Rochester Institute of Technology

Academic Program Overviews

Student Skills & Capabilities, Salary Data, Career Information 

Communication BS

Program Overview

The Bachelor of Science degree in Communication combines advanced education in the theory and practice of spoken, written and technology-mediated communication with focused study in one of the three communication sub-disciplines - Technical Communication; Health Communication; Media, Rhetoric & Culture – and instruction in an RIT professional or technical program related to the selected communication sub-discipline.  Students gain tools to be more proficient public speakers, to work more effectively in teams--a must in today's organizations--and to use written and visual communication to create powerful messages.
 

Degrees Awarded

  • Bachelor of Science

Enrollment

  • Approximately 50 students are enrolled in the Communication program.

Cooperative Education & Experiential Education Component

  • Students are required to complete one co-op work assignment, ideally during the summer of their 2nd or 3rd year.
  • Note: co-ops during the academic year are allowed; however, students are asked to consult with their department Academic advisor before enrollment. A minimum of 350 hours must be completed if a co-op is during the academic year.

Salary Information

Co-op:   $12.08                     $9.00 - $20.00
*BS:         $37,544                   $34,667 - $40,588
*Statistics from the Nat’l Assn. of Colleges & Employers (NACE) for Spring 2016 graduates

Student Skills & Capabilities

All students at the end of their Second year have completed a basic sequence in spoken, written, and visual communication.
 
 At the end of their Third year all students are capable of conducting scientific and applied research, are polished writers and speakers, and are capable of writing reports, manuals, newsletters, and instructions.  Students are also ready to assist in communication training programs focusing on leadership, presentations, problem solving, analytical discussions, and media relations.

Professional/Technical Skills

Students complete a professional core, which gives them an additional competency related to their sub-discipline.  These cores are usually in business, graphic media, film & television, photography, or health communication.  All students have working knowledge of the Adobe Suite programs.

Nature of Work

Writers and editors in the field of communication fall into one of three categories. The first is writers and authors, including copywriters, bloggers, and journalists, to name a few. Depending on the job title, job duties in this category may include choosing subject matter that interests readers; writing original nonfiction for publications such as books, magazines, and newsletters; conducting research; writing advertising copy; and working with editors and clients to shape material. The next category is editors, including copy editors, assistant editors, executive editors, and managing editors. These jobs entail reading content and correcting spelling, rewriting text, and developing story and content ideas.Finally, technical writers develop technical materials, such as equipment manuals, which requires them to study product samples and talk with product designers and developers, organize and write supporting content for products,and revise content as new issues arise. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics O.O.H.)

Training / Qualifications

Certain professions in the field of communication may require training. For example, many technical writers need short-term on-the-job training to adapt to a different style of writing. Increasingly, technical writing requires a degree in, or some knowledge about, a specialized field—for example, engineering, business, or one of the sciences. Other qualifications to obtain a job in the communication field include analytical and critical thinking skills, as well as being detail-oriented.College newspapers, literary magazines, community newspapers, and radio and television stations all provide valuable, but sometimes unpaid, practical writing experience. Many magazines, newspapers, and broadcast stations have internships for students. Interns write short pieces, conduct research and interviews, and learn about the publishing or broadcasting business. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics O.O.H.)

Job Outlook

The outlook for most writing and editing jobs is expected to be competitive because many people with writing or journalism training are attracted to the occupation. Online publications and services are growing in number and sophistication, spurring the demand for writers and editors, especially those with Web experience. Job growth in the field of communication varies for different professions. For example, employment for technical writers is expected to grow 10 percent between 2014-24, which is faster than average. However, the job outlook for editors is expected to decline by 5 percent. Opportunity for market research analysts is expected to grow by 19% between 2014-24, which is much faster than average. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics O.O.H. ’15)

Job Titles

Technical Writers, Proofread Editors, Market Research Associate/Analyst, Copywriters, Communication Trainer, Research and Writing, Communications Coordinator, Media Relations Assistant and Web Updating, Newsletter Editor

Significant Points

  • Although employment is projected to increase faster than average, keen competition is expected for entry-level jobs.
  • The ability to communicate effectively is essential. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics O.O.H.)

Selected Employer Hiring Partners

Bausch & Lomb, Pulse, Chrysler, A Thin Line Studio, Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield, City of New York Parks & Recreation, Grant Office LLC, Monroe County, Presidential Classroom, Navistream Corp, NY State Assembly, RIT, United Way, USA Today, Walt Disney World, WCMF Radio, Xerox, National Guard, Synergy Enterprises

Contact Us

We appreciate your interest in your career and we will make every effort to help you succeed. Feel free to contact Tabitha Arrendell, the career services coordinator who works with the Communication program. You can access information about services through our web site at www.rit.edu/careerservices.
 
Tabitha L. Arrendell, Career Services Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 585.475.7823
Rochester Institute of Technology . Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
Bausch & Lomb Center
57 Lomb Memorial Drive . Rochester NY  14623-5603
585.475.2301
 
Unless otherwise noted, information is based upon data collected by RIT Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
 
7/16