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Communication and Rhetoric, M.Sc.

  • Application Deadline
  • 24 months
University rank #301 (ARWU) Troy, NY, United States
Students entering the graduate program in Communication and Rhetoric bring diverse cultural and intellectual perspectives to Rensselaer and the Communication and Media department’s multidisciplinary research community. 
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They matriculate with experience or research interests in the humanities and social sciences with a focus on how texts create and are created by culture and society. These incoming graduate students aim to understand how texts – written texts, cultural events, place, communication artifacts and processes, design outcomes, games, interactive media – influence and are influenced by humanity and the social and material environments. They also aim to contribute new knowledge through the design, redesign, interpretation, or appropriation of texts. To these ends, they may study historical, contemporary, or future texts to develop a critical understanding of cultural expression, facilitate meaningful interaction, or proffer new technologically mediated ways to communicate. 

The graduate program in Communication and Rhetoric offers a multidisciplinary curriculum that engages students in questioning the complex textual phenomena they encounter, as conveyed through media and communication technologies. An integrated curriculum in communication, culture, design, and media prepares students to contribute to sustainable and resilient national and international communication infrastructures. Students conduct humanistic and empirical research focused on the development and analysis of multimedia, multicultural, and multimodal texts that enable them to orient and otherwise operationalize diverse media and communication technologies to contribute to the sustenance and preservation of humanity and the environment and effect positive global change.

The graduate program in Communication and Rhetoric provides a research platform for studying humanity's mediated interactions with texts for social or political advocacy, cultural expression or engagement, and cognition. The stories told through mediated texts—like Twitter, television, games, data, software, novels, still and moving images, robots, and Indigenous and vernacular artifacts and processes—shape intellect, individual and collective identities, aspirations, perceptions of others, and behaviors. And such stories profoundly affect political, cultural, and social institutions in our local and global communities.

Programme Structure

The program accepts students from discourse-related fields such as English, communication arts, or journalism and students with research experience in the social sciences, physical sciences, or engineering.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

English Language Requirements

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120. Read more about TOEFL iBT ®.

    Schedule TOEFL®
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL®PBT is administered in a paper format and measures your ability to use and understand English in a classroom setting at the college or university level. It accurately measures how well you can listen, read and write in English while performing academic tasks. Read more about TOEFL®PBT.

    Schedule TOEFL®

General Requirements

  • Graduate Application
  • Nonrefundable application processing fee of $75
  • Personal Statement
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Portfolio, if required by department
  • IT Background Evaluation form (IT only)
  • Transcripts and Degrees
  • Degree Equivalency

Tuition Fee

  • International

    54000 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 54000 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
  • National

    54000 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 54000 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
  • In-State

    54000 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 54000 USD per year and a duration of 24 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

Living costs for Troy

  • 958 - 2090 USD/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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