
CMST 2610 Intercultural Communication 3
FNLG 2600 Intermediate Foreign Language 4
General Elective 3
GER Arts & Humanities 3
GER Social Sciences 3
 Semester Hours16
Year 3
CMST 3700 Designing Communication Research 3
General Elective 3
GER Arts & Humanities 3
GER Social Sciences 3
Upper-division General Elective 3
 Semester Hours15
CMST 3754 Argumentation and Advocacy 3
CMST 3756 Interviewing 3
Minor course 3
Upper Division General Elective 3
Upper-division General Elective 3
 Semester Hours15
Year 4
CMST 4850 Social Media Campaigns 3
CMST 4851 New Communication Media 3
Upper-division Minor course 3
Upper-division General Elective 3
General Elective 2
 Semester Hours14
CMST 4899 Senior Project 3
CMST 5860 Persuasion and New Media 3
Upper Division Minor course 3
Upper Division Minor Course 3
General Elective 3
 Semester Hours15
 Total Semester Hours120-122


Regardless of track, students graduating with a B.A. degree in communication studies will:

  1. Students graduating with a B.A. degree in Communication Studies will interpret, evaluate, and apply communication scholarship. 
  2. Students graduating with a B.A. degree in Communication Studies will perform verbal and nonverbal behaviors that illustrate self-efficacy. 
  3. Students graduating with a B.A. degree in Communication Studies will demonstrate communication expertise in their career development. 
  4. Students graduating with a B.A. degree in Communication Studies will identify communication theories, perspectives, principles, and concepts.

Students completing their degree in communication studies are uniquely qualified to enter the job market and compete effectively throughout their careers for advancement and promotion.

Through course offerings and applied learning experiences, the communication studies program combines a rich liberal arts emphasis with a much needed specialized professional and career focus for undergraduate students.