Build a strategic mindset for the communications workplace.

Columbia University’s Master of Science in Communications Practice program provides you with a foundation of analytical skills, storytelling know-how, audience understanding, and an internship to gain a competitive edge in the field and prepare for a career-track job in communications.

You’ll be prepared to segment and target audiences, evaluate and design research tools, use social media strategically, develop storytelling skills, and thoroughly understand how to develop effective communications strategies.

Extensive Real-World Experience

Aided by the program’s professional network, you secure an internship at a New York City firm. For your entire third semester, you will put your skills to use there as a fully functioning member of a communications team, expand your résumé, and build a network of contacts.

Spend a semester exploring and working in the communications capital of the world. Hear three students discuss their internship.

Gaining further experience, for your Portfolio Project, you will select and analyze a real-world communications challenge faced by an organization. A mentor assigned from among Columbia’s Strategic Communications program alumni will advise you along the way.

Communications Skills Employers Value Most

Communications executives demand their best new hires think critically about any communications challenge before acting. The M.S. in Communications Practice provides you with the mindset and analytical skills these employers value most, not technologies and tasks that may be obsolete by graduation. This focus on strategy prepares you to obtain a higher-level job more quickly.

Outside of the classroom, we encourage students to take advantage of our supplemental communications seminars and workshops, such as Columbia’s Strategic Communications Workshop Series, to further develop their skills and career advancement opportunities, and network with students and alumni from Columbia’s Strategic Communications M.S. program and leaders in the field.


  • 42–45 points for degree completion
  • Full-time program only
  • 4–5 consecutive terms to complete
  • On-campus instruction only
  • Fall intake only

Time Demands

Courses take place during the day, evenings, and on specific Saturdays. Class meetings vary in length from two to four hours. Every week, students should be prepared to spend 25 to 30 hours outside of class in order to complete assigned readings, work on projects, and participate in meetings with work groups.

In order to receive the master's degree in Communications Practice, students must complete all requirements of the degree in a maximum of five terms (including an internship) with an overall grade point average of 3.0 (B) or better.

If a situation arises where a student must leave for the semester, under certain circumstances, it may be possible to resume the following year.

Enrollment & Transfers

Individual Course Enrollment

Individual course enrollment for this program is occasionally available for some courses on a space-available basis.

Advanced Standing

Previous Course Work — Into the Program

In principle, the School of Continuing Education does not accept transfer credit for degree work done at another institution. However, students enrolled in an M.S. degree program may petition their Program Director for advanced standing if they believe course work they have previously done is duplicative.

Transfer Credit — Out of the Program

Students who seek to apply course credit towards a degree must consult with the degree-granting school in order to determine eligibility and limitations. The School of Continuing Education cannot advise students on the applicability of credit toward another degree.

Program taught in:
  • English (US)

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This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2020
4 - 5 semesters
1,830 USD
per point.
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