Fast Track | Online | No GRE

When you’re ready for the next step in your education, the Robertson School is here with an M.S. degree in Mass Communications with two concentrations in Integrated Communication and Multimedia Journalism. Both concentrations have small cohorts so you have a personal, engaging educational experience. And our alums go on to top jobs in public relations, journalism and media. Find out how to take your education to the next level with the Robertson School.

Why Robertson?

The Robertson School inspires and empowers students to be transformative media innovators while continuing to be a thought leader in a changing communication environment.

The School accomplishes its mission through immersive teaching, quality research and professional scholarship. The School explores and engages local and global communities in advertising, journalism, public relations and other emerging communication fields.

The School values truth, ethics, creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, collaboration and diversity. The School practices shared governance in decision-making.

Three options. Choose the one that's right for you. 

Integrated Communication 

Multimedia Journalism

Media and Leadership Certificate

Where to start?

  1. Start by completing our Prospective Student Form and someone from the program will follow up with you. 
  2. When you’re ready to apply visit the VCU Admissions website and choose the "Graduate" application type. Then scroll down and click on "Terms beginning in..." (Spring, Summer, Fall)." That will prompt you to create an account, and then you can get started on your application.  

When is the application deadline?

The application opens December 1, and the deadline to apply is March 15. Please note that our program begins in the summer, typically in June.Admissions 

For information related to admission requirements to either the Multimedia Journalism or Integrated Communication concentrations, contact Dr. Karen McIntyre, Director of Graduate Studies, at kemcintyre@vcu.edu or (804)-828-4652. She will provide additional information.

Do I have to take the GRE?

No, you are not required to take the GRE. Although you will see that requirement on the VCU Graduate School website, the Robertson School chooses to waive that requirement.

Is there a minimum GPA required for acceptance?

Although the Robertson School does not require a minimum GPA, the VCU Graduate School does require a minimum GPA of 3.0.

To whom do I mail my application/documents to?

The Robertson School only accepts graduate applications online. 

Can I apply to both programs? 

There is only one graduate program you are able to apply to — the degree in mass communications. However, there are two concentrations (multimedia journalism and integrated communication). You may only choose one of those two options.

Will there be an orientation for admitted students?

Yes, there will be an orientation for admitted students into VCU’s graduate program. Here is a link for you to register: Graduate School Registration Form  Additionally, the Robertson School will host an orientation event. 

Is there an application fee?

Yes, there is a nonrefundable application fee of $70. 

English is not my primary language, will I need to take an English proficiency test in order to be accepted?

Yes, the VCU Graduate School requires you to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). More information can be found on the Graduate School website

Have questions about financial aid or tuition? 

Follow these links to learn more about the requirements specific to VCU’s Graduate School:

  1. financial aid website
  2. division of strategic enrollment
  3. graduate school funding opportunities

What is the estimated cost of attendance for the entire program?

The estimated cost for our program is $23,574 for in-state students and $24,444 for out-of-state students.

For additional information regarding VCU’s tuition and fees, please use this link: https://sfs.vcu.edu Or, call 804-828-2228 to speak with Student Accounting.

Is there an application fee?

Yes, there is a nonrefundable application fee of $70. 

What equipment will I need for the program?

Our graduate studies committee has created an entire resource to help you acquire the right equipment for success in either concentration of the program. Please visit our Equipment Needs page to learn more. 

How many classes should I take per semester?

In order to graduate with a degree in one full year, students should take two courses per summer semester and three courses each in the fall and spring semesters. 

 When are classes offered? 

The program is offered year-round — fall, spring and summer — with a June start date. Classes span a regular 16-week semester during the fall and spring and span 8 weeks during the summer semesters. All courses are offered online. 

Am I able to take graduate classes without seeking a graduate degree?

Yes, by doing so, you will be considered a non-degree-seeking student. You will need to have graduated (or are in the last semester of your bachelor’s) from an accredited university. More information can be found through this link: non-degree-seeking student 

What courses are included in the program?

Please see the VCU Bulletin to view required courses. Specifically, the curriculum requirements for the multimedia journalism concentration and the integrated communication concentration can be viewed here.

Do you offer any study abroad opportunities? 

We hope to provide our students with classes that have a study abroad opportunity, but it is dependent on demand, enrollment and instructor availability.

 

Required and recommended equipment for master’s students

Required Equipment

Personal computer

All incoming master’s students are required to own a personal computer. Please note the following important requirements:

  • Computers must meet the Adobe Premiere Pro system requirements as well as VCU’s requirements. Note that if you plan to do a lot of video editing, you should opt for more than 8GB of RAM.
  • Given that courses are taught online, a reasonable Internet service is very important. Check the Internet for the recommended speed for your living environment based on the number of people and devices.
  • Good quality speakers and microphones are critical. If your laptop speakers are not providing good audio, purchase a headset with headphones and a built-in microphone.
  • A working camera on your laptop is important, to fully participate in online classes, small group discussions and meetings with your instructors or teaching assistants.
  • If purchasing a new computer, a laptop is recommended over a desktop. You may purchase computers at a discount through VCU RAMTech

A smartphone or a DSLR camera

  • Phone or camera must be able to shoot 4K video

A lavalier microphone that’s compatible with your smartphone OR DSLR camera

A tripod that’s compatible with your smartphone OR DSLR camera 

Required Software

Microsoft Office, which includes Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access and Publish, is free for VCU students and can be accessed at the following link: https://ts.vcu.edu/software-center/general-purpose/microsoft-office/

The Adobe Creative Cloud Suite, which includes Indesign, Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere Pro and other programs, is available for VCU students at a discount. ($60/year, $30/6-months or $15/3 months). Subscriptions can be purchased at the following link: https://adobe.vcu.edu/


Recommended Equipment

Note: We provide these recommendations to provide an example of equipment, but there are many options that would work; having comparable equipment is not a problem. Please think about your interests and the compatibility of your devices with one another.

Headphones - adapted from UC Berkeley’s Advanced Media Institute

Although you may choose to use your smartphone earbuds throughout the program, we suggest good quality stereo headphones that connect directly to your laptop and the audio recorder or smartphone, especially if you plan to pursue a career involving audio editing. Audio editors typically use over-the-ear headphones as opposed to earbuds. You’ll find many options available—we like the Sony MDR7506, or the less expensive, but equally as popular: Senal SMH-1000.

Audio recorder - adapted from UC Berkeley’s Advanced Media Institute

While you may use a smartphone to record audio in this program, several valid options are available for semi-professional to professional use audio recorders that some of you may find a worthy investment. For the purposes of this program, we recommend the Zoom H1n—it’s a powerhouse for a reasonable price (while the Zoom H5 costs more and offers many advanced features.) The Zoom H1n uses a Micro SD Card of 32 GB. It’s a great recorder for those starting out in audio, and if used correctly, can get really good sound. Depending on your career goals, you may want to invest in a higher-quality recorder down the line.

USB Microphone

The portable microphone allows you to record audio for podcasts, video and audio packages. We recommend the Blue yeti microphone or the Elgato Wave 3 brand. 

A halo/ring light 

This will help improve the lighting in your photography and videos. It’s available on Amazon, Walmart and B&H. 

Gimbal Stabilizer
This tool will help keep your camera steady while you’re moving and allow you to film steady video. Check out this article outlining some options. (Note that this requires a wireless mic.)

MicroSD card
If using a DSLR, you will need a MicroSD card (San Disk) with a minimum of 32GB and, if needed, a MicroSD card reader.