BA in Communication


BA in Communication Studies

Our Mission

BA COM guides students toward deeper understanding of how contemporary society increasingly relies upon communication knowledge and skills in personal, professional, and civic spheres. From the oldest forms of the spoken word to the electronic world of mediated images, our program focuses on how argumentation and reasoning are rhetorically engaged to persuade, inform, and entertain. Our program prepares students to succeed, by cultivating their communication knowledge, skills, and experiences that enable them, in face-to-face, written, and mediated forms, to develop effective strategies, meaningful relationships, and critical reflection in the communication environment. Our program is committed to intercultural, international, and cosmopolitan approaches that reflect the wide range of resources Hawaii offers for the study of communication.

BA COM Goals

To prepare students to become competent communicators in the global community, we foster:

1. Critical understanding of the principles of communication
A. Demonstrate understanding of key concepts and theories in the communication discipline
B. Demonstrate understanding of history and traditions of communication theories
C. Demonstrate critical capacity to evaluate and analyze face-to-face and mediated communication
2. Strategic communicators in face-to-face, written, and electronic forms
A. Demonstrate ability to apply communication theories and principles in face-to-face, written, and electronic forms
B. Demonstrate ability to develop and deliver creative communication strategies in face-to-face, written, and electronic forms
C. Demonstrate ability to apply and analyze communication research and scholarship
3. Ethical communicators in diverse communication contexts
A. Demonstrate ability to analyze ethical ramifications in communication process
B. Demonstrate ability to apply communication principles to manage ethical/relational concerns in communication
4. Appreciating the diversity of culture in Hawaii and the world
A. Demonstrate appreciation of the centrality of culture in communication
B. Demonstrate ability to produce and engage in inter-culturally mindful communication
5. Engaging and serving the needs of global communities
A. Demonstrate ability to analyze personal, professional, and civic ramifications of communication
B. Demonstrate ability to develop and deliver communication products to serve the needs of communities

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Meet Our Student:

Linn Skulstad, BA COMLinn_Skulstad

In January 2010 I moved to Australia to start my bachelor in journalism. To my great disappointment it was not even close to what I expected it to be. Only one out of five courses were relevant to my degree, and the overall organization of the degree was a mess. I therefore chose to only finish the first semester and move back to Oslo, Norway. I enrolled at the Norwegian School of Creative Arts in August 2010 where I after two years got my journalism degree. In order to get my bachelor I had to go abroad. HPU was one of four options. There was not a doubt in my mind – Hawaii was definitely the designated destination.

So why did I choose HPU?
Well, besides from the sun and amazing beaches in Hawaii, HPU gave me an option. I could either choose to continue with journalism or move onto communication. The choice was simple. Communication is what I have been dreaming about after the first year completed at the Norwegian School of Creative Arts. I have a passion for journalism, but an even bigger passion to combine the two fields and get the best out of both worlds, especially since I have been working as a journalist for over two years. The communication courses that HPU provided were something I found highly interesting, and I believe that what HPU provides to their students is of great value.

So what has been my overall experience with HPU?
Leaving the poor experience with another University behind I certainly had big expectations for HPU. I wondered if I would meet the same challenges as I did in Melbourne. To my joy the experience with HPU has been nothing but amazing and I find it important to share this with you, faculty members and future students. First of all, HPU challenge their students by providing a high amount of workload each week, consistently through out the semester. I am a firm believer that hard work pays off, both when it comes to grades and creating a good relationship with professors. HPU allows this to happen. Also by expecting hard work, and deliver assignment after assignment constantly, it gives you a great opportunity to be on top all the time. There is no room for lacking. By always being expected to deliver, work in groups and perform, you learn a lot, it sticks to you, and you are able to use what you learn in every day life since the way of teaching is more hands on than most of the universities in Norway. I have to be honest when I say that the workload did surprise me, but I would not have it any other way. By pushing students it only shows who really wants it, and how much we are willing to work for it. I want this more than anything, and as I said, hard work pays off. Not in a million years did I think I would make the Dean’s list after the first semester, nor that my essays from WRI1100 would be nominated for the anthology of Fresh Perspectives, or even make it to WRI1200 Honors section. Being rewarded like this by HPU is a huge motivational factor inspiring me to work harder, and achieve my goals.

Second, HPU allows you to build networks, get you in contact with great job opportunities and motivates you into showing your best skills, assets and own motivation. After two semesters I already know what my aspiring dream is based on the courses I have covered, and what I have learned. I have gotten to know myself better, found what I am good at and know how I can reach my goals.

Last, HPU cares about you as an individual. In between all of the theoretical and academic teaching they leave a big space for you to fill with own thoughts and self-development. I experience HPU as a university where there is room for own critical thinking along with the curriculum. This is something I value deeply and find highly important when studying. It is not about reading and remembering what our books said, but it is also about learning by doing. HPU has given me this opportunity. It is not only a great and well-known university with a strong reputation, but it is a university that allows your creative and critical mind take form and develop further on. I give HPU my best recommendations, and I look forward to my next two semesters with more exciting courses, and the best part is yet to come – the internship.