Missouri State University

College of Arts and Letters - Uniting Passion and Creativity

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  • School of Communication Studies

    The School of Communication Studies at Missouri State University is comprised of two academic departments:

    Department of Communication

    The Department of Communication offers varied areas of study in public relations, socio-political communication, speech and theatre education, and communication studies with track options including health communication, organizational communication, ethical leadership, interpersonal communication, rhetoric, and intercultural communication and diversity. The department supports pre-professional student organizations such as the Association of Women in Communication, Public Relations Student Society of America, and Lambda Pi Eta Communication Honor Society, and its unique programs of ethical leadership and conflict resolution tie directly to the Missouri State University Public Affairs mission. COM students also have opportunities for involvement with community internships and as volunteers or mediators in the Center for Dispute Resolution.

    Department of Media, Journalism and Film

    The Department of Media, Journalism and Film provides diverse and relevant programs in audio studies, computer animation studies, multimedia studies, video studies, broadcast journalism, print and internet journalism, film and media studies, digital film production, and media production. This year MJF students have won over fifty regional and national awards for their work, including five awards in the 2012 Broadcast Education Association Media Arts Competition in Las Vegas, five Society of Professional Journalist and three Collegiate Press Association awards. The campus newspaper, The Standard, won one of thirteen Pacemaker Awards presented to four-year non-daily newspapers by the Collegiate Press Association – a first in the hundred-year history of the student paper. The TV news magazine show, Ozark News Journal, has earned three Society of Professional Journalism awards. The department also inaugurated a department-to-department student exchange with Oxford Brookes University in England. This summer,  MJF will launch its first short study abroad program, taking media production and journalism students to the headwaters of the Amazon in Ecuador to document the eco-tourism activities taking place in that unique location. And the department is on track to complete the high-definition upgrade to its television studio facilities this year.

    More Academic Departments

    Department of Art + Design

    Department of Art and Design has outstanding faculty and students, and offers diverse and relevant areas of study in ceramics, computer animation, digital arts, drawing, metals/jewelry, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, graphic design, illustration, and art history. As the largest and one of the most varied publicly funded departments of art and design in Missouri, faculty are dedicated to providing a quality curricular and extra-curricular experience to prepare individuals for careers in art, design, art education, and art history, as well as to develop culturally aware, independently minded, and imaginative leaders by educating the next generation of creative thinkers. The department is also dedicated to enhancing student and community understanding of, and engagement with, the visual dimensions of culture, serving the university and broader community through the Student Exhibition Center, the Brick City Gallery, and other public venues and collaborative service activities. Graduates find meaningful careers in many areas, such as advertising, publishing, education, as graphic designers, professional studio artists, studio and freelance photographers, computer animators, digital artists, museum or gallery personnel and consultants.

    Department of English

    The English Department offers relevant areas of study in English with emphases in creative writing, literature, and professional writing. The department also features numerous co-curricular programs and remarkable events each year that reach out to our fellow community citizens and colleagues on campus. Annually, the English Department hosts the Children’s Literature Festival of the Ozarks. Thousands of fourth- through sixth- grade kids come to hear their favorite authors speak and autograph their books. The Ozarks Writing Project helps train, revitalize, and reinvigorate hundreds of teachers in the region in all the disciplines that use writing. Its director invites area fourth grade students to the Youth Writing Camp each summer for a special day teaching them important writing skills that they can use in their school work. The Moon City Press, in cooperation with the art and design department, publishes 6-8 books annually. At its heart, the MCP is (and will always be) a "teaching laboratory," providing real-world experience to student researchers, writers, artists, editors, and graphic designers. The English Department features students and faculty reading their poetry and fiction each semester and has hosted state and national Poet Laureates as well as nationally known authors in readings for MSU students and for the community.

    Department of Modern and Classical Languages

    The Department of Modern and Classical Languages offers diverse and relevant areas of study in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Latin, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. Students in these courses are taught by a diverse faculty, which includes professors from a number of foreign countries and native speakers of the languages we teach. Students benefit from the personal attention they receive inside and out of class. Whether studying in a classroom or talking with a native speaker of a foreign language, MCL students get acquainted with other cultures in a way that will enrich their personal lives and prepare them for future careers. The department offers a variety of course options, including iCourses, online and blended courses, as well as many evening classes. Students leave MCL's undergraduate programs prepared for graduate studies in languages, communication, political science, marketing and more.

    Department of Music

    The Department of Music offers diverse and relevant areas of study in music with options in composition, instrumental performance, jazz performance, keyboard performance, vocal performance, instrumental music, vocal/choral music, and musical theatre. The department's programs address Missouri State University's public affairs mission in creating cultural competence and community engagement in the over 250 yearly free concerts presented on the MSU campus that attract a wide audience of both campus and community listeners. Its music education majors model ethical leadership in their work in teaching practicums and student teaching. The bands, choirs, orchestra, opera, and jazz ensembles have a place for everyone, major or non-major. Most music majors participate in Study Away opportunities through international performance trips or class study abroad.

    Department of Theatre and Dance

    The Department of Theatre and Dance houses outstanding faculty and students, offering diverse and relevant areas of study in musical theatre, theatre studies, speech and theatre education, with options in acting, dance, design, technology, and stage management. All of the department's programs are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre. Its students are talented and enthusiastic, and faculty members are dedicated to providing the knowledge, skills and creative experiences that students need to build a career. Department graduates work as performers, designers, and stage managers from New York to Los Angeles, Education graduates lead theatre programs throughout the state and region, and other alumni are excelling in prestigious graduate schools such as Southwest Methodist University and California School for the Arts.

    Interdisciplinary Programs

    Electronic Arts

    The Electronic Arts program is an interdisciplinary program that stresses collaboration across the arts, while fostering creative excellence and technical mastery in animation, sound design and music recording, film scoring, interactive multimedia, and narrative film making.

    This highly selective program is comprised of motivated students from the music, art and design, and media, journalism and film departments. Students are introduced to all areas of the program, then specialize in one. Throughout tight bonds are formed between students as they work closely and intensely in creative teams. As a culminating experience, seniors collaborate for two semesters with other EA students to create an original, professional-quality project. Many of these senior thesis projects go on to win international and national awards.

    Global Studies

    Global studies can be defined as the study of global issues and trends with the goal of developing an understanding of the increasingly global nature of every aspect of life and how this shift affects local, national and international environments.

    The Global Studies major at Missouri State University is inherently linked to MSU's public affairs mission in that students are educated as globally aware citizens. In an increasingly interdependent world, students must be aware of and be educated in political, social, economic and cultural aspects and, combined with necessary language skills, be able to live and work as citizens in such a world.

    Musical Theatre

    The Musical Theatre program is designed for the singer/actor/dancer who possesses a strong foundation in the skills needed to pursue a career as a performing professional in musical theatre, including "book" musicals and variety productions. It is a cooperative program between the music department and the theatre and dance department.

    In addition to excellent musical training – particularly vocal – this University program also offers students outstanding acting and dancing courses, as well as a variety of opportunities to perform and earn professional performer credentials.

  • Missouri Fine Arts Academy June 8-28, 2014

    The Missouri Fine Arts Academy (MFAA) is a three-week summer residential program for highly motivated student artists in visual arts, theatre, dance, creative writing, and music. The Academy offers an intensive schedule of classes in interdisciplinary and discipline-specific arts, and a wide range of co-curricular activities. MFAA is conducted with the support and cooperation of Missouri State University, and is funded through program fees, endowments, scholarships, and private donations.