curriculum that works around your schedule

Through coursework and a capstone project, you’ll evaluate communication practices in patient-provider relationships, health organizations and the media, and ask meaningful questions about their consequences.

All courses are 100% online and asynchronous, with no specific days or times you are required to be online. Each class requires weekly deadlines, so you’ll interact with other students on a regular basis and feel like you’re part of a program with colleagues (as opposed to complete self-paced learning). All deadlines allow you to complete work during your own free time.

What is unique about the curriculum in HCOM?

What is unique about the
curriculum in HCOM?

Click here to read more questions & answers.
Click here to read more questions & answers.


required for the HCOM degree



must be taken through the Department of Communication



are required for the degree

Sample Course Schedules and Descriptions

Each semester, full-time students take two online courses for a total of 6 credit hours: an eight-week course followed by a four-week course, with a two-week break in between.

Courses operate Wednesday through Tuesday, with two to three deadlines per week. For example, a course module begins on Wednesday with readings and a brief assignment or paper due on Sunday, and reflections and responses to peers due on Tuesday. This allows you to fit courses into your professional work schedule and complete the bulk of assignments on the weekend.

Marcie Albrecht, Fall 2012 Graduate

Required Courses for the HCOM Degree

Health Communication Research Methods 1 and 2 (4 credit hours)

Two research methods courses explore the variety of methods used in health communication research, including designs that are quantitative (e.g., using data from experimental or survey designs), qualitative (e.g., using data from observations, interviews, or interaction), or rhetorical (e.g., using texts or speeches as data). The goals of the research methods courses include developing skills needed to understand and critically analyze research.

Capstone Project (4 credit hours)

The capstone project is the final course in the program. It integrates knowledge and skills from prior coursework and experiential learning. This course enables students to demonstrate broad mastery of material for the promise of future employment opportunities and career advancement.

Learn more about the Capstone:
Students work with their Capstone instructor and two other committee members of their choosing to design an applied project that integrates skilled learned in HCOM with professional goals. Types of projects that students have completed include:

  • Conducting an extensive literature review of a specific topic area
  • Creating a webinar series
  • Designing an organizational intervention in a health care setting
  • Designing a media campaign, or
  • Implementing a hybrid project combing the above options; or a “design your own” model of the student’s choosing
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