Communication empowers us to remember the past, act in the present and anticipate the future. It is the vehicle by which we manage relationships with others in contexts ranging from one-to-one to one-to-many using personal, public and mass-mediated channels of communication. The disciplines represented in the Communication and Performance Studies Department have developed a body of knowledge concerning verbal and nonverbal symbols that are spoken, enacted, heard and seen. The department covers six major areas of study and also serves the skill development needs of students who wish to learn to communicate more effectively.
The disciplines represented in the Communication and Performance Studies (CAPS) Department share a focus upon understanding how messages are used to manage relationships with others in contexts ranging from "one-to-one" to "one-to-many" using personal, public and mass-mediated channels of communication. Although the goals for different majors may flow from specific arenas and methods of social interaction or performance, graduates of CAPS programs share a fundamental appreciation for what it means to live in a symbolic world, to engage in life-long learning, and acquire a suite of skills that can be transferred to a wide array of career options. Thus, students majoring in CAPS learn to critically examine the role communication plays in daily life, to embrace the multicultural foundations for human discourse, to work in teams as well as independently regarding the application of communication concepts to practical situations, and to use what they have learned in the practice of civic engagement.