Some Communication majors may wish to focus their coursework on a particular area in the communication discipline.  The five concentrations explained below provide a range of choices.  However, it is important to note that It is entirely acceptable for communication majors to opt instead to pursue a general concentration.  In this approach, students can sample widely and follow their own interests in selecting from departmental offerings while fulfilling the requirements of the major. Whether one selects a general concentration or one of the focal areas defined below, communication courses present a strong foundation for a Wake Forest liberal arts education. 


The Health, Environmental, and Risk Communication Concentration (HERC) offers a course of study that investigates how communication shapes health, environmental, and risk issues from a socio-ecological perspective. HERC classes explore the use of empirical, rhetorical, and critical/creative methods to build a more equitable, sustainable world. In these classes students investigate (1) intrapersonal processes of communication (beliefs, values, attitudes), (2) social influence factors like stigma, stereotyping, and group norms, (3) interpersonal/relational aspects ranging from family coping to patient-provider interactions, (4) public and mass media contexts such as public health crises, health/risk communication campaigns, community change programs, and integrated arts initiatives, and (5) societal discourses informing health and environmental policy. HERC concentration students have the option to obtain course credit by working with faculty and community advisers to complete community-based research, internships, and other forms of local civic engagement. Students who complete the HERC concentration will be better prepared for careers in healthcare practice, the helping professions, public health advocacy, medical and science journalism, federal agencies, and nonprofit health and environmental organizations.


The Integrated Communication Strategies (ICS) concentration educates students about the integration of communications in both online and offline contexts including traditional forms of mass communication such as TV, radio, print, and public speaking as well as new forms such as websites, blogs and social media. The goal is to ensure that all messages emanating from an organization or social movement are coordinated and aligned across all contexts to strengthen and focus the communication. The concentration is intended for those students wishing to pursue a career that involves positioning, defining or promoting organizations and their mission, services and products. 


The Media Studies concentration considers the production, interpretation, and theoretical analysis of communication that is (1) disseminated to a broad and largely anonymous audience and (2) mediated by the various technological devices that make such broad dissemination of the message possible. Production courses combine technical instruction in the use of the relevant tools with aesthetic instruction in how to use those tools most effectively. The study of the interpretation, criticism, and production of the moving image receives a special emphasis in our curriculum in a core of film studies courses. Practicum work and internship experience enhance the program to prepare students to begin a career in film and media or for further study as graduate students. 


In line with the Wake Forest University motto, Pro Humanitate, the Public Advocacy concentration combines public speaking, debate, rhetorical theory, and public address with a focus on direct engagement with the community. This concentration prepares students to serve as leaders, practicing what they learn in class and teaching, sharing, and collaborating with others both within and outside of Wake Forest. The Public Advocacy concentration provides students with the critical thinking and communication skills necessary to advance careers and causes in multiple settings: academic, legal, political, entrepreneurial, envi-ronmental, medical, and social. 




Students seeking the HERC concentration must take four (4) total courses from the following list. At least 3 courses must come from the Core Group.

Core Group

270 Special Topics Seminar

  • Community Narratives: Environmental Justice
  • Environmental Risk Communication

355 Survey of Health Communication 
356 Patient-Provider Communication
357 Health Communication Campaigns
361 Family Communication and Health across the Lifespan
364 Narrative, Communication, and Health
370 Special Topics Seminar

  • Body Image and Communication 
  • Health Communication in Developing Countries 
  • Environmental Communication: Risk & Crisis 


Elective Group

113 Relational Communication
270 Special Topics Seminar

  • Intergroup Dialogues
  • Listening to Community Stories 

315 Communication and Technology
330 Communication & Conflict
336 Rhetoric of Institutions
339 Practices of Citizenship
345 Rhetoric of Science and Technology
349 Advocacy, Debate, and the Law 
350 Intercultural Communication
353 Persuasion
370 Special Topics Seminar (Rotating Courses)

380 Great Teachers (rotates among concentrations) 



Students seeking the Integrated Communication Strategies concentration must take four (4) total courses from the following list.  

162 Introduction to Integrated Communication Strategies

215 Broadcast Journalism 

245 Introduction to Mass Communication 

250 Communication in Entrepreneurial Settings  

262 Writing for Public Relations and Advertising  

270 Special Topics Seminar (Rotating Courses)

  • Digital and Social Media Marketing
  • Sports Broadcasting 

305 Communication and Ethics  

308 Speech Writing 

309 Visual Storytelling 

315 Communication and Technology 

327 Social Media Effects 

334 Narrative Approaches to Communication and Entrepreneurship 

335 Survey of Organizational Communication 

336 Organizational Rhetoric  

342 Political Communication 

346 Sports, Media, and Communication 

350 Intercultural Communication  

353 Persuasion 

354 International Communication  

357 Health Communication Campaigns 

362 Advanced Campaigns 

363 Communication & Consumer Behavior  


Students seeking the Public Advocacy concentration must take at least four (4) courses from the following list. 

262 Writing for Public Relations & Advertising 

270 Special Topic Seminar (Rotating Courses)

  • Rhetorics of Activism and Advocacy 
  • Community Narratives: Environmental Justice
  • Peer Consulting in Oral Communication
  • Speaking & Listening for Understanding 

270/370 –  Where Are You From? 

282 Debate Practicum I

283 Debate Practicum II

300 Classical Rhetoric

302 Argumentation Theory

305 Communication and Ethics

307 The Prophetic Mode in American Public Dis-course

308 Speechwriting

317 Communication and Popular Culture 

334 Narrative Approaches to Entrepreneurship

335 Survey of Organizational Communication

336 Organizational Rhetoric

338 African American Rhetoric

339 Practices of Citizenship 

340 Democracy, Slavery & Sex: Emancipation Discourse from the Founding to the Civil War

341 Class, Race, Sex & War: Emancipation Discourse from the Civil War to the 2nd Wave of Feminism 

342 Presidential Rhetoric

344 Conspiracy Theories in American Public Discourse 

345 Rhetoric of Science & Technology

346 Sport, Media, & Communication 

347 Rhetoric and the Law

348 Legal Theory, Practice, and Communication 

349 Advocacy, Debate, and the Law

370 Special Topics Seminar: 

  • Environmental Communication: Risk & Crisis
  • Music and the American Voice
  • Queer and Trans Rhetoric
  • Rhetoric of the South 

380 Great Teachers (rotates among concentrations)




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