Other Requirements

In addition to the requirements for Plan 1 and Plan 2, students may be subject to other requirements and expectations, as described here.


Applicants' transcripts will be reviewed by the program's graduate committee to identify any deficiencies in training. If admitted, the student will be notified of any remedial coursework that must be taken during the course of his or her first year of study. Accomplished students who did not major in communication as an undergraduate are strongly encouraged to apply, but may be required to take undergraduate courses at UC Davis before enrolling in our graduate courses.

All students are expected to have completed an undergraduate course in inferential statistics before enrolling in the program's required graduate-level methodology courses. Students who did not complete such a course as an undergraduate will be expected to correct this deficiency during the first quarter of residency.


Students generally are expected to complete the M.A. degree work within two years (six quarters). Students who anticipate completing the degree in the summer following their second year of study must obtain the written consent of both their M.A. adviser and the program director. Students will be allowed to extend their studies into the third year only in the most exceptional of circumstances. Such an extension requires the written approval of the student's M.A. adviser and the program director.

If you may decide to request an exception to the normative time policy, please keep in mind that most members of the ladder-rank faculty are often out of town or unavailable during the summer.


Success in graduate school is a full-time endeavor. We do not admit part-time students into the program. Full-time status requires continuous enrollment in no less than 12 units of coursework per quarter. During most quarters you can satisfy this requirement by taking two 4-unit seminars and 4 units of CMN 299R (Directed Research, in preparation of a thesis proposal and thesis, required of Plan 1 students) or CMN 299 (Directed Reading in preparation for the comprehensive examination, required of Plan 2 students). The additional 4 units may come from enrolling in CMN 396 (Teaching Assistant Training Practicum, for students holding a teaching assistantship) during the fall quarter of the first year of study.


Plan 1 students

Students on the thesis option (Plan 1) will be enrolled in 4 units of directed research as they prepare and carry out their thesis. We take these credits very seriously.

Plan 2 students

Students on the non-thesis option (Plan 2) will take 4 units of directed reading to prepare for the comprehensive examination. These credits are earned by enrolling in CMN 299 (Individual Study), but do not satisfy 40-unit plan 2 credit requirements. Students should meet at the beginning of each quarter with their M.A. adviser to devise a research agenda (Plan 1) or develop a reading list (Plan 2) for the quarter. CMN 299 and 299R (Thesis Research) coursework will typically be carried out under the direction of the M.A. adviser, although other arrangements can be made when appropriate and with the approval of the program's graduate adviser.


CMN 299 also is used for adviser-approved independent studies on a topic not covered by the program's regular curriculum. Up to 4 units of independent study may be counted toward satisfaction of degree coursework requirements. Please visit the graduate coordinator to obtain the required form for Independent Studies.