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New and Prospective Students

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We are excited to welcome the newest cohort of Communication majors!

Communication at UCSD is a field of study that emphasizes the role of technologies of communication in shaping human experience and relationships. It draws from a range of disciplines, including anthropology, psychology, sociology, political science, and visual arts.


More About the Communication Major at UCSD

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Communication occupies an especially exciting position in contemporary scholarship and education. We have seen over the past generation the emergence of new media forms as fundamental to the fabric of our social, economic, scientific, and cultural life as was the invention of the printing press in the 15 century. The ever-expanding centrality of information technology and communication industries; the mass migration of social interactions to the digital world; the substitution of mass media for other institutions of socialization and intermediation; the life-altering impact of globalization, which makes mediated relationships across distance and community boundaries increasingly important; and the growing attention to how built and digital environments assume and shape as well as foster particular forms and practices of life - all have motivated increased attention across the social sciences and humanities to mass media, information technology, and processes of mediation. The "linguistic turn" in many disciplines, subsequently broadened to include visual and other discourses, have similarly increased the centrality of our discipline and the range of its connections to other fields.

As you traverse our website, the department’s unusual approach to the field of Communication will undoubtedly become apparent. Our faculty come from fields across the Social Sciences and Humanities and bring multiple disciplinary traditions and methodologies to bear in the study of communication as an institutional, technological, cultural, architectural, and cognitive phenomenon, inextricably anchored in and shaped by questions of democracy, diversity, social justice, and social change.

What this means for our undergraduates majoring in Communication is a more theoretically-oriented investigation of how discourses, communication infrastructure, media institutions, and the spatial dimensions of human activity together shape economic, political, and cultural life.

Although we do not provide pre-professional training in journalism, advertising, public relations, or business communication, our curriculum is nevertheless rich in hands-on learning opportunities for students interested in designing and producing media, conducting fieldwork, or bridging the university- community divide through participation at a number of our faculty directed, regionally-based labs and community-based sites. Students in Communication can expect to graduate with analytical tools applicable to a variety of careers, not only in the industry sectors traditionally categorized as “Communication,” such as journalism, broadcasting, advertising, and marketing, but in other fields where communication systems and processes are increasingly central, for example, government and public policy, law, business and non-profit organizations.

The COMM Major and Minor at a Glance

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Newly Admitted First-Year Students

Congratulations and welcome! 

As a first-year student, most of your early planning as a newly admitted student will involve working closely with your College.

A few things to keep in mind:

    • Please focus on General Education courses in your first year. Work with your College Advisor to choose courses for your first Fall Quarter.

    • Plan to take COMM 10 in Fall Quarter of your second (Sophomore) year. COMM 10 is required for the major, and is a prerequisite course for upper division Communication courses.




Here are a couple of Quarter by Quarter Plans to help visualize completing the major:

Quarter by Quarter Plan: New Frosh (4 Year Plan)

Quarter by Quarter Plan: New Frosh (3 Year Plan)

Newly Admitted Transfer Students

Congratulations and welcome!

You should plan to enroll in 2 COMM courses in your first Fall Quarter. You can select Plan 1 or Plan 2:

Plan 1: Enroll in COMM 10 and COMM 100A

  • During your enrollment pass day and time, enroll in COMM 10.
  • Once enrolled in COMM 10, submit an Enrollment Authorization System (EASy) request to enroll in COMM 100A.
  • Once your EASy request has been approved, return to WebReg and enroll in COMM 100A.
  • NOTE: Students will only receive approval to enroll in COMM 100A if they are already enrolled in COMM 10. Waitlisted is not enrolled; EASy requests will be denied if you are only waitlisted in COMM 10.

Plan 2: Enroll in COMM 10 and one Intermediate Course (COMM 101 - 119)
  • During your enrollment pass day and time, enroll in COMM 10.
  • Once enrolled in COMM 10, submit an Enrollment Authorization System (EASy) request to enroll in a specific Intermediate Elective (COMM 101 - 119).
  • Once your EASy request has been approved, return to WebReg and enroll in the Intermediate Elective course you requested.
  • NOTE: Students will only receive approval to enroll in an Intermediate Elective if they are already enrolled in COMM 10. Waitlisted is not enrolled; EASy requests will be denied if you are only waitlisted in COMM 10.


The department recommends that transfer students enroll in no more than 3 Communication courses in their first quarter. These COMM courses can be paired with a college requirement course (if any) or a course of interest from a different department. 


 
Here are a couple of Quarter by Quarter Plans to help visualize completing the major:

Quarter by Quarter Plan: Transfer Students (taking COMM 10 in FALL)

Quarter by Quarter Plan: Transfer Students (taking COMM 10 in WINTER)

Prospective Students

First-Year Students

A first-year applicant is currently in high school or has graduated from high school but has not enrolled in a regular (non-summer) session at a college or university. If you've completed college courses during high school (through summer after graduation), you're still considered a first-year applicant. Please visit UCSD's Office of Undergraduate Admissions First-Year Students webpage for more information. 


Transfer Students

A transfer applicant has been enrolled in a regular session at a college or university after high school, excluding summer sessions. UC San Diego enrolls transfer students at the junior level. 32% of our undergraduate class are transfer students: free thinkers and creative nonconformists from all over the globe who converge on our campus to shatter the limitations of "ordinary." Please visit UCSD's Office of Undergraduate Admissions Transfer Students webpage for more information. 

Minors and Double Majors Commonly Paired with the Communication Major

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