Communication, Technology, and Society


Degrees Offered


Explore the diversity of Communication Studies, with a focus on applying research skills to communication technologies. Our MA in Communication, Technology and Society develops thought leaders to bring critical thinking, global insights, practical applications, and historical perspectives to technological debates and decision-making. Our faculty emphasize understanding the impacts and interconnections of technologies in society and culture, deploying a full range of theoretical and methodological approaches, including social science, critical/cultural, organizational, and other approaches. Gain skills to understand and assess technologies as social phenomena shaping and shaped by users’ goals in various communication contexts. Become prepared to enter doctoral study, teaching, business, politics, or social organizing with advanced expertise.

As part of MACTS, students may opt to acquire a Graduate Certificate in Health Communication, also administered by the Department of Communication Studies.

The Department of Communication Studies is committed to providing our graduate students with opportunities for academic and professional development. We believe that individuals continue to develop their expertise throughout their careers. Currently, most full-time students receive a Teaching Assistantship with tuition waiver and stipend. The program supports opportunities to engage in scholarly and professional development activities outside the classroom, including participation in colloquia offered by communication scholars, professional workshops, internships, applied projects, and study abroad. We also encourage our graduate students to become active members of international, national, regional, and state academic and professional associations. Getting involved in these development activities while at Clemson will build your network and contacts in the communication discipline before you graduate.


More information can be found in this graduate handbook.


Program of Study

The MA in Communication, Technology, and Society includes coursework and additional requirements that allow students to synthesize and apply course material. Our students select one of three options: Scholarly Thesis, Project Thesis, or Comprehensive Exams.

All MACTS students are required to take all five core courses below (unless a similar course was previously taken and accepted by the Director of Graduate Studies or department chair), constituting a total of 15 credits.

• COMM 8010: Communication Theory I 

• COMM 8100: Communication Research Methods I

• COMM 8030: Survey of Communication Technology Studies

• COMM 8020: Communication Theory II

• COMM 8030: Communication Research Methods II

In addition, teaching assistants must take COMM 4990: Communication Pedagogy. View syllabi.

The number of elective courses our students take will vary depending on whether they are participating in the thesis options or comprehensive exam option. Their faculty advisor and committee will help them select courses that meet their goals for life, education, or industry paths. We also guide our students toward the many Clemson resources for skills training, networking, and career development.


All Clemson students have free access to Adobe Cloud Creative Suite.

The Erwin Center for the Study of Advertising and Communication is taught by industry professionals from Erwin Penland. These instructors have years of experience in the advertising industry, and offer students the chance to experience what it is like to work in the agency world. At the Erwin Center, students will learn creative methods and strategies for building brands and reaching customers through emerging technologies and insightful content strategies.

Managed by the Department of Communication Studies, the Social Media Listening Center is an interdisciplinary research lab and teaching facility that opened in 2012. Envisioned by CIO Jim Bottum, the Listening Center brings together faculty, staff, students and external partners to support undergraduate creative inquiry, faculty research, pedagogy, and outreach through social media listening. The SMLC has six large display screens that faculty and students monitor, similar to a small network operations center. Salesforce Radian6 provides the platform to listen, discover, measure and engage in conversations across the Web by capturing more than 150 million sources of social media conversations, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, blogs and other online communities. The Radian6 summary dashboard provides a graphic display of social media content to convey sentiment, share of voice, trend information, geo-location data and much more.

The Communication Studies Lab at Clemson University is a support center for all undergraduate students. The primary function of the lab is to assist students with the speechwriting and rehearsal process. The Communication Studies Lab now serves as a tutoring center for students enrolled in the basic oral communication courses—COMM 150: Introduction to Human Communication and COMM 250: Public Speaking. MACTS students work as tutors to assist students with skill development in interpersonal, group, and public contexts. The Media Technology Lab is available for more advanced instruction and practice with communication technology such as Adobe Creative Suite and Final Cut Pro. The lab is equipped with powerful Mac computers and wide-screen monitors for student use. 


Scroll down on our website for links to download our program brochure, newsletter, and handbook for more information, and check out MACTS on social media.

Our Students

Current students in this program have majors and minors in communication studies, business administration, environmental health sciences, education, Spanish, and public relations. Their interest areas include sociology, organizational communication, online networks, social media, environmental communication, and marketing. Coming from the United States and China, they have practical experience in areas such as scholarly research, disaster relief, arts programming, teaching, media relations, journalism, sports, and content editing.

Scroll down on our website for links to download our program brochure, newsletter, and handbook for more information, and check out MACTS on social media.


Application Information

Priority for fall admission and assistantship funding will be given to applicants who apply by March 1. However, we may continue to review applications after the deadline until all spaces are full.

Priority for spring admission will be given to applicants who apply by September 15. However, please be aware that students entering in spring are not eligible for tuition waiver or assistantships that spring. These are not available until the following fall.

The following credentials are preferred, though the entire application is considered holistically. Invited students typically have:

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accreditedcollege or university GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) or better.
  • Competitive GRE scores on verbal/quantitative/writing tests.
  • We will accept TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic test scores. Scores must indicate very strong abilities in listening, writing and speaking.
  • Strong writing skills demonstrated through a sample and curriculum vitae/resume.
  • Specific, detailed reasons for pursuing this MACTS degree program, at Clemson, as well as evidence of successfully working independently on projects, all as described in your in curriculum vitae/resume and statement of purpose


Required Documents



Most students accepted full-time are offered a full tuition waiver and annual stipend in return for a Teaching Assistantship, pending available funds.


Program Contact(s)

Program Coordinator(s)