Global Studies BA / Strategic & Digital Communication MS

Major: Global Studies and Strategic and Digital Communication
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Master of Science (MS)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 225.0
Co-op Options: One Co-op (Five years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code:
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 19-3094

About the Program

The accelerated BA in Global Studies provides students with an interdisciplinary, intercultural, and interactive program with four concentrations: media, arts and cultures; justice and human rights; business, economics, and development; and health and sustainability. Global Studies students develop the critical skills to understand global political, social, and economic trends, while the MS in Strategic and Digital Communication addition will further deepen students’ practical and professional experience in the communications field.

Drexel University is committed to building a strong foundation through the accelerated Global Studies/Communication degree, which enables academically qualified students to earn both a bachelor's and master’s degree—graduating sooner than they would in traditional programs. Graduates of the accelerated degree enter the workforce one year sooner with the benefits of a Master’s degree in Strategic and Digital Communication, using the year saved to gain full-time experience and earn a salary in the field.

Drexel’s Master of Science in Strategic and Digital Communication requires 45.0 credits, and prepares students for careers in a wide range of professional activities relating to communication in both media environments and communication contexts that are characterized by advanced digitization.

With a robust core curriculum consisting of seven courses (21.0 credits), the program provides a strong foundation in theoretical approaches to communication, ethics and media/communication policy. This theoretical basis is designed to ensure that, as the field changes, students will continue to have an intellectual framework for evaluating and implementing new technology and changing media environments. Furthermore, the program trains students in leadership skills that will help them to lead teams to be innovative communication professionals in digitized media environments and different organizational communication contexts.

The program emphasizes flexibility, encouraging each student, in consultation with a faculty advisor, to craft an individual course of study tailored to the student’s individual interests and career goals. Throughout the curriculum students use four Communication electives (12.0 credits) to increase communication skills or to further develop areas of specialization. An additional four free elective courses (12.0 credits) can be taken in Communication or in other departments across the university. This allows students to continue to tailor their plan of study, to add on a graduate minor, or to complete a certificate program.

The program specializes in two areas:

  • Strategic Communication (public relations)
  • Digital and Social Media Communication

Strategic Communication

Strategic Communication has much to offer for those looking to work in public relations as well as for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Students typically choose from courses such as PR Writing and Planning courses, Crisis Communication, Media Relations, Nonprofit Communication, and others.

Digital Communication

With Communication being an area characterized by ongoing digitization, the program offers courses such as Strategic Social Media Communication, Digital Publishing, Digital Media Environments, Social Media Concepts That Matter, and others.

Additional Information

For more information, visit the MS in Strategic and Digital Communication webpage.

Contact Julia May, Director of the MS in Strategic and Digital Communication program, at for more information.

Admission Requirements

Both incoming freshmen and current GST students are eligible to apply for this program. Students who are already matriculated may apply after completing a minimum of 90.0 credits but no more than 120.0 credits. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and maintain this GPA throughout the program.

In addition to formally applying and getting all the signatures required on the Accelerated Degree Program Admission form, applicants must provide:

  • A 500-word statement of goals that explains why they want to enroll in the accelerated degree program
  • The name of a faculty reference who can speak to the applicant’s academic qualifications and preparedness for graduate studies

Additional Information

Contact Julia May, Director of the MS in Strategic and Digital Communication program, at for more information. 

Degree Requirements

CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
COOP 101Career Management and Professional Development1.0
ECON 201Principles of Microeconomics4.0
ECON 202Principles of Macroeconomics4.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
or ENGL 111 English Composition I
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
or ENGL 112 English Composition II
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
or ENGL 113 English Composition III
PSCI 150International Politics4.0
Two Math courses6.0-8.0
Two Science courses6.0-8.0
UNIV H101The Drexel Experience1.0
UNIV H201Looking Forward: Academics and Careers1.0
Global Studies Core Courses
GST 101Becoming Global: Language and Cultural Context3.0
GST 102Understanding Global: Markets and Governance3.0
GST 103Acting Global: Research Methods in Global Studies3.0
Four 200+ level GST courses12.0
GST 400Senior Project in Global Studies3.0
Language minor in French, Spanish or Japanese, or minor in Asian Studies, or Middle East and North Africa Studies24.0
Students must complete at least 24.0 credits above the 103 language level to earn a language minor.
Global Health and Sustainability Concentration Requirements
ANTH 360Culture and the Environment3.0
PBHL 301Epidemiology in Public Health3.0
PBHL 303Overview of Issues in Global Health3.0
PSCI 334Politics of Environment and Health4.0
or SOC 346 Environmental Justice
Choose one of the following ethics courses3.0
Biomedical Ethics
Environmental Ethics
Public Health Ethics
Choose one of the following English courses3.0
Literature & Science
Environmental Literature
Topics in Literature and Medicine
Global Health and Sustainability Distribution Requirements24.0
Students must complete 24.0 credits from the approved list:
Worldview: Science, Religion and Magic
Health & Healing Practices in Cross-Cultural Perspective
Societies In Transition: The Impact of Modernization and the Third World
Culture and the Environment
Biological Diversity, Ecology & Evolution
Environmental Crime
Campaigns for Health & Environment
Environmental Communication
Science Writing
Grant Writing
Resource and Environmental Economics
Literature & Science
Environmental Literature
Topics in Literature and Medicine
Cities and Sustainability
Introduction to Urban Planning
Energy Entrepreneurship
Environmental Science
Native Plants and Sustainability
Global Climate Change
Global Warming, Biodiversity and Your Future
Conservation Biology
Introduction to Global Capital and Development
Introduction to Identities and Communities
Introduction to Power and Resistance
Introduction to Global Media, Arts, and Cultures
Introduction to Global Health and Sustainability
Advanced Studies in Global Capital and Development
Advanced Studies in Identities and Communities
Advanced Studies in Power and Resistance
Advanced Studies in Global Media, Arts, and Cultures
Advanced Studies in Global Health and Sustainability
Special Topics in Global Studies
Special Topics in Global Studies
History of Science: Ancient to Medieval
History of Science: Medieval to Enlightenment
History of Science: Enlightenment to Modernity
Themes in Global Environmental History
Empire and Environment
Transnational History of Science, Technology and Environment
Development of World Health Care
Health Care across Cultures
Foods and Nutrition of World Cultures
Perspectives in World Nutrition
Introduction to the History of Public Health
Introduction to Health & Human Rights
Women and Children: Health & Society
Introduction to Community Health
The World's Water
Exploring the HIV/AIDS Pandemic
Disease Outbreak Investigations
Health Inequality
Biomedical Ethics
Global Ethical Issues
Environmental Ethics
Environmental Philosophy
Philosophy of Technology
Philosophy of Science
Social Development: A Global Approach
Politics of Environment and Health
The United Nations in World Politics
Ethics and International Relations
International Human Rights
Psychology of Sustainability
HIV/AIDS and Africa
Development and Underdevelopment in the Global South
Women's Health and Human Rights
Women and Society in a Global Context
Free electives52.0-48.0
MS Strategic & Digital Communication
Required Core Courses
COM 500Reading & Research in Communication3.0
COM 574Organizational Communication in Project Management3.0
COM 610Theories of Communication and Persuasion3.0
COM 613Ethics for Professional Communication3.0
COM 615Media Environments in a Digital World3.0
COM 651Media and Communication Policy in a Digitized World3.0
COM 698Managing Communication Professional Identities in a Digital Age3.0
Program Electives12.0
Choose four of the following courses:
Campaigns for Health and Environment
Communicating Health and Risk in a ‘Fake News’ World
Science Writing
Document Design and Usability
Modern Desktop Publishing
Digital Publishing
Strategic Social Media Communication
Foundations of Public Relations
Public Relations Writing
Public Relations Planning
Media Relations in a Digital Age
Creative Content Production
Fundamentals of Journalism & Newswriting
International Negotiations
Event Planning
Technical, Science and Health Editing
Grant Writing
Nonprofit Communications
Communication for Civic Engagement
Focus Groups
Strategic International Communication
Graduate Seminar in Communication
Social Media Concepts that Matter
Investigative Journalism
Medical Writing
Medical Journalism
Independent Study in COM
Independent Study in COM
Special Topics in Communication
Special Topics in Communication
Graduate Electives *12.0
Total Credits225.0

Writing-Intensive Course Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

A "WI" next to a course in this catalog may indicate that this course can fulfill a writing-intensive requirement. For the most up-to-date list of writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Writing Intensive Course List at the University Writing Program. Students scheduling their courses can also conduct a search for courses with the attribute "WI" to bring up a list of all writing-intensive courses available that term.

Sample Plan of Study

First Year
ENGL 101 or 1113.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0CIVC 1011.0VACATION
GST 1013.0GST 1023.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0 
MATH 1014.0MATH 1024.0GST 1033.0 
UNIV H1011.0(UG) Language*4.0PSCI 1504.0 
(UG) Language*4.0 (UG) Language*4.0 
 15 14 15 0
Second Year
COOP 101**1.0(UG) GST Concentration Requirement3.0ECON 2014.0ECON 2024.0
(UG) GST Concentration Requirement3.0(UG) GST Distribution Options6.0(UG) Language*4.0(UG) Language*3.0
(UG) GST Distribution Option3.0(UG) Language*4.0(UG) GST 200+ Level Course3.0(UG) GST Concentration Requirement3.0
(UG) Language*4.0(UG) Free Elective3.0(UG) GST Concentration Requirement3.0(UG) GST Distribution Option3.0
(UG) Free Electives6.0 (UG) Free Elective3.0(UG) Free Elective3.0
 17 16 17 16
Third Year
(UG) GST 200+ Level Course3.0(UG) GST 200+ Level Course3.0 COM 5743.0
(UG) GST Distribution Options7.0(UG) GST Concentration Requirement4.0  
(UG) Free Elective3.0(UG) GST Distribution Option3.0  
COM 5003.0(UG) Free Elective3.0  
 COM 6103.0  
 19 19 0 3
Fourth Year
UNIV H2011.0GST 4003.0(UG) Free Electives9.0VACATION
(UG) GST Concentration Requirement4.0(UG) Free Electives9.0(UG) GST Distribution Option3.0Student converts to Graduate Status
(UG) GST 200+ Level Course3.0COM 6513.0COM 6153.0 
(UG) Free Electives6.0(GR) SDC Program Elective3.0(GR) SDC Program Elective3.0 
COM 6133.0   
 17 18 18 0
Fifth Year
(GR) SDC Program Elective3.0(GR) SDC Program Elective3.0COM 6983.0 
(GR) Grad Electives6.0(GR) Graduate Elective3.0(GR) Graduate Elective3.0 
 9 6 6 
Total Credits 225
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