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Bachelor of Arts

Advocate for new realities. Achieve media fluency. Change your world

Digital. Convergence. Remix. Circulation. Fragmentation. Mobility. Collaboration. Crowdsourcing. Participatory. Personalization. Hashtag.

These buzz words reflect a reconfiguration of the world for media and communication professionals. Clarke’s communication degree program empowers students to navigate this digital media world. A communication major at Clarke is challenged to become flexible, adaptive, and nimble. So, our students studying for a bachelor of communication are preparing for many career options, even ones that do not yet exist.

What is a communications major? Clarke communications major students become powerful advocates fluent with digital media. The communication studies program balances new media studies with rhetorical fundamentals. Students pursue interests though projects analyzing communication, producing with visual and audio media, crafting arguments, and designing presentations.

At the same time, bachelor of arts in communication students graduate with a sophisticated communicative awareness, deep knowledge of how rhetoric and digital media shape society, and honed skills to make an impact. We help communications majors and graduates find their paths for their long-term success in a variety of professional careers. Visit Clarke University in Dubuque, Iowa, for hands-on-learning about our digital media studies and communications major.

Clarke University Senior Communication Major student working on capstone project in radio room.

Clarke University Communication Degree students engaging while working on a project in Dubuque

Flexibility with a Communication Degree

The ability to communicate effectively is a vital skill that is applicable to most careers. With the upsurge of the internet and social media, the need for strategic communication professionals in the digital media world has also grown. As a communications major, you will learn how to navigate, manage, and participate in the multifaceted flow of information. You will be able to serve as the voice of any organization in Dubuque, Iowa, nationally, and worldwide.

Study Communication with the Best

Innovative learning within the Communication Degree Program. As a communications major, you will:

  • Create podcasts by weaving interviews with music and effects through sound editing.
  • Produce viral videos for local non-profits.
  • Write news stories and take photographs for The Crux.
  • Design multimedia magazines for local non-profits, such as the Dubuque Museum of Art.
  • Debate cases petitioning the Supreme Court in a moot court.
  • Explore popular culture artifacts, like TV programs, memes, and Snapchat, by writing about them academically.
  • Generate advertising and public relations campaigns for local causes, such as the community health center.
Clarke University Communication Major students in a class discussion.
Clarke University Communication Major using the latest technology.

Technology Access

Our communication and digital media degree majors have access to professional technology:

  • Exclusive communication labs
  • A dozen iMacs
  • Adobe Creative Cloud
  • The latest MacOS apps
  • GoPro video camera
  • Canon EOS 80D and Canon EOS Rebel T7i digital SLR cameras
  • Olympus LS-100 digital audio recorders
  • Two Røde shotgun mics and one boom pole
  • Eachshot LED ring light
  • Renovated radio station space and podcast/vidcast recording studio
  • Two whisper rooms – sound isolation enclosures
  • Green screen for video-ready, chroma key compositing

Program Details

Our communications degree program prepares students for an ever-changing media environment, develops students’ rhetorical invention to adapt for future changes, and empowers students to advocate for themselves, for others, and for products, ideas, and actions.

Our Communication Major Students:

  • Encounter the bleeding edge of media studies by learning to leverage emerging communication technologies informed by historical knowledge.
  • Become strong advocates by crafting compelling arguments and developing persuasive presentations.
  • Produce professional-quality podcasts, news stories, communication campaigns, and research projects.
  • Challenge cultural and political assumptions that perpetuate injustice and inhibit freedom.
  • Practice critical analysis of written, spoken, and visual messages to better identify and solve problems while having fun discussions about topics like popular culture or political discourse.
  • Contribute to our new student media initiative, The Crux, which converges student newspaper, student radio, and student television into one digital space. Launched in May 2017, The Crux is digital media for and by students.

Communications Degree Classes with Relevance

Social Media and Virtual Communities — Study social media platforms and their impact on community-building.

Professional Presentation — Make oral presentations more compelling and more beautiful to meet the needs of a variety of speaking situations.

Visual Literacy — Analyze and create visual communication media used in social networks, online culture, marketing, film, television, art, and science.

Admission to Clarke University

Applicants are considered on an individual basis. Apply to Clarke today to begin your journey.

More Opportunity for the Communication major at Clarke: The Crux

A new, student media initiative, The Crux, launched in May 2017 with the primary purpose to be a campus news and culture outlet of, for, and by students. The Crux is an excellent way for communications degree students to publish their work, creativity, and research. It provides a powerful avenue that can be utilized in a professional interview setting to highlight projects from their beginning stages to the final format. The Crux unites student newspaper, student radio, and student television into one digital place. Visit

Let’s talk about jobs

You might wonder, what can I do with a communications degree? Clarke University offers a multi-faceted Bachelor of Arts degree that empowers students to pursue successful careers in a variety of fields, not just one. Here is a sampling of the vast lineup of jobs available to graduates of our communications degree program:

  • Social Media
  • Media Relations
  • Public Affairs
  • Professional Writing
  • Campaign Management
  • Recruiting
  • Brand Consultation
  • Spokesperson
  • Advertising
  • Public Relations
  • Journalism
  • Promotions
  • Event Planning
  • Fundraising
  • Law
  • Academia
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Meet Our Faculty

When our communications major graduates speak about the Clarke moments that helped shape them, there’s always a professor in the story. That’s because being a faculty member at Clarke University requires a deep passion for educating, encouraging, and empowering students. Here, your professors will know your name. They will push you to develop your full potential, and then they’ll ask for more. And, they’ll be right there to congratulate you when you exceed even your own expectations. Often, it’s a relationship that lasts a lifetime.

View Our Faculty & Staff
Chrissy Bartels

Chrissy Bartels

Visiting Assistant Professor of Communication

Media literacy. Communication matters. There really is just one incorrect comma placement between world peace and total annihilation. We owe it to the world to learn how to communicate and we owe it to ourselves to be sensitive and acutely aware of what is being communicated through mass media channels. In a global society, understanding the cultures around the world can create more harmony. We don’t have to travel to see things through the eyes of various cultures. But let’s do it anyway!

Getting ready to take notes in a Clarke University English Class
There’s more to college than going to class.

The Classroom and Beyond

But don’t take our word for it…

Our Students & Alumni

Mimi Ottavi

Mimi Ottavi

Communication '20

The best part of the Communications major program at Clarke is its diversity and broadness. There’s no limit to the subjects we study – from law to media studies to rhetorical strategy. Clarke has not only prepared me for a wealth of professions, but it has also given me confidence in my skills as an interpersonal communicator.

Tucker LaBelle

Tucker LaBelle

Communication '22

The Clarke communication major pushes students to question and research in order to arrive at an answer that will both explain and tell a story. This major is the multi tool that will prepare students for jobs all across the world.

Jacob Schemmel

Jacob Schemmel


When Chrissy Bartels started as our new Communication professor, I decided to show her my creativity, and when I did, she knew I had potential to do amazing things in my future career, whatever that may be! Her classes are amazing, and she brings so much incredible experience and insight to what we do.  

Chrissy also recommended me as an intern for Susan Gorrell at the Julien Dubuque International Film FestivalWorking with Susan and getting behind-the-scenes knowledge has been a dream come true. I love storytelling and being creative, so it’s been fun to explore that through film.

Social Media Skills

CareerBuilder reported that 63% of 2017 employers expect employees to have social media savviness.

Annual salary

The average yearly salary for communication majors, according to the 2017 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Communication skills

According to Job Outlook 2018 survey of employers by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the number one quality for job candidates is the “ability to verbally communicate with persons inside and outside the organization,” making communications major graduates highly sought after.

Other Programs to Explore

Experience Clarke Communication for Yourself

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