Frequently Asked Questions
The following information answers questions that current and prospective graduate students often have during the admission process and during the course of the program. Please review this information carefully and if you have further questions, please contact Barb DeSanto.
What version of the Graduate Record Examination do I need to take for admission?
Students applying for admission to the Mass Communications master’s program must take the GRE General examination. The exam is offered in an online format at any of the six Prometric Test Centers in Kansas. Information on the test centers and dates the tests are offered is available at http://www.ets.org/gre
Students do not need to take any of the specialized subject tests for admission to the MC program.
How long does it take to complete the graduate program in journalism?
The majority of our graduate students take three courses per semester, at which rate it typically takes two years to complete the 30 required hours.
How many hours of coursework are required each semester?
Most full-time students take six to nine hours (two to three courses) per semester. The Graduate School requires full-time students to take at least 6 hours per semester. GTAs are required to take a minimum of 6 credit hours and may take up to 15 hours per semester, with approval from their advisor.
Can I get a master's degree in a specialized area like Public Relations or Broadcast Journalism?
We do not have specialized degree programs at the graduate level. Graduate students can include any 600-level or above courses in MC for graduate credit. Many of the 600-level courses are in specialized areas like Advertising or Public Relations. Interested students can also contact the sequence heads or their major advisors to talk about special projects they can undertake.
After I start the program, can I take classes in other departments?
Yes, as long as they are at the 500-level or above. No more than two classes at the 500-level can count towards your degree. Many graduate students take classes in areas like History, Marketing, Psychology, Sociology and Statistics.
What kind of job/career can I expect with a graduate degree?
Our graduates have jobs in journalism and media industries, from newspaper and magazine reporters to public relations practitioners. Many of our graduates go on to do their Ph.D. in specialized fields to begin a career in teaching and research.
Whom do I talk to about my visa status?
You should contact the KSU International Student Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 785-532-6448. They can provide valuable information and services for international students.
What is the comprehensive exam?
All master's degree candidates must pass a written comprehensive examination in their area of concentration. Committee members assign topics on which the student will be tested. This is a four-hour exam usually taken near the end of the studentís coursework, but before the thesis or creative project.
Are all students required to do a thesis or is there a professional track?
Students may choose one of the following program options (subject to the approval of your committee): (a) Thesis: a minimum of 24 hours of graduate credit in addition to 6 hours of master's thesis research credit (b) Report: a minimum of 28 hours of graduate credit in addition to 2 hours of master's report credit (c) Non-thesis / non-report: a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate credit in coursework only, must demonstrate evidence of scholarly effort, such as term papers or production of creative work
What academic rules should I be aware of?
Students must maintain a 3.0 GPA or will be put on probation. If a student has less than a 3.0 for two continuous semesters they can be dismissed from the University.
Why must I submit an Affidavit of Financial Support (AFS)?
This form demonstrates that international students have sufficient funds to study at Kansas State University. U.S. immigration regulations require the University to verify that every international student has the financial resources to pay for all education, living and other expenses.
What is a program of study?
Every master's student must file a Program of Study (POS) with the Graduate School, usually before the end of the second semester of study. This is a formal list of courses the student intends to complete to fulfill the requirements of the degree and should consist solely of courses directly related to the master's degree. No more than three hours of independent study courses (MC 680 Readings or MC 690 Problems) may be counted toward the 30 hours required. No more than ten hours of graduate credit may be transferred to K-State from another accredited graduate program. At least 18 of the 30 hours completed must be at the 700-level or higher.
Are graduate courses offered in the evening?
Since some of our graduate students work full-time, the required core courses are offered during the evenings. Many of the elective courses are offered in the evenings or late afternoons.
How do I form a committee?
Students completing a project or thesis need a committee. The committee must include at least three graduate faculty members. The chair and one other committee member must be MC.
How much does it cost to study at Kansas State University?
As of August 4, 2008, the University estimates that it costs $27,315 per year to live and study here. If you already reside in the area, the cost of just tuition and fees (not textbooks) is $934 for 3 hours, $1813 for 6 and $2691 for 9.
What if I took IELTS instead of the TOEFL?
For IELTS scores less than 7, an English proficiency test will be given at time of enrollment if admitted to the program. Students who do not pass this test will be referred to the English Language Program for English coursework.