Department of Human Communication Studies                                                                                                                      Phone(657) 278-3617

CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON                                                                                                                                   Fax (657) 278-3377 

                                                                                      California State University - Fullerton


Contact: John Reinard                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, March 7, 2011                     

Phone: (657) 278-3617


Cal State-Fullerton Masters Programs in Intercultural Communication and Debate and Argumentation Rated Tops in North America


The Speech Communication degree program in the Cal State Fullerton Department of Human Communication Studies was rated as the top Intercultural Communication program leading to a Masters Degree among programs in North America. The Debate and Argumentation emphasis area was rated seventh and was among only two Masters Degree programs to be listed in the top ten for that category. Overall, the program was rated as a “Top Ten” D epartment for research in seven areas of disciplinary scholarship by the Communication Institute for Online Scholarship (CIOS), besting some of the most prestigious schools with doctoral programs in the United States and Canada.

In particular, using its ComVista/ComAnalytics system to track article publications by faculty members at more than 700 programs in the US and Canada, CIOS announced its results February 24. The Department received its "Top Ten" designation because of its extensive record of publications in several specific sub areas of the field dealing with communication issues in “Asia” and “China,” “Debate and Argumentation,” “Deception Communication,” communication issues in "Europe,” “Intercultural Communication,” and communication issues in the “Pacific Rim.”Despite the absence of a doctoral program, CIOS President Timothy Stephen explained that the Titan degree program was listed as a “Top Ten program and entitled to the designation of a ‘Top Ten’ program in communication.” Though there are ratings of Communication Studies doctoral programs’ reputation and prestige, the CIOS rankings are the only assessments that include Masters Degree programs and that are also based on actual faculty research productivity in communication journals.

When doctoral programs’ research productivity records were included, Fullerton tied for eleventh place in the category of “Intercultural Communication” with the only programs ahead of it from Ph.D.-granting programs. Thus, the Fullerton program was the top Masters Degree granting program listed. Furthermore, the Fullerton program eclipsed such well established schools as Northwestern University, Michigan State, Penn State, Arkansas, Utah, Hawaii, and the University of Southern California—all of whom were ranked below Fullerton. In research dealing with communication related to Asia, the Fullerton program was in a three-way tie for fifth place (with Northwestern University and the University of South Carolina). Intercultural research related to European communication issues placed the Department in a tie for seventh place with five Ph.D. granting institutions (Tennessee, Texas, New Mexico, Alabama, and the University of California at Santa Barbara). For research dealing with communication issues in China and for those of the Pacific Rim, the Titan Speech Communication degree program captured a pair of tenth place honors.  In all cases, the only schools with higher ratings in any category were Ph.D. degree programs.

In the area of Debate and Argumentation, the program captured ninth place, which placed the research productivity in this field above that generated by Ph.D. granting institutions including Utah, Purdue, Illinois, Washington, and Michigan State. In the area of research on DeceptiveCommunication, the HCOM program was ranked tenth, one of only two non-Ph.D. programs to place in the top ten.

Individual faculty members also were ranked among the “Leading Scholars” in individual fields. Whereas in 2007, only Professors Stella Ting-Toomey and Department Chair John Reinard were featured on these lists (in Intercultural Communication and Persuasion respectively), the respect for the faculty has grown. Ting-Toomey now is listed as a leading “global” expert in European Communication, Asian Communication, Intercultural Communication, Conflict Communication, Interpersonal Communication, Marriage and Intimacy Communication, Research Methods, Nonverbal Communication, and Pacific Rim Communication. Human Communication Studies Professor Jason Teven was recognized in the latest list as a “Leading Scholar” in Communication Education, Cognition and Communication, Communication Competence, Gender and Communication, Interpersonal Communication, Nonverbal Communication, and Personality and Psychology.  Assistant Professor Perry Pauley made the list in the areas of Health Communication and Interpersonal Communication. Professor Jon Bruschke was included in the list of “Leading Scholars” in Debate and in the study of Communication in the Law. Professor Robert Gass was featured as a “Leading Scholar” in Debate and Argumentation.

“We have always been proud of our faculty, “Human Communication Studies Chair John Reinard explained, “Now, we have the first formal rankings to prove the significance of our program in competition with North America’s doctoral programs.” In addition to specialties in Intercultural Communication and in Debate and Argumentation, the Speech Communication degree program features emphasis areas in interpersonal communication and in organizational communication.

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