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The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication Online MA Strategic Communication

Capstone Goals

The Capstone (COMSTRAT 701) is the final course in the online MA Strategic Communication program. Capstone deliverables are a demonstration of the student’s mastery of core MA Strategic Communication concepts through a comprehensive exam and professional online portfolio. Students are assessed in three core attributes: critical thinking, written communication and creativity. The comprehensive exam includes prompts for students to respond to five (5) questions, case studies or activities. Each response is open-book (not proctored) and completed individually (non-collaborative). With these five prompts, students are asked to demonstrate their understanding and proficiency in the following core areas:

  • Research methods
  • Crisis communications and reputation management
  • Professional ethics
  • Persuasion in communication
  • Brand and consumer behavior
  • Multimedia content creation
  • Storytelling across multiple channels
  • Integrated campaign strategy and development

Course Learning Goals

  1. Critical Thinking: Ability to gather and assess strategically relevant information using analyses and research.
  2. Written Communication: Evidence of professional skills to develop strategic communication materials using best practices and industry standards presented across the curriculum
  3. Creativity: Demonstrate knowledge of strategic, entrepreneurial communication skills such as managing online presence, self and organizational presentation, and collaboration in an increasingly global world.

Course Deliverables

  1. Completion of five (5) questions, case studies or activities (referred to in this course as “prompts”)
  2. Completed Online Portfolio that includes an About Me page, Resume or Work History, Contact page and Portfolio Index showcasing six (6) completed assignments representative across the curriculum.
  3. Optional, yet encouraged participation in weekly discussion threads designed to maintain student and instructor connection and add value and insights related to prompts.

COMSTRAT 701 Capstone is a pass/fail course. Students must complete all five prompts and online portfolio in order to meet minimum criteria for the course. Points are attached to prompts and the online portfolio for the purpose of assessment. Each prompt and the online portfolio is assessed using a set point structure that incorporates a pass/fail threshold based on the grading scale below. “Passing” is defined as scoring a 1 or above.

Grading Scale

(0)  Deficient: Does not meet course standards (does not meet assignment standards)

(1)  Competent: Meets basic course standards (student meets basic requirements of the assignment)

(2)  Proficient: Exceeds course standards, approaches professional/academic publication standards (student demonstrates clear proficiency in assignment requirements)

(3) Exemplary: Meets or exceeds professional/academic publication standard (student exceeds assignment requirements and stands as an example to others for how the assignment should be completed)