NCA's Doctoral Program Guide

North Dakota State University, Department of Communication

The doctoral program in communication at North Dakota State University is unique. Students are encouraged to engage in applied research that seeks to solve real-world problems. While some programs produce dissertations and research that are read by few and used by no one, our program seeks to make a difference in the world. Our doctoral students, who come from a variety of academic backgrounds, strive to understand issues, solve problems, and create programs that can improve organizational, educational, interpersonal, and intercultural settings and situations.

Carnegie "Doctoral University: Higher Research Activity"


Communication doctorates conferred between 2010-15: 22


Concentrations/Research Emphases 

  • Media & Society
  • Organizational Communication


NRC Assessment of Research-Doctorate Programs

  • #61 of 83 programs in Research Output
  • #69 of 83 programs in Diversity

Allen, et al., 2012 

  • #55 of 60 programs by Number of Citations


  • Top Ten Research Program in 14 of 99 Research Areas

Admission Requirements 

  • Graduate application.
  • Statement of reasons for graduate study.
  • Transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate degree(s) earned.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • A CV or resume which clearly identifies your current position, including your responsibilities; your professional publications and papers; your service and professional activity; and your teaching and training experiences.
  • A professional writing sample, such as a master's thesis, a final paper for a course, a conference paper, a briefing paper or a news article.
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores.
  • TOEFL test results (required for international students).

Graduate Faculty 

  • Associate Professor Stephenson Beck, Ph.D., University of Kansas
  • Professor Ann Burnett, Ph.D., University of Utah
  • Assistant Professor Melissa Vosen Callens, Ph.D., North Dakota State University
  • Professor Ross Collins, Ph.D., University of Cambridge
  • Assistant Professor Elizabeth Crisp Crawford, Ph.D., University of Tennessee
  • Professor Robert Littlefield, Ph.D., University of Minnesota
  • Associate Professor Pam Lutgen-Sandvik, Ph.D., Arizona State University
  • Associate Professor Zoltan Majdik, Ph.D., University of Southern California
  • Professor Mark Meister, Ph.D., University of Nebraska
  • Professor Charles Okigbo, Ph.D., Southern Illinois University
  • Associate Professor Carrie Anne Platt, Ph.D., University of Southern California
  • Assistant Professor Justin Walden, Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University
  • Assistant Professor Catherine Kingsley Westerman, Ph.D., Michigan State University
  • Assistant Professor David Westerman, Ph.D., Michigan State University
  • Assistant Professor Nan Yu, Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University
Research Specialties : 
Mass Communication-Media Studies, Organizational Communication, Other-None