Delivery Model

MA in Professional Communicati... » Learning Model

The MA in Professional Communication is a 36 credit, two-year program delivered through online courses and an immersive on-campus residency in both years.


The on-campus residencies at the beginning of each study year allow students to become acquainted with the Royal Roads University culture; faculty and fellow students.

Students will also:

  • begin the study of core elements of the program;
  • attend interactive workshops in professional communication;
  • listen to lectures and seminars by external experts in the field;
  • develop team and leadership skills essential for future distance-delivered semesters;
  • consolidate learning acquired during the program; and
  • benefit from small-group mentoring and personal consultation.

Students can expect to work hard during the residency period. The normal classroom schedule is Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Team meetings, homework, and readings are done outside of these hours. In addition to the educational activities, there will be a number of planned recreational events.

Both residency periods are mandatory. However, you do not have to stay on campus, and off-campus housing is available through an off-campus housing registry.

Online Learning

The distance learning portions of the MA in Professional Communication program take place online. During the distance study periods, students typically take one distance course at a time for a period of approximately nine weeks each. Prior to commencing each course, students are provided with a package of materials and readings. Each course will require a level of effort of approximately 22 hours per week. This may vary at times throughout the course and from student to student. During the first distance courses, the amount of time required may be higher, as students familiarize themselves with our distance learning technologies. At their own convenience, students will work through the requirements of the course (although there are ‘real time’ deadlines for assignments, exams, etc.).

Elective Courses

Students may select from the following options to complete their program.

 *   Thesis option (includes 1 elective)
 *   Research Paper option (includes 2 electives plus 1 additional course)
 *   Course-Based option (includes 2 electives plus 3 additional courses)

The elective courses are as follows:

  • PCOM 530 Strategic Digital Communication
  • PCOM 631 Media Production
  • PCOM 632 Conflict Analysis and Management
  • PCOM 635 Communication for Development and Social Change
  • PCOM 639 Communication for Sustainability*
  • PCOM 655 Organizational Cultural Development

*Pending approval

We use a number of different delivery methods including textbooks, articles, case studies, videotapes, and interactive Internet learning using discussion groups (bulletin boards) for correspondence with classmates. Having already met their classmates during the first residency period, students continue to work in teams during the distance courses. This diverse and comprehensive approach to learning has proven extremely helpful to our students.