MA in Global Communcations: Development Communications Track

Track Description

The Development Communications track is designed for students with a clear interest in working in communications roles for governments or civil society actors involved in local, national and cross-border development, such as NGOs, aid organizations and international organizations. It is suitable both for current professionals looking to expand their academic grounding in development communications theory and practice, and for recent graduates hoping to gain practical career-relevant skills in order to enter a career in this field. 

AUP’s interdisciplinary approach and multicultural environment takes on new meaning in a development communications context, as the work involves navigating and appreciating multiple perspectives and engaging in translation across cultures, languages and ways of being. The track places a strong emphasis on the ethical issues to consider when working in development fields, particularly when working in unfamiliar contexts. It takes a critical approach to assessing development communications strategies and exploring the challenges inherent in the field alongside the benefits. Tailored practicums in locations including France, Morocco and India push students to engage, for example, in sustainable development, or NGO work, often through direct engagement with development professionals on the ground.

Alongside the skills developed through core MAGC courses, students in the development communications track explore topics such as:

  • the issues impacting global civil society, including freedom of expression; advocacy, governance and the rule of law; and political and institutional agency;
  • historical and present-day communications practices that promote development, social change and global justice;
  • actors and agents of social change, from international bodies such as UNESCO and the OECD to smaller-scale development NGOs and local government bodies;
  • strategic communications initiatives surrounding topics such as public health, education, women’s empowerment and environmental sustainability, among others; and
  • the complex interactions between civil society and donors, governments and the corporate world.

Development communications students also have access to a number of electives from across the global communications degree and other relevant disciplines, such as the MA in International Affairs, MSc in Human Rights and Data Science, the Msc in Sustainable Brand Management, and can choose a variety of courses including those in in place branding; media, gender and globalization; and food, culture and communication.

Find out more about the requirements of the general track on the main program page.

Structure

MA in Global Communications, Development Communications Track: Program Requirements (48 credits)

The MA in Global Communications is a 48-credit program, regardless of which track is selected. All courses listed below are 4-credit courses unless otherwise noted. 

Please note that all requirements from previous years can be found in our archive catalogs.

Core Courses (16 credits)

Course NumberCourse Name
CM5001Global Communications
CM5012 
or
CM5025/PO2025
Civil Society: International and Comparative Perspectives
or
Communication and the Global Public Sphere
CM5053Development Communications
CM5063
or
CM5068
Sustainable Development Practicum
or
NGO Practicum

 

Track Electives (16 credits)
Select four courses from the following list.

Course NumberCourse Name
CM5005Identity Formation in a Transnational World
CM5016/PO5016Digital Advocacy within and without Borders
CM5020MODMAGC Module: 
Choose two modules (2 credits each)
CM5020MOD
CM5022Place Branding
CM5060Visual Culture, Theory and Communication
CM5062Digital Media Writing Practicum
CM5070Media, Gender and Globalization
CM5076Food, Culture and Communication
CM5080Visual Design Practicum
CM5081/PO5081Collaborative Methodologies in Conflict Resolution
LW5091/PO5091Topics in Law/Topics in Politics
Selected politics or law courses.
CM5091Topics in Communications
(Changes each semester. Is selectable if relevant to student’s chosen track.)

 

Open Electives (8 credits)

Students choose two additional elective courses from among all other MAGC course offerings (coded CM5) or selected courses from other master’s programs when relevant.  

Internship, Thesis or Applied Project (6 credits) and Compulsory Seminar (2 credits)

Course numberCourse Name

CM5095INPR

or

GR5096

or

CM5098INT

Thesis

or

Applied Project Capstone

or

Internship

Plus compulsory 2-credit seminar

GR5093

or

GR5099

Global Workplace Cultures: Internship Seminar

or

Thesis Seminar

 

Timeline: Coursework and Research Master’s

The MA in Global Communications Development Track can be completed over three to four semesters, including Summer semester. The length of an internship or thesis may vary; however, many students choose to take additional time for these components.
 

    FallSpringSummerFall 2
    3 core courses2 core courses2 elective coursesInternship/Thesis*
    1 track elective course2 track elective courses  
     Internship/Thesis Seminar (2 credits)  
    16 credits18 credits8 credits6 credits

    * The length of the internship or thesis may vary. Many students choose to take additional time for these components.

    Required GPA

    Graduate students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.00. Students with a GPA of less than 3.00 will be placed on probation. Only two grades of C (or C+) may be counted towards an MA degree. Students do not earn credit for grades below C.

    SpringSummerFallSpring 2
    3 core courses2 elective courses2 core coursesInternship/Thesis*
    1 track elective course 2 track elective courses 
      Internship/Thesis Seminar (2 credits) 
    16 credits8 credits18 credits6 credits

    * The length of the internship or thesis may vary. Many students choose to take additional time for these components.

    Required GPA

    Graduate students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.00. Students with a GPA of less than 3.00 will be placed on probation. Only two grades of C (or C+) may be counted towards an MA degree. Students do not earn credit for grades below C.

    1st Semester2nd Semester3rd Semester
    3 core courses2 core courses2 elective courses
    1 track elective course2 track elective coursesInternship/Thesis*
     Internship/Thesis Seminar (2 credits) 
    16 credits18 credits14 credits

    * The length of the internship or thesis may vary. Many students choose to take additional time for these components.

    Required GPA

    Graduate students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.00. Students with a GPA of less than 3.00 will be placed on probation. Only two grades of C (or C+) may be counted towards an MA degree. Students do not earn credit for grades below C.