Communication Studies

Major | Minor

Become a strong communicator. Write skillfully. Speak clearly. Learn how to develop targeted messaging with a communication studies major at Luther College.

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Why Pursue Communication Studies?

Communication skills and experience are vital in today’s job market. Focusing on communication studies can help you develop a strong foundation for your future career.

Beyond that, communication is critical in most situations. It helps individuals, groups, and communities navigate relationships. It creates and impacts society and culture. It also serves as an integral part of democratic self-governance.

Why Pursue Communication Studies at Luther?

At Luther, you’ll learn how to understand, evaluate, and practice human communication. Our program specializes in three related and overlapping areas of study that you’ll use as a foundation to forge your own path.

  • Relational studies—study the ways people communicate in organizations, groups, and families
  • Rhetorical studies—master the skills of presenting before an audience
  • Media studies—learn about the roles various media play in society and how to produce media content

Because you’ll study in a liberal arts environment, you’ll learn in lots of other areas too. This means that you’ll be prepared to work with rapidly changing technologies in an ever-widening global context.

Program Highlights


Get matched with businesses, newspapers, radio stations, and nonprofits for real-world experience!

Undergraduate Research

Expand your knowledge beyond the classroom for more in-depth learning with faculty on communication-related topics.

Digital Media Center

Use Luther’s full video production studio and multi-station editing lab to complete video and audio projects for your courses.

What You’ll Learn

As a communication studies major or minor you’ll learn how to understand, evaluate, and practice human communication in all forms.

Luther’s communication studies courses will teach you how to:

  • Identify the central thesis of various communications and critically analyze arguments
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of a message by applying practical communication theory
  • Access information through research and analyze that information
  • Adapt a message based on audience and situation
  • Write skillfully for a variety of situations and media
  • Speak clearly, effectively, and extemporaneously before a live audience or on camera
  • Be aware of the ethical implications of persuasion skills
  • Understand the role of communication in a democratic society

A senior project presentation is required for all communication studies majors.


If you’re looking for expert advice on speech preparation and delivery, Luther’s Speech and Debate Center is a great resource. It’s staffed by specially trained, upper-level communication majors that can provide help on audience analysis, topic selection, thesis development, organization and outlining, use of supporting materials, presentation aids, and effective delivery.

Communication studies offers so many courses that help you learn how to engage in the media, how to better your communication on paper, and especially how to improve your communication within relationships through the interpersonal development courses they offer.
Sammie Sabin '24
Communication studies major

Careers and Outcomes

According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), graduates with a communication studies major nationwide most commonly obtain careers in the following fields:

  • Education
  • Finance/insurance
  • Professional, scientific, and technical services
  • Management

The most common occupational fields among Luther graduates with a communication studies major include:

  • Public relations
  • Radio broadcasting
  • Journalism
  • Development/fundraising
  • Sales (sales representative, retail manager)

Other graduates concentrate on:

  • Media production
  • Additional studies in journalism or English to prepare for success in broadcasting or filmmaking careers
  • Preparation for law school or seminary
  • Interpersonal communication as a background for careers in sales, human resources, or corporate training

Communication studies graduates are often hired by diverse organizations, from marketing firms and small publishers, like local newspapers or regional magazines, to national corporate institutions, such as Target, Epic Systems, and Best Buy.

KWLC Student-Run Radio

Interested in radio? Get hands-on learning experience at KWLC, a radio station on the Luther College campus operated by trained student staff.

White man wearing headphones, sitting at a microphone and control board

Journalism Minor

When you study journalism at Luther, you’ll develop the curiosity, inspiration, and skills to become a successful reporter.

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