By continuing to use this site, you agree to the use of cookies in accordance with our privacy policy.

Communication and Rhetorical Studies B.S.

In the communication and rhetorical studies (CRS) program, you’ll build the skills you need to become a competitive and versatile professional in diverse and evolving industries.
Communication and rhetorical studies major works on a writing assignment.
Communication and rhetorical studies major works on a writing assignment.

About this Program

  • Tailor your communication degree to your interests and passions through elective courses, preparing you for a virtually unlimited array of careers in such areas as education, business and industry, political communication, media and entertainment, public affairs and advocacy, and law (the CRS program can be considered preparatory for law school).
  • Pursue a dual major or a minor within the College of Visual and Performing Arts, or combine your major with a major or minor from one of Syracuse University’s other colleges or schools.
  • Learn from faculty who are renowned organizational leaders, teachers and researchers.
  • Find unique opportunities for hands-on learning and real-world application of your studies. Spend a semester in Los Angeles taking CRS courses and completing an internship, or travel to New York City to explore the many career paths available to you.
  • Take advantage of study abroad opportunities at the University's center in London, England, or individualize semester-long or summer opportunities at other Syracuse Abroad centers (including Madrid, Spain, and Florence, Italy) as well as through our World Partner programs.
  • Benefit from our strong, supportive CRS alumni network.

Program Information

Degree Type






College or School

A woman looks at large color photos coming out of a printer while a man works on a computer in the background.

College of Visual and Performing Arts

Home to the visual and performing arts at Syracuse University, VPA supports the creative process and professional development of its students. VPA is divided into seven areas: the School of Art; the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies; the School of Design; the Department of Drama; the Rose, Jules R. and Stanford S. Setnor School of Music; the Department of Film and Media Arts; and the Department of Creative Arts Therapy.
Explore the College


The CRS program allows students to integrate their individual professional interests with a thorough background in communication and rhetorical studies and a selection of arts and sciences courses.

Students must complete a total of 120 credits. Of these, 37 credits must be in communication and rhetorical studies. Students must also take 54 credits in arts and sciences, including 6 credits in writing (English); 6 credits in the natural sciences and mathematics; 6 credits in the social sciences; 6 credits in the humanities, including language proficiency at a 102 level (American Sign Language will fulfill this requirement) and 30 credits in areas supporting their studies in communication. 

  • Demonstrate effective and mindful listening practices in a variety of communicative contexts.
  • Ethically and effectively engage an audience through a variety of media.
  • Produce persuasive arguments on issues of contemporary concern adaptable to diverse audiences.
  • Describe and evaluate key communication theories.
  • Analyze communicative acts.
  • Recognize, analyze and critique diversity and systems of power as manifest in self, other and society, locally and globally.
  • Design, execute and write an original research project.

Extracurricular Opportunities

Professional development opportunity

Engaging Careers

Engaging Careers helps you explore the numerous career paths available to you following graduation. Held annually in New York City, students visit such firms as NBC, CBS News and Condé Nast and enjoy networking and discussions with CRS alumni who represent a wide variety of career disciplines.

Study abroad opportunity

London Semester

Spend a semester at Syracuse University’s center in London, England, where you can take CRS courses in creative industries, visual culture, presentational speaking and more. Or explore another study abroad destination through Syracuse Abroad, which offers more than 100 programs in over 60 countries.

Immersion opportunity

VPA LA Semester

The VPA LA Semester is an immersive professional development program that provides you with the opportunity to work as an intern in Los Angeles while taking academic courses taught by LA professionals with expertise in their given discipline. The program is designed to broaden your understanding of career opportunities and gain skills to network and succeed in your career.

Learn more about this program

Start your application
Start your academic journey with us.
Explore affordability
Learn about grants and scholarships.
Schedule a tour
Plan your visit and get ready to make yourself at home.