Undergrad questions answered here

Answers to questions about ...

Applying to the Communication major
Faculty advisors
General Education requirements
Global Education requirements
Peer advising
Study abroad and domestic exchange

Applying to the Communication major

Q. Where can I get an application?
A. Pick one up in the Undergraduate Advising Office, 411 Machmer Hall, or in 407A Machmer, or download it. Download an application at right.

Q. Who do I see for questions about my application?
A. Someone at the Undergraduate Advising Office, 411 Machmer Hall, can answer your questions about the application form, prerequisites, switching majors, etc. Drop in during business hours during the semester. Or e-mail your questions to the peer advisors at askcomm@comm.umass.edu.

Q. What prerequisites do I need to complete to apply?
A. If you entered UMass Amherst (not the major) September 2011 or thereafter, you must first take at least two of the following courses: Comm 118, Comm 121, Comm 122, Comm 125, or Comm 140.

If you entered UMass Amherst (not the major) before September 2011, you must first take Comm 118, Comm 121, and an R2 class.

Q. What criteria are used to assess my application?
A. Your overall GPA should be 2.7 or above, and in Communication classes, 2.9 or above. Your application essay is also considered. We do not accept any students with aCommunication course grade below C minus.

Q. When should I apply?
A. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis—there is no application deadline. However, we cannot assess your application until we receive your grades in the prerequisite courses.

Q. How do I find out if I’ve been accepted?
A. Once your application has been evaluated, you will receive an e-mail from April Tidlund, the undergraduate secretary, letting you know if it has been accepted, denied, or put on hold.

For more information see the Admission page of this website.

Faculty advisors

Q. Who is my faculty advisor?
A. Your faculty advisor’s name and contact information can be found at the bottom right-hand corner of your SPIRE Student Center page.

Q. How can I find my faculty advisor?
A. Office hours and contact information can be found here.

Q. How can my faculty advisor help me?
A. Your faculty advisor can help you with course selection, checking your progress toward fulfilling major requirements, exploring academic and career opportunities, sponsoring an internship, and getting referrals to other campus offices.

General Education requirements

Q. Can I use Communication courses to fulfill the General Education requirement?
A. You can count one course toward both your Gen Ed and major requirements.

Global Education requirements

Q. Can I use Communication courses to fulfill the Global Education requirement?
A. No. We call that double-dipping. You cannot count a course toward both Global Ed and Communication requirements. If a Comm course is listed as an approved Global Ed course, you have to decide whether you want it to fulfill your Global Ed or your Comm requirements.

Q. Where can I get help with Global Education questions?
A. Please visit the SBS Advising Center, 128 Thompson, 577-1057.


Q. How can I check on my progress toward graduation?
A. Meet with your faculty advisor to review your Academic Requirements Report (SPIRE), or drop by the Undergraduate Advising Office, 411 Machmer, to meet with a peer advisor. Either one can help you determine which requirements you still need to fulfill and then help you plan your courses.


Q. How do I get an internship?
A. Internship information sessions are held each semester in the Department of Communication. We also encourage you to visit the Internship Office, 511 Goodell, to speak with an advisor and access the database of available internships, or click on the Internship page of the Career Services website. If you need help finding a faculty sponsor, contact your faculty advisor for help.

Q. Can I get Communication credit for an internship?
A. Internship credits can count toward the overall 120 university credits you need to graduate, but not toward your Comm credits. Sorry, no exceptions.

Q. Who can I see for questions about internships?
A. Please visit the Internship Office, 511 Goodell. See the Career Services website.

For more information, see the Internships page of this website.


Q. Can I minor in Communication?
A. The Communication department does not offer a minor in Communication.

Peer advising

Q. What do peer advisors do?
A. Learn more about who they are and how they can help you here. 

Q. How can I become a peer advisor?
A. Peer advisors are selected each spring for the next fall. Learn more here.

Study abroad and domestic exchange

Q. Can I work on my Communication requirements while studying abroad or on domestic exchange?
A. With prior approval, some courses taken while studying abroad or on domestic exchange can fulfill Comm requirements. To get an answer about a particular course, please call Susan Dreyer, the department receptionist, at 413-545-1311 to make an appointment with the Undergraduate Program Director.

To learn more visit the Study Abroad and Domestic Exchange page.