Doctor Of Philosophy In Communication Studies


The Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Communication Studies aims at equipping the graduates with expert knowledge in Communication Studies that is required for leadership in variety of Communications related careers and roles such as Communications Directors in Governmental and Private organizations, Public Relations Consultancy, Corporate Communications Supervisors, Diplomacy, Corporate Media Relations, Advocacy and Campaigns, International Communication and General Communications Consultancy. The programme is intended for students with Masters or relevant Postgraduate Qualifications in Communication Studies, Public Relations, Journalism, Media Studies and Educational Communication. The programme anchors students in philosophical, theoretical and conceptual foundations of Communication and while also appraising the practical needs for appropriate designs, implementation and evaluation of Communication Strategies for diverse contexts and platforms. The programme also educates students for expertise in research in Communications Studies specifically and Social Sciences generally therefore giving them the pre-requisite knowledge for Advanced theorisation and research as scholars, researchers and professionalism in Communication and Media discourse in Higher Education, International Organizations or National Agencies. This revised programme has gained from the experience and expertise of the faculty who have offered it successfully for about Five years. The review of this programme has also been informed by advice from alumni, most of whom hold senior positions in Higher Education, Government and Non- Governmental organizations in the Country and Region; thereby also offering important insights from the Communications related Industry, which have been incorporated in the revision.

Philosophy of the Programme

The PhD in Communication Studies programme is anchored in the conceptualisation of Communications as a multidisciplinary field situated within the broader area of Social Sciences. Thisoverarching nature of Communication Studies asan academic field concerned with both internal and external interaction and transaction in virtually all Human Spheresdraws upon pragmatism as a philosophy. Therefore, the programme is informed by both the realist/positivist and the relativist/constructivist paradigms of knowledge. Accordingly, the programme aims to provide expertise in theories of Communication Studies in relation to the broader Philosophies of Social Science while also exploring the link between these philosophies/theories with principles and techniques of Communication in various platforms and contexts..

Rationale for the Programme
This revised curriculum has benefited from input from the alumni of programme – some of whom are renowned practitioners in Corporate Communication, Higher Education and the Media in Kenya and other places - suggestions from the Communications industry in form of relevant professional associations and organizations with whom the faculty enjoy robust links. The revision has also been informed by views of faculty who have taught the course over the last Twenty years. In addition, the revision has been necessitated by the changing needs of the profession considering developments in socio-political and technological contexts served by Communication. Furthermore, in the recent past, in Kenya and globally, there have been increased human rights awareness and demands information and sensitivity to Communication in all public spheres. There is also vicious competition within both the manufacturing, civic, educational and hospitality industries that has called for unparalleled attention to public human Communication. Finally, over the years, the programme has continuously attracted increasing numbers of students from various backgrounds, universities and even countries who have found its multidisciplinary approach suitable for diverse but related careers and specialties in higher Education. Finally, the Department has experienced continued demand for this programme from many sectors most of whom have found this the most responsive after comparison with similar programmes offered by other Universities in the region.

Goal of the Programme
The programme aims to provide graduates with advanced and specialized theoretical and conceptual perspectives in Communications and Journalism policy formulation, management, practice and research.

Objectives of the Programme
The specific objectives of the programme are to:
1. To produce professionals capable of providing empirically and theoretically grounded expert leadership and management services in Corporate Communication, Public Relations, Diplomacy and related contexts.
2. To facilitate the graduates to acquire ability to interrogate contemporary communication policies, strategies and practices in diverse contexts
3. Develop graduates’ ability to critically discuss social, contextual and academic implications for policy and practice in Corporate Communication, Public Relations, Diplomacy and similar contexts.
4. To provide graduates with advanced research skills to independently design, implement and evaluate research in Social Sciences generally and specifically in Communication Studies.

Expected Learning Outcomes of the Programme
At the end of the course, the graduates will have gained:
1. Empirically and theoretically grounded expert knowledge of relevant leadership and management services in Corporate Communication, Public Relations, Diplomacy and related contexts.
2. Advanced knowledge in contemporary communication policies, strategies and practices in diverse contexts.
3. Critical conceptualization of social, contextual and academic implications for policy and practice in Corporate Communication, Public Relations, Diplomacy and similar contexts.
4. Expertise in design, implementation, analysis and evaluation of research in the Social Sciences in general and Communication Studies in particular.

Admission requirements
In addition to the University Minimum Requirements, the following course specific requirements will be considered:
a) A Masters Degree in any other field with a Postgraduate Diploma in Communication Studies, Public Relations, Journalism, Mass Communication, Media Studies or any other similar PGDs considered relevant by the Departmental Graduate Faculty.
b) A Masters Degree in any other field with active professional and academic practice in Communication, Public Relations, Diplomacy, Journalism and related engagementsas evidenced by publications in refereed journals, presentations in conferences and research outputs.
c) Candidates whose Masters Degrees and other Admissions considerations are not deemed as directly related to the programme will be expected to take at least Four relevant level Eight (8) courses as determined by the Departmental Graduate Faculty.

The PhD degree programme in Communication Studies is designated to last at least Three (3) academic years of two (2) semesters each. A Semester shall last for 16 Weeks (14 for teaching and 02 for exams).

Programme Structure