The interdisciplinary minor in political communication is offered jointly by the School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs and the Department of Communication. This minor is available to all Mason undergraduate students with the exception of communication majors pursuing a concentration in political communication. For policies governing all minors, see the AP.5 Undergraduate Policies section of this catalog.
Political communication explores the interaction among members of the public, the media, advocacy groups, and politicians in democratic society. This minor uses a diverse approach to questions of how mass and interpersonal communication influence democratic functioning, including (1) how political actors use strategic messaging to persuade and mobilize the public, (2) how citizens make sense of these messages and their impact on engagement, deliberation, efficacy, knowledge, and participation, and (3) the role of the mass media in facilitating or hindering this relationship. Political communication includes explicitly political activities like voting and political campaigns. It also encompasses any issue of public debate or deliberation, including culture and social movements.
The University Catalog is the authoritative source for information on program requirements and courses. The Schedule of Classes is the authoritative source for information on classes scheduled for this semester. See the Schedule for the most up-to-date information and see Patriot web to register for classes. Requirements may be different for earlier catalog years. See the University Catalog archives.
Students pursing this minor must complete 18 credits with a minimum GPA of 2.00. Eight credits of course work must be unique to the minor. A minimum of 6 COMM credits and a minimum of 6 GOVT credits are required.
COMM 386 - Special Topics in Political Communication may be substituted for any other COMM course with the permission of the minor director, depending on the specific topic.
GOVT 319 - Issues in Government and Politics may be substituted for any other GOVT course with the permission of the minor director, depending on the specific topic.
Courses from the School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs may be substituted in the cultural politics, persuasion theory, or political process categories below, with the permission of the minor director.