Students looking at laptop outside

Expanded Classroom

You are Always Learning
No Matter Where You Go

As a communication studies major you have countless opportunities to grow your communication competencies, make a difference in your community, see the world, make lifelong friends, experience personal growth, and build your resume.

The field of communication studies is alive with hands-on research about how people relate, work, connect, listen, meet, govern, organize, love, lead, age, and so much more. Here at Colorado State, many of our faculty work with undergraduate students to advance this work.

One of the most rewarding experiences our majors have during their time at CSU is the opportunity to travel and study communication abroad and earn credits toward their degree.

Are you a community-minded student who wants to help people from all walks of life connect with each other and problem solve challenging issues affecting their futures?

Do you love watching documentary films? Are you passionate about event planning, film festival production, community outreach, or social media? Do you care about human rights?

There are countless opportunities across campus for putting your communication skills into practice – and learning new ones along the way – while having fun, meeting new people, and making a difference.

Collaborative Research

“I chose to become an undergraduate research assistant because I was curious about the opportunity to engage in hands-on research and receive mentorship from Communication Studies faculty and graduate students. From this experience, I have gained lasting relationships, problem-solving skills and opportunities to explore my own curiosity. For students interested in exploring their own creativity and learning more about the research process, RICC is the perfect opportunity at CSU.”

- Carmyn Ginnetti

How do I get involved?

The field of communication studies is alive with hands-on research about how people relate, work, connect, listen, meet, govern, organize, love, lead, age, and so much more. Here at Colorado State, many of our faculty work with undergraduate students to advance this work.

Collaborating with faculty on their research is a unique opportunity to advance your understanding of the communication discipline by gaining hands-on experience in one or more research methodologies.

  • Talk with your communication studies professor about their research and let them know you’re interested in learning more.
  • Get involved with RICC – the Research in Interpersonal Communication Collaborative. RICC helps communication studies majors develop knowledge and skills in the social science research methodologies our faculty use. Activities include:
    • Conducting focus groups and surveys
    • Transcribing and coding interviews and conversations
    • Observational research
    • Data collection related to conflict, humor, social support, and other interpersonal communication dynamics.

Please tell us more about yourself. We’ll email you soon with more information.

RICC Contact Form

Education Abroad

Ed abroad preparing pasta outsite

One of the most rewarding experiences our majors have during their time at CSU is the opportunity to travel and study communication abroad and earn credits toward their degree.

During summer, communication studies faculty lead multi-week programs in Italy, South Korea, and Spain. CSU’s Education Abroad office and the Department of Communication Studies awards a handful of scholarships to students who have been accepted into one of these programs.

CSU’s Education Abroad program also offers other opportunities for studying communication around the world.

Update on Summer 2021 Programs

  • Communication Studies Education Abroad programs in South Korea and Spain will not occur until Summer 2022.
  • Open for Registration: Communication in Rome, Italy – June 27, 2021 – August 1, 2021
    • In the event the program is canceled because of COVID-19, students will be refunded the application fee and deposit and will not be charged the program fee.
    • Carl Burgchardt, Professor, Communication Studies, will be offering an optional online complementary 3-credit course on cinematic Rome in summer term II prior to this program. More information on enrollment in this offering - coming soon.

At this time, CSU Education Abroad is allowing students to apply for programs that begin in 2021-2022. However, due to the significant and lasting effects of COVID-19 on our global community, it is important that potential Education Abroad students assess their risk tolerance with planning travel in these uncertain times; make backup plans in case their studies cannot move forward as planned; and if approved, set realistic goals about what the experience will look like. Your well-being is important to CSU. While we want you to have an education abroad experience, we need to remain flexible in this evolving situation.

Education Abroad Programs taught by Communication Studies Faculty

ITALY – Communication in Rome, Italy

Travel and study in Rome, Italy, with Dr. Julia Khrebtan-Hörhager

Dates: June 27 – August 1

Build intercultural and global communication skills through exposure to, and analysis of, Italian identity, and effective strategies for dialogue with a global mindset. View the 2019 student blog here. Historically, this program has offered a second course related to Cinematic Rome. For summer 2021, only one course will be offered in Italy, see the Academics tab on the course webpage for details.

Highlights

  • Live and study for five weeks in one of the great capitals of the world
  • View masterworks of art and architecture in the historical seat of Western civilization
  • Study and travel with an intercultural communication expert fluent in several languages

Learn More/Apply

SOUTH KOREA – Cinema, Culture & History in South Korea
SPAIN - Communication Studies in Spain

Education Abroad Scholarships

Department of Communication Studies Education Abroad Scholarship

This scholarship supports participation in a communication studies-led program in Italy, South Korea, or Spain.

  • Must be accepted into a Communication Studies strategic education abroad program
  • Minimum GPA of 2.5 (2.75 preferred)
  • Must demonstrate financial need

Frank B. Davis and Sue Davis Pendell Scholarship

This scholarship provides scholarship(s) to benefit students enrolled in the Department of Communication Studies within the College of Liberal Arts at Colorado State University.

  • Must be sophomore, junior or senior undergraduates pursuing a degree in Communication Studies
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative 2.5 GPA
  • Must be accepted to a CSU approved Education Abroad program at Colorado State University
  • Must demonstrate financial need

Office of International Programs Scholarships

The Office of International Programs (OIP) offers several additional need-based and merit-based scholarship opportunities. Awards range from $250 to $2,500.

Center for Public Deliberation

Center for Public Deliberation poster

"Working with the CPD has really been the culmination of everything I have learned as a communication studies student. In my major, I have focused primarily on rhetoric, public speaking, persuasion, and dialogue, and the CPD has let me practice and hone those skills. It has also helped me engage in my community in an incredibly meaningful way."

- CPD Student Associate Leslie Schenk

The Center for Public Deliberation has been facilitating community conversations since 2006. We help our community talk through tough issues such as affordable housing, climate change, aging, and transportation.

Every semester, the CPD selects 15-20 new students to become trained facilitators. Students enroll in a 3-credit course, SPCM 408: Applied Deliberative Techniques, to learn the skills needed to manage effective and meaningful conversations.

As a facilitator, you are on the front lines helping citizens share their differing points of view and listen to each other. You play an important role in making our community a better place.

Following the first semester, students are required to register for at least one credit of practicum, which is equal to 45 hours of CPD-related work. This work includes facilitating at community events, working on a CPD team, event planning, public relations, data entry, and other skill-building tasks.

ACT Human Rights Film Festival

ACT group standing in purple-lit room

Awaken, connect, and transform your student experience at CSU by stepping into the ACT Human Rights Film Festival as a volunteer, program committee member, or festival assistant.

Produced by the Department of Communication Studies at Colorado State University, ACT Human Rights Film Festival screens artistically excellent films from around the world and fosters conversations about social justice and human rights.

ACT Programs

Festival: ACT hosts an annual film festival in Fort Collins, Colorado each April. Throughout the week-long festival, ACT screens films that explore human rights and social justice themes. The festival brings filmmakers from throughout the world to Fort Collins to engage in dialogue, Q&As, and panel discussions. ACT strives to broaden local/global awareness, create community connections, and to encourage civic engagement.

ACT Year-Round: Launched in early 2019, ACT Year-Round brings must-see films to northern Colorado throughout the year. ACT Year-Round’s goals are to connect audiences with social justice films all year and to help remove barriers for participation.

Call to ACT: This program creates pathways for local and regional nonprofit and other organizations working on human rights and social justice issues to engage ACT’s audiences. ACT’s films are paired with relevant Fort Collins and northern Colorado activists and organizations and audiences are encouraged to get involved.

Take SPCM 480 – Film Festivals Practicum

Offered in spring, SPCM 480 provides students with hands-on experience organizing, planning, promoting, and executing ACT.

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Campus Involvement & Leadership

There are countless opportunities across campus for putting your communication skills into practice – and learning new ones along the way – while having fun, meeting new people, and making a difference.

Your one-stop shop for campus involvement and leadership is the Lory Student Center. Here’s an initial lineup of ideas for where you can pair your interests with your skills and expand your horizons.

Rocky Mountain Student Media

Student Leadership, Involvement and Community Engagement

Student-run Clubs, Organizations & Affinity Groups

Fraternity & Sorority Life

CSU Undergraduate Research Opportunities

CSU has several exciting opportunities for presenting undergraduate research. The Institute for Learning and Teaching outlines these on their website.

Celebrate Undergraduate Research and Creativity:
Once a year (in April) all students participating in undergraduate research, service learning, and creative opportunities at Colorado State University are invited to present their work at the Celebrate Undergraduate Research and Creativity (CURC) Showcase.

Multicultural Undergraduate Research, Art and Leadership Symposium

The annual Multicultural Undergraduate Research, Art and Leadership Symposium (MURALS) provides students of color in various disciplines the opportunity to explore and present a research project related to one's passion or interest.

National Undergraduate Research Opportunities


Western States Communication Association Undergraduate Scholars Research Conference

The Western States Communication Association hosts an annual convention every February that includes an Undergraduate Scholars Research Conference. The USRC is an excellent opportunity for undergraduate scholars and researchers to showcase their scholarly and creative work and to receive feedback from experienced scholars in the field. Undergraduate students benefit from participating in the research conference by crafting and sharing a professional presentation, meeting other undergraduate scholars in the field, and learning about graduate studies in Communication. The conference concludes with an awards ceremony.