Online. On campus. On your terms.






Gonzaga’s online or on-campus M.A. in Communication and Leadership Studies (COML) curriculum encourages students to push boundaries, think critically, and develop a personal sense of leadership. Our program helps students become more effective communicators in their communities and organizations. While rooted in communication research, the COML curriculum is practical and students develop skills that are immediately applicable to their career and life.

36 semester credits are required to complete M.A. in Communication and Leadership Studies:

  • 21 credits in Theory & Practice Core Courses
  • 6 credits in Research & Thesis/Project Core Courses
  • 6 credits in Communication Electives
  • 3 credits in Leadership Electives
  • Sub-specializations listed below

How do I know if these courses are offered online or on campus?

This program is quite flexible in that you can take classes online, on campus or both! For the most up to date information on a specific course and whether it will be offered online or on campus for the upcoming semester, please see Zagweb or talk to your Faculty Advisor.

Core Communication Courses (27 credits required)

  • COML 500 – Organizational Leadership (3 credits)
  • COML 501** – Communication & Organizational Research (3 credits)
  • COML 503 – Communication & Organizational Ethics (3 credits)
  • COML 504 – Organizational Communication and Leadership (3 credits)
  • COML 506 – International & Intercultural Communication (3 credits)
  • COML 508 – Theorizing Communication (3 credits)
  • COML 509 - Social Dynamics of Communication Technology (3 credits)
  • COML 518 – Writing in the Discipline (no credit, co-requisite with COML 508, fee-based lab)
  • COML 517* – Communication Practicum: Speech, Writing and Multi-Media (3 credits)
  • COML 680*** – Capstone Communication Seminar –  Project or Thesis (3 credits)

*COML 517 is designated a residential course for Online students.

** COML 501 is a required prerequisite for COML 680.

*** COML 680 is a capstone semester-long (16-week) course and should be taken the final semester.

Communication Electives (6 credits required)

  • COML 510 – Communication Teaching & Pedagogy (3 credits)
  • COML 511 – Seminar in Communication Consulting and Training (3 credits)
  • COML 512 – Seminar in Strategic and Corporate Communication (3 credits)
  • COML 513* – Seminar in Advanced Topics in Communication (3 credits) Advanced topics changes from time to time and includes the Visiting Scholar Course.  Below are four examples:
    • COML 513* – Communication, Technology & Social Change (3 credits)*
    • COML 513* – Peacebuilding through Dialogue (3 credits)
    • COML 513* – Renaissance Rhetoric & Contemporary Leadership (3 credits)
    • COML 513* Cultural Immersion and International Media, Cagli, Italy (3 credits)
  • COML 514 – Seminar in Advanced Criticism (3 credits)
  • COML 515 – Seminar in Interpersonal & Small Group Communication (3 credits)
  • COML 516 – Seminar in Media Literacy (3 credits)
  • COML 520 – Communication Leadership Internship (1-6 credits)
  • COML 521 – Travel Writing (3 credits)
  • COML 660/661 – Directed Readings (3 credits)

*COML 513 can be repeated twice for credit up to 6 credits total.

Leadership Electives (3 credits required)

Any Organizational Leadership (ORGL) course can be used to meet this elective. Talk with your Academic Advisor regarding which one would support your degree goals.

At a Glance




Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities


Online or On-Campus (Spokane, WA)

Admission cycles

Rolling 8-week


One, three-day immersion required in Spokane, WA. Study abroad opportunities in Florence & Cagli, Italy and Derry, Ireland.


Top 3 Regional University in the West by U.S. News & World Report

Named “Most Innovative Program” by the National Communication Association, 2010

Maximizing your Master’s Degree in Communication and Leadership with Area Studies.

Gonzaga University offers a wide selection of courses within the field of Communication. To offer our students the utmost flexibility relevant to their interests, we offer a broad selection of courses that students are free to choose from to complete their degree.  Many students choose to take particular courses to create opportunities to develop skills in particular sub-specializations within the field of communication.

Here are some of the examples that students have selected, but it is always recommended you speak with your Academic Advisor when making choices.

College Teaching of Communication

Course a: COML 510 Communication Teaching and Pedagogy

Course b: COML 520 Internship in College Teaching

Course c: COML 517 Practicum and Teaching Portfolio

Course d: COML 680 Capstone with project or thesis in Teaching & Learning

Global/Intercultural and International Communication

Course a: COML 506 International and Intercultural Communication in Cagli, Italy

Course b: COML 517 Multi-Media Practicum in Cagli, Italy

Course c: Choose one of the following two courses

  • COML 508 Theorizing Communication or
  • COML 509 Social Dynamics of Communication Technology

Course d: COML 680 Capstone with project or thesis on Intercultural Theme

Strategic and Organizational Communication

Course a: COML 504 Organizational Communication & Leadership

Course b & c: Choose two of the following three courses

  • COML 511 Strategic and Corporate Communication, or
  • COML 512 Consulting and Training, or
  • COML 515 Seminar in Interpersonal and Small Group Communication

Course d: COML 680 capstone with project or thesis in this specialization