Jun 15, 2024  
2013-2014 Undergraduate Bulletin 
2013-2014 Undergraduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Rhetorical Studies, B.A. Major in

Candidates for graduation from The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication  with the degree of Bachelor of Arts must fulfill the B.A. requirements as listed under The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication. In addition, students majoring in the Department of Rhetoric  must choose a concentration in one of three areas: speech communication; political communication; or communication, culture, and social action.

Note: The concentration in speech communication is recommended for students wishing to double major in rhetorical studies and another major. Students in other concentrations who wish to double major should consult with a department adviser as soon as they choose a major, in order to complete the major requirements on time.

Incoming freshmen and transfer students may declare a major in rhetorical studies; matriculated Hofstra University students must have a grade point average of at least 2.0 to declare a major in rhetorical studies. All declared majors in rhetorical studies must maintain a minimum grade point average in the major of 2.5 and a grade point average overall of 2.0 to remain in the major.

The requirements for each concentration are listed below.

The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication also requires that all majors in Rhetorical Studies take MASS 001  and RTVF 001 .

See Also: Communication B.A. Program Requirements

B.A. Requirements  for The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication majors.

Concentration in Speech Communication

The concentration in speech communication provides students with an overview of the discipline of communication studies, as well as focused course work in culture and identity, performance studies and public persuasion.

Program Requirements: - Total Semester Hours: 36

C. Performance Studies - Semester Hours: at least 6

 Chosen from among the following:

E. Semester Hours: 3

Chosen from among the following:


Designated sections of RHET 150 /151 , 170 /171 , RHET 180 to 189 A-Z , 197 , 198 , and 199  may also fulfill Speech Communication concentration requirements.


Students with a concentration in speech communication are also required to take 6 s.h. chosen from comparative literature, linguistics, literature in translation, drama, English, economics, history, philosophy, political science, psychology, sociology and anthropology.

NOTE: Majors in rhetorical studies who are also elementary education  majors are required to take 6 s.h. in mathematics and/or science to satisfy this requirement.

NOTE: Students who are interested in majoring in combined disciplines should inquire in The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication Dean’s Office, Room 318 Lawrence Herbert Hall.

Students with a concentration in speech communication are also encouraged to take course work and/or minor in radio, television, film; journalism; media studies; psychology; linguistics; English; drama; literature in translation; comparative literature; management; and marketing, in consultation with their major adviser.

Concentration in Political Communication

Law, government, issue advocacy, and social activism all rely on effective communication. Leaders in all of these fields are required both craft and respond to arguments as they persuade others, mobilize public opinion, forge consensus, and share information. This concentration offers students both a theoretical foundation necessary for understanding the role of communication in a diverse society, and intensive practice in creating and presenting messages to a variety of audiences. Through courses in the history and theory of rhetoric, social protest, persuasion, and mass media and politics, students learn about the importance of communication in political and social processes. Through courses in public speaking , argumentation and debate, and speechwriting, students learn to prepare, present, and respond critically to messages aimed at a variety of publics. By combining communication courses with supporting course work in political science, history, sociology, economics, and other areas, students develop a rich understanding of politics and society.

The political communication concentration is intended for students who are interested in positions of leadership in civic life, whether in government, public service, educational or cultural institutions, or non-governmental organizations or social advocacy groups. It is also an excellent program of study for students preparing for law school or for graduate school in communication or public affairs.

Program Requirements - Total Semester Hours: 39

A. Core Courses - Semester Hours: 12

C. Departmental Elective Courses - Semester Hours: 6-9 minimum

Chosen from among the following:

D. Supporting Course Work in Politics and Public Affairs - Semester Hours: 18

Semester Hours : 3

Concentration in Communication, Culture and Social Action

Drawing primarily from communication, performance, and rhetorical studies, the concentration in communication, culture, and social action (CCSA) is intended for students who want to pursue a fulfilling career that requires an understanding of social issues and cultural difference. This concentration gives students the flexibility to pursue a broad range of occupations in the public, private and government sectors. Some of these possibilities include: diplomacy, international business, law, public service, and human resources development.

The department provides a rich diversity of courses that includes a variety of theoretical, historical, critical, analytical, and interactive approaches to communication. The CCSA is divided into three major areas: departmental required courses; communication courses focused on language culture and identity; and courses in related disciplines.

Program Requirements - Semester Hours: 39

A. SPCM Core Courses - Semester Hours: 15

B. Communication and Culture Requirement

C. Concentrative Elective Courses

Cultural Performance and Social Action - Choose 9 Semester Hours From:

Designated sections of RHET 150 /151 170 /171 , 180 to 189 A-Z ,197 , 198 , and 199   may also fulfill CCSA departmental elective requirements.

Supporting Course Work - Semester Hours: 18


Majors in rhetorical studies who are also elementary education majors are required to take 6 semester hours in mathematics and/or science courses to satisfy this requirement.

For students interested in majoring in combined disciplines, inquiry should be made in The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication Dean’s Office, Room 318, Dempster Hall.

Rhetorical Studies majors are encouraged to take course work and/or minor in audio, video, film, journalism, mass media studies, psychology, linguistics, English, drama, literature in translation, comparative literature, management and marketing in consultation with the major adviser.